The 5th annual Burch Startup Competition was a success with over 130 students total participating and 80 students finishing lean startup training through the workshops.
At the end, 16 teams formed and competed for 1st 2nd and 3rd place along with five unique recognition awards (best business plan, best presentation, most innovative product, best use of domestic natural resources, and best poster).
The top team was Whoopedu with their educational gaming platform for kids age 1-8. They had a working prototype application and a talented team to execute their idea. Thus they were awarded the entry to the Burch Student Incubator worth over 40.000,00 KM in value.
The second placed team was home assistant software platform Shift. Their working prototype connects and controls kitchen appliances and other home automation devices through voice command on your mobile phone. Their idea was inspired by the work one team member does through volunteering at a home for special needs children. They saw how caregivers and parents struggled to support special needs children and came up with this innovative solution.
The third place team is Intern.it a marketplace for intern placement. Interns are qualified through quizzes which challenge them in coding and other skills. Based on machine learning and other algorithms companies can see the ranked candidates and select the best fit for entry-level positions at their company. They already have interested customers and are in the beta stage of their software build.
"Overall the students learned a great deal about market-oriented timing for projects and launching products given the short two-week nature of the competition. Teamwork was the most important factor in the successful team, but also creative ideas that solved real customer problems. One area for improvement is invalidating ideas and pivoting based on feedback received from the market", said senior teaching assistant Malcolm Duerod, organizer of the competition.