Yervant Zorian, chief architect and fellow at Synopsys, and president of the Synopsys Armenia research and development site, joins us to reflect on the past two decades of Synopsys’ presence in the country. Zorian also discussed the current trends in the semiconductor industry, its impact on the EDA market, and why more companies are increasingly opting to design their own chips in-house.
Last year, Teach for Armenia launched the Tech4Armenia initiative. The program allows tech professionals to move to underprivileged areas of Armenia and teach computer science while continuing to work remotely in their current roles. Gor Nazaryan, the managing director of talent initiatives at Teach for Armenia joins us to discuss the program’s objectives and the overall state of education in Armenia.
Hayk Chobanyan, the executive director of the Union of Advanced Technology Enterprises (UATE), joins us to discuss several of the organization’s initiatives, including the upcoming Digitec conference and Armath Engineering Laboratories. Hayk also shared with us his thoughts on how the country’s tech sector needs to be positioned globally in order to attract more companies to Armenia.
Gevorg Soghomonyan is the co-founder and CEO of AimStack, an open-source machine learning experiment tracker. Gevorg shared with us how AimStack tackles the problem of tracking and visualizing ML metadata. We also spoke about his thoughts on the current MLOps landscape and where it is heading. Lastly, Gevorg shared his experience in building a company around an open-source project.
Al Eisaian is a serial entrepreneur who has been involved in growing Armenia’s tech ecosystem for more than two decades. In this episode of EVN Disrupt he shares with us the insights he’s gained throughout his long career. We also spoke about his current role as CEO of Cognaize, an AI start-up that helps companies extract insights from unstructured data.
Unum is a deep-tech company focused on designing next-generation AI models and novel database technologies. Ashot Vardanyan, the founder and CEO of the company joins us to speak about his unorthodox journey of becoming a computer scientist and entrepreneur in the deep tech space. We also speak about the current trends in machine learning and what the future holds for the technology.
Viktoria Khechumyan, the CEO of nooor, joins us to discuss the evolution of Armenia’s blockchain ecosystem over the past few years. Nooor is a consulting company that advises on topics related to blockchain technology, including idea validation and talent recruitment. They’ve been involved in developing the blockchain ecosystem in Armenia from the early days. Viktoria also shared her thoughts on current trends in blockchain, and what the coming years hold for the technology.
What goes into evaluating a start-up idea? What metrics can you monitor to know whether or not your product has a high probability of succeeding in the market? These are the answers that Prelaunch.com is looking to answer. Narek Vardanyan, the co-founder and CEO of the company joins us to discuss how their platform provides entrepreneurs with insights on the market demand for their product, allowing them to make adjustments before launching in order to ensure the highest probability of success.
Raffi Kassarjian, CEO of Sensyan and advisor to the CEO of the Union of Advanced Technology Enterprises, joins us to recap the major events that took place in Armenia’s tech sector over the last year. We spoke about the state of the global tech sector and how it relates to Armenia’s context, particularly the slowdown of venture capital financing and how start-ups are thinking about their run rates. Raffi also shared his thoughts on the influx of Russian, Ukrainian and Belarusian tech talent to the country this year, and the arrival of several global tech companies. Lastly, we spoke about the impact of the appreciation of the Armenian dram and its impact on the industry.
SpaceTech denMACH is a Danish space engineering company building solutions at the intersection of IoT (Internet of Things) and satellite communications. The CEO, Sheila Christiansen, and the CTO, Alexandru Csete, join us to discuss how their work is impacting the logistics, smart agriculture and education spaces. Sheila and Alexandru also shared with us their perspective on what approach smaller countries should take to develop their space industries.
Leonid Kirakosyan, a partner at McKinsey & Company, joins us to discuss the importance of digital transformation and making Armenia a more attractive destination for strategic investment. We also spoke about how Armenia’s tech industry can have a larger impact on the economy and what it will take to turn the country into a globally competitive innovation hub, including addressing the talent needs of the ecosystem.
Earlier this year, the Armenian Government announced a new subsidy program to help attract top talent to the country. The program will subsidize anywhere from 20%-70% of the salaries of graduates from top 400 universities or people who have 10 years of work experience at leading global companies. The program was developed jointly by the Investment Council of Armenia and the Ministry of Economy. Hovsep Patvakanian, head of the Investment Council, joins us to discuss the impact he hopes this program will have, and what other legislative proposals they are currently working on. Hovsep also shared with us his take on Armenia’s economic growth in 2022.
