Started in February, the third joint business accelerator programme of Turku, Riga and Tallinn ended at a DemoDay event arranged in Riga at the end of April. Nearly 30 participating teams with a business idea or an existing start-up company introduced their ideas, networked with each other and listened to inspiring speeches over a period of two days.
The best teams were awarded
The programme of day one included a pitching contest in which the 12 best teams made it to the final. The goal was to find ”The Best of the Best – best business case, strongest team and likely to succeed”.
After a three-minute pitch and the questions that followed, the jury declared the Finnish company Mendolor Oy the winner. Founded last autumn, the Turku-based company is developing a digital pain measurement method e.g. for the follow-up of post-operative pain. Mikko Ketovuori who is behind the business idea was satisfied with the offering of the accelerator programme.
“The best thing for me was to share my experiences and notice that others ponder similar questions regarding their own ideas,” Mikko Ketovuori says.
Although there were a number of good teams, Johanna Puhtila from Turku Science Park Ltd who manages the Springboard project was not surprised to see Mendolor as the winner.
“Mendolor is an excellent example of successful combining of hard work with experience in different fields. Even the experienced jury saw that there is a definite demand for their product in the hectic hospital environment which may even seem frightening to some people.”
The second place went to the Latvian team Rotato. The criterion was ”The Runner-up – the one that was not yet there but you loved the idea”. The best pitch among nearly 30 teams was also awarded. The award went to Demosarte Oy which is developing online shop Taiko.
The winners were elected by the jury of the final which comprised of Patrick Halford, Nordic Robotics & Drone Ecosystem Director at IBM, and the Latvians Viesturs Zeps and Rudolfs Krese.
Internationality provided new opportunities
Johanna Puhtila is satisfied with the results of the accelerator programmes implemented within the Springboard project.
“Springboard gave us an excellent opportunity to familiarise the teams with an international operating environment and provided both the organisers and the teams with new perspectives and contacts in the start-up world. The best thing was the support the teams in the same phase or otherwise working with the same challenges received from each other. Many ideas were developed further using assistance from mentors and other business experts from different fields as well as the feedback received from other teams.”
The Springboard project that enables the international implementation of the BusinessUp programmes is carried out using the EU’s Central Baltic funding.