Slovenian and Austrian cross-border mingling at the Startup Spritzer #39

Tuesday, March 27, 2018
On March 15th, the Graz startup scene met with the Slovenian startup ‘delegation’ at the traditional Ideentriebwerk Graz event Startup Spritzer #39. The Slovenian co-organizers drummed up a bus full of startup enthusiasts from Ljubljana and Maribor who were excited to pitch alongside their Austrian colleagues, network and share their success and fail stories over a ‘cup of spritzer’. All jokes aside, there was no spritzer, but there was a delicious fruity start-up beverage Marry – the berried iced tea.

The evening began with a short introduction from the organizers and the evening’s host Xiaoao and the guests, represented by Urban from Start:up Maribor. He gave his thanks to the organizers for the warm welcome and wished that events such as this would become a steady regular occurrence. With the developing of the Start:up Alpe-Adria project this will soon become a reality, but more on that later.


Xiaoao from Ideentriebwerk Graz and Urban from Start:up Maribor and Start:up Alpe-Adria Slovenian team gave thanks and a warm welcome. 

Sharing is caring, and start-up stories can be fun

The format of the Startup Spritzer events is a pitch presentation from the start-ups followed by presentations of stakeholders and support organizations that have services for them. In light of the ‘Crossover’ theme of the #39 event, the introductory Start-up stories were told from the Slovenian start-up Modri planet, who presented their comprehensive system 3Dsurvey, designed for gathering geospatial information from air and analysing it as well as converting it into exact 3D models; and doro, a newly developed hydropower turbine which is able to increase the places where hydropower is still possible. The two presenters shared their ups and downs along the way, their successes and their plans for the future.

Austrian start-up doro and Slovenian Modri Planet (3D Survey) opened the evening's programme with a short story about their startup. 

Game on: Portal Vs. Prototype maker Vs. Blockchain

After the warm and comedy filled Start-up ‘confessions’ the audience was warmed up and ready to be the judge. The following three start-ups pitching in the competitive portion of the night received their marks from the audience who logged on the Ideentriebwerk app and have their truly honest opinion on what they heard. First to take on the stage was Austrian start-up MINImill. They developed the ideal tool for makers, hackerspaces and prototype shops for manufacturing precise parts from a wide range of materials. It makes turning ideas into finished projects a fast and easy process. The qBot company was founded by three friends at the Technische Universität Graz.

The following pitch was presented by the only lady pitching at that evening, from Slovenian start-up Spamatch. With her team they are developing a mobile app and a platform for connecting beauty service providers with it users. It offers supply / demand matching and booking. The last start-up presenting was the Austrian Unibright. Their team of business integration specialists offers a unified framework for blockchain based business integration. The idea of the Unibright framework is to define business integration workflows visually, based on proven templates for different use cases. All needed objects like smart contracts, adapters to connect to different systems and queries to monitor the ongoing process are then generated automatically.
Sandra Auer from the Slovenian start-up Spamatch was the winner of the pitchcompetiton, voted on by the crowd. 
Sadly, due to illness, the second Slovenian from start-up MojMojster representative was not able to ‘defend’ the colors of the Slovene delegation, but luckily the lady was able to take on the mission and convince the audience that her pitch was the best. The absent team developed the web portal MojMojster for Slovenia and DaiBau for Austria, for finding providers that renovate and build apartments and buildings. On a single page, individuals can communicate with various providers, compare offers and submit the order to the best person, based on the collected opinions, benefits and reference projects of individual providers.

Cross-border networking done right

The evening was concluded with a relaxed portion of networking where start-ups and start-up ecosystem representatives, supports, investors and mentors exchanged their opinions on the start-up pitches, their own projects and possibilities for future collaboration. Both teams plan that evenings such as this will become regular opportunities for mixing and matching Austrian and Slovenian projects, knowledge and experience. You can find the full photo gallery here

Cheers to may more Spritzers!

Foto: Ideentriebwerk Graz