over 5000 in ‘13, Slush has stayed true to its intimate roots. We still sweat the small stuff, celebrate the local successes and host the breakthrough connections. Community service BIgger and bolder SLUSH: THE SURVIVAL GUIDE Remember Supercell launching Gunshine in 2011? What about Jolla and Sailfish in 2012? I Was There Slush is a true collaboration between our startup community of serial entrepreneurs, investors, startups, students.
the pulse of Slush is all you need to warm the soul. And it’s going to be the most fun you’ve ever had while wearing a nametag. Many of you may not know what to expect of Slush or how to make the most of it. Here’s where we want to help. This year marks the sixth anniversary of Slush. What started in 2008 as conference for 150 attendees has grown into over 5000 attendees. At the same time we’ve wanted to stay true to our humble roots and approachable vibe. Every year there are many first time attendees, startups and volunteers. For hundreds of people, Slush is the first experience in startup world. Whether this is your first time in Slush or you are an old pro, Slush will surprise you. The idea is simple – we get the most relevant people together for two intense days and magic happens. Startups, we prepared some homework for you (p.6). For out-of- towners we wanted to highlight some of our favorite places in Helsinki (p.11). And for the perfectionists we even have a checklist (p.9) combined with a less than scientific flowchart of what Slush really feels like (p.4). It’s not our goal to make Slush the biggest startup event out there - but the best. For this, we sweat the small stuff, celebrate the local successes, and connect breakthroughs. Slush is possible thanks to our culture of working together for a greater cause. It’s a true collaboration between our startup community of serial entrepreneurs, investors, companies and volunteers. After all, it takes a village. Mikko Kuusi On behalf of Slush team 2013
step at making the most out of Slush. Onwards. Plan My primary goal for Slush: The three people I want to start a high-quality relationship with: Three things I want to learn at Slush: The number of business cards I will to collect: The
FROM INDUSTRY JUST CURIOUS ATTEND A FOUNDER TALK CHECK OUT SLUSH.ORG/JOBS TOUR THE DEMO BOOTHS HEAR AN INVESTOR TALK HANG OUT AT MEETING AREA SEE THE PITCHES LISTEN TO PRODUCT PITCHES GET FEED BACK LOOKING FOR INVESTMENT NEW BUILD START A MEME CHEER FOR A PITCH HOW MANY STEPS DID YOU TAKE DURING ONE DAY? ENJOY THE PARTY DID YOU SELECT YOUR FAVORITE HOODIE + SNEAKER COMBO TO WEAR? TAKE A GUESS: WHO IS THE BIG NAME IN SLUSH 2014 GIVE FEED BACK FIND THE MOST EXCITING TECHNOLOGY PRESENTED LIKE CRAZY TAKE PART IN INDUSTRY SESSIOS SLUSH: PREPARING FOR SLUSH RAISING FUNDING NEW JOB? ENTHUSE ABOUT TECHNOLOGY. SLUSH IS FULL OF EARLY ADOPTERS. FIND A SCOOP GET INSPIRED BLUE STAGE DEEP DIVE GREEN STAGE LEARN MORE AT THE SLUSH TV ON YELLOW STAGE FIND SWAG SHARE YOUR STARTUP CRUSH NEW IDEAS LIST ALL THE PEOPLE YOU WANT TO MEET! PITCH PITCH PITCH PITCH CHECK OUT SLUSH.ORG/ SLUSH2013/ COMPANIES CHECK OUT SLUSH 360 INTERVIEWS A S K QUESTIONS SHARE YOUR IMPRESSIONS #SLUSH13
in one place. It’s your job to know who you should be talking to. Everything moves fast. The talks last 10-15 minutes, so be on time. Remember, 15 minutes is already a long time to meet. Get to know the space in advance. You’ll have an easier time finding your way. Start with who you are. Your pitch is the most important thing you have. Practice relentlessly! Your goal is to have more people remember your startup after Slush so make sure you stand out. Bring your demo, business card and pitchdeck. Pronounce your name and your company name clearly. We’ve invested in the wi-fi like never before, but you never know. Prepare a demo video. Be sure to delegate with your team. Slush is not best experienced hunched over computer. Don’t leave your team stranded, but avoid being on e-mail all the time. Evenings are just as important as the official program. Don’t miss them! SLUSH: FOR STARTUPS This conference can be the defining moment for your startup. Many great companies have started here. So how to make the most out of Slush as a startup?
