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Results of the business creation competition for Ukrainian refugee women

On Thursday 18 May, a business creation competition for Ukrainian refugee women was held in Tallinn. The competition was co-organised by CAdFE, the Hands For Ukraine NGO and FICE (Foreign Investors’ Council in Estonia) and took place at VIVITA's (international creativity accelerator network for kids and youths) premises in Tallinn. Four business projects were submitted for the public, made up of entrepreneurs and experts, to judge and vote on.

The event began with a speech by Violaine Champetier de Ribes as President of CAdFE, followed by Alice Järvet, representative of the Hands For Ukraine NGO, who presented a video summarising the work carried out by Hands For Ukraine during the last 18 months to help rehouse Ukrainian refugee women and their children. The President of FICE, Peter Thomsen, also gave a speech, and it was then Jean-Marc Salsa, CAdFE board member and secretary, who introduced the VIVITA company, which had made its premises available for the event.

The first candidate to present her project was Olena Bezsmertna. Based on a language learning technique called Mnemo25, Olena Bezsmertna's business project is based on the creation of an online language learning platform. The languages available for learning would be the most widely spoken in the European Union, as well as Estonian. This is a 'passive' learning technique, which involves watching a video containing a large number of vocabulary words and their translations, scrolling at high speed.

The second candidate to present her project was Anna Lytvyn , accompanied by her associate Maryna. The business project presented by Anna Lytvyn is Fruitiki, a business selling healthy dried fruit snacks. Together with her partner, they make their own fruits, vegetables and meat based snacks, with the aim of offering healthy, easy-to-eat products that fit in perfectly with a balanced diet. Highly committed to the Ukrainian cause, during the first few months of the business they intend to donate 40% of the profits generated to the Ukrainian army. Faced with huge demand, their main obstacle is the lack of space in their current premises and the lack of additional machinery and tools to satisfy it.

The third candidate, Anna Pozdniakova, presented a project for a digital marketing agency for influencers. With her in-depth knowledge of the Baltic influencer scene, Anna Pozdniakova wants to offer a service that puts Baltic companies in touch with europeans influencers. The aim is to be able to offer companies the opportunity to work with the influencers who have the most appropriate audience in terms of size or areas of interest, in order to make the most of the product or service for sale. On the influencer side, the agency would guarantee a simple and secure experience (protection against unpaid contracts, or contracts requiring the promotion of illegal or fraudulent products) while carrying out the search for contracts on their behalf, allowing influencers to devote more time to content creation.

Finally, the fourth candidate to present her project was Halyna Proode, with Hallinn Cake. Hallinn Cake is a business selling healthy and vegan cakes, without gluten, lactose or artificial colourings. Perfectly in line with the diets that are in the spotlight at the moment, such as the Paleo or Keto diet, Hallinn Cakes are a great way to enjoy sweet desserts without damaging your health. Halyna Proode makes the cakes herself, and has taken courses to master such recipes as well as photography to showcase her work.

After each presentation, there was time for discussion between each candidate and the audience to answer questions, and for the audience to share their expertise and advice with the candidates.

During the presentations, the audience was able to taste the products of the Fruitiki and Hallinn Cake projects while enjoying the buffet.

After the presentations, the audience was invited to vote by phone using a QR Code and the Mentimeter application.

The results are as follows:

1st place - Anna Lytvyn - Fruitiki: 13 votes

2nd place (ex aequo) - Halyna Proode - Hallinn Cake: 3 votes

2nd place (ex aequo) - Anna Pozdniakova - Influencer Marketing Agency: 3 votes

3rd place - Olena Bezsmertna - Language learning platform Mnemo25 - 1 vote

All the candidates were offered several mentoring sessions by CAdFE. The first place winner Anna Lytvyn and her associate Maryna also won professional Estonian language courses from UN-IOM and a feature in Estonian World media.

We congratulate the candidates on their participation and thank our members for attending.

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