Artem Harutyunyan, the co-founder and CTO of Bardeen, joins us to discuss how his company helps automate browser-based workflows. Bardeen raised a $15.3 million Series A round this year to grow their engineering and AI teams. Artem also shared with us his thoughts on the importance of students from Armenia having opportunities to study at universities abroad, emphasizing the perspective shift that comes from being exposed to new environments, and how they are able to impact Armenia positively when they return to the country.
Dr. Lucy Abgaryan, the co-founder and CEO of GrittGene Therapeutics, a biotech company based in Los Angeles, California, joins us to discuss how her company is working to find treatments for Myotonic Dystrophy, a rare genetic disorder that causes progressive muscle loss and weakness. Lucy also shared with us her experience in trying to find opportunities to work with the local Armenian biotech industry.
Arsen Stepanyan, the co-founder and CEO of Orders.co, joins us to discuss what challenges and opportunities there are in building software as a service (SaaS) solutions for the restaurant industry. Orders.co is a Los Angeles-based order and menu management system for small- and medium-sized restaurants. We also discussed Arsen’s efforts to build a team for his company in Armenia, and what lessons he’s drawn from his experience.
This week on EVN Disrupt we are continuing our series of podcasts from the Science and Technology Convergence Conference. Once again, we have two guests on this week’s podcast. Our first guest is Ashot Papoyan, a biotech executive who is the Chief Operating Officer at Biosim and CEO of Elm Tree Research. Our second guest is Haig Eskandarian, a microbiologist at the University of California, San Francisco. With our two guests we spoke about experimental biology and commercializing science findings in the biotech industry.
This week on EVN Disrupt we are continuing our series of podcasts from the Science and Technology Convergence Conference. We have two guests on this week’s podcast. Our first guest is Viken Douzdjian, the managing partner at Argonoutic Ventures. He shared with us his perspective on the Armenian venture capital ecosystem and how he sees the future of venture funding for the Armenian startup ecosystem. Our second guest is Levon Budagyan, the founder of Waveye. Levon is one of the early members of the Armenian tech scene. We discussed with him how the tech industry in Armenia has evolved over the last decade, and the problems they’re working to solve with WaveEye.
This week on EVN Disrupt we are launching a new series of podcasts that were recorded with guests and participants of the Science and Technology Convergence Conference that took place on September 28-29, 2022. Our first guest of the series is Dr. Mary Papazian, the former president of San Jose State University. We discussed the evolving role of the university today, and her thoughts on Armenia’s higher education ecosystem.
This week on EVN Disrupt, Marina Aghayan, the co-founder of AIP Tech and Fact Industries, joins us to discuss the potential that 3D printing has for solving real-world problems. AIP Tech is an Armenian company that 3D prints devices for the medical and aerospace industries. AIP Tech volunteered to help veterans of the 2020 Artsakh War with varying bone injuries with customized 3D implants to help them return to normal life.
This week on EVN Disrupt, Stepan Aslanyan, the co-founder and CEO of Hexact, joins us to discuss the problems they are working on solving by building no-code business intelligence tools. We also discussed Stepan’s long business career in Armenia and his thoughts on the country’s business culture.
Zareh Zurabyan, the head of the Americas division at eLabNext, a European biotech company, joins us to discuss problems the biotech industry is currently working to solve. Zareh describes who the different players in biotech ecosystems are and what trends he is seeing in the industry in 2022. We also discussed his efforts to mentor Armenian start-ups and his thoughts on Armenia’s biotech scene.
This week on EVN Disrupt, Karen Vardanyan, a founding partner at FormulaVC, joins us to discuss their firm’s investment strategy and what early stage start-ups they’re seeing in the Armenian ecosystem. We also discussed what the current global economic situation means for Armenian start-ups, and what the future of the venture capital space in Armenia may look like.
This week on EVN Disrupt, Manana Hakobyan, the founder and CEO of DataPoint Armenia, joins us to discuss the importance of data-driven culture, and how her organization is working to accelerate the development of data science in Armenia.
Karen Gyulbudaghyan, the founding partner at Strategic Values Ventures, a strategic advisory firm for global startups, joins us this week to discuss what it takes to build a successful start-up ecosystem. We also spoke about the impact of the Berkeley Skydeck start-up accelerator program, and the Armenian start-ups that have successfully gone through the program.
Aram Kocharyan, the CEO and co-founder of Layerswap, joins us this week to discuss his start-up that optimizes transferring crypto assets from layer-1 to layer-2 networks. Aram shared his journey from a self-taught junior engineer to building a company that has successfully raised investments and closed deals with multi-billion dollar companies. We also discussed a new project that Aram and his colleagues have started to conduct cryptography research in Armenia.
Liana Karapetyan, an associate at SmartGateVC and the director of Hero House Angels, joins us this week to discuss angel investing opportunities in Armenian start-ups. The Hero House Angels program allows individual investors from around the world to be connected with the Armenian start-up ecosystem and make investments. We also discussed Armenia’s ecosystem's trajectory as the number of start-ups in the country grows.
