Posts Tagged ‘ Aalto Venture Garage

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.

Working in the Garage

US Ambassador Smitten with Pamoja

The Aalto Venture Garage hosted a few high level visitors: the US Ambassador Bruce Oreck and the Embassy’s senior commercial officer Nicholas Kuchova. In their early days they had worked in clean technology, working in Panama with a company producing bio digesters! As we already have two prototypes up and going here at the Garage, one with cow dung and one with food waste,  we had the opportunity to showcase these – and to guests who already knew a thing or two about the work we do!

They were impressed and gave us good feedback and ideas about our next steps, including financing.

The work continues… One and a half weeks to go with the Summer of Startups program.

US Ambassador Bruce Oreck from Aaltoes on Vimeo.

Summer of Startups! update

It’s been almost a month since the Summer of Startups program started. During this time, we’ve realized that it’s time to take the whole project to another level and give it 120%. The Summer of Startups offers an interesting platform to shape our business model, narrow down our focus and take necessary steps towards approaching future investors. Surrounded by 9 other startup teams, it’s been an inspiring working environment – with everyone creating their own projects – all at the Aalto Venture Garage. Constantly being able to exchange experiences and ideas and bringing alive new ones is just another reason why I’m becoming a believer in open work spaces as entrepreneurs from a diverse range of businesses interact and innovate together! This is what the Aalto Venture Garage calls Open Source Entrepreneurship . I love the unexpected collision of ideas generated in a place like this!