ACG alumna Niki Psarafti-Boutari (PIERCE ‘71), who serves as Vice President for Marketing and Communication at The American College of Greece, was one of the distinguished judges during the innovative Disrupt Startup ScaleUP, event, which took place in Athens November 15th and 16th.

“At the heart of marketing is creativity. And this event was so innovative, creative and disruptive indeed. It is important to help bring change as we are living in times of change,” Ms Boutari, a seasoned Marketing executive and founder of Arrow Advertising, tells Touch Base.

Ms Boutari was a judge for the Creative Business Cup Live Competition – the world championship for creative entrepreneurs that runs in a number of countries. It covers Design, Architecture, Content production, Advertising, Books and the Press, Music, Film & Video, Art & Crafts, Radio & TV, Amusement Parks & Live Scenes, Gastronomy, and Leisure activities.

“It was very inspiring and very vibrant,” says Ms Boutari, adding, “There were ten finalists, made up of young teams where the average age of the candidates was around 25 years old.  There were a number of innovative ideas, including a robot, 3D printing, and others. In the end, we the judges voted unanimously in favor of an e-tutoring service – – a start up in EdTech offering a pioneering eLearning platform for students. It combines advanced knowledge-learning technologies supported by thoroughly selected tutors making tutoring truly personalized, efficient, and significantly increasing student’s learning abilities and exam passing rates.”

Ms Boutari’s co-judges were Michael Hjortlund, Chairman of Board LEGO-Capital of Children, Yannis Spanoudakis, CEO of Stoiximan, Kelsey Ramsden, Entrepreneur, Mentor and Guide, and Vassilis Charalampidis, Founder of Bios and Romanzzo, while the panel was hosted by Theodore Anagnastopoulos, Co-Founder and President of SciCo.

Also at the two-day festival of entrepreneurship, where they held a session, were I for U, an organization for women entrepreneurs founded by noted ACG Alumnae Alexandra Pitta Chazapi (PIERCE ’67), Managing Director, Attiki Bee Culturing Co. Alexandros Pittas SA, Xenia Kourtoglou (PIERCE ’72), the President & CEO, Focus Bari, and Effie Karakitsou (PIERCE ‘76 & DEREE ’80), Managing Director, founder and owner of Magnet Advertising, as well as other celebrated women entrepreneurs to promote young women’s entrepreneurship.

The weekend event was organized for the second year running by Industry Disruptors – Game Changers (ID-GC), a non-profit organization founded to promote entrepreneurship in Greece, South East Europe and the East Med region, and featured presentations, competitions, workshops with one million livestream hits. Startups from Greece and thirty other countries took part, while the event also kicked off Global Entrepreneurship Week (GEW).

It featured the International Finals of GEW’s new “Future Agro Challenge”, and the regional finals of “Get In the Ring,” the “Creative Business Cup,” where Ms Boutari was a judge, and “Cleantech Open Ideas” with other prominent judges and speakers like Scott Halford, Emmy Award winning writer and producer, Larry Sanger co-founder of Wikipedia and Nanxi Liu founder of Enplug, among others.

The event was held under the auspices of UNESCO, the Hellenic Federation of Enterprises (SEV), the Association of Greek Tourism Enterprises (SETE) and the City of Athens – while it enjoys the support of institutions ranging from the Hellenic Pharmaceutical Manufacturers Association (SFEE) and the Federation of Hellenic ICT Enterprises (SEPE) to the US Embassy, Orange Grove and the British Council; It was attended by nearly 200 start-uppers, and young entrepreneurs from all over the world, and was broadcast live to 150 countries via livestream.

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