Traction Programme Introduced its 8 Startups Graduates during the Digital Demo Day

09/02/2022 15:11

Traction Programme Introduced its 8 Startups Graduates during the Digital Demo Day


The European Union, GIZ, and Viva-MTS joined forces with Catalyst Foundation to support the second batch of the Traction Programme by Armenia Startup Academy

On January 25, 2022, at 8 PM AMT, Armenia Startup Academy held a Digital Demo Day to present the 8 startup graduates of its Traction Programme Batch 2. The participant companies pitched their innovative solutions in EdTech, FinTech, Media, InfoSec, Pharmaceuticals, Construction Tech, and HealthTech.

The Armenia Startup Academy Traction Programme is an intensive mentorship-based programme designed to assist companies having initial traction to accelerate growth by providing support in Sales Enablement, Growth Hacking and Fundraising. The programme was implemented by Catalyst Foundation supported by the European Union’s EU4Business “Innovative Tourism and Technology Development for Armenia” (ITTD) project implemented by GIZ. Viva-MTS, Armenia’s leading mobile network operator, joined the initiative as a corporate partner and supporter.

During the 12-week period of the programme, the startups closely worked with industry professionals who helped them in the achievement of their pre-set goals and milestones. The 1-1 sessions with mentors helped the companies set up sales and marketing processes, make valuable connections with industry experts, get introduced to investors, create strategic frameworks, implement the designed sales and growth hacking strategies, connect with potential customers and get advice from domain experts on their next steps in the product development processes. As a result, some notable achievements include acceptance into international accelerators, releasing refined versions of their products, securing funding, substantial increases in their user base, passing the €100K revenue mark, and being recognized as the number one Product of the Day and Week on Product Hunt. 5 companies also had the opportunity to be awarded the EU Seed Stage Grant of up to €50K.

The event was live-streamed on Hero House’s YouTube channel. The Demo Day opening and programme overview were given by Anna Tantushyan, Programme Director at Armenia Startup Academy, who greeted the audience and introduced the agenda of the event.

Welcome addresses were given by Frank Hess, Head of Cooperation at the EU Delegation to Armenia, Wilhelm Hugo, Team Leader of EU4Business “Innovative Tourism and Technology Development” Project, and Ralph Yirikian, General Manager of Viva-MTS.

Frank Hess emphasized the importance of startups in economic success in small economies, ‘’With your work, Armenia is going to be able to possibly turn into one of the world’s leading hubs for innovation.’’

‘’The Demo Day for the Second Batch of the Armenian Startup Academy Traction Programme is gathering us here to see another success story of Armenian entrepreneurs,’’ said Wilhelm Hugo.

Ralph Yirikian mentioned, ‘’It has already been two years that VIVA-MTS joined this initiative as a corporate partner and supporter, and I wish this programme helps to reveal more talents and lead their way to growth and innovation in our country and beyond.’’

The welcoming remarks were followed by Batch 1 alumni pitching their companies and providing updates on their newest achievements and developments. During his pitch, alumni Hrant Davtyan, the Founder of Pinsight, mentioned, ‘’The Traction Programme helped us commercialize science and package the technology as a product that meets the end users’ needs best.

Mushegh Gevorgyan, the next alumni, presented Dowork.ai and shared their new achievements along with the next steps. Since 2021, they have organically attracted 1500 users, got 50 paying beta customers, became the number one Product of the Day on Product Hunt, and closed their second pre-seed round.

After the Digital Demo Day, the founders of the Second Batch also shared their thoughts on the programme and how it has supported them in their journeys. 

‘’The Traction Programme helped us to establish ourselves as an international company while also providing our team with fundraising opportunities. We are now positioned to fully support our global customers across the US and Europe.’’ said Taylor Chartier, CEO and Founder of Modicus Prime.

‘’Our participation in the Traction Programme was a great opportunity for Uteach. We worked with the best mentors, got useful knowledge, became #1 product of the day and week on Product Hunt and had many more other achievements. It was one of the best experiences in our journey so far.’’ said Shushanik Shahbazyan, Co-Founder at Uteach.