VCs and the funds they represent in advance. Read the VC’s investment thesis and see what types of companies they’ve invested in before. Read blog posts the VCs might have written or recent announcements they’ve made. There are no back- stage areas in Slush, so chances are you’ll get your five minutes to present. Journalists are always in a hurry: the more you can help them the better. Understand where they are coming from: what have they covered before? Product launches or larger stories? Do you have an exclusive launch coming up? Is your company a part of a bigger phenomenon? SLUSH: FOR STARTUPS Insider tip: One year a startup printed out all the pictures of the investors and found them from the crowd one by one. Dedication! Customers Employees Peers Show your culture. Make it easy for a potential employee to under- stand what you do and what you’re looking for. Remember to follow up. after the conference. Remember, not all press stories materialize overnight. Starting a relationship with a journalist is equally important. Insider tip: Don’t forget blogs and bloggers. Is there a guest post you could write on your experience in Slush? Insider tip: Choose the stage that is most relevant for your startup - they all have a theme. The crowd that gathers around the stage is just as important as the speaker. Slush is full of people from every imaginable industry. Whether you’re in gaming, cleantech, con- sumer web or health, the people within your industry will most likely be at Slush. You’ll just need to find them. Happy hunting! Don’t stand. Hunt. Insider tip: Another year a com- pany live-measured the amount of Slush attendees and at the same time demoed their product. The demo booth was crowded every day. Insider tip: Use the lunchtimes well. Food is a great excuse to get a potential hire to gel with the team. Who has had similar problems with recruiting/uptime/funding/ product vision? Conferences are a great time to learn from peers and ask the uncomfortable ques- tions. Make sure you know who else is attending and have relevant questions. Whether you’re looking for a startup to work for or trying to recruit your next superstar team member, conferences are a great place to make an impression. The only ones who really under- stand what you’re going through as a startup are your peers. Insider tip: he other startups are also potential customers who might be willing to test your prod- uct. Make your product relevant, ap- plicable and easy to grasp in a second. Slush offers potential customers to both B2B and B2C companies - you just need to grab their attention. Slush is a great place to showcase your startup and get your first customers. Just be relevant and memorable.
want to see in advance. The presentations are short and packed, usually around 15 minutes, so arrive early. The evening program is as important as the day program, so don’t skip the party. Inspiration. How Spotify scaled up to hundreds of millions of users? What do Supercell and Japanese gaming giant GungHo want to learn from one another other? Follow the Blue Stage and you’ll be sure to get a pulse of the startup world. For more of your favorite speakers head over to the Yellow Stage for a Slush TV interview. Insights. User acquisition 1-2-3? Getting started with a cleantech idea? Follow the dedicated industry sessions. If a gaming career is in your plans, take a closer look at the Black Stage on Wednesday. For in-depth knowledge on health startups, check out Green Stage on Thursday. For cleantech as well as information and cyber security, head over to the White Stage. Perspective. See the next billion dollar startup at the beginning of their journey and learn from the leading investors of the world by following the Green Stage on Wednesday and Black Stage on Thursday. You’ll hear over a hundred of pitches and from over twenty investors. A few words on what to do in Slush. We’ll have five stages, hundreds of companies and thousands of attendees. You’re not going to be able to do it all. Here’s how to navigate.
this book. Want to make friends? Bring a power strip. We’ve invested in wi-fi like never before, but a portable connection device isn’t a bad idea either. Practice your pitch. Can you pronounce your name as well as your company name so that a non-native speaker catches it? Pack comfortable shoes, plenty of business cards. Take a bag - you’ll have lots of swag to carry around. Charge your laptop! Start following the #slush13 feed in advance and check out the interview videos on Slush360. Talk about Slush in advance. You never know who else is coming. Contact your friends in town and ask them who you should meet during Slush. Get to know the space in advance. Arrive early to sessions. You’ll have better seats, less queues and a chance to catch up with others. Keep your meetings short. Everyone is running around just as much as you. Never skip lunch. Food brings people together. Take notes on people you’ve met. High five a volunteer. Slush is a nonprofit, so most of the staff - they make your event. Be sure to participate in the Twitter stream during panels and keynotes. Follow #Slush13 and @slushhq. Start a new meme. Conferences are awesome because of the density of