On Saturday 05 May, the EIT Alumni held the second edition of the 2018 EIT Alumni Startup Days.
Following on from a successful event in Barcelona, which invited those involved to redesign the port of Badalona, this event took a more technical direction, challenging participants to expand the use-cases of Blockchain technologies for the benefit of society.
Leveraging on the hype of Blockchain as one of the most disruptive technologies of 2018, and the business model orientated format of the EIT Alumni Startup Days, this event drew a lot of interest from alumni in Berlin. Attracting a fine balance of highly skilled Blockchain enthusiasts, and Blockchain 'first timers' eager to throw their own ideas into the mix, while also learning a thing or two about this innovative technology.
Our event partner this time was the Energy Web Foundation (EWF), who provided the following challenge: How do we use Blockchain technology to decentralise and democratise our inefficient systems?.
Oriol Pujoldevall, a Business Development Associate at the EWF, and EIT InnoEnergy Alumnus kicked off the day by explaining a little about the platform his company work on, and why they decided to purposefully shape day's challenge in vague terms, to open it up to all sectors.
Following the same structured sessions as the Barcelona edition, teams began to take shape as a plethora of ideas were thrown around the room. Under the guiding hands of Francesco Bonadiman, the moderator for the day, the teams then got down to the details of their business models and prepared for the pitching competition at the end of the day.
Taking full advantage of Berlin in spring, some of the groups even decided to take their ideation process outside, soaking up the innovative surroundings of the Green Garage campus, and making use of some of the on-site activities when they felt like they needed a break.
At the end of a productive day, three teams took to the stage to present to our expert jury made up of Rosen Dimov (IYPF), Oriol Pujoldevall (EWF), and Xin Hu (Match X). The ideas were very well developed, with one team even having a prototype app ready to display with their pitch! The three final teams consisted of:
- Med Ac: Use Blockchain to tokenize prescriptions to make the system more efficient and reduce costs.
- Plafair: Regulate the recycling of plastic, and ensure fair pay for plastic collectors in developing countries.
- Stoken: Using Blockchain to create a stock market for startups, using crypto-currencies.
Finally, over some well-deserved Vietnamese curry, the jury announced their decision to award 1st prize to team Med Ac. They were given an EIT Alumni Raspberry Pi 3, and exclusive access to incubator.coop. An international incubator run by the IYPF, which will give Med Ac the chance to properly take their idea to the next level.
We look forward to hearing how all the teams progress!
Thanks again to our dedicated coaches and jury, our organising team, and all the participants who took the time to join us for this edition of the EIT Alumni Startup Days.