EU4Moldova: Startup City Cahul – young people in the region encouraged to practice tech entrepreneurship

The youth from Cahul region participated in the second edition of the tech hackaton organized within EU4Moldova: Startup City Cahul – Entrepreneurial Program for Young People. Several programmers, designers, project managers, engineers, teachers and other specialists worked together for three days to turn ideas into viable businesses.

For the best ideas, cash prizes were offered:

First place – 20,000 MDL; Second and third place – 10,000 MDL.

On the first day of the event, those entered in the competition formed work teams, analyzed their ideas and generated an action plan for the development of potential businesses. They were guided by experts in the fields of entrepreneurship, IT, business development, marketing, design, etc., who offered them consultancy to strengthen the business idea.

Alexei Placinta, founder of apic.md: “Through the created platform, we want to help beekeepers in Moldova to promote their small businesses. Officially we have 7,200 beekeepers, and unofficially – over 10 thousand, so we believe it will be an extremely useful tool for people in the field. We are currently creating the site from scratch, and when it is complete, those interested will be able to place ads. Although initially the Hackathon seemed like a programming competition, in the end, being guided by mentors, we ended up creating a real startup.”

Nichita Mazilu, founder of HashDeus: “We decided to create a platform to help influencers create content, but also businesses to promote their products. We are already collaborating with 2 brands from Cahul, who want to advertise the products and we have 6 influencers, to whom we will send the offer and connect the brand with the influencer. During the quarantine period, social media has developed a lot, and we, being passionate about this field, decided to develop a specific business in the online environment. Even though we initially had a different idea, the Hackathon mentors helped us redirect and create a perspective project.”

Veronica Zbîrciog, founder of Piticot: “Our idea includes animation programs, photo services and surprises at home. I have done face painting in the past, and my colleague was a circus photographer, so we decided to combine our skills and start a business in the field. We have already received 2 orders and we hope that our project will be appreciated. During the Hackathon, first of all we learned to create a website, and this is very important and interesting, and secondly, we were motivated to go further with our idea, because we have all the chances to succeed.”

In the end, the participants’ efforts were rewarded with cash prizes, but also with outstanding entrepreneurial experiences. The winners of the edition are: 

  • 1st place – apic.md. The apic.md platform will be intended for people who have businesses in beekeeping or for those who want to start a business in this field;
  • 2nd place – HashDeus. The “HashDeus” platform helps companies in Cahul to promote their product through local opinion leaders;
  • 3rd place – Piticot. Piticot has the mission to give color to events and to offer unforgettable memories to both children and parents.

The event took place between 3-5 September 2021 and brought together over 30 active young people from the Cahul region. EU4Moldova: Startup City Cahul – Entrepreneurship Program for Youth is developed with the financial assistance of the European Union, in partnership with Sweden, implemented by ATIC

More opportunities for young people in the Cahul region

With the help of “EU4Moldova: Startup City Cahul” the region will become an innovative entrepreneurial community, with community leaders, events and meetings, educational initiatives, programs for startups and public institutions that join forces, so that all activities provided in the project have place.

The EU4Innovation Center – a regional center of excellence in IT – is to be set up in Cahul. With an area of ​​1500 m2, the center will develop several local services and about 137 community programs and activities for local entrepreneurs, in order to encourage the use of technology. The project also provides for several entrepreneurship education programs dedicated to different community groups.

In this context, several actions are implemented to encourage the creation of startups and stimulate their development, attract investment and expand their area of ​​operation at regional, national and even international level. In this regard, several events will be organized, in which local startups will have access to conferences and workshops, information on potential sources of funding and acceleration programs, exchange of experience with other startups in various fields, meetings with potential investors, etc.

Corina Andronic, EU4Moldova project manager: Startup City Cahul: “Increasing the entrepreneurial skills and competencies of young people in the region is one of the project’s priorities. We aim to create more opportunities to support those who have innovative ideas and want to change the life of the community for the better, as is this Hackaton. With the help of EU4Moldova: Startup City Cahul, the region will become an innovative entrepreneurial community, with community leaders, events and meetings, networking opportunities, educational initiatives and startup programs that will lay the foundations for a sustainable local economy.”

About EU4Moldova: Startup City Cahul

“EU4Moldova: Startup City Cahul” is implemented in the period 2020-2024 by ATIC, with the financial assistance of the European Union, in partnership with Sweden. The initiative addresses the sustainable socio-economic development of Cahul municipality and neighboring localities, which complements the regional coverage of development assistance provided by the European Union to the Republic of Moldova. The project supports, in particular, economic development through innovation, entrepreneurship, employment in small and medium-sized enterprises outside the capital. It also offers study opportunities to young people, regardless of age and gender, in areas such as science, technology, engineering and mathematics (STEM). As part of the project, a regional innovation and technology center will be created in Cahul – EU4Innovation Center – and a large group of locals will become its beneficiaries. The aim of the center is to have a stimulating effect in the city of Cahul and the neighboring districts. The EU is investing 6.8 million euros in the development of the project, which is being provided through Sweden, the project being implemented by ATIC.

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