Remember the difference between product and business. This was the main message that Aleksander Levental, CEO of Feathr, a US startup that has raised a few million dollars in investment, shared during the 3DS Checkpoint, a free event held March 17-19 at the Guamá Science and Technology Park (Guamá STP), in Belém.
Remember the difference between product and business. This was the main message that Aleksander Levental, CEO of Feathr, a US startup that has raised a few million dollars in investment, shared during the 3DS Checkpoint, a free event held March 17-19 at the Guamá Science and Technology Park (PCT) Guamá), in Belém.
This is the second time 3DS has taken action in Brazil, in 2016 they promoted the U.S. Brazil Startup Connection in two Brazilian capitals: Belém and Brasilia. This year, Belem was the chosen city to receive the 3DS Checkpoint, new event format developed by them. “When we were setting up a venue to host the inaugural 3DS Checkpoint program, we were touched by the motivation, knowledge, and availability of students in Belém. Last year we met people with a real desire to make important things happen and we felt that Checkpoint could help them. “Said Maia Donohue, Senior Program Manager at 3DS.
In this new version of the program, about 40 participants were able to delve into issues related to dynamics between co-founders, to understand more about revenue and how to capitalize on their business, and the importance of having good mentors to assist in the development of their startups. In addition, participants were able to get a better understanding of their talents through the BP10 test, from Gallup, a company that has more than 80 years of experience analyzing attitudes and behaviors. In Belém, the participants had mentoring sessions based on the results of their tests conducted by Talent Based Solutions, a business consultancy based in São Paulo.
The 3DS Checkpoint was designed to create practical ways to address these challenges and to lead this process, the event featured a team of local mentors, led by Thais Haber, Adailton Lima and Paulo Santos, professionals with extensive expertise in developing startups. As a general facilitator, 3DS invited American entrepreneur Aleksander Levental, who started his startup while a student at a 3DS-sponsored event, and has now raised a few million dollars.
“I was amazed with the level of engagement of people in Belém. Usually in events of this nature there is a big difference between the number of participants on the first and second day. This is the first time I have been to South America and I was expecting some particularity due to cultural differences, but in fact I realized that the types of processes, motivations and challenges are very similar with our reality. Another factor that caught my attention was the number of ideas ‘sponsored’ by the universities, I talked to 3 different groups that their business ideas were born from research developed in the academy and, although it is a great challenge to turn this knowledge into entrepreneurship , it is something that can directly benefit the population, “said Aleksander.
As the inaugural program, people from Brasilia who participated in the event in 2016 came to Belem especially for 3DS Checkpoint. “Before the event we already had a company, but the tooling and startup mentality allowed an acceleration in our process in an absurd way. In a way, we consider one of the products of our creative office as a son of 3DS. When we came to Belém we did not know much about what it would be like and it was interesting because it is difficult not to have the expectation of how the first one was. The event was very intense, addressing aspects of maturity and not just the ‘just do it’. It was incredible, “said Victor Guerra, designer and entrepreneur.
In addition to participants from Belém and Brasilia, the event was also attended by people from the interior of the state, such as Jordanio Santos, a worker of the Federal University of Southern and Southeastern Pará (Unifesspa), located in Marabá. “I am feeling empowered and now I know better how to do – my own business – once I get to Marabá I will bring people together to put ideas into practice and share the knowledge.”
Actions like this are part of the objectives of the Guamá Science and Technology Park. “In addition to offering opportunities for technology-based companies, it is also our role to stimulate the development of innovative entrepreneurship in the region and actions such as these are extremely important because they stimulate the exchange of knowledge and strengthen the development of the local economy,” said Antônio Abelém, CEO of PCT Guamá.
Text by Juliane Frazão
Translation By Matheus Castelo Branco