A rapidly-growing Vilnius tech sector—TechFusion—has been supporting Ukraine’s war against Russia all year. To date, millions of euros have been donated on behalf of the ecosystem’s most prominent players, like the unicorns Vinted and Nord Security, while many companies continuously present new ways to raise funds to donate.
February 23, 2023. Vilnius TechFusion, the tech ecosystem in Vilnius, the capital of Lithuania, that unites the most advanced technology sectors—IT and communications, fintech, biotechnology, and lasers—has come through with financial help for Ukraine since the first day of the war. The country’s first unicorns, Vinted and Nord Security, as well as other notable players in the sector Tesonet, Hostinger, Omnisend, and others have donated millions of euros worth of aid and continue to participate in fundraising projects.
“Now, when many globally-recognized tech companies are slowing down and laying off employees, we are proud to witness that Vilnius tech sector is resilient and going strong. Not only does it grow steadily and recruit global talents, but it also displays a strong political stance. By donating and fundraising significant amounts, the sector’s representatives have been helping many Ukrainian people for the past year,” said Inga Romanovskienė, director of Go Vilnius, the official tourism and business development agency of Vilnius.
Lithuania has been a resilient supporter of Ukraine since February 24th, 2022, the start of Russia’s unlawful aggression toward Ukraine. The country’s residents and businesses have come together to donate financial and humanitarian support, recruit volunteers to help the Ukrainian refugees, and organize numerous war-aid projects.
The latest country-wide initiative, called Radarom! (Let’s Radar!), collects financial support from the residents and businesses to purchase the much-needed multifunctional tactical radars that can monitor the airspace around significant objects in Ukraine and protect infrastructure as well as prevent disruption of civilians’ lives. So far, over EUR 8M have been donated to the cause, and Vilnius TechFusion ecosystem has contributed both financially and by inciting the public to donate more.
Tesonet, a cybersecurity company and business accelerator which has produced the country’s second unicorn Nord Security, boosted the donation process significantly a few weeks ago—on February 3rd, the company doubled the funds collected for one hour, finally adding another million euros to a million euros donated by the country’s residents.
Many other Vilnius TechFusion players have joined the initiative: Omnisend, an e-commerce email marketing startup, is tripling the funds collected by its employees, Furniture1, an online furniture retailer, and Billo, an app developer, are doubling their employee’s donations; carVertical, a VIN decoder, has donated EUR 25K, and Tech Zity, a co-working space, is offering three days of space use for free for every person who donates over EUR 50. Baldai1, a branch of Furniture1 operating in Lithuania, has also taken the Lithuanian National Selections of Eurovision Song Contest 2023 as an opportunity to add EUR 100K to the record-breaking amount of EUR 205,455 donated by the national broadcaster’s viewers within 7 minutes of the broadcast.
Year-long aid from tech players
Other Vilnius TechFusion representatives have been relentlessly raising funds, encouraging teams to participate in initiatives, and donating to Ukraine for the entire year. Unicorns.lt, a Lithuanian startup association, has donated over EUR 1.8M on behalf of the association. The majority of this amount was used for medications and Ukrainian resident evacuation.
Vinted, an e-commerce startup and Lithuania’s first unicorn, reports to have donated EUR 2M and raised EUR 1M from its members, contributing a total of EUR 3M worth of support to Ukraine.
Baltic Classifieds Group, an online classifieds group, has donated EUR 300K at the beginning of the war, Hostinger, a web hosting provider, has donated over EUR 160K throughout all year, and is also contributing to the Radarom initiative by doubling its teams’ donations, while the employees at Frontu, a technician-first service execution software, have donated their quarterly bonuses to aid Ukraine.
As a rapidly growing tech hub, Vilnius has also been continuously helping Ukraine—from organizing protests and rallies against Russia’s invasion to providing accommodations to Ukrainian refugees, helping them enroll at schools, and finding new jobs.