VUNK Garage48 hackathon day #2: 3 stories

It’s the second day at VUNK Garage48 hackathon in SpaceX grounds in Tallinn, Estonia. Good news is that at least some of the teams with missing team members found new people by the morning. There are now 18 teams going in full speed to get to their first working prototype by Sunday evening.

To help you understand the scope of what’s cooking, we take a closer look at three awesome fresh-from-the-oven startups – MovePrep, Tipoff and Holme Care.

MovePrep is a service connecting expats with local homeowners. It’s co-founder Ott Ilves shares the background of who they are and where they want to go.

So, Ott, have you ever participated in a similar hackathon?

No, it’s my first time ever.

What’s the first impression , how would you describe what you see?

It’s fun and hectic here. It seems there are a lot of smart people working on fun problems.

What’s your own background?

I’m a marketer at Pipedrive, digital marketing manager. I also help Ampler bikes with marketing.

Where did the idea for MovePrep come from?

From personal experience. Four of our team members used to live abroad and a lot of our friends were also expats. All of us have been in numerous fruitless searches for finding appartements.

Why only limit yourself with expats?

We need to start somewhere and we saw a massive problem in finding an appartement when  moving abroad. When you know the market, it’s a lot easier. But when you move to a new place you might not have the contacts, time or other resources. Additionally, there is a a lot of prejudice towards people who look different, sound different or just aren’t locals.

And how’s MovePrep coming along?

Right now we intend to find our first customer within next 24 hours and have a minimum viable product - AirBnb looking website - available in next 12 hours. We have a roadmap of what the product should look like in one months time and building blocks of how we’re gonna get there. Our first goal is to find customers to test our service on.

What has been the most useful advice from a mentor so far?

I’d say it’s something Calum Cameron from Startup Wise Guys suggested. Figuring out all the parts of value proposition as clearly as possible. As we have have multiple beneficiaries, we should make sure to emphasize the value for all of them.

What’s your ambition by 2018?

Serve people in 3 capital cities in Europe.


Another new startup called Tipoff aims to change the marketing strategies of big corporations. One of the co-founders Grete Urbel discusses the hackathon, the background and the future or Tipoff.

Have you ever participated in a similar hackathon?

No,  it’s my first time!

What’s your own background?

I’m a former sales person right now working as a development manager in Telia Eesti, I’ve been an organisation addict from a young age while my friends had hobbies like dancing or sports. Rait Videvik, my cofounder has been in sales for more than 10 years. He’s been in retail, head of telemarketing, head of partner channels and is now head of sales in Telia.

Where did the idea for TipOff come from?

Idea comes from Rait. It’s very time consuming to call up masses of people, calling results in very few sales. Skipping ads is a rising trend, but people still talk to their friends about products and services they like. It’s one of the biggest challenges for companies to find additional and better channels to market themselves.

And how is Tipoff coming along?

We just posted our first call to action on VUNK’s & Telia’s Facebook pages where they have more than 100 000 followers. We’ll give prizes to loyal customers who bring us another client. We’re also on half way with our webpage and our marketing team is in the middle of defining our clients, both businesses and private.

What has been the most useful advice from a mentor so far?

On the first night Lauris Muzikants from Telia Sweden suggested to make a precise plan and structure of how we’re going to do it. We made a plan for each and every member for the team and described what exactly will they be doing. He also suggested to forget about thinking about the name, saying that if we want to change it, it will come sooner or later and there is no point in waisting time on brainstorming new names now.

What’s your ambition by 2018?

To be an independent company with full-time employees and hiring more. We want to make a solid ground in Estonia. I’d hope for around 2000 agents i.e. loyal customers recommending services to their friends, and 20 offerers.  

Another fresh startup being developed is called Holme Care. It’s a connecting platform for people who are looking for care takers and those offering care taking services. The founder of this socially ambitious service Nik Seth explained the idea and how it would work.

Have you ever participated in a similar hackathon?

I took part in Garage48 Serious Fun hackathon. I was actually in the winning team. We made a thing available at I was responsible for content creation.

What’s your own background?

I sold my nursing home in UK and moved here to Estonia to create Holme Care.

Where did the idea for Holme Care come from?

People used to come to me to find carers for their loved ones, it is such a complicated process in the UK. Oftentimes I was given a list of  agencies  and people asked if any of them were good. For example, one of the services you can buy from that kind of an agency is helping you to get up in the morning. It might easily happen that agency people say they can come at 7, but you’d like to sleep until 9 that day.  And there is nothing you can really do about it. It is a system convenient for the agencies and not for the service user

How is Holme Care coming along?

I feel we’ve done so much, the team has achieved a lot. But I’m still afraid of how much more we have to do. We are constantly changing and adjusting as we go.

What has been the most useful advice from a mentor so far?

Advice to make sure everyone understands what Holme Care is looking to achieve and people take responsibility in achieving that goal.  I think it was Ivo Kukavica who said that.

What’s your ambition by 2018?

I want UK care agencies to talk about us the same ways taxi companies are talking about Uber.

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