Startup Lab’s teams were spinning around at Mentor Feedback Carousel

On 24 October, Startup Lab hosted a Mentor Feedback Carousel which brought together teams of the Starter Tartu programme and experienced mentors to help develop the teams’ ideas. Teams rotated between mentors to get feedback to their ideas from different experts. At the end of the event, mentors gave virtual play money cheques to the teams they liked the best.

All mentors got virtual play money cheques worth €100,000, €50,000 and €10,000, which they gave to their favourite teams as an investment at the end of the event. One team received a direct pass to the top 100 teams of the Ajujaht business ideas competition. Harri Tallinn from Ajujaht gave this award to the team CommuniCare, whose idea is to help care home patients to have better connection with the world around them.

Team Medea collected an investment of €550,000 and as the winner of the play money game was awarded “The Startup Owner’s Manual“ – the book every startupper dreams of. Head of the team Medea, Sophio Japharidze who studies at the Institute of Computer Science at the University of Tartu said, “Getting that kind of investment from mentors shows that they have faith in us and that our idea has potential.” Medea is developing a medical device that is integrated with an alarm system and that continuously measures oxygen levels and heart rate. The runner-up was team CommuniCare who collected €330,000 and Gerifix came third with €270,000. Gerifix is creating a system that analyses the falling patterns in elderly people in order to prevent future falls.

Kristina Viznovich from LMP made a surprise to all Starter Tartu teams by offering them an opportunity to get one hour of free legal advice from their law firm. Teams can approach LMP with questions on a variety of areas, ranging from data protection to entering foreign markets.

Head of Ajujaht, Harri Tallinn has been a mentor for Starter teams in Tartu on several occasions. In his words, every idea has potential if you put work into it. “None of the ideas should be underestimated, because it is often the ideas that seem the most foolish and crazy at first glance that turn out in the end to be most successful,“ said Harri Tallinn and encouraged teams to apply for Ajujaht.

All the teams were very grateful to the mentors. According to the teams’ feedback they got advice from different perspectives and the confidence to move on. It was also mentioned that mentors had pointed out critical aspects of their ideas and warned about mistakes they should avoid.

Norman Vester, a first-year bachelor’s student at the School of Economics and Business Administration of the University of Tartu and one of the leaders of the CommuniCare team, said, “Because CommuniCare is a social enterprise, we did not expect to be selected among the Ajujaht top 100. Therefore, it was a big surprise for us. I believe that one of the cornerstones of our success was our clear objective. In addition, we have conducted market research and interviews to get a better overview of the problems we are facing. We have worked hard and at the Startup Lab workshops we focused on analysing the feedback received and immediately making the necessary adjustments. Now it is time to review the tips from mentors and build an initial version of our service.“

Startup Lab’s good partner Tartu City Government was represented by their Marketing Manager Helen Kalberg as a mentor. According to Helen, all teams were very ambitious and she saw great potential in some teams.

Maret Ahonen, Manager of the Startup Lab and Starter Tartu programme, is grateful to the mentors for their time and attention spent on mentoring teams. “It's great that we have so many mentors in Tartu who are excited about students’ ideas, are willing to listen to them and give suggestions. Moreover, it makes us happy to see that several alumni of the Starter programme have showed up as mentors,” said Maret.

Startup Lab would like to thank all the mentors: Harri Tallinn (Ajujaht), Taavi Tamm (Starter@Pärnu), Kadri Haljas (Triumf Health), Chris Thompson (Neuroactive AI), Vaido Mikheim (Tartu Science Park), Kristina Viznovitš (LMP), Sven Illing (Startup Day), Evgenia Trofimova (Introwise), Alo Peets (Unversity of Tartu), Indrek Tulp (Selfdiagnostics), Rimante Valancauskaite (Nevercode), Helen Kalberg (Tartu City Government ), Mari-Liis Kärsten (Nortal) and Ants-Oskar Mäesalu (TRIT).

Event photos in Startup Lab’s Facebook album.

The event was financed by the European Social Fund.

The event is funded by EIT Health.

Further information: Andres Vaher, Marketing & Communications Specialist, Startup Lab, University of Tartu, +372 5558 7359, andres.vaher@ut.ee

Sandra Sommer Press Officer Tel: +(372) 737 5681
Mob: +(372) 5307 7820 sandra.sommer@ut.ee
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