AGPC was at WebSummit, held in Lisbon from November 6 to 9, where it met foreign clients and entrepreneurs interested in investing in Portugal.
WebSummit is a technology conference held annually since 2009 that was born from the idea of ??connecting the technology community with all industries. It is a conference focused on internet technology and is the largest event of its kind in Europe.
Participants range from Fortune 500 companies to small technology companies and at the event we can find a mix of CEOs and founders of technology start-ups, joined by industry professionals from global technology and related supporting services.
In the first five years the event was held in Dublin, Ireland. In September of 2015 Paddy Cosgrave, co-founder and CEO of WebSummit, announced that the event would be held for the first time in Lisbon in 2016.
Cosgrave says this decision was made because "Lisbon is a cosmopolitan city and has better infrastructure and a greater number of hotels".
Since then feedback on the organization of the event in Lisbon has been very positive and has attracted the attention of the public in general. This year’s edition counted with the participation of Al Gore, François Hollande and António Guterres, as well as Founders, CEOs and CTOs from major companies such as Microsoft, Amazon, Intel, Google, Booking.com, Uber, and representatives of several governments.
With many conferences going on, participants have the opportunity to learn about topics such as marketing, robotics, startup creation, innovation but also health, sports, music, environment and investment is one of the central themes.
In addition, parallel events are held during the week throughout the city, with everyone joining the party for the night summit, during which local residents and participants get together in well-known areas such as Bairro Alto, Cais do Sodré or LxFactory.
With 60,000 participants from all over the world, we had the opportunity to talk to entrepreneurs with diverse experiences, but with a common interest: Lisbon and Portugal. All were unanimous in stating how much they were enjoying the city and many took the opportunity to learn more about how to invest in Portugal.
It was possible to confirm a trend of growing interest from foreign investors and entrepreneurs in Portugal and many consider not only investing, as well as starting their businesses and living in our country.
The most frequently asked questions we answered during our meetings were:
- What does it take to open a company in Portugal?
- How will I be taxed?
- What are the most interesting areas to invest currently?
- How do I get a residence permit?
In order to facilitate the entry and stay of entrepreneurs from outside the European Union in Portugal, so that they can start their projects here, the Portuguese government announced during WebSummit the launch of "Startup Visa": a program designed to grant a visa residence permit in Portugal to entrepreneurs who want to establish or move their innovative company to our country.
The program enters into force on January 1, 2018 and is directed at entrepreneurs who "want to develop entrepreneurial activities of production of innovative goods and services", that "will open or relocate companies and / or projects centered on technology and knowledge with a view to the development of innovative products" which "have the potential to create qualified employment" and which have the potential "to achieve a value of € 325,000 three years after the incubation period or a turnover of more than 500,000 € / year".
The evaluation of the economic and innovative potential of the project is based on criteria such as: the degree of innovation, the scale of the business and market potential, the capacity of the management team and the potential for creating qualified jobs in Portugal.
Applications will be made through an online platform available from January 2018 and, by investing and creating qualified employment, companies will be able to integrate a Startup Portugal incubator and benefit from all the incentives and support of the Startup Portugal Program.
Portugal thus reinforces the instruments through which an ecosystem of innovation and a structure that welcomes foreign entrepreneurs is created, attracting investment and talent. AGPC, through its One-Stop Shop, accompanies this movement, intending to support entrepreneurs in their establishment in Portugal and to assist them in all stages of the launch of the project, making sure it is a success.