Economy, Business And Markets

Startups Sharing Ideas

Startups Sharing IdeasStartups Sharing Ideas

On Wednesday evening Tehran University’s business accelerator Avatech hosted the Hamfekri event otherwise known as the Meeting-of-Minds. The event was well attended with young (and one pension age) entrepreneurs looking for ideas, mentoring and most of all funding for their business concepts. In total there must have been near 100 people attending the event, with many more in side rooms pitching their ideas to the organizers.

Many of the people at the event didn’t have full developed ideas for their businesses and were asking around the first batch of startups for help and advice on their proposed online businesses. What was noticeable was the amount of Iranian returnees: those people who have lived in either Europe or the US and brought with them online concepts which work in those respective places.

It’s not known how the next group of budding startups are going to fair considering the first startups are not finished with their mentoring session; however, with the number of people questioning and sometimes showing off to each other its likely there will be dozens of people coming up with similar concepts.

One potential business discussed on the night was a new Google Android app which would allow ordinary Iranians a chance to play in the capital market. The business proposal was presented by a woman who recently returned from Germany. She said she hoped that her potential app would liberate and educate people about the potentials of the capital market and turn give them a return on their modest investments.  

One of the observers of the event told the Financial Tribune that the problem is that many people look at eBay and then try to copy it, adding that “you just can’t wholesale bring business concepts from one culture to another, it doesn’t work like that.”

One returnee from the United Kingdom discussed how he had trouble with separating his startup from people with good ideas but little knowledge. He said that many people get lumped together in this new industry, further emphasizing “many people only recently understood this industry existed and now they’re experts.”

It doesn’t look like the startup scene is slowing down anytime soon though. With the mixture of online business concepts floating around the room, it seems like there continues to be great potential in terms of future opportunities in the online industry. Whether or not the majority who go to places like Avatech will be successful remains to be seen, though many people have the right mixture of entrepreneurial spirit and technical acumen to give it a shot.