Yesterday evening, on the 38th floor of the Warsaw Spire building, The Heart Warsaw – a new European corporate-startup collaboration centre – was officially launched. It will help the largest corporations embrace the innovative potential of European and Israeli startups. The centre was established by the D-RAFT company with the support of MasterCard and Ghelamco Poland.
The opening of The Heart Warsaw is a big step for D-RAFT, a company that until today has been a “headhunter for startups” and has been cooperating with global corporations. “This startup ecosystem us a valuable source of innovation for large companies. Corporations have the resources and money, but they lack the agility of startups. We have seen repeatedly that the combination of these two worlds can be mutually beneficial,” said Tomasz Rudolf, President of D-RAFT and co-founder of The Heart.
Ghelamco is the owner of the Warsaw Spire office building. The company has allocated an entire floor to The Heart Warsaw. As Jeroen Van der Toolen, the Managing Director at Ghelamco CEE says, “we are excited to be a part of an initiative that helps position Warsaw as an international innovation center which attracts corporations and startups from across Europe.”
The Heart Warsaw will connect three worlds – corporations, startups that are ready to scale and investors. It will be a point of contact for the members of the Corporate Club that gathers corporate leaders responsible for innovation and digital transformation. The partners include such notable companies as Mastercard, PKO Polish Bank or Orbis.
Mature startups will have the possibility to accelerate in the ecosystem created by The Heart. The ScaleUp Club will bring together the best startups and allow them to meet investors and corporations. The first meeting of the club will take place on 9th February. The main requirement is that the startups must be present on the market, have a ready product and be willing to accelerate their growth.
Startups will also have the opportunity of participating in dedicated thematic programs such as FinTech, HealthTech, Smart City, Internet of Things and OmniChannel. The first program – FinTech – has already kicked off; the Demo Day will take place two weeks from now. Within the FinTech path, The Heart Warsaw closely cooperates with Mastercard SmartPath, a global startup support program.
The founders of The Heart Warsaw plan to make their new center a vital point on the startup map of Europe. In the upcoming years, they plan to scale up, creating international branches not only in Europe, but also in the United States or in Asia.