ICT Hub is a centre for technology entrepreneurship and innovation. Founded in 2014, in a very short period of time, it positioned itself as one of the key stakeholders in the local and regional innovation ecosystem, bringing together individuals, startup teams, companies and various organizations, experts and institutions, by providing them with consulting services, pieces of training, educations and overall support on their innovation journeys.
ICT Hub comprises a team of individuals dedicated to empowering innovation, both in smaller business systems that are fighting for their marketplace, as well as in corporations that are making significant efforts to understand the needs of the ever-changing market and improve their current industrial positions. Through a series of educational, mentoring and consulting activities, all aimed at building and strengthening the community inspired by innovative actions, ICT Hub provides professional support in the strategic approach to innovation, improvement of the organizational culture and development of technological entrepreneurship, both to partners in Serbia and the SEE region.
Four key service segments for ICT Hub are:
1. Consultancy in the field of innovation and business development
Over the years, ICT Hub has become an innovation partner to traditional companies and corporations, developing a variety of projects and programs that help them better leverage a disruptive business environment, whether the goal is a specific business need or a wider industry initiative. ICT Hub’s team of experts helps companies identify new technologies and business models, accelerate their projects and bridge the gap between corporate and startup culture, helping to bring together strategy, technology and people in order to create sustainable and future-proof business practices which will, in turn, secure a company’s position in a very unpredictable market.
The cooperation between ICT Hub and corporations is achieved through different areas of work:
- employee training and activities aimed at boosting innovation culture and startup way of thinking within companies (workshops and lectures on business model generation, testing business ideas and implementing lean startup methodology, but also organizing internal idea challenges, hackathons, Design Thinking Bootcamp).
- hands-on work on making innovation a strategic goal for a company (mapping innovation portfolios, developing innovation thesis and the overall innovation strategy, working on product co-development and various projects focused on customer-centricity, customer development and creating new customer experiences).
- supporting communities created around important business issues and connecting corporations with tech startups in order to facilitate the creation or improvement of competitive advantage to its clients.
2. Inception, development and implementation of donor-funded projects
ICT Hub’s dedicated project development unit aims to leverage its creative and operational potential, as well as its in-depth knowledge of the regional digital landscape to mobilise the support of prominent, globally significant donors, and articulate it towards the accomplishment of its overall mission. Positioned at the strategic crossroad between policymakers, financing instruments, leading implementors and grass-root communities that comprise the innovation ecosystem in the Western Balkans – ICT Hub is bringing together and empowering a wide spectre of stakeholders, successfully facilitating complex multilateral efforts and joint initiatives that foster the culture of innovation across national borders and sectoral domains.
The Project Unit brings a specific and well-balanced set of skills and competencies covering the complete life-cycle of a project – from its inception and articulation into a coherent intervention design, through the comprehensive fundraising process, proposal writing and budgeting, to partnership building and implementation including monitoring, evaluation, impact analysis and reporting.
Throughout the years of devoted work, with an already impressive list of projects under its belt, ICT Hubs Project Unit has been steadily crafting a reputation of reliable associate for donors and partners alike, contributing significantly to the company’s push towards the position of an industry leader and strong central pillar of the regional innovation ecosystem.
3. Office and workspace solutions
In 2017, ICT Hub has opened its centrally located co-working place, which became one of the biggest regional hubs, offering its 700m2 state-of-the-art workspace to a number of freelancers, entrepreneurs and IT professionals. With its combination of open area and separate and enclosed office spaces, ICT Hub premises have become more appealing to its corporate partners as well, helping create a specific synergy effect where employees from legacy businesses can try out the benefits of working in a place that offers a new and different atmosphere than the one associated with usual headquarters, enabling them to experience the environment where startups and smaller teams – who now lead the disruption across the industry spectrum – can thrive.
4. Investments in early-stage tech startups
ICT Hub Venture is a private investment fund, focused on early-stage technology startups in the SEE region. Through pre-seed and seed rounds of investment, the fund offers up to 50,000 EUR in exchange for 5-15% equity and provides the teams in its portfolio with access to the startup ecosystem, tailor-made development programs and networking opportunities with key figures in relevant industries who then become their mentors along the way. Its main focus is on startups that have a complete team and a scalable solution that challenges traditional businesses.