The first-ever Forbes Under 30 Global Retreat brought together the world’s most elite young entrepreneurs and game-changers, half hand-selected from the Forbes 30 Under 30 lists worldwide, half from the Central European host region.
Held in Bratislava, a beautiful capital city on the banks of the Danube, the celebration honored 30 years of democracy since the fall of the Iron Curtain and the subsequent rise of independent society establishing the Slovak capital as a home to many startups and a testament to the transformational power of entrepreneurial capitalism.
The event constituted part of the 14th edition of GLOBSEC’s Bratislava Forum, an established and essential meeting place for political and business leaders, visionaries and innovators who share a common determination to make the world a better and safer place. The GLOBSEC Bratislava Forum annually hosts more than 1,000 participants from about 70 countries.
As with every Under 30 Summit, the social and cultural opportunities were world-class. Activities included a bar crawl through the historic, beautifully preserved downtown and a startup pitch competition aboard a private cruise to Devin Castle, near the site on the Danube where many brave Slovaks died trying to swing for freedom during the Cold War.
Inspiring Conversations From founders to politicians to CEOs, many esteemed speakers—including Czech Prime Minister Andrej Babiš, Formula 1 champion Nico Rosberg and British Parliament Member Seema Malhotra—took the stage to share innovative business insights.
Party at the Castle Bratislava Castle lords over the city and the Danube River. Participants took over the restaurant at the castle's base for a private evening centered around networking and friendship to last long after the Retreat concludes, not to mention unforgettable views and a taste of local cuisine.
Idea-a-thon Attendees took over the 18th-century Primate's Palace, where the Holy Roman Empire was dissolved and the Austro-Hungarian Empire emerged, for an afternoon brainstorming solutions for the host city, alongside Bratislava's mayor and chief innovation officer.