The train from Minsk-Riga will set as the venue for the international hackathon, combining teams from Latvia and Belarus.
Today, ten mixed teams from Belarus and Latvia will compete in the first-ever cross-border startup competition on a train dubbed “Minsk-Riga Startup Train”. The unique concept will bring together 40 participants from two countries, mostly developers and future startup founders, who will work together to build their startup ideas - and compete for the victory.
The goal of the international hackathon, organized by Magnetic Latvia and Imaguru Startup Hub Minsk, with the help of TechChill and Startin.LV is to strengthen the relationship between the Belarusian and Latvian startup ecosystems. The Startup Train is bringing together 20 startup builders from each country, who will all have a chance to develop their ideas with the help of experts and mentors, as well as explore both cultures, gain insights in the national startup ecosystems and see offered opportunities.
The hackathon will begin on August 27 and end with the final pitching on August 31 in Riga, but the most exciting part for both teams and mentors will be the night hacking on the train Minsk-Riga, within their own dedicated train car for the participants. This event is a first of its kind for the Latvian ecosystem, aimed at building stronger bonds in the region and raising awareness about the many opportunities and advantages for startups in Riga.
The participants have already submitted the ideas they will work on during the event and picked their teams. There will be ten teams in total, with four members in a team, each with a specific skill set - from designers to data scientists, developers to marketing experts.
The ten teams taking part are:
- “TripShare” working on photo and video sharing place;
- “Finance Flow” creating a solution that shows rentability for projects, employees, and customers;
- “Remuzio” crafting a service that would fight against the shadow economy in the music industry;
- “VAT Compliance” developing a VAT compliance platform specifically for digital companies;
- “MAZZY” offering new products for new IoT cloud;
- “OpenBusiness” presenting SaaS for retailers and banks;
- “ARrow” demonstrating a sketch app that creates a prototype on the phone screen, based on the drawing on paper;
- “Smart Sneakers” working with blockchain that allows earning tokens for the physical activities and later exchange for goods;
- “MeetnGreetMe” making travel experience better by creating a space to meet with local people while traveling abroad;
- “Color emotion” planning to pass emotions to the mobile application.
The teams will be consulted by experienced mentors who can help with developing ideas, problem-solving and most importantly, relevant feedback based on their extensive knowledge in their particular fields.
The delegation of Latvian mentors includes Arturs Bernovskis, Angel investor and Chairman of the Supervisory Board at PulseTip, Andris Stabins, Web designer from SQUALIO, Andrejs Cirkovs, Founder of Strix Studios, Peter Marculans, General Partner from Overkill Ventures, Egita Polanska, Chairperson of the Board of Latvian Startup Association and Program and partnerships at Startup Wise Guys, Viesturs Sosars, Board Member of TechHub Riga co-working and Director and Lecturer of the entrepreneurship course at Stockholm School of Economics Riga, Zane Bojare, Communications and Marketing guru working with startups at Startup Wise Guys accelerator, and Olga Barreto-Goncalves - Chief Startup Instigator from Magnetic Latvia Startup.
The Latvian mentors will be joined by a similarly extensive list of mentors from the Belarus side, consulting the teams during their work in Minsk.