K.A.V.A. 2018 Awards – Focus on Innovation, New Business and Social Responsibility
“Kaunas Growing Business Awards” (K.A.V.A. 2018) is gaining momentum: already on June 12th at the solemn awards ceremony, the most prominent representatives of Kaunas business who have been nominated for nine awards will be presented and honored.
Nominations were created with the partners of the awards and they reflect the most relevant trends in business. This time about three of them: marking the leaders of the new business sector – “Kaunas Startup” nomination, also the nomination “Responsible Business” testifying the changing attitude and the nomination “Innovation 2018” testifying the success of Kaunas city as an innovative business attraction centre.
Experienced players in new business
The success of new and progressive business will be awarded in nomination “Kaunas Startup” presented and sponsored by K.A.V.A. awards partner – “KTU Startup Space”: the winners will be chosen after evaluating the most unique idea, smooth development and, no less important, the potential for international activity.
According to Tomas Proscevičius, Business development specialist in “KTU Startup Space”, the nomination “Kaunas Startup” has high requirements: the winner should be an inspirational and a good example not only for the entire ecosystem of Kaunas city startups, but also for young entrepreneurs in Lithuania or even in the Baltic region.
According to specialists from the “KTU Startup Space”, who are developing and expanding the open starter community, the activity of the startup sector in Kaunas is intense, and recently a new tendency is emerging – not only students start to build startups, but also 30-40-year-olds, experts in their field, with solid expertise and specialized knowledge in specific areas.
“More increasingly, people, who have worked in companies for years, who are experts in internal work processes or technology defects and who are creating solutions to emerging issues with the help of this experience, are dashing into the startups ecosystem. We notice that the teams of startups developed by older entrepreneurs are more focused on the result: they are trying to develop the final product only in a year and to introduce it to the market, and that, of course, results in significantly higher productivity,” T. Proscevičius speaks about changes in the startup business of Kaunas.
Social responsibility: important not only for the community, but also for the business itself
Does socially responsible business mean benefits only to the community? Lina Blaževičiūtė, director of the Lithuanian Responsible Business Association (LAVA), says that it is not true: “Not only in Kaunas but also throughout Lithuania companies are paying more and more attention to positive changes, realizing that social responsibility projects implemented in various ways are beneficial not only to the public, but no less, to the business itself.”
L. Blaževičiūtė observes that companies that are able to assess the environmental and social impact of their business contribute to positive changes by various means both within the company and in the community. And precisely that – the business that embraces economic, social and environmental responsibility, and companies that in this way contribute to the welfare of Kaunas city and its citizens – will be evaluated and honoured during the K.A.V.A. awards ceremony in the nomination “Responsible Business”, presented by the LAVA Association.
“This nomination is important both as an inspirational example for others, and as a reminder that social responsibility is an important part of the business strategy that creates value,” says L. Blaževičiūtė, Head of the LAVA Association.
Innovative enterprises raise the quality of the city
The nomination “Innovation 2018” for the business that had the most successful development and promotion of innovation is presented by the “Kaunas Science and Technology Park”. Paulius Nezabitauskas, Director of Innovation and Entrepreneurship Development Department, emphasizes that Kaunas has one of the strongest and largest infrastructure of science and business valleys in Lithuania, where startups and small business enterprises together with scientists develop innovative technologies for improving human health, saving energy resources, managing the infrastructure of homes and the city.
“However, one of the main indicators of innovation is investment in research and experimental development. In the enterprises working in Kaunas Science and Technology Park, this indicator amounts to 4.15%. of total income, while in Lithuania this investment in the private sector amounts only to 0.28% (according to data of 2015), and across the EU – 1.3% (according to data of 2015). We feel obliged to speak about these excellent results, to spread good news and to appreciate the fact that Kaunas innovative companies are investing a lot, they are growing and at the same time contributing to the growth of the quality of the city,” notes P. Nezabitauskas.
Companies wishing to apply for the announced nominations must submit a completed application form on the website www.kaunasin.lt/kava2018. Other persons or organizations may also offer nominees and submit applications. Completed applications must be submitted until 1 June 2018.
Awards are organized and funded by Kaunas City Municipality in accordance with the program of 2018 “Initiatives for Kaunas”. The initiator and guardian of the awards is Kaunas City Municipality Administration.