Launching TechChill in Milan – TechChill steps outside its borders for the first time

TechChill is Latvia's flagship startup event, regularly bringing together thousands of attendees over multiple days to drive the startup ecosystem forward. For the first time, TechChill decided to take its event and go international – to Milan. Truesix helped develop the event's visibility and reputation in an entirely new market.

TechChill and Truesix's collaboration goes waaaay back. Having worked with Truesix over several years, it was a no-brainer to collaborate with TechChill to launch their first foray into the international market and establish themselves in Italy's financial hub to develop what eventually became known as TechChill Milano.


While very established in Latvia, the Baltics, and even the Nordics, TechChill had comparatively little visibility and brand recognition in Italy – the chosen location of their first international conference. Not only that, the TechChill network of investors, media reps, and speakers didn't necessarily have exposure or interest in the market. 

The Truesix team would have to support TechChill in developing awareness that it is present in Milan, develop its network's interest in Italian startups, and develop the Italian ecosystem's awareness that TechChill is coming to town.


The news that a conference is coming to town is by most standards not considered to be internationally relevant news. Truesix then had to find a way to make it news. 

We did that through harnessing the power of community – in three different ways:

One: Making use of the TechChill investor community to gain insight into the state of foreign investments into Italian startups. 

This took the form of a survey, where investors were asked about their opinions about Italy's startup ecosystem – the state of investment, the maturity of the ecosystem, the potential, etc. 

With original data, the Truesix team could use it to develop various forms of valuable, owned content that provides insight into a major European country. Something media outlets could find desirable, which would also highlight TechChill's role in shining the spotlight on Italy.

Two: Activating local startup ecosystems that pitch battle semi finalists are from.

One of TechChill's main elements is its pitch battle that comes with many sought-after prizes. With applicants from around Europe (and beyond), the 50 semi-finalists represented a dozen or so countries. 

The Truesix team developed customized pitches to each country's business media outlets letting them know that they had representatives in the final stages. Countries like to root for their team players (small countries especially), and so this would help drive the news that TechChill's in Milan, and it's a great opportunity for startups in the region. 

Three: Activating Truesix media communities and connections.

No matter where the event occurs, Truesix makes sure to offer a premium journalist experience for media reps attending. This comes through personalized interview matching, resource centers, and what has now become a staple – the Truesix media tour. This way, we have been able to develop relationships with media representatives, deliver them the most interesting stories for them specifically, and thus, increase the likelihood of coverage during the event. 


Using the original data gained from the investor survey combined with interviews with Italian tech ecosystem heavyweights, Truesix was able to put together a report on the state of the Italian startup ecosystem. This was immediately picked up with exclusivity by, and the report remained trending for a week. 

The data was also used to develop an opinion piece picked up by Maddyness on the thriving potential of the Italian ecosystem.

Meanwhile, press releases activated startup communities across Europe, drawing attention to their startups' opportunities to win the pitch battle. 

While the custom media service led to a fun time touring Milan's startups, which eventually resulted in stellar pieces such as story on a local luxury EV startup in The Next Web by the inimitable Cate Lawrence, a feature in Wired, an overview of Italian startups in Hipertextual, an interview with a pitch battle finalist in Forbes Italy, and so many more.

The buzz was so prominent about TechChill's presence in Milan that when Sifted wrote a piece on Italian tech, TechChill was sure to get a shoutout.

Safe to say, the event was a hit, and TechChill's first foray into international waters was a major success.

We had set ourselves quite ambitious goals – not only to get to know the Italian startup ecosystem, but also to facilitate its growth. That took not only skill and courage, but also reliable partners in arms. The Truesix team is our strategic partner, and together we've been able to create content for international media outlets about the Italian startup industry's news. Growth requires a global perspective, and relationships with leading media outlets is a cornerstone of attracting both expert experience as well as investments in the region. Long-term successful collaborations must be built on a foundation of people-first values, and for TechChill, that fits well with Truesix.

Annija Mežgaile
CEO of TechChill

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