BUSINESS
The most exciting market of Georgian startups held in Tbilisi
21 December, 2017
Startup Market EXPO is a grand exhibition enabling a number of Georgian startupers to introduce their products to potential customers. The annual exhibition marking the success of both small and fledgling Georgian enterprises, businesses, shops and companies, was held for the second time, on December 16-17.

Upon entering the space, one found oneself in a bright, colorful
and friendly environment, where representatives of various companies exchanged smiles, positive emotions and offered their products. The Startup Market is aimed at supporting and promoting small and newly-born businesses in Georgia.

“It is a conclusive event of the year, bringing together Georgian entrepreneurs in one space, and, over these years, the project has proved to be successful,” Startup Market project manager Mariam Shevardenidze told GEORGIA TODAY. “This year, 130 entrepreneurs are presented in 16 different categories. The event gives all participants an opportunity to introduce their products to customers as well as create partnerships and expand their production.”

Guests were able to help themselves to a variety of Georgian staples and organic products as well as warm up with mulled wine.

Famous female winemaker Baia Abuladze, who launched her own business at the age of 22, presented two sorts of wine and held a degustation for wine enthusiasts at the expo.
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Baia's Wine. Photo courtesy Marketer

“We presented the white wine Tsitska-Tsolikouri and red Otskhanuri Sapere. We have expanded our production and serve the local Georgian market and export to Austria. Currently, negotiations are underway to enter the US market, too,” Baia’s sister, Gvantsa Abuladze, said.

The venue also gave space to artists and various brands manufacturing trendy, chic and quality clothes, shoes and accessories.

Beka Jimsheladze is yet another courageous young entrepreneur who welcomed and offered his wine to the guests. The winemaker gave up his job of a financial expert and started his own wine business under the name of Vellino.
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Vellino. Photo courtesy Marketer

“The company hit Georgian market with Saperavi wine in October 2016 and now we already offer three different species, Saperavi, Rkatsiteli and Mtsvane (Green). Besides, in Kakheti I have constructed marani(Georgian wine cellar) with kvevris where we showcase tourists how Georgian wine is made in accordance with old traditions”, Beka Jimsheladze, founder of Vellino elaborated.

Musya Qeburia, famous Georgian street artist, put on display giant posters of her signature series of lips, as well as stickers and handmade earrings with colorful prints.
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Musya Qeburia

“Recently, I had a personal exhibition as part of Tbilisi Fashion Week that received positive feedback from the Georgian public. My products are more in demand on the German and US market as well as on international online platforms, but now, through this festival, I’m able to introduce my artworks and products to a wider Georgian audience,” Musya told GEORGIA TODAY.

At the fair, one could purchase colorful stockings with Christmas designs and renowned brand Altersocks presented its new models for the season. The brand was founded two years ago by a husband and wife who decided to use their experience and knowledge to set up their own business. The brand produces 83% cotton socks: organic and extremely pleasant to wear.
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AlterSocks

“There was no such brand on the Georgian market before us. Our popular Georgian themes are Georgian Khinkali, boat-shaped cheese-bread Adjaruli Khachapuri and paintings by Niko Pirosmani. We have seven branches throughout Georgia and around 80 types of socks. Along with Georgian staples like churchkhela, our socks serve as souvenirs that tourists often take home with them,” said Rezi Beselashvili, co-founder of Altersocks.

At the stalls, various kinds of Georgian products including sweets, chocolates and well-known spices that give characteristic flavor to Georgian dishes were available.

Brand Khurjini, selling only home-made products, was yet another discovery for lovers of organic produce. The company gathers organic produce from local farmers in different regions of Georgia and delivers them to consumers in the city.
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Khurjini

“Our company picks the best ‘culinary pearls’ from different corners of the country. We offer authentic home-made Georgian churchkhela, a wide assortment of tkemali (plum sauce), honey, jams, tea, as well as spices. We travelled from village to village to find the best produce,” Mikheil Dzidziguri, the co-founder of Khurjini, told us.

Yet another novelty that captured ones’ attention was Skiji, an enterprise famous for producing delicious dried fruit, founded through the program Produce in Georgia.
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Skiji

“Skiji means dried grapes in ancient Georgian. We wanted to stand out from other brands, so we decided to produce rare dried fruits that grow in western Georgia, such as kiwi, melon, tangerine and feijoa. We have sent samples of our production to Japan, England, Germany and we’re planning to export our fruit to the foreign market in the near future. In addition, we make our own signature chacha, with the flavors of leftover citruses,” said Mako Tsirekidze, Marketing Manager of Skiji.

Company Flipflop.ge grabbed customers’ attention, in particular, by introducing an extraordinary way of painting.
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Flipflop.ge

Through its innovative technology anyone, even amateur artists and kids, can create amazing artworks and gift them to their loved ones. Other companies in technology, innovations, fashion, household tools, and jewelry were present at the exhibition, showcasing their extraordinary wares and proving that Georgia is on the ball for creativity and looking forward!

Author: Lika Chigladze

Source: Georgia Today
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