HUB Helsinki co-hosted event

The initiative to co-create an event with the HUB Helsinki appeared in early spring 2010 when we visited Sami Oinonen for a chat. Well he listened to us telling the Pamoja story and our establishment in East Africa and then he simply opened up his calendar and suggested us to co-host an event on cleantech. We really did not know what to expect from a visit to the proto space of HUB Helsinki, but this sounded like a cool thing.

The planning of the event was a quite long process from thinking only cleantech we started to shift focus towards  sustainable business in Bottom of the Pyramid markets. When we picked up this idea after the summer, this made a lot of sense. The week we had scheduled for the event was full of events touching upon the same subject. There was the TEKES workshop on cleantech business in BoP markets, there was the Mobile Brain Bank event on Mobile Business in Africa, and then Nordic Africa Days in Turku as well.

We simply decided to attend all events and pitch, as well as run our co-hosted event at the HUB. Read more

Pamoja constructs a fixed dome shaped bio digester.

Pamoja, determined to fight the effects of climate change, has entered into partnerships with other organizations that are already involved in the fight. One such organization is Heifer International, an international non-government organization that is involved in improving livelihoods through giving skills and providing projects that can fight poverty.

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Pamoja to launch floating dome shaped bio digester.

After spending almost a year of research, design and great deal of effort from engineers both local and international, Pamoja can proudly say that there is a ray of hope at the end of the tunnel for those, especially farmers and urban people who have a great deal of organic waste and yet spend all their lives in darkness and no cooking energy. This comes after Pamoja Research Engineer, Ashabahabwe Ambrose handed over the research report to the Pamoja management team while at their offices at Uganda Industrial Research Institute (UIRI) last Thursday.

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Inspiring times

Time is running fast when you have fun. The Stockholm times so far has been wonderful. One day we work from morning to evening in order to finish business proposals or budget layouts, another day goes by with intense planning or brainstorming combined with tons of emails. One day is not similar to the other one.

Just a week or so ago we were hosting a guest from Denmark. Kresten Buch, Founder of HumanIPO, seed investor and entrepreneur. He paid us a visit at the office for some morning coffee. We had the chance to show him our plans and we got some valuable feedback. Our business model got essential push forward. 

At lunchtime we all headed to Kyrkan, the entreprenuerial hub for social entrepreneurs in Stockholm.It was a lot of fun to visit Kyrkan since a lot familiar faces and friends were present. We had a chat with Arne from Global Focus who shared his thoughts with us and encouraged us to move forward. It was inspiring indeed to discuss crowdsourcing among other topics with him. Hopefully, something concrete comes out of Arne and Kresten meeting each other.

We were also discussing the lack of a meeting place for social entrepreneurs to actually connect with investors – there is even a broader lack of an open-minded meeting place between actors from different fields and entrepreneurs, not to mention a place where academia can meet business people and social innovators!


The new approach? – Pamoja event in Helsinki

Event location in Helsinki

Upcoming Pamoja Event in Helsinki

Together with the HUB Helsinki, PAMOJA is organizing the event “THE NEW APPROACH?” – Sustainable growth for a changing base of the pyramid. We are really proud about the prominent speakers we could arrange for this event. It already caught a lot of interest in Helsinki.

Our project “Sprouts of Sustainability” and its business model serves as a case for discussions at the event. The project is still in stealth mode and we are really excited to present it for the first time to the public at this event. “Sprouts of Sustainability” is an integrated model that brings renewable energy to rural areas, while exciting new business opportunities for local entrepreneurs. We will explain it more in detail later.


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“Think global, act local” from the Pamoja perspective

Hejsan, Siku njema, Annyeonghaseyo (안녕하세요), Hyvää päivää, Ywm Sʻyd (يوم سعيد.), Dobar dan (Добар дан) and Servus,

“hello” in all languages spoken in the Pamoja team…

I just realized this the other day, as I was receiving an email in finish again (not a single glimpse what it means) : We have quite a mix of languages in Pamoja . – Finish is always good for some real laughters. It looks and sounds so funny. Those tough guys…:) – Also, Peik and me, who are sitting in the Swedish office, often… Read more

SU Innovation

Our new office is in the heart of the Sthlm University campus

Pamoja moves forward with full speed in Sweden. During the last week me and Felix has relocated to SU Innovation offices at the Stockholm University campus. We are really satisfied with our new office.  SU Holding AB serves with experienced business expertise and broad networks, the working atmosphere at the offices seems to be really good as well. We are glad that the incubator has earlier experience to work with for profit social entreprenuership and personally I am really excited to design our social enterprise profile during the autumn. Read more

Stockholm, Helsinki, Seoul, Kampala and Shanghai

Our Pamoja team has as normally been spread all around the world. Felix left for Stockholm in the beginning of the week and arranged with housing and all practical matters important when settling in a new city. One of the first things he got his hands on was a new racer bike for instance.

Maria is in Shanghai to participate in a climate finance conference and hopefully we get an exciting report from there in the near future.

In Finland the team focused on preparing for future activites. Me and Irena met with the Hub Helsinki to discuss a co-hosted event in the planning. I also attended “Africa – continent of opportunities” TEKES seminar where Pekka Haavisto was one of the speakers. 

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Summer 2010 goes to history as the “Summer of Startups”

August turns to September and it is time to look back at an amazing summer of great experiences at the Aalto Venture Garage. It has been a summer full of great fun, fresh ideas and people. Working closely together with nine other start up teams offered an inspirational working environment indeed.

The Summer of Startups is an entrepreneurial program for startups aiming to become global growth companies. The program is first of it’s kind in Finland. Internationally it reminds of the model developed by Y Combinator – supporting early stage teams to go from idea to company.

To bring this concept to Finland was a brainchild of Project Manager Ville Simola at Aalto Entrepreneurship Society. It was a truly interesting process to watch how he managed to pull together the concept in the Finnish context. The Head Coach Ramine Darabiha was of great value to push the teams out of their comfort zone and grow as entrepreneurs and specially as public speakers.  Apart from having the great coaches at hand for input and instant feedback the Venture Garage was visited by a large number of the most interesting people in the Finnish entrepreneurial ecosystem. Read more

Pamoja one of the winners at Demo Day at Aalto Venture Garage

 Last Friday the Summer of startups program ended in a great gala show with all ten teams presenting their result in a pitching competition. The garage was packed with people and the atmosphere was comparable to any top start up event event at Silicon Valley, to quote Talouselämä the largest weekly  business magazine in Finland.  3 winners were chosen out of all the great teams:

Living Canvas offers exotic green walls for interior design in offices. The team was awarded for best demo pitch and the show delivered was truly entertaining and the prototype of their product catched a lot of interest throughout the summer.

Arada Services offers easy and affordable inter city transportation via monile phone in Ethiopia. They were chosen the most promising team of the program and won a trip to USA for their achievements. Congrats!

Pamoja was chosen as the team which developed most during the summer. Our team was really happy to gain this acknowledgement. We are now looking forward to carry on our establishment in the Nordic region.  Many thanks to all the people that have supported us along the way.