Last Friday we were back at it again with the 4thSeedstars even in Seoul. We set up in Naver’s ‘Startup Alliance’ headquarters in Gangnam where Seoul’s top 8 early stage would pitch in front of a panel of esteemed judges and start-up experts. The winner would be rewarded with a ticket to the Seedstars wold final in Swizerland to pitch in front of investors and other start-ups from 60 countries around the world. With a grand prize of half a million dollars on the line, the stakes couldn’t have been much higher.
At G3 Partners we’ve been involved with Seedstars since before we were even a company. Our CEO, Nathan, has been Seedstars World’s Seoul ambassador for four years. This year, thanks to help from the K-Startup Grand Challenge, we were also the local sponsor for the event.
A total of 8 start-ups pitched to a crowd of tech enthusiasts and fellow entrepreneurs. Concepts from the night ranged from Bitcoin and other international money transfers to personal safety devices, language learning guides and a way for businesses to streamline their hiring processes. Unfortunately, not everyone could be a winner, but without further delay, here’s the judges’ top 3 from the night!
Third place was taken out by Skyscanner-inspired search engine, BringPrice. BringPrice certainly touched on an issue that was important to many of the members of the Seedstars team. The problem of organising multiple flights to multiple countries, the hidden costs and headache of scheduling across different time zones.
BringPrice CEO Roy Wan and his team have made it possible for travellers to punch in their origin, stop overs, return city and have the cheapest flights from multiple carriers delivered in seconds. It’s a really straightforward and clean solution to a problem that a large percentage of travellers have every year.
BringPrice already have collaborations with Skyscanner and a deal with Star Alliance is currently on the cards.
Runners up this year were team B-bless from Vital Smith. Vital Smith’s vision is simple – Communicate with doctors to bring outstanding ideas readily available to the public.
CFO Aiden Hwang pitched the idea that current ovulation tests are inconvenient and often simply inaccurate. B-bless provides women with precise ovulation dates and by using their smartphones to analyse a small sample of saliva.
Although similar technology exists in the market currently, it relies on women to look at and compare chemical reactions which are inconsistent and can lead to false-positives. B-Bless integrates a collection device and app to ensure that all information collected is accurate and detailed. B-bless clearly know their target market and their product well. It’s going to be exciting to see where this young team head in the years to come!
First place was awarded to the team at PiQuant. Recent cases of Infant deaths related to melamine levels in milk have Chinese parents rightfully concerned about their children’s health. With the upcoming lifting of the one-child policy, these concerns will grow along with the market for infant formula. PiQuant are selling peace of mind. They have developed an IoT scanner which analyses milk and beams a result directly to a smart device, indicating whether it is safe to drink or not.
It’s a fantastic solution for a current global issue, which is something that I think all start-ups dream of solving. PiQuant have already secured manufacturing deals with some big names, and I can’t wait to see the finished product in production and in the hands of concerned parents all around the world. Congratulations to the whole PiQuant team (I hope I’m pronouncing it correctly)
As always, a big thanks to the whole team at Seedstars for collaborating with us at G3. Out emcee for the night, Nick Feneck, did a stellar job of keeping everyone on time and the event running smoothly. (I’m sure the free beer helped out too). A shout out to our panel of judges for calling the event and asking the tough questions: Eugine Kim (SparkLabs), Katarina Szulenyiova (Seedstars World), Juno Kwon (Shift.), Rock Oh (DEV Korea) and Nathan Millard (G3 Partners).
I want to personally thank all of the startups and guests for coming to the event. These things couldn’t happen without your support and we’ll see you guys next year at Seedstars 2017!