“The Traction Programme mentors took a personalized and deep dive into our company when advising us on how best to grow. And for that, we are grateful.” said Misha Tenenbaum, CEO and Co-Founder at EditMentor.

‘’The Traction Programme had a huge impact on our product strategy. Armenia Startup Academy mentors provided us with regular feedback, it helped us to improve our pitching skills as well as learn much more about growth hacking and  market penetration strategies.’’ said Narek Aslikyan, Co-Founder and CEO at Bootcamp.

 

Meet the Academy Traction Batch 2 Companies

Modicus Prime is a self-service AI company enabling process and quality control for biotech research and manufacturing.

Toxometris.ai is an AI-based non-clinical safety assessment solution for chemicals using hybrid test models with the unique combination of AI (in silico) and biological (in vitro, in vivo) approaches.

Bransfer has built a layer 2-focused platform, called Layerswap, which allows transferring crypto from CEXs to roll-ups instantly and low-fee, thus simplifying the onboarding to layer 2s.

Buildern is an all-in-one a growth and operational excellence solution for small construction companies. 

Stingle Photos is a secure, end-to-end encrypted, open-source gallery and sync app, which protects user's data from providers, hackers and data leakage.

EditMentor is a web app transforming video education for students and life-learners by using  real-life interactive “challenges” to teach critical video editing skills.

Bootcamp provides a SaaS platform for employers for virtual internships building with permanent access to the best candidates.

Uteach is an all-in-one platform for launching an online school in a matter of minutes.

The Armenia Startup Academy team is happy to welcome the graduate companies to its community of founders.

About the European Union

The Member States of the European Union have decided to link together their know-how, resources, and destinies. Together, they have built a zone of stability, democracy, and sustainable development whilst maintaining cultural diversity, tolerance, and individual freedoms. The European Union is committed to sharing its achievements and its values with countries and peoples beyond its borders.

About EU4Business Innovative Tourism and Technology Development for Armenia Project

The EU4Business “Innovative Tourism and Technology Development for Armenia'' project is co-funded by the European Union and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation and Development (BMZ) and implemented by German Development Cooperation GIZ through the Private Sector Development and TVET South Caucasus Programme. The project is part of the EU4Business initiative of the European Union. It aims at the creation and further development of investable and innovative ventures in Armenia leading to stronger and competitive tech and innovation ecosystems with potential export orientation, increased number of Science2Business2Education cooperation platforms, and higher participation in HORIZON 2020 and HORIZON Europe innovation programmes.

About Viva-MTS

Viva-MTS (MTS Armenia CJSC) is Armenia’s leading telecommunications operator, having the widest network reach and spreading a wide range of Voice and Data services all across Armenia. Having the best of the Armenian people at heart since its launch on 1st July 2005 and in a short period of time Viva-MTS has managed to build a nationwide network and a considerable customer base. Viva-MTS drives innovation and aims at always being at the forefront of any development serving the Armenian mobile communications market.  The company follows the guidance provided by ISO 26000 (International Standard of Social Responsibility), ISO/IEC 27001:2013 (Information Security Management System) and ISO 37001 (International anti-bribery management systems standard).

About Catalyst Hi-Tech and Entrepreneurship Development Foundation

Catalyst Hi-Tech and Entrepreneurship Development Foundation aims to contribute to the development of the tech entrepreneurship ecosystem in Armenia. The Foundation has a number of initiatives aiming to fuel the Armenian startup ecosystem with competitive skills and develop a pipeline of capable companies, including Hero House, Armenia Startup Academy, AI Incubator, Entrepreneurial Assistant School, Startup Boost Weekends, etc.

About Armenia Startup Academy

Armenia Startup Academy is an entrepreneurship and startup education programme aiming to prepare companies to raise their pre-seed rounds and expand to global markets through its Pre-acceleration and Traction programmes. The Academy was launched in October 2017 with the support of the “Support to SME Development in Armenia” (EU-SMEDA) Project within the EU4Business initiative. Since then, the Armenia Startup Academy has mentored 281 entrepreneurs from 121 startups with the ongoing assistance of 100+ high-profile professionals. The programme alumni have already raised more than €10M+ in the form of grant financing, VC, and angel investments.


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