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Azerbaijani start-up joined Seedstars World held in Lozanna, Switzerland, as a winner of qualifying round of the competition which took place last year in Azerbaijan with the support of Azercell Telecom and organizational support of Barama Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center. 12 star-ups out of 60 were able to qualify for the final round to compete for USD 500 thousand in investment. Although start-ups from South South Africa, Australia and Morocco became the winners of the competition, the start-up project representing our country caught great interest. Azerbaijan joined the competition with the project Dronee, which is a drone, customizable aircraft vehicle carrying a hardware platform. Developers can easily use the drone for own purposes by choosing relevant hardware (mobile multimode camera, air censor, thermal camera, 4G modem etc.) and applications and entering the codes.
Seedstars World is the global competition to identify talented youth in emerging and fast-growing start-up market. The competition aims to provide support for entrepreneurs in emerging countries. While Seedstars World covered 36 countries last year, now there are 60 countries participating in this competition. It drew the attention of entrepreneurs from Silicon Valley (center for hi-tech companies in California, US) and Western Europe. Previous participants of the competition were able to create over 360 jobs and attract some USD 20 million as investment. Having MEST, Google for entrepreneurs and Microsoft as its partners, Seedstars World provides platform for innovative start-ups and supports regional business.
Azercell Teecom LLC, leading mobile operator in Azerbaijan, collaborates with Swiss company of Seedstars in the World Start-up Competition. Imran Baghirov, head of Strategic Partnership and Customer Channel Management Department, recently appointed a Seedstars World ambassador, underlined the importance of global integration in the process of digital ecosystem development in Azerbaijan. While sharing his impression about the event, he stated that considering the innovative and great business potential of the young in Azerbaijan, it is a reasonable strategy to increase the role of start-ups in national economy by creating favorable conditions for them. Currently, there is a severe struggle going on for innovative minds and business ideas in the world, and we, as a part of this struggle, need to work hard to apply innovation and encourage international investors to invest in our country. "Rivalry between the countries over the next period will be on science and innovation.” Imran Bagirov added.
Barama Innovation Center was founded in 2009 by Azercell with the purpose of supporting entrepreneurship in Azerbaijan. The Center generally supports the projects in information technologies and start-ups operating in this industry. Barama Center has made a number of achievements during six years of its activity. More than 30 projects were launched at the center and 20 of them completed successfully. 4 companies have been established and successfully run operations. Barama has upgraded its activities since 2014 to grow as professional business incubator and was introduced to the public with the name “Barama Innovation and Entrepreneurship Center”
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Azercell Telecom LLC was founded in 1996 and since the first years sustains a leading position in the market. Azercell introduced number of technological innovations in Azerbaijan: GSM technology, advance payment mobile services, M2M,MobilBank, GPRS/EDGE (mobile internet), 24/7 Customer Care, full-time operating Azercell Express offices, mobile e-service “ASAN imza” (ASAN signature) and others. With 48,2% share of Azerbaijan’s mobile market Azercell’s network covers 99,8% of the country’s population. In 2015, the number of Azercell’s subscribers reached 4,5 million people. In 2011 Azercell deployed 3G and in 2012 the fourth generation network – LTE in Azerbaijan. The Company is the leader of Azerbaijan’s mobile communication industry and the biggest investor in the non-oil sector. Azercell is a part of TeliaSonera Group of Companies serving 186 million subscribers in 17 countries worldwide with 27,000 employees.