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On September 21, as part of the St. Petersburg International Innovation Forum (SPIIF), a Demo Day was held for ITMO Business Incubator’s acceleration program Future Technoogies. Ten teams presented their ideas to the expert jury, special guests and visitors. Over the course of five months, the projects have gone through many stages, from initial prototypes to final products, and acquired market introduction strategies. Visitors of the Forum could learn more about ITMO University’s technological projects at a special exhibition.
What does one need to get into tech, and, ultimately, launch their own project? A unique idea, a team of professionals, materials, equipment, financing and, first and foremost, specific knowledge that can’t be gained fast and cheap. Not having even one of these things will often make even the most enthusiastic entrepreneur abandon their work before it’s even started. The staff at ITMO’s Student Laboratory OLIMP, however, believes that finding your place in the tech world isn’t as hard as it may seem. Four years ago, a student team had a similar experience, and they are now ready to share it with others. As part of Gogol Library’s “Popular Science Week”, OLIMP’s co-head Kirill Bodrov gave a talk about the traps and pitfalls of technological entrepreneurship, why it’s important to visit FabLabs and science festivals and where to find the right skills and people for a project.
S&R Systems, a resident of ITMO University’s business incubator, is working on the optimization of chemical technology processes in manufacturing and laboratories with a strict focus on import phase-out. The company’s equipment is cheaper than its foreign-made counterparts and is made according to clients’ custom requirements. Founders Denis Sapegin and Mikhail Razin spoke with us about the tasks their company solves, lifehacks for finding angel investors at bars and indifferent engineers.
Sixteen years ago, Dave Vasquez first came to Russia from Columbia to study Russian language and literature. Since then, he has succeeded in launching several independent projects, participated in accelerators in Moscow and St. Petersburg, graduated from a Master's program in Barcelona and worked some time with American startups. Now, Dave is living in St. Petersburg and helps novice entrepreneurs develop their businesses. In an interview for ITMO.NEWS, he shared about what you should know before starting a business, how to build a startup ecosystem in such a big country as Russia and why it's best to teach entrepreneurship starting with children at elementary school.
The SumIT Startup School and the MIT Global Startup Labs acceleration programs have both come to a close at ITMO University. Young entrepreneurs from Russia and South Korea have received feedback from an expert board of staff from MIT and ITMO University’s business incubator. Their ideas were presented to potential investors during the DemoDay closing event on August 10.
Do you live in St. Petersburg? Then you’re likely aware of what it’s like to live in a rainy climate. You always need an umbrella, your choice of clothing is limited, driving is a hassle, you need to carry around all the extra stuff, can’t spend as much time in parks as you’d like to and, of course, the rain outside puts you in a mood. Do not fret – the age of technology has a solution to any problem. ITMO.NEWS has put together a list of inventions, both clever and odd, that help people live, laugh and love despite the rain.
On July 31, ITMO University’s business incubator launched the International SumIT Summer School. This year the acceleration program will welcome young entrepreneurs from South Korea. Three startups, each supervised by a Russian mentor, will work and study here for two weeks. ITMO.NEWS explains what sort of a program the business incubator has prepared for its Korean colleagues and what projects they have brought with them.
The eight-week MIT Global Startup Labs program, organized by the Massachusetts Institute of Technology, was launched in June at ITMO University’s business incubator. 29 students and graduates from St. Petersburg, Moscow and Irkutsk, supervised by mentors from MIT and Sloan School of Management, are given two months to assemble a team, present a prototype of a new mobile application and to develop its marketing strategy. In August the participants will present final prototypes to potential investors. ITMO.NEWS describes the apps that very soon might be a part of your mobile experience.
The company AGCT, a resident of ITMO University’s Technopark, will receive funding of more than 44 million rubles from RBV Capital Fund. The contract was signed during the Startup Village conference. The company is working on development of a complete cure for HIV. Startup Village also featured the residents of the Future Technologies business accelerator and the “New Generation of Supercapacitors” project headed by advisor to ITMO’s Vice Rector for Research.
MIT Global Startup Labs program started off in the Business Incubator of ITMO University in June. The program goes on for eight weeks and is organized by Massachusetts Institute of Technology. Starting from the year 2000, a similar MIT GSL program has been carried out in 14 countries, altogether 59 times. This summer marks the first time that the program is conducted in Russia. The goal for the students from St. Petersburg, Moscow and Irkutsk is to gather their teams and to come up with a prototype for a mobile application and a marketing strategy with the help of curators from MIT and Sloan School of Management.