Veracity Protocol’s DEMO DAY + Techstars Alchemist Blockchain Accelerator 2019 Wrap Up
The Techstars wrap up you’ve been waiting for is finally here. Here’s our take on the intense 12-week journey in New York full of sweat, tears, sleep deprivation and growth that was all worth it in the end.
Let’s talk about Demo Day
May 1st, 2019 was the most important day in our entire program. After a month of rehearsing, pitching and brutally improving our presentation, we crushed it. Demo day was a huge success and we were able to make sure our message was heard — that we’re building the new standard of trust.
A shoutout to everyone who helped us get to where we needed to be.
In case you missed it, here’s Jakub presenting our pitch to over 200 investors on Demo Day:
What we learned along the way
When it comes to the growth and progress that both the company and we as individuals have made during these few months, wow — it’s been profound and way more than what we originally expected.
Our major takeaways:
- Communication within the team should never be overlooked.
As we were often swamped with tasks, we didn’t manage to keep our Czech team updated as much as we wanted. It affected their motivation and weren’t as “in the loop” as they should have been. To combat this, we began having 10-minute daily standups (where we all throw in updates for 10 minutes and update each other about what we’re working on that day and what we need from others). Once we began doing this, we added more team rituals and things improved a lot.
- Communicating with investors is an entirely different ball game.
We had to stop thinking about Veracity Protocol at the product and technical level. Investors and partners want to hear different things — at least at the very beginning. Instead of the tech details or about our algorithm, it’s more important to start by communicating our vision, scaling, financing, allocation, market size, and strategic partners. We had to rewire our brains and our pitch decks to cater to different audiences.
- Learning to prioritize and distinguish music from the noise. The beginning of the program absolutely hit us like a storm. Everything felt like a top priority and we were encouraged to focus on way too many things at once, so of course, we spread ourselves really thin. There was also an insane sense of urgency, like — “If you can send me a product vid by tomorrow, I’ll work miracles for you.” And the next day, we had an even bigger promise. So with this, we had to learn what to jump on. We had to evaluate what was important and what we needed to pass. What helped tremendously was that our entire team started wearing many different hats so that all of us could switch over to anything and everything when needed — more or less (writing code, attending meetings, pitching the company, presenting KPIs, business development, legal stuff and prepping for demo day). Titles were out the door.
- Going leaner. At first, we spent way too much time trying to perfect things only to realize it still didn’t meet expectations or requirements. It was an ineffective and frustrating approach that cost us a lot of time and energy. So we changed our approach to a minimal one — to fulfill the minimum requirements so that we can go back in and tweak it up once we get the right feedback. Since then, we became quick at delivering solutions and reduced the number of times of going the wrong direction.
- Earned ourselves 3 strategic partnerships with Fortune 500 companies, 7 running pilots, 42 leads across different industries (marketplaces, automotive, pharma, luxury brands, apparel, art & collectibles, supply chains, hardware, logistics and more).
- We met with over 100 mentors and over 50 investors and business partners
- Developed three custom-made white label iOS and Android apps for clients
- Finalized one Veracity Registry web-based app (UI for the database where we store the digital passport)
- Ate about 100 bowls of ramen noodles and drank 5kg of coffee.
We started to collaborate with a huge semiconductor manufacturer company while partnering with another global logistics company. Unfortunately, these two are currently under a Non-Disclosure Agreement (NDA) so we can’t mention any more details about it for now.
However, we can mention that we’re building an authentication platform for NFLPA to protect the players’ rights. This has to do with the collectibles & memorabilia market which suffers from a global counterfeiting issue where fake items are constantly being sold.
What we’re focusing on right now
- We’ve been invited to NFLPA’s Rookie Preimier event which takes place in Los Angeles on May 16th — 18th. Jakub and Harrison will be representing Veracity Protocol’s tech to immediately protect the autographed cards and memorabilia items from the freshly drafted players.
- Physically getting together with the Prague team to get everyone on the same page and defining our executive plan & strategy.
- Continuing with our other leads and verticals, fine-tuning our communication strategies and polishing the codes in our mobile apps while preparing the software development kit (SDK) to make our app development more effective.
New teammates and our deepest thank yous
This 12-week journey was intense to say the least. We couldn’t have made it without the support from our families, friends, partners, and the rest of our team in Prague. A major shoutout to all those who came to visit us in New York as well and give us that little extra energy boost that we craved.
And of course, thank you to Techstars for giving us this opportunity. We’re equally dedicated and excited to ride this productivity wave out as long as we can.
“Veracity Protocol brings a new authenticity standard of fingerprinting physical objects to combat counterfeits. Thanks to computer vision and machine learning, we identify unique material characteristics and use them for future protection, verification and visual inspection. Unlike tags, chips or markers that need to be embedded and can be removed or tampered with, our solution works with items’ surfaces even when damaged and is still 100% tamper-proof.”