Venture Up 2016

Update on teams – Week 2

Welcome back to another edition of team updates! So much has happened in the span of a week that it had to be captured and documented with the amounts of pivots, name changes & idea improvements to each venture. Have a look below and see how the team are currently doing!

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Team name: Darkhorse

Team members:  Jacksen L, Alana K, Jacob VW, Jakobb M, Nick H.

Where is your idea at? In the same space i.e tinder for food but we’re still validating – doing market research, setting up meetings with businesses to see if employees have lunch break issues, have talked to companies like Flick, Xero and Trademe so far.

How many pivots do you think you’ve made since day 1?16

Most challenging thing about week 2? Finding people willing to validate – It’s hard to get people on the street to want to talk to you and give feedback, and figuring out the right way to pitch to get the information across efficiently is particularly tough.

Where are you making progress/ what are you proud of? We love our mentor 🙂 We have a plan based off market validation now, rather than working off assumptions which will help.

Do you have any asks for this week? If you work in town please complete this survey, and chuck it on your team slack/ share with your colleagues 🙂

Venture Up 2016

Team name: Part-Timer (formerly Project Water)

Team members: Dylan R, Michael S, John R, Loren T, Dani W, Rebecca G.

Where is your idea at? We pivoted and are now solving the problem of high school students finding part-time work – like Student Job Search but for high schools, as well as info on how to make a CV, job interview tips etc.

How many pivots since day 1? 3/4

Most challenging thing about week 2? It was a productive week, the hardest thing was finding out that we had to validate both sides of our platform – the students and businesses, having to do the weeks worth of work in one night once we pivoted was pretty challenging!

Where are you making progress/ what are you proud of? Every aspect of our progress, our website is up, our Facebook page is up, we have surveys out which was great!

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Team name: Influencer

Team members:  Omer H, Felix P, Hunter W, Rachel Y, Jordan P.

Where is your idea at? We are still in the same space – building our MVP which is a website that should be up today. We have found that Instagram users are easy to get on board but brands want to actually see something before. This will help us to keep validating by finding out what they do and don’t like about it.

How many pivots since day 1? Only small minor pivots – our problem has changed, we were initially focused on improving current online advertising, but this was based on assumptions. Instead we are looking at how there aren’t businesses using Instagram for organic advertising.

Most challenging thing about week 2? Pitching, learning how to go through our presentation without starting with the pitch – we don’t want to lead with the product and get a product-biased answer.

Where are you making progress/ what are you proud of? Lots of positive feedback, lots of connections.


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Team name: Intrude-a-lock

Team members? Elisha F, Hayden W, Keith T.

Where is your idea at? Still thinking about freight, but going down the direction of customers travelling and package manufacturing. We are looking at a possibility with a company that is interested in being NZ’s only distributor.

How many pivots since day 1? 0-1, we have changed market – moved away from logistics and more towards travelers but not entirely, still pharmaceutical applications etc.

Most challenging thing about week 2? Market validation – trying to find the right market for our product, dealing with conflicting feedback

Where are you making progress/ what are you proud of? The contacts that we have made, that we almost have the application up and working, doing the research which has allowed us to narrow down the market from a big group of people to a more specific audience.


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Team name: Deliver Me

Team members? Sophie S, Sam Y, Cameron F, Aiden S, Derek L.

Where is your idea at? We are honing in on working parents – developed our solution to a personal concierge service. So still in the delivery space but a different target market.Through market validation, we focused on who gave us the most useful feedback, and we identified them to have the biggest problem – being time poor.

How many pivots since day 1? We are still in the research phase and hadn’t committed to a certain path yet so not exactly pivoting, more testing the waters for the best product/market fit.

Most challenging thing about week 2? Getting Rollo roasted, finding out that our old concept had a major competitor in Auckland that is expanding to Wellington and Christchurch. Being resilient – dealing with the mental challenge of the journey.

Where are you making progress/ what are you proud of? All the validation we’ve done – we are a lot more sure of our market as a result.

Any asks? If you have a second please fill out our survey to help us with market validation :).

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Team name: MultiMenu (formerly Recorded Intent)

Team members? Kim E, Charlotte K, Toby H, Tiger C.

Where is your idea at? Late last week we had a crisis with market validation – Tourism NZ firmly discourages hitchhiking, backpackers didn’t seem concerned with the problem we assumed they had – and the solution they wanted was not the solution we would be able to provide.

So we completely scrapped it and are now looking at a different problem tourists can have – a language barrier when it comes to things like ordering from menus etc. So we contacted people who would be potential target market, validated the problem, and still need to talk to cafes and restaurants to further explore the problem.

We have an ask simply of story’s of experiences where there was miscommunication or a language barrier at a restaurant which restricted the experience.

How many pivots since day 1? For a while there it was every 3 hours – 3/4 pivots a day and we would keep coming back to the same idea, going in a circle basically. Now we’ve changed the circle and in the new circle we’ve done about 6 – 10 pivots already. Our high score was 5 days without a pivot, then we went 0 days for a few days then we changed to hours because it wasn’t working.. So it’s fair to say we’ve done a lot of pivoting..

Most challenging thing about week 2? Staying positive, but we think we did a good job – it’s invigorating when you do have a bit of a breakthrough and that keeps us going. Having to accept that an idea won’t work was hard when you’ve put so much thought and energy into it! The uncertainty of not knowing what you are going to be doing when you are still working through the problem and the product/market fit is challenging.

What did you take away from week 2? Jessica’s talk (from Flick Energy), showing us the power of storytelling and how important it is. Rollo roasted us :), which helped us accept that the idea was dying, and started to put us on a new path – which helped us get to where we are now!

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Team name: Feelen

Team members? Francisco S, Emily C, Emma F, Liberty T, Eleanor J, Nicholas B.

Where is your idea at? Expanded from focusing on cafes, now focusing on charities. We talked to Ben from the food store and found he had a bigger problem than food waste – he struggles with a sustainable source of funding. So we are looking at addressing it with a platform where charities can go to increase their visibility to the general public/ corporates with details and stories of the impact they are making. We loved Jessica’s Venning-Bryan’s session on the 6 word life story!

How many pivots since day 1? 26 but about 3/4 big pivots

Most challenging thing about week 2? Coming to a dead end with our last idea!

Where are you making progress/ what are you proud of? Finding a new direction, we are proud of the relationships we have built, and that we have gotten out of the building and talked to people, applying all the stuff we had learnt over last week in one day to catch up with the programme!


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Team name: Youth on Board

Team members? Joy W, Jimmy P, Cameron O, Logan J.

Where is your idea at? Still in the same space – talking to tonnes of board members asking them and asking them lots of questions to validate our idea, we have had lots of positive feedback as well as some constructive push back.

How many pivots since day 1? Just little tweaks, right now we still have quite a broad scope and are still fleshing out the right solution to offer but feeling secure about the problem.

Most challenging thing about week 2? Our target market makes things tricky with market validation, we found getting contacts to board members hard and it was all via email, but we have got lots of valuable information and established some great connections.

Where are you making progress/ what are you proud of? The fact that we are talking to board members, the amount of solutions we have to choose from, which puts us in a position to explore which one targets the problem fully.

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