The salt in our stars: Techstars Startup Weekend

From bags to pitches, to a room full of ambitious startups guided through a weekend full of rewarding work and fun, the ICK powered experience of a lifetime was a win for everyone!

From bags to pitches, the commemorative launching event of Techstars Startup Weekend made its mark with a warm meet-and-greet bonding night between startup dreamers and events instructor and entrepreneur Simone Demelas at the centre we all know and love that made this possible with wit, a good staff and a promising talent of making things matter; the Innovation Centre of Kosovo.

Having had all participants group up and develop teams of glorious magnitude, the teams were lulled into a restful night for a productive following morning.
Trending around the pattern of hard work and dedicating time to a cause one genuinely believes in, the event participants spared no extra second to waste and instead channeled their full energy and creativity towards making sure their startup concept lit not only Simone’s awesome sneakers on fire, but the whole business world!

And as the building blocks of their ideas seemed to thin, out came the arrival of the prestigious mentors consisting of Eldita Tarani, Zana Shehu Budima, Shpend Thaqi, Shenaj Shala, Zana Tabaku, Erris Veliu, Val Sopi, Ermal Sadiku, Valon Canhasi, Jehona Lluka, Agon Kabashi, Hana Qerimi, Dorjan Berishaj and Agon Avdimetaj who tirelessly went table to table to guide these thinkers into becoming productive and constructive doers. Adding nuance and flavor to every idea with their own blend, the mentors gave a piece of their experience and criticism towards each startup team in the hopes of having them reach their personal peak of excellence.

Full of music, accomodation, coaching activities, support,positive workspace (and the most awaited glorious supper), the weekend passed with the teams finalizing their ideas into 5 minute presentations which were critiqued by honourable judges consisting of the CEO of Meridian Express a.k.a. Agon Gashi, Managing Director of Project X-ITE; Nina Sharma and Professor at the Faculty of Economics in Skopje known as Dimitar Jovevski.

Pitch by pitch, the audience was almost as excited as the startup teams themselves when they delivered their pitch full of vigor and promise, delighting the judges with such energy and care towards their idea.

After having the Shef No-More win 3rd place, D-Ziner reach 2nd and 1st place awarded to Kopshte, the wrap up of Techstars Startup Weekend consisted of a wonderful meal and heartfelt embraces of gratitude and goodbyes by both staff and participants after recognition distributed via Certificates of Excellence to all the wonderful individuals who made that collectively phenomenal experience possible. Saying this was a good jump-start for Techstars Startup Week would be a definite understatement!