Garage48 first time ever hackathon in Uzbekistan sets to boost the local startup ecosystem!

There is no feeling more amazing for Garage48 than seeing the real impact we make on people. November 16th-18th, we organized our first ever Garage48 hackathon in Tashkent and the feedback is overwhelming, with participants still sharing their excitement in social media and communication channels.

So how did it all go? On Friday evening, the event has kicked off by our experienced hosts Ragnar Sass and Andres Susi. The opening night gathered more than 110 participants from Uzbekistan, Tajikistan and other countries, ready to present their ideas and to work their hardest for the next 48 hours. 34 ideas were pitched, varying from delivery services to telegram bots, from touristic websites to language learning services. Out of these 34, 24 ideas found their teams and went into production. 

Participants worked very hard, pushing more and more with every hour of the hackathon. We know it wasn't easy for them but the feedback couldn't be more rewarding. Here's what Islombek Khasanov, team Ctrl + Eng, said, "It’s been the most intense 48 hours in my life! Who knew that in this little amount of time, anything could happen. It was crystal clear that without the care and support from our organizers we would have never reached this stage. Without you, it wouldn’t be the same. I now know that Garage48 isn’t just the name, it’s the people behind it who hold it together, build it together and level it up together."

And these 48 were truly intense!  The teams leapfrogged from having mere ideas to working websites and apps, feedback from the potential customers and to becoming real teams out of strangers they were on Friday night. The culmination was, of course, the Sunday finals. 20 teams presented their ideas, hoping to get the acknowledgement from the jury.
Frankly, the choice wasn't easy. The jury members spent half an hour discussing what would be a fair decision while our host, Andres Susi, was talking to participants about an entrepreneurial path and dealing with failures on the way to success.

In the end, however, the choice needed to be made! So here's the decision!

Overall winner: Ctrl + Eng

Ctrl + Eng offers an innovative approach in learning English deeply through the prism of programming logic.
The team gets a chance to send 2 of its members to sTARTUp Day in Tartu in January with all expenses covered by Startup Estonia. They also got 3 months of access to GroundZero coworking to focus on their project.

Iskander Ganeev - Project Manager, Davlatyor Botirbaev - Designer, Islombek Hasanov - Front-End Developer, Muhammad Abdughafarov - Marketer, Javokhir Avlikhodjaev - Back-End Developer, Qutfullo Ochilov - Back-End Developer

Runner-up: Music Spider

Music Spider is an extension for a browser that allows playing music while browsing!
The team will get to send its representative to sTARTUp Day with all expenses covered by Startup Estonia and to work on their idea for three months in GroundZero.

Darveshov Sardor-marketing, Sadullaev Diyorbek-web designer, Yo'ldoshev Jasur - back end. Pulatov Azimjon - back end

Favourite of the audience: Flex

Flex helps you to find an interesting party for you, with a bunch of people you didn't know yet and most important, who are open to new connections.
This team got two prizes with an Estonian spirit - a 3-month access to an Unlimited language learning from Lingvist and a box of delicious Kalev candies.

Rustam Babadjanov - Back-end developer, Timur Gaibov - Designer, Arslan Tajibaev - Android developer

But we didn't stop there. As Ragnar Sass said, "All jury members saw so many amazing teams, so that's why we actually decided to give more prizes that we planned in the beginning." Always a good news, right?

Special prize for technical excellence - WordExpert

WordExpert is an online glossary and TM (translation memory) management tool for translators.
As a prize, the team got 4 Xiomi power banks, to always be powered up for the next challenge!

Hamza Foziljonov – Founder | Project Manager, Abdujabbor Mirkhalikov – CTO, Farukh Usmanov – Chief Designer, Boburmirzo Khamrakulov – Software Architect, Ulugbek Ruzimbaev – Back-end Developer, Navrozbek Akhmedov – Front-end Developer

Special prize from Lift99 went to Latofat Bobojonova from FaceShare

Latofat will join the team members of Music Spider and Ctrl + Eng on a trip to sTARTUp Day in Tartu in January with all expenses covered by Lift99. 

Latofat was awarded for her amazing technical skills and progress she made during the hackathon and her incredible pitching abilities. As Ragnar Sass said, we hope that she will bring her Estonian experience back to Uzbekistan to empower more local women to choose a tech and entrepreneurship path.

Special prize from Lingvist: Farmer.Uz

Farmer.Uz allows making prices more transparent, letting anyone see the real price of any product.

Special prize from Lingvist: Sven

Sven is a Telegram bot that checks competitive programming tasks and supplies users to ask and answer, communicate with each other. And all of this in one bot. Interesting fact: the team has named their product after our technical mentor - Sven Kirsimäe.

Abror Ruzibayev - Full Stack Dev, Djebarov Dlyaver - Project Manager,  Barsov Grigoriy - Back-end dev, Barsov Artyom - Back-end dev.

Special prize from Lingvist: NO PANIC

NO PANIC is an online platform that links mechanics and the people who are in need of their help.

Akmal Bakhronov - Project management, Behzod Mukhiddinov - sales and marketing, Nilufar Tojiboyeva - Designer, Komiljon and Nurlan - developers. Sevinch - researcher

Special prize from GroundZero: Tour To Uzbekistan

Tour To Uzbekistan created a website and a bot with the main goal to provide users with an easy and convenient way to travel around Uzbekistan.

Kodirjon Ahmedov - Project Manager, Odilbek Utamuratov-Backend Developer, Doston Matyakubov-Marketing&Designer, Shohjahon Rahmataliyev-Developer

Special prize from mentors: iDad

iDad is a guide for future Dads - helpful hints and challenges which helps them to understand the emotional and physical condition of their partner during pregnancy period.
The team will get a post-hackathon mentoring and 3-month access to GroundZero Coworking.

Sherzod Khojiakhmedov - Project manager, Davron Rakhmatullaev, Mobile developer, Saidakmal Madjidkhodjaev - Backend developer, Amirkhon Khamidov- Marketing

Many teams were awarded prizes but all left home with something valuable, something they didn't have on Friday evening. As one of the jury members and the biggest supporter of Uzbek growing startup ecosystem Hikmat Abdurahmanov said, "It was not easy to choose the winners. But it's not important who wins but who participates, and at the end of the day, everybody here is a winner, because the process of being here, getting new friends and enjoy this creativity and a great challenge is already is amazing."

Of course, this event won't be the same without our amazing organizing team from GroundZero, our supportive partners and mentors who did their best to help teams go from an idea to a product with a strong potential!

We're very grateful to our mentors,

Ragnar Sass - Co-founder @Garage48, @Pipedrive, @LIFT99
Maarika Truu - Head @Startup Estonia

Andres Susi - Entrepreneur and investor
Maido Parv - Senior Designer @Microsoft
Joao Rei - Digital Strategist @Idea Group
Sven Kirsimäe - Chief Architect @Lift99
Abdulahad Kuchkarov - Director @Groundzero
Ruslan Yuldashev - CTO & Co-founder @D:CODE, ex-Team Lead @Yandex
Triin Preem - Entrepreneur and Manager of the Innovation Centre @SEB
Azizbek Bakhodirov - UI/UX designer @Newmax Technologies

Triin Kask - CEO & co-founder @Nevercode

And our sponsors and partners,

Ministry of Foreign Affairs of Estonia, Estonia Development Cooperation, Global Entrepreneurship Week in Uzbekistan, Ground Zero, Startup Estonia and Lingvist. 

This hackathon will always have a very special place in our hearts. But we don't plan to start there.  Now, when we're back to Estonia, we plan to start working on having more Garage48 hackathons in Uzbekistan in 2019! 

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