The semi-finals of the competition will be held on November 17th and 18th. Out of the 42 teams selected to participate in the Spotlight 2021 program, only 10 startups will be chosen as finalists.

The 10 teams will compete to win the €350,000 investment prize on November 24th at the Spotlight Pitch Day, the final round of the competition.

Only one startup will be chosen as the winner of the competition by a jury consisting of: Dan Oros (Google), René Schöb (KPMG Romania), Horia Velicu (BRD - Groupe Société Générale), Laura Ștefan (Mastercard Romania), Gabriel Diaconescu (BearingPoint Romania), Monica Obogeanu (Orange Romania), Alexandra Badea (2Checkout, now Verifone), Mihai Buda (Mastercard Romania), Bogdan Axinia (eMAG), Andreea Pipernea (NN Romania), Ondrej Bartos (Credo Ventures), Lavinia Neagoe (Fitbit), Andrei Dudoiu (SeedBlink), Mălin Ștefănescu (TechAngels), Alexandru Bogdan (RocaX), Dan Mihăescu (GapMinder Venture Partners), Andrei Pitiș (Simple Capital), Adrian Erimescu (Growceanu) and Mircea Vădan (Transylvania Angels Network).

The Spotlight Pitch Day event will take place on November 24th from 16:30 to 19:30 EET and will take place online, broadcast live on the Crowdcast platform.

While waiting for the winner to be announced, participants will be able to watch a discussion between Ondrej Bartos (General Partner at Credo Ventures) and Sergiu Neguț (Co-Founder at FintechOS) about Eastern Europe’s potential to create new technology leaders.

The investment prize awarded to the best startup in the Spotlight 2021 competition is syndicated by a group of investors, including TechAngels, SeedBlink, Growceanu, GapMinder Venture Partners, RocaX, Simple Capital and Transylvania Angels Network (T.A.N.). The amount is offered as a contribution to future investment in the startup in the form of a convertible note.

Spotlight has officially started on October 5th, and during the program, startups had access to over 1,000 individual meetings with leaders of the technology industry, such as Luciana Lixandru (Sequoia), Nicolas Dessaigne (Y Combinator), Irina Haivas (Atomico), Andrei Brașoveanu (Accel), Carlos Espinal (Seedcamp), Hristo Borisov (Payhawk), Nopadon Wongpakdee (Startup Core Strengths), Ramli John (Product-Led Institute), Andy Budd (Clearleft), and Ondrej Bartos (Credo Ventures), as well as representatives of over 50 investment funds, such as EarlyBird Venture Capital, Credo Ventures, 500 Startups Istanbul, Speedinvest, SOSV, Gamegroove Capital, LAUNCHub Ventures, Market One Capital, Eleven Ventures, Smok Ventures, eMAG Ventures, Flashpoint Capital, Notion Capital and others.

Spotlight is developed in partnership with Google for Startups, KPMG Romania, Mastercard Romania and BRD - Groupe Société Générale, with the support of eMag, 2Checkout (now Verifone), Fitbit, Microsoft Romania, BearingPoint Romania, Orange Romania, NN Romania and Credo Ventures.

Launched in 2011 and initially organized as part of the How to Web conference, Spotlight is the best-known competition in Eastern Europe for technology startups to expand globally.

More details about the program are available at