On 22 June 2022, TWIN delivered the keynote at the AtLAS Conference in Scotland, where future athlete entrepreneurs could pitch their business ideas.

Hosted by the Edinburgh Napier University, the conference acted as the main multiplier event for the EU project AtLAS – Athletes as Entrepreneurs. The morning of the conference sought to illustrate European models of dual career support. Introduced by the opening of host Susan Brown (Edinburgh Napier University) & project leader Elizabeta Valentic (FH Joanneum), the speech of TWIN Founder & CEO Wolfgang Stockinger investigated the European dimensions of dual career.

Subsequently, international athlete support approaches of Slovenia, The Netherlands, Italy, Denmark, and Scotland took centre stage. A virtual speech of Scotland international rugby union player Simon Berghan added the important athlete voice to the discussion. Concluding the first part of the day, a Scottish panel discussion featuring Ali Collins, Ben Atiga and Sean McPartlin reflected upon the presentations and the programmatic challenges in the dual career support of athletes.

AtLAS pitch

The afternoon of the conference was dedicated to the AtLAS business pitch – a competition of international high-performance athletes. Five elected national winners during the AtLAS programme had been awarded a travel to Edinburgh where they had the opportunity to present their business idea to an international audience. Rasmus Gotke (Denmark), Ali Collins (Scotland), Gianpiero Avataneo (Italy), Jelte Boersma (The Netherlands) and Norbert Dürauer (Austria) pitched in front of an expert jury, consisting of Nick Fannon and Peter McLean of Bright Red Triangle (a hub for enterprise practice at Edinburgh Napier University) and Maggie Anderson of The Edinburgh Napier Business School. In a very tight race for the win, Ali Collins and Gianpiero Avataneo could finally secure a Scottish-Italian double victory.

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