Sifted: Slush revokes Immigram’s controversial win at pitch competition

Startup conference Slush has decided to reverse its controversial decision to award Immigram, a startup founded by two Russian citizens, the top prize in its pitching competition. The decision comes after a flurry of criticism over the award, with many arguing that Europe’s tech scene shouldn’t back companies with any Russian ties.

  • “In light of new information on the extent of the Slush 100 Pitching Competition winner’s operations in Russia, Slush has decided to revoke their win,” the competition’s organisers said in a statement on Monday. “Slush has requested the participating funds, who are currently going through their individual assessment, to pull their investment into Immigram.”
  • As the pitch competition’s winner, Immigram, which helps tech talent (including Russians) relocate to the UK, was in line to get €1m in investment from five leading international VCs: Accel, General Catalyst, Lightspeed Venture Partners, NEA and Northzone.
  • None of the firms replied to Sifted’s request for comment about the investment by the time of the publication.
  • The Slush statement added: “Slush is sorry for the oversight. We should have reviewed all participants’ operations more closely before letting them enter the competition.
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