Once again, iWeekend showed the spirit of start-ups and entrepreneurship is hot in Beijing. Overall all the ideas were very different and didn’t all have a very tech flavour to it. But hey, entrepreneurship does not discriminate!
The winner, by votes cast from the audience and mentors was WoLaiYe. Lead by LeBin, the product is a mobile app for smartphone or tablet that allows users to aggregate all content about their holiday such as pictures, reviews, blogs, weibo, travel tips; to easily share it with friends and family. The idea is similar to one of the ideas pitched at last iWeekend in April by Alex Su, Co-Founder of TukeQ (formerly Toureet) which is now incubated in Innovation Works. The difference is that WoLaiYe is aimed at sharing your experience and tips but TukeQ is about helping people to plan their trip based on tips.
This time the voting system was more advanced! Alex from the iWeekend team created an online system which made the whole process much quicker. Check it out:
All the teams appeared to have gelled well together and made some modifications to their idea with the help of experienced mentors.
Team 2 – Initial Momentum
Starting with the finding that 9/10 start-ups fail within the first 5 years, this team presented a solution to help start-ups identify and solve weaknesses through an online platform. The platform would allow them to post questions and get feedback and advice from the start-up community and experts, including investors. They intend to monetize through banner ads for start-up resources such as server racks and marketing services etc. The future model plans to grow into incubation where an eco-system of start-ups and advisors can interact. The basic foundation of this product reminds me of Start-up Genome, which allows start-ups to benchmark themselves and learn from each other.
Team 3 – INpeople
The presentation showed a shift from a website to a mobile app where people would fill out a profile of themselves in order to find like-minded and interesting people. The product aims to fill a gap between something as general as Facebook or RenRen and SNS’s that are more specific such as a Linkedin. The app is intended to build a complete profile by knowing who you really are based on keywords you type, behaviour, location and education. It is envisioned that more internationalized and educated people will use this app. They intend to make money through targeted advertising.
Team 4 – Zen Garden
Quite simply, the team wants to create a physical resort that allows people to relax and re-energize themselves. The ideal places to position such a resort is in a suburban courtyard, in a mountain or in a forest. One of the key challenges to solve is to define their positioning and how to start this project. Mentors commented that, to build a resort is very capital intensive and requires a lot of planning and resources.
Team 5 – ChiYouPu
On the Friday, the idea started out as a fruit delivery service, tailored to your specific health condition. The idea changed to become a one-stop health website which gives people important health related information about food, exercising and vitamin supplements. The website would also allow users to exchange information to create a community and recommend healthy recipes to cook. The target audience is busy female professionals who care about their appearance and health. They aim to make money from advertising. Mentor awarded this team with the ‘Best Team Spirit Award’ for their great ability to work as a team.
Team is more powerful than ideas
The resounding advice from mentors, is that the team is more important than the idea. It’s all about execution, rather than a nice fuzzy idea that can easily fade away. Having gone through an iWeekend myself, I wish the best to all teams, even those that did not get through. Keep the ball rolling and don’t give up!