Finalists of Ncell App Camp received comprehensive mentoring from sectorial experts today, as the final competing teams undergo conclusive preparations a day before the grand finale hits the ground.
Arranged into four concurrent sessions, competitors under different categories; agriculture, corporate solutions, education and tourism received guidance in business modeling and financing, marketing strategies, in-depth knowledge of respective sectors and technical aspects of app development.
The 24 teams – six from each category, which were selected from among 150 teams by an independent selection panel on December 2– are working currently on the final pitches and prototypes of their apps. On Thursday, each of these teams will be provided five minutes for idea pitching and additional three minutes to demonstrate prototypes of their apps as their final presentation in the competition.
Experts mentoring the participants said that the young developers have come up with exciting ideas and impressing business models for their startups.
“Obviously, you wouldn’t expect the developers to have really sound sectorial knowledge. So, we could see some gaps in this aspect,” said one of the mentors who appreciated the organizer’s efforts to shed in-depth knowledge onto the participants by inviting sectorial experts to the events. “Hopefully, the teams are doing well as they are in a continuous process of learning,” said the mentor who wished to remain unnamed.
Sohan Babu Khatri, CEO of Three H Management, commented that the selected six apps from the education category seem to help students, schools and parents connect among each other and deal with their issues, concerns and problems. Khatri who had trained 150 teams previously on business modeling guided the teams under education category during the mentoring session. “I would recommend any institutions to buy all of these six apps because they help reduce cost involving in teaching and learning materials,” said Khatri.
“All these apps from tourism are trying to replace travel agents with technology,” said Co-founder of One to Watch, William Grimminck, who helped the participants working in tourism category to refine their business ideas. “You should be able to reach out to the potential tourists well in advance because important decisions are made before they enter the country,” Grimminck advised the teams to work together to fight their major challenges.
After mentoring the teams under agriculture category, Vahdat Zehtab, Head of B2C department at Ncell, who guided the teams in building marketing strategies, said many of them have same base; availability of information to the farmers. “However, some are really high tech. This is a game of who is going to be big at the end, said Zehtab. “The real challenge is how those apps will be user friendly to the farmers.”
Co-founder of nLocate and an executive at Leapfrog Technology Richan Shrestha who mentored the teams under the corporate solution on technical aspects said, “Technically all the teams are good enough. As all the teams have a sound background in technology, they do not seem to face any sort of major challenges in implementing their ideas.
Six teams that got the highest scores and found way into the finals under Agriculture are Care Crop, Creative Mind, Creatu Developer I, ICT for Agriculture, Saathi and The Revolution. AppsJhola, Cabby, Drupartment, Eagle School Bus, QOD and SentiNep have been selected as finalists under Corporate Solution.
Likewise, MeroAnswer, Group of Innovative Developer, Leazies, Riti-Riwaj, Special Forces and Team Xaverian have been selected as finalists under Education, while HireAGuide, Home Stay Nepal, Nepflights, Team Yellow Nepal, Tourist Talk and Lipi (Script) have their way to the finals under Tourism category.
The winners of each categories will receive Rs 250,000 and the overall winner will receive additional Rs 500,000 and a chance to represent Nepal in the International Application Conference in 2015.