It’s been 10 months since Startup Weekend Vantaa: Health & Wellbeing in October 2014 and this time we would like to share the story of PramBag, one of the winners of that edition, who have continued their work and have achieved a lot ever since.
PramBag solves the mobility problem of parents with babies by providing a superlight pram that can easily transform into a backpack. Sabyasachi Ghosh, the team leader, first identified the problem with strollers in India where he was a student at the time. Moving around with traditional heavy strollers created a lot of problems for parents and Sabyasachi and friends tried solving the problem by creating a modular solution, so the first prototype was made back in India. Sabyasachi then came to Finland and met Fabian Sepulveda, one of the coaches and organisers behind the previous editions of Startup Weekend in Helsinki, Espoo and Vantaa. Fabian suggested that a team needs to be formed first and Sabyasachi joined Startup Weekend in October.
As Sabyasachi was working on the idea and the business model on his own, the goal for Startup Weekend was to form a team and get new minds with fresh perspectives into the project. Startup Weekend attendees gave a lot of new directions and enthusiasm to the idea. Eventually, Team PramBag was one of the winners and got 3 month of co-working space and coaching from Aalto Startup Center as a prize. After Startup Weekend, the team continued for another two months. “It is a big commitment for a startup and a lot of us at that stage were not ready”, Sabyasachi comments. After several months the team was formed and now consists of four very committed and experienced individuals who drive it forward.
This summer PramBag was lucky to get into the Summer of Startups programme at Startup Sauna. They received a lot of coaching, one-on-one mentorship with Finland’s best entrepreneurs and most skilled mentors and presented successfully at demo day. Just as Team Froodly excels at validation, PramBag is mastering agile and lean startup methodologies by reiterating the process – they have managed to build and test four prototypes within the summer! In the next months the team has set to do more customer development and prototyping in the near future, get into a hardware accelerator and close initial funding rounds.
PramBag is a great example of how Startup Weekend can help you take your idea forward. When asked what kind of advice he would give to future attendees of Startup Weekend, Sabyasachi says, “Go to Startup Weekend with an open mind. Meet a lot of people. I can’t emphasize enough the importance of networking there. And, get to know people from not just your team but the other teams too”.
We are proud of what PramBag have achieved and we wish them luck! We hope that their story inspires you to get off the ground with your idea and bring it to the next Startup Weekend Helsinki!