StartUp Conference 2016 – a Mix of Entrepreneurship and Enthusiasm
The first day of the biggest entrepreneurial event in Southwestern Bulgaria welcomed nine presenters among which were Anita and Kalin Klasanovi, the founders of Roobar, Daniela Ivanova, a Business Development Manager at @ViberCEE, and Simeon Prusiyski, the cofounder of StartUP Masters,
During the day, two AUBG alumni, Nikoleta Popkostadinova and Ashod Derandonyan, also introduced their projects as part of a Social Entrepreneurship Panel from the non-profit organization Reach for Change founded by the Kinnevik Group. Popkostadinova presented an online platform about filling the gaps about sex, love and relationships for teenagers in Bulgaria. Derandonyan, the only deaf person accepted at AUBG, said that with his ListenUP project, deaf people want to say how important is that their voice is heard.
The second day began with the StartUp challenge and the four participating teams presenting their business proposals. The winner was Central Property with a platform that will ease the work of home managers in Bulgaria by replacing the old system with a new one, where “everything is managed, everything is seen” as Hristo Georgiev, speaker for the team and a fourth-year student at AUBG, said.
The silver medal was taken by ShareLugg, a delivery service that is “cheaper and faster” according to Udval Batsaikhan, a second-year student at AUBG. Avtorite placed third with their online platform about handmade arts and crafts from Bulgaria. The jury positioned last Snimachnata – a matchmaking platform and a social enterprise about screenwriters, directors, actors and operators.
Among the lecturers during the second day were Grozdan Karajov, the founder of Maria`s World Foundation, Dimitar Simov, a user experience specialist for SAP, and Zlatin Cvetkov, the creator of ShiziPro.
The organizers from StartUP@Blagoevgrad were satisfied with the final product of their hard work.
“The conference, according to all the members of the team and to the few participants we managed to talk to, was really successful,” said Gergana Ivanova, President of the club. She also said that this year the “lecturers were almost faultless.”
The thing the team will consider more carefully next year will be the date of the event. This year the conference coincided with the Daylight Saving Time and some participants were confused about the time of the lectures. As Ivanova said, they will attempt to avoid that in the future.
The participants in this year’s StartUP weekend also shared their impressions.
“Incredible organization, indescribable atmosphere and very intersting, motivating, and inspiring lectures,” said Elena Georgieva, a fourth-year AUBG student.
“I am happy that I took part in the conference. It was really tiring, but I learned a lot, gained useful experience, and got to know many people who share my interests,” Yordan Karayankov, also a fourth-year student at AUBG, said.