This week on EVN Disrupt, Arek Der-Sarkissian from Hero House Glendale joins us to recap the 2022 Armenia Tech Trip, a program that brings tech professionals from the Diaspora to Armenia to familiarize them with the country’s tech sector. During the program participants visit the offices of Armenia’s leading tech companies and participate in networking events with members of the industry. We also discussed Hero House Glendale, a start-up hub in Southern California.
Our guest this week on EVN Disrupt is Chinar Movsisyan, the founder and CEO of Manot, a start-up that helps companies using artificial intelligence identify where their models may fail when users use them in the real world. We also discussed Chinar’s experience as a PhD student, and how effective a path graduate school is for building deep tech start-ups.
Hovsep Patvakanyan, the CEO of Invest in Armenia, joins us today to discuss the investment climate in Armenia, and the recently launched Investin.am platform which allows investors to invest in Armenian companies. We also discussed what aspects of Armenia’s economy are attractive for investment, and what reforms are necessary to continue attracting interest from investors.
Albert Poghosyan, the founder and Chief Dean of BuildUp Bootcamp, joins us this week to discuss how his organization attempts to prepare junior and mid-level professionals in Armenia’s tech sector for more senior roles. We discussed the project-based curriculum that BuildUp has developed, and what outcomes they are seeing with their first cohort of students.
This week on EVN Disrupt, Naré Gevorgyan and Sargis Karapetyan join us to speak about their start-up, Embry Tech. We discussed their experience building a wearable product company, their move into the Web3 space with Motearn, how they incentivize their users to live more active lives, and how they envision the future of wearable technology.
Tania Sahakian, the regional director for DISQO in Armenia, joins us this week on EVN Report to discuss how DISQO established their office in Armenia in 2018, and how they have grown to a team of over 130 people in the country. We also spoke about the training programs that DISQO runs, and what is needed to fulfill Armenia’s tech sector’s talent needs.
Over the last year, the term "metaverse" has become increasingly prevalent in media and culture. This week on EVN Disrupt, Taron Khachatryan, the CEO and founder of Knoxlabs, a virtual reality equipment company based in Los Angeles, joins us to speak about the current state of virtual reality technology, and what the future of the metaverse may look like.
Tigran Shahverdyan, the co-founder and Chief Technology Officer of Robomart, joins us this week on EVN Disrupt to discuss how Robomart is attempting to make fresh produce more accessible through their "store-hailing" platform. We also discussed the future of self-driving vehicles, and Gituzh's initiatives to advance science in Armenia.
This week on EVN Disrupt, Lilit Nersisyan, a bioinformatician and the founder of the Armenian Bioinformatics Institute (ABI), joins us to discuss the field of bioinformatics, its role in the world today, and what ABI is working on. We also discussed science commercialization, and the biotech industry.
Mikayel Khachatryan, the CEO and co-founder of Wirestock, joins us this week on EVN Disrupt to talk about how his company allows users to sell photos, vectors and videos online through multiple marketplaces at once. We also spoke about Wirestock’s experience in raising their seed round last year, and what they have planned for the future of the company.
Gevorg Poghosyan, the CEO and co-founder of reArmenia, and board member Armine Mkrtchyan, join us this week on EVN Disrupt to speak about reArmenia, a crowdsourcing platform that encourages collaboration on a variety of projects in Armenia. We also spoke about the recent developments regarding regulating equity crowdfunding in Armenia, and how it can encourage more investment in Armenian companies.
Hrant Khachatrian, the founder and director of YerevaNN, a machine learning research lab, joins us this week on EVN Disrupt to tell us the story of how YerevaNN was built at a time when there was very little machine learning activity in Yerevan. We also spoke about the state of scientific research in Armenia and what is needed to significantly develop and boost research activity in the country.
The first guest of the newly launched Creative Tech podcast series, "EVN Disrupt" is Ashot Arzumanyan, a partner at SmartGateVC, a venture capital fund focusing on early stage start-ups. We discussed the Armenian start-up ecosystem, how it has evolved over the last four years and what we can expect from the Armenian tech sector in the near future. 0:00 Introduction/ 0:52 Founding of SmartGate VC/ 3:50 Tim Draper's investment in SmartGate/ 8:28 Evolution of Armenia's start-up ecosystem/ 15:55 Rise of product companies in Armenia/ 19:04 Recent investments in Armenian start-ups/ 29:26 Hero House LA, Diasporan start-ups/ 35:19 Challenges/ 37:58 Future of SmartGate and the ecosystem