- Pandora Box Business Project to Increase the Financial Culture of Young People Wins UniCredit Bulbank Award
- The competition went successfully for 250 students from all over the country who developed their first businesses in the past nine months.
250 teens with 43 business ideas reached the Final Competition of the programme for development of business thinking and start-up culture in Bulgarian students in 10th and 11th grade — Teenovator, last weekend. This year, the programme reached a record number of 420 participants enrolled in the autumn of 2021.
The winning business projects in the first three places were a platform for creating educational content by students for students — Sedu.bg, a project for vertical cultivation of microplants in the city — Microcity, and a board game of chess with cards to promote socialisation — Chessler.
The Pandora Box business project to enhance the financial culture of young people won the prize of UniCredit Bulbank.
Among the main topics discussed by teenagers in their business projects are climate change, coping with the consequences of fast fashion, video game coaching, social space for conscious young people in Svoge, charity initiative to support the hospital in Vratsa, a festival for returning to Bulgarian roots, a program for building useful habits, vertical wind turbines that absorb wind energy from moving vehicles and others.
A special guest for the opening of the competition was the European Commissioner for Innovation, Research, Culture, Education and Youth — Mariya Gabriel. She congratulated the participants —“Teenovator means three things — it is an adventure in which young people discover themselves, it is an experience they gain, and it is a vision for a better future, for problem-solving.”
The American financier and founder of Bulgarian Entrepreneurship Center (BEC), Larry Biehl, arrived from the Silicon Valley. “You inspired me to live my life!” he said in an emotional speech to the young people and guests present in the hall. Larry Biehl is one of the founders of Teenovator in Bulgaria.
The ideas were evaluated by a jury of investors from the funds Launchub Ventures, Vitosha Venture Partners and NV3 Fund. There was also a special jury from UniCredit Bulbank, Kaufland, Sofia Tech Park, as well as from the American University in Bulgaria.
The competition took place in Sofia Tech Park, where young people from Sofia, Plovdiv, Stara Zagora, Burgas, Svoge, Panagyurishte, Blagoevgrad, Ruse, Pleven, Vratsa, Montana and other towns and cities gathered together. Students from Varna and Dobrich joined through a video conference call.
“We are proud of the achievements of Teenovator and that it connects students from many towns and cities who work together on their first business projects”, said Zornitsa Mitkova, Managing Director of Teenovator. “The programme is a bridge between Bulgarian schools and Bulgarian business. The two give each other strength, inspiration, ideas and new knowledge and our ambition is to make Teenovator with an ever-increasing reach and to encourage companies in Bulgaria to pay attention to young people because our economic future is in their hands”, said Mrs. Mitkova.
Teenovator is supported by the America for Bulgaria Foundation and the Bulgarian Entrepreneurship Center.
Partners of Teenovator are UniCredit Bulbank as part of its ESG strategy “Mission for Future”, Kaufland, Sofia Tech Park, the American University in Bulgaria. The event was supported also by the Bulgarian State Railways, Coca-Cola Hellenic Bulgaria, Domino’s, Superhosting.