On 8 September, Latvian Start-up Awards were presented to Latvian start-ups in eight categories for the first time. In seven categories, the winner was chosen by a jury of Latvian Start-up Association "Startin.LV" representatives, while in the eighth category - "Community Choice" - the favorite was chosen by public vote.
In the category "Start-up with the biggest social impact", ISSP UL spin-off company Cellbox Labs was chosen as the winner. The award to the company was presented by the President of Latvia, Edgars Rinkēvičs: "Your technology is amazing because it will not only speed up but also simplify the development of new medicines." The President was particularly interested in companies represented in this category as they were committed to making a difference in solving planet-wide problems.
The President acknowledged the importance of the start-up sector by his presence at the awards ceremony. He did not stick to the prepared official speech and spoke from the heart, emphasizing that “The companies awarded today are a vivid example of the fact that we do not lack ambition to change Latvia. Start-ups are changing many industries and are proof that we have something to be proud of. Latvia needs economic change, and start-ups need to be part of it. Congratulations to all the winners! We have a lot to be proud of, and I hope these achievements will inspire future entrepreneurs."
The award ceremony took place during the annual Start-up Day, supported by the Ministry of Economics of Latvia, the Investment and Development Agency of Latvia (ERDF project "Support for Technology Transfer Programme"), and the Riga Investment and Tourism Agency.