UT IdeaLab’s idea competition Kaleidoskoop brought together a record number of participants and strong business ideas
On UT IdeaLab stage at sTARTUp Day business festival on 9th December the finals of Kaleidoskoop business ideas competition took place. The main prizes were given to the student company Festera who produces recycle bins that eliminate biodegradable waste using special bacteria, and UT IdeaLab’s STARTER program graduate Triplecase who has developed a practical three-zipper pencilcase.
“As in the first round of Kaleidoskoop the atmosphere was friendly and felt like a mentor club, then the finals at sTARTUp Day left really powerful impression – both our competition on UT IdeaLab stage as well as the speakers on the main stages! For one student company it is the same feeling like getting to play in the NBA is for a schoolkid,” praises Sandra from Festera team. “Participating in Kaleidoskoop not only gave us experience in performing but a feeling that we’re part of the start-up world – now we want to compete, pitch, sell and network even more!”
The foreman of the jury, University of Tartu Vice Dean for Development Erik Puura mentions that he’d like to “Especially point out the student companies that have consulted with university’s scientists during the product development process. It shows that science-based ideas are already accepted in our schools as the fundamentals of a new entrepreneurship.”
Two best teams from Kaleidoskoop will go to Oulu to attend Polar Bear Pitching Competition – it’s an international start-up event where ideas are presented standing waist deep in the ice-cold water on a stage carved in the frozen sea! Moreover, several special prizes were given out to Cody (University of Tartu price), Senior Gym (Tartu City Government prize), TutorFriend (Ajujaht prize),Jätsu (Good Thoughts Club prize), Festera (Ecoinnovation prize) and Viljandi Vibes (Union of Viljandi County of Municipalities Prize).
During the Kaleidoskoop two best STARTER program teams from UT IdeaLab were also chosen! Two winners, Triplecase and Tutorfriend had a chance to present their ideas on the stage one more time and compete with the best STARTER teams from all over Estonia! “STARTER program has opened so many doors for me,” admits Liis, the leader of Triplecase. “Thanks to practical seminars and valuable mentor feedback our idea has grown into something much bigger that we ever imagined!”
“We have gained so many new experiences, acquaintances and valuable feedback, so that we’re already considering ourselves as winners!” say Eda and Eeva-Liisa from Senior Gym, gratuates of the STARTER program.
Kaleidoskoop is the biggest youth project and business ideas competition in South-Estonia. This time it took place 7th time, bringing together the record number of participants – in the first round there were 42 teams competing! The judges in the finals were Erik Puura, the University of Tartu Vice Dean for Development; Siim Espenberg, the Chief Specialist in Business Development at the Tartu City Government; Kristian Sägi, a member of the Estonian Business Angels Network Estban; and Harri Tallinn, Manager of the Estonian biggest business idea competition Ajujaht.
Event is funded by European Social Fund.
Maret Ahonen, TÜ Ideelabori juht, 5225910, maret.ahonen [ät] ut.ee