Identifying entrepreneurial challenges

Entrepreneurial challenges were identified and solutions were discussed at the two-day Druk Entrepreneurial Challenge that ended on Thursday.

The entrepreneurial challenge focused on designs to solve real world problems posed by startups, scale ups, government, Non-Government Organizations and education.               In response to business challenges and concerns that entrepreneurs face in Bhutan, it opens up an invaluable opportunity to access and leverage business ideas and solutions. With the cooperation of Australia Awards and the Australian Government, local business, government, industry connections and young minds, the event has the potential to build upon an impactful entrepreneurial ecosystem.

 The focus of the Druk Entrepreneurial Challenge is to help the Bhutanese businesses, enterprises and organizations address real-world problems, scaling up within and beyond Bhutan.

 There were more than 70 to 80 participants. The participants worked with business and industry representatives and Micro, Small and Medium Enterprises to ‘growth hack’ a number of problems, products or services and aspects of the business.

At the end of the two days, participants pitched their business ideas and showcased the problems versus solutions developed throughout the challenge.

The team greenovation won the first prize. The team pitched the idea on prototype of drying egg trays. The team found that the social enterprise of Youth Development Fund’s (YDF) egg tray-manufacturing unit in Bjemina have challenges of drying egg tray during monsoon season.

One of the team members and also the program coordinator of YDF, Kinley Tenzin said that it takes one and half day to dry egg trays. Around 2000 egg trays are put out to dry in a day. It takes two days to dry them.                  

 The prototype of team is to build a room out of bricks, with four chambers and have 85 egg tray shelves. A room will heat with 101 degree Celsius either with or without using  solar or electrical energy.          

Kinley Tenzin said that the egg trays will dry in 15 minutes with their innovation. He said that the prototype will consume time and scale up the productions.

The first prize will get 30 minutes online session with Queensland University of technology (QUT) with entrepreneurial leaders twice which is worth of US$ 500.

 The second prize was awarded to CDK.

Fashion designer Chandrika Pakhrin said that she wants to create employment, sustainable fashion and build a website to reach the international market.

The second prize will get time with an entrepreneurial organization and a mentor worth US$ 400.

The third prize was awarded to ihub team. The team presented on ihub core working space.

The team member and founder of ihub, Tashi Wangdi said that young entrepreneurs face challenges in getting space and equipment like table and chair.

Their team plans to provide space for young aspiring entrepreneurs.

“Young entrepreneurs cannot afford to rent the space since the rents are very high,” said Tashi Wangdi. 

The third prize will get product or service or mentoring value from Bullys Meats worth US$ 300.

The course leader, Wendy Perry said that in Bhutan the business are simple-related to foods, similar business and cloths and the market is very small.

“There is issue about selling online, credit card payment and scaling up of the manufacturing are challenges,” said Wendy Perry.

She said that this can be solved if entrepreneurs have entrepreneur mindset. “More entrepreneurs need to have website, use e-commerce platform and should be active on social media.”

She said that they support local entrepreneurs with coaching and mentoring.

This program was conducted with support from Australian government and QUT.

Dechen Dolkar from Thimphu