Gen2Gen, Diamond Challenge 2019 Finalist
With such a direct focus on innovation and the new “modern” age nowadays, it can be easy for a generational gap to form between older and younger individuals. The problem is only exacerbated when older generations are pushed out of job opportunities to make room for more tech-savvy individuals. High-schoolers Daria Bounegru and Alexei Murinets saw this pervasive problem in their home country of Moldova as well as across the world and sought to help the situation for pensioners. Their venture concept is dubbed “Gen2Gen” and serves as a social media platform fully adapted for senior citizens. Through the website, pensioners can input their contact information along with the services that they can provide: childcare, tutoring, recipes, etc. for customers to browse and carry out orders at an affordable price. A geo-location component within the website notifies the nearest pensioner to pick up the order and carry out the service. After the service is completed, the customer is able to evaluate the pensioner and leave a review for future customers to view. Alexei explained: “Our project is a bridge from generation to generation. Our site will teach older people to keep up with the times, improve their level of life, and diversify their life.” Their venture earned them fourth place in the Social Innovation track at Diamond Challenge 2019, giving them a taste of success in the field of entrepreneurship.
The Gen2Gen team got the inspiration for their idea after spending extensive time volunteering in Moldova and realizing the vulnerability of senior citizens. They then engaged in detailed product cost analysis and determined the necessary resources they would need to make their venture a reality. Given the design of their website, one of the challenges that they needed to solve was how they were going to earn profit. They ended up deciding to allocate 10% of the transaction profits towards Gen2Gen, and use the funds to troubleshoot and improve the website. They also faced other challenges as high school students working to balance their busy schedules while working on their venture. Daria recalled: “For us, the biggest challenge was time management. We had to sacrifice a lot of time that we would normally spend doing homework, hanging out with friends, etc. to work on our venture. It was also difficult as high-school seniors balancing exams and the competition. However, Diamond Challenge was our dream and so we made it our priority with pleasure!”
As an international team, Daria and Alexei traveled a long way from Moldova to compete at the Diamond Challenge. They learned valuable skills in both entrepreneurship and public speaking, while also getting the chance to meet some international friends along the way. When asked about their Diamond Challenge experience, Alexei enthusiastically replied: “It was absolutely amazing. We’ve gained new friends, learned from successful entrepreneurs and visited the USA.” Daria agreed, adding: “It was perfect. I was very happy to meet with all these student entrepreneurs and have the opportunity to make new friends and visit a new country.”
As for future plans, the two are looking to attend college and continue furthering their entrepreneurship education. Daria explained: “The Diamond Challenge showed that I need to learn more details about Business Administration and social issues. After competing abroad, I realized my passion for international business and decided to major in that field in university.” Alexei added that he wants to continue working on their Gen2Gen venture: “I want to develop this project and continue growing as an entrepreneur. Diamond Challenge gave me indispensable experience, which will definitely help me in the future!”
The team at Gen2Gen will undoubtedly accomplish great things, as well as continue developing as entrepreneurs and individuals. We are so excited to see where the future takes them and wish them luck in the upcoming years!
No matter where our Diamond Challenge alumni go, we are constantly amazed by how they continue to make an impact on the world for the better.
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Horn Entrepreneurship serves as the University of Delaware’s creative engine for entrepreneurship education and advancement. Built and actively supported by successful entrepreneurs and thought leaders, Horn Entrepreneurship empowers aspiring innovators and entrepreneurs as they pursue new ideas for a better world.