“The 3 Musketeers” of Environment Protection: IdentMe
The startup IdentMe participated in the 2nd batch of the Weinberg Campus Accelerator and not only completed the class with a successful pitch, but also founded a Ltd. during the four-month intensive program. So things are going great at IdentMe. Their whole story, from the idea to getting acquainted to the various support services they received, can now be read about in this article.
How everything started
The startup IdentMe consists of Anne Findeisen, Richard Pabst and Patricia Holm. Their endeavor is to track down and identify rare and hidden specific species so that construction projects can be realized more efficiently in accordance with the Nature Conservation Act. All three studied at the Anhalt University of Applied Sciences and, as it later turned out, had the same mentor. She was also the one who united the three of them, allowing an extremely promising startup to develop.
Patricia took up the basic idea of Anne’s project work, to trace protected species with molecular biological methods, and further developed it in 2017. With the idea of offering a “DNA-analysis” as a service for protected species, she competed in the “ideas competition” at the Anhalt University of Applied Sciences and won 2nd place.
The chemistry between Anne, Patricia, and Richard was right from the start, and with their complementary skills they continue to move the project forward. Richard is very familiar with laboratory work, method development and bioinformatics. So he is the one who evaluates the water samples in the lab. Anne, on the other hand, is an expert in administrative tasks and an indispensable part of the team’s project management. With Patricia’s knowledge in nature conservation one would almost think they are “The 3 Musketeers” of environmental & nature conservation.
Richard Pabst, Source: Michael Deutsch
Now that everyone was aware that DNA-analyses absolutely had to be pursued, the team looked for ways to be financially supported. Accordingly, they sought advice from the Anhalt University of Applied Sciences and finally applied for the ego.-Gründungstransfer. The approval of the application was a great success, as IdentMe no longer had to worry about finances from September 2018 to October 2020. All their energy could now be put into the further development of a market-ready product. So what followed were countless hours and night shifts at the desk, in the labs and at the real hot spot, the water.
Steep learning curve through subsidy programs
Soon, however, they had to take care of their follow-up financing so that nothing stood in the way of the further development of their business idea. One thing was inevitable: pitching, pitching, pitching! Anne, Richard and Patricia had to learn how to present and sell their idea properly in order to attract potential investors. In October 2020, the perfect opportunity presented itself. At the three-day Startup FOCUS pitch training of the Transfer- und Gründerservice of MLU Halle, they learned everything about the Perfect Pitch Deck and also met another important player, Steffen Ahrens. Steffen Ahrens educated the team about important funding programs and assisted them with their subsequent application for the ego.START Gründerstipendium. Through Maximilian Heine from the FOUNDIT! Gründerzentrum of the Anhalt University of Applied Sciences, the team was made aware of the Fight Club of the Startup SAFARI and specifically prepared for it. In 2020, IdentMe not only took the 1st place at the entire event, but also won the audience award. On top of that, they even received a special praise from the Minister of Economics Prof. Dr. Armin Willingmann, which of course encouraged the three of them even more to step on the gas.
By taking part in the 100 Tage Challenge of the Transfer- und Gründerservice of MLU Halle in November 2020, the team was able to build valuable foundations and get advice on further support services. Thus, IdentMe applied for the ego.-Start Gründerstipendium and is now funded until June 2022.
Weinberg Campus Accelerator
Another significant key figure was Karsten Andrae, who already got to know the team in mid-2019 and realized that IdentMe would fit perfectly to the Weinberg Campus Accelerator. More specifically to the 2nd batch of the program. So in January 2021 it was the time to take on the challenge of the 4-month-long Accelerator program. During the class, which consisted of numerous workshops and individual coaching sessions, IdentMe was not only able to draw up its articles of association and founded a limited liability company, but also landed a commitment from a business angel. The series of successes was rounded off with the signing of a lease at the Weinberg Campus Technology Park. What spoke in favor of the Weinberg Campus Technology Park were the excellent premises, laboratories, the large network and the proximity and accessibility of the players on campus: everything the team needed to be able to continue working efficiently on IdentMe.
We think the founding story is a great example very of the successive support services that the state of Saxony-Anhalt offers to people wanting to found a company. From now on, you will run into IdentMe more often on campus or at any of the nearby lakes. We are looking forward to it.
f.l.t.r. Patricia Holm, Richard Pabst, Anne Findeisen; Source: Michael Deutsch
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Author: Kathleen Bier
Online Marketing & Project Management