Pavel and Bamomas – From a student to a technology startup entrepreneur
Pavel Marek – From a student to a technology startup entrepreneur
In 2015, Pavel Marek was a master’s student in Tampere University of Technology (TUT). He was searching for a summer job or project at the time to use his skills in building prototypes and for example robots, the kind of things he actually liked to do.
He was doing an extra project for some credits and showed his project to his teacher who was very pleased with the results. The teacher then told Pavel to let him know if he ever wanted to do something more with his skills. He didn’t have a job to offer straight away but he could contact him with a professor who might be able to help him out.
“I just wanted to do something that would be interesting to me, so that was quite a good starting point for a conversation.”
Soon after discussing with professor Yevgeni Koucheryavy and business expert Raimo Vuopionperä, he was part of a research project and he was to build a prototype for battery intelligence.
“I just programmed and built it, but it quickly became annoying to constantly ask them why we were doing the things we were doing. After that they started involving me with every kind of discussions, not only on the level where they tell me what to do. The idea escalated quickly as we realized that our idea is really working, and suddenly I found myself writing a TUTL funding application.”
There were some moments of frustration when getting almost a red light from a pitching panel where the applicants present their work to Business Finland jury before submitting the application.
“After pitching, I returned back here to Y-kampus and they said nothing is lost, you didn’t get a full red.”
After some work with the application, the team got the funding.
Pavel’s role has been evolving from a practical student programmer to so much more. He quickly took the role of presenting in pitching competitions and doing all the general matters a company needs to do.
“There are these times that I often feel really bad doing my work, there is constantly something new to be done and to learn, and most of the time I have to be out of my comfort zone. Anyway, when I look back to everything I have accomplished, these things have been the best learnings”, Pavel says.
“If you want to develop something, it must be yourself who takes the initiative to do it. You cannot wait things to happen. If you just wait, then it will happen but not in your favor”.
Bamomas – a journey from a problem to a solution
So what exactly does Bamomas do? How did it all start?
“It is battery intelligence as a service, which in practice means that we look into the batteries with sensors to understand how they behave in order to find out the conditions of the batteries, how efficient they are and how they should be maintained and replaced”.
Raimo got the idea when he was talking with a maintenance manager from a company who rents forklift trucks and provides maintenance service. The company’s problem was that their customers caused unnecessary maintenance needs by misusing their batteries and they could not prove the misuse as there was no data available from the batteries.
The idea was to create lightweight solution that can provide the information about battery usage. Raimo discussed the topic with Yevgeni and they decided to try to solve this need by collecting information about batteries. That is when Pavel also got involved.
These days Raimo as a CEO takes care of the operations, and he is an expert in public funding and dealing with the institutions in Finland. Yevgeni is a full-time professor at TUT and he is only partially involved with the company as a co-founder.
The team did the TUTL project, and at the same time, they participated in Rockstart accelerator program in Netherlands as well as started piloting. The actual company was established in the spring 2018. At the moment, they are continuing the pilots and have already their first paying customers.
Bamomas continues working with an ambitious mindset. They are also chosen as one of the Kasvu Open finalists.
“This thing in my hand is going to be in every battery in the world”, Pavel says with a look in his eyes that tells he is going towards something big with his team.
What TUTL –funding?
Business Finland New business from research ideas -funding (TUTLI, tutkimuksesta liiketoimintaa) which supports the commercialization of research results.
Applications 2 times a year, next round spring 2019.
Before submitting the applications, there is a pitching panel for Business Finland representatives, where they evaluate the pitch with green, yellow and red color symbols.
Read more about Bamomas: www.bamomas.com
Text and photos: Aino Siiroinen