On 14 November 2023, a new pitch format celebrated its premiere as part of the Female Entrepreneurship Week: the Startup Port Campus Pitch. At the Forum Finkenau of the HAW Hamburg eight teams from Hamburg universities and research institutions were set out to convince the audience and a six-member jury made up entirely of women of their ideas. The winner was a project, that aims to produce a palm oil substitute from coffee waste.
The Startup Port has set itself the goal of advising and supporting students in founding a startup. In this respect, the Startup Port Campus Pitch was also a showcase for what is currently happening at Hamburg's universities and research institutions in terms of entrepreneurship – and that was absolutely impressive: One thematic focus was on education and learning. There was an app, that helps students prepare for exams, an offer to make physical experiments more vivid with the help of augmented reality and a digital coach for presentations with audience appeal.
Also in the running was a project dedicated to collecting and analysing data on the muscular system, which could provide important impetus for medical research. An app, that aims to provide a comprehensive overview of current events appealed to a wide audience. What all the competing teams have in common is, that they are still in the development phase and have not been officially founded.
This also applies to the startups from the next focus area environmental protection and waste avoidance. Here, an urn made from mushroom mycelium and a process for recycling plastic attracted attention. The most votes from the audience and jury and a cash prize of 500 euros received microbiologist Natalia Tarazona. Born in Colombia, she reported on the endangered rainforests in her home country, which often have to make way for palm oil plantations. She presented an alternative to palm oil, that can be produced from coffee residues and used in cosmetics production, for example. A project, that fulfilled evaluation criteria such as degree of innovation, market opportunities and sustainability particularly well.