like-minded people. Try and collate the main take away points for each talk. Join the afterparty, however tired you are. Everyone will be there. Follow up with everyone you met with nice, personal e-mails. Provide value, not just empty greetings. This is the point where acquaintances turn into relationships. Use Slush as a reference point in contacting people you didn’t get to meet, but would like to connect with. Write a blogpost of lessons learned - be sure to ping us also at @slushhq. You can always send us feedback through the website. Share your learnings with your colleagues. Compare experiences with other attendees. Check back on Slush.org for the recorded talks, extras and anything you might have missed during the days. Were there others from your hometown? Organize a get together to celebrate the new connections. SLUSH: CHECKLIST
Ysibaari as the locals would say) is an affordable favorite. Uudenmaankatu 9 2. Putte’s has great pizza, relaxed atmosphere and is open late by Helsinki standards. Kalevankatu 6 3. Pastries. Buy a karjalanpiirakka (carelian pie) and korvapuusti (cinnamon bun) from the pastry section of a grocery store. Late night foodtrucks offer authentic lihapiirakka SLUSH: GETTING AROUND Whether you’re a scrappy startup or a billionaire in the making, we’ve chosen places for you to work, eat and enjoy. Helsinki, one of the world’s most liveable cities, is a pocket-size metropolis. Even in the Slush. Bootstrapped Get work done 4-5. Startup Sauna is only a bus-ride away (102T/103T) from Kamppi). Even closer is Minimum Viable Office, MVP. Startup Sauna. Betonimiehenkuja 6. Minimum Viable Office. Aleksanterinkatu 16 Experience 6. Run around Töölönlahti (2 kilometers) starting from the Railway station - you’ll see a plethora of sights including Finlandia Hall and Linnanmäki. 7. Pubcrawl in Kallio is cheap, but unforgettable. We recommend Musta Kissa, Siltanen and Rytmi. 8. Kotiharjun Sauna is one of the last wood- heated public saunas for 12 euros. Harjutorinkatu 1 9. Juuri. Vegetarian food with a neighboring winebar Latva. Korkeavuorenkatu 27 10. Eat & Joy. Organic produce market and best porridge in town. Aleksanterinkatu 36 11. Muru. Tiny restaurant with a great menu. Fredrikinkatu 41 12-13. For drinks try Liberty or Death and Navy Jerry’s with their hipster crowd. Erottajankatu 5 and Hietaniemenkatu 2 18 - 20. Atelje Finné offers modern Finnish cuisine. For Michelin stars try Demo or Postres. Arkadiankatu 14, Uudenmaankatu 9 and Eteläesplanadi 9 21. Drinks in American Bar of Torni offer one of the only views over Helsinki as well as a lesson in history. Series A Exit Eat & drink Eat & drink Get work done Finnish people consume most coffee in the world and the coffee culture is strong. Try for example: 14. La Torrefazione. Wonderful lattes. Aleksanterinkatu 50 15. Johan & Nyström. Enjoy Katajanokka. Kanavaranta 7C 16. Design Forum Finland gathers together old and young Scandinavian Design. Erottajankatu 7 17. Kulttuurisauna is a new eco friendly sauna envisioned by Alvar Aalto in early 1900s but realized only this year. The 15 euro admission includes the possibility to dip in the sea. Hakaniemenranta 17 Experience 22-23. Kaivopuiston ranta and its many cafeterias offer silence and relaxation. Try out Mattolaituri on a sunny day or spend the afternoon in Carusel looking at the sailboats. Ehrenströmintie 3 and Merisatamanranta 10 24. Suomenlinna. The Suomenlinna fortress is part of Unesco’s wold heritage and beloved by everyone in Helsinki. You can use the public boatline (or rent your own cruise!). 25. Yrjönkadun uimahalli is a swimming hall with a classic 1920s decor and separate swimming turns for men and women. The regular ticket is 5 euros but you can also rent the private sauna from fourth floor. Yrjönkatu 21b Get work done Experience
The number is 0100 0700 or with a text-message at 13 170 (Type HELSINKI EXAMPLE ADDRESS 32 A). The private car company (no Uber here!) is called Kovanen and can be called at 0200 6060. Public transportation (trams, metros and buses) is world class and safe to use at any hour. Try Journey Planner to help plan: http://www.reittiopas.fi/en/ Good to know Transportation Ice, ice breakers Miscellaneous A quick primer for your encounters in Helsinki. Kippis! Slush. There’s many words to describe snow. Ask any Finn what the difference between lumi, loska, hanki, huurre, hile, kinos, nuoska pyry and puuteri. Startups. Finns are fiercely proud of their technology: praise MySQL, Nokia, IRC, Linux, SSH. Make small talk about Rovio, Supercell. Namedrop Jolla, Zen Robotics and Grand Cru. Sisu. Finnish word for perseverance. Silence and Sauna are the other words to know. Souvenirs. Go to Stockmann (Aleksanterinkatu 52) and buy Fazer chocolate, liquorice and Finnish design. Or hunt the demo booths for some authentic startup gear! Currency. Most places accept credit cards. The ATMs are called usually OTTO. Alcohol. You can purchase alcohol only between 9 AM and 9 PM. Retail sales of wine and liquor take place through Alko stores. Helsinki Airport. Helsinki Airport as excellent working conditions with a free wi-fi, plentiful power outlets and all the Angry Birds souvenirs you can think of. SLUSH: GETTING AROUND