IDEAFEST Student Business Idea Competition Launches in Ukraine

23 May 2019

IDEAFEST Student Business Idea Competition Launches in Ukraine

On 15 May 2019 a group of staff from Henley Business school travelled to the Kyiv National Economics University (KNEU) to launch the Final of their first IDEAFEST Student Business Idea Competition, as part of the British Council's Creative Spark 'SPARK x KNEU' project.

The Henley Business School delegates consisted of Dr Maks Belitski, Associate Professor in Entrepreneurship and Innovation, Dr Norbert Morawetz, Associate Professor in Entreprenuership, and Jurek Sikorski, the Executive Director of Henley Centre for Entrepreneurship. Maks took on the role of the main presenter, whilst Jurek and Norbert were members of the judging panel.

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The other judges were Lisa Spencer, Fellow at Waterford Institute of Technology in the Republic of Ireland, Deborah Fairlamb, US Advisor to the Minister of Finance of Ukraine and Government Commissioner for Investments, Illia Bobyr, Senior Software Engineer at Google Headquarters in the USA, and Andrey Bezpiatov, Director of Analytical Department at Dragon Capital in Ukraine. Addtionally, the IDEAFEST Final was attended by representatives of the British Council, including Hinde Dicker, the director of the Creative Spark Higher Education Enterprise Program.

Five finalists were selected to present to the judges and after much deliberation the panel selected Stefanie Parubets as the winner for her idea ‘Beeswax Wrap’, a reusable and eco-friendly food storage alternative to the common plastic wrap. Stefanie backed up her presentation by handing out samples of the warp to demonstrate its uses and her aim to reduce the waste of single use plastic packaging impressed the judges. Stefanie was awarded £1,000 of prize money and invited to attend the Henely Summer Start-Up Boot Camp 2019 in the UK as reward for her victory.

The second place prize of £500 was awarded to Andrii Sych, Oleksandr Tsypliak and Vladyslava Kotiash for their idea ‘New Vision’, a business idea for portable skiascopic rulers designed to reduce eye strain. The £250 award for third place went to Anna Kuznetsova and Helen Velikova for their idea ‘Zooplatform’, a mobile app that facilitates the adoption of homeless pets.

The other ideas that reached the Final were ‘Energy Saving Building’, a project aimed at creating a building company that uses only energy saving materials when repairing apartments, and ‘Gomuesli’, a business idea centred on producing a healthy muesli snack, made with fresh ingredients, as take-away product to encourage healthy eating.

Larysa Antonyuk, the Vice Chancellor of KNEU, said: IDEAFEST has changed the business landscape at our university and in Ukraine. The winner will attend the Henley Summer Start-Up Boot Camp at the University of Reading and engage with external stakeholders in the UK.”

You can view the video of the event below.