Lithuanian leisure airline unites efforts with startups at Hacker Games Pro
Over the past decade, aviation sector has been developing rapidly. With the advancement of low-cost airlines, more people can afford traveling around the globe. Furthermore, experience of airplane passengers has been greatly improving due to technologies and aggregated data, which is collected during flights. That said, travelling service providers are becoming increasingly dependent on technology and data analysis tools to provide reliable service and stay competitive in the market.
To help the airline industry experts tap into the latest pool of technology solutions, Lithuania’s Vilnius Tech Park will host a hackathon called Hacker Games Pro: Aviation. On 28–30 of April, more than 100 people will develop new IT solutions for the aviation and travel industries. The main partner of the event is Small Planet Airlines, one of the fastest growing independent leisure airlines in Europe.
“I can bet that a year ago many of you were thinking, how good it would be to have a possibility to express emotions for the posts on Facebook, not only “like” or “dislike”. And guess what, finally it was introduced. There are many areas in aviation as well that could be more effective or user-friendly, but we are still lacking innovative solutions or products. Hackathon is a possibility for any of you to make a difference. What could it be?”, says Kristijonas Kaikaris, CEO of Small Planet Airlines.
During the creative workshop, organized by Vilnius Tech Park and Startup Lithuania, participants will be able to develop their own business ideas or to create mixed teams with the professionals from Small Planet Airlines. The teams will have 48 hours to create and refine a business idea that solves a problem related to aviation and traveling. Throughout the hacking journey, travel and aviation experts, entrepreneurs and other mentors will help the participating teams to build their idea. At the end of the hackathon, participants will pitch their projects to the jury.
The winning team will be granted an opportunity to development their business idea further at Vilnius Tech Park for three months, using the park’s infrastructure and help of various mentors, free of charge. Furthermore, if the project reaches certain goals, the accelerator StartupHighway will provide the initial investment.
According to Vilnius Tech Park acting director Darius Zakaitis, the hackathon has a lot to offer for the aviation industry: “This is the first hackathon related to the aviation industry in Lithuania and we are very proud that it will take place at Vilnius Tech Park. I truly believe that startups and technology enthusiasts have a lot to offer to the aviation industry, and this will be a great step forward to a closer cooperation between them. Moreover, Hacker Games Pro is an international contest — we welcome participants from Belarus, Russia, Ukraine and other countries.”
This year is very keen on aviation related hackathons, since many of them are organized for the first time in the history of hackathons. Some of them are known internationally. For instance, hackathon called Sky
Hack, which will be hosted by Kent State University in the US. It brings students from all around the US to hack for the aviation and aeronautics industries with a possibility to win the grand prize of $10000. Another hackathon, related to the travel industry, is organized by Emirates with a goal to build new and innovative travel-centric solutions based on both web and mobile. The participants are offered different cash prizes and trips to Dubai. However, the most eccentric and exciting hackathon is Hack Horizon, offering a unique opportunity to hack on the plane from Hong Kong to London and pitch ideas in front of the press and investors.
The aviation hackathon is the second event of hackathon series Hacker Games Pro. In total, at least four hackathons, uniting startups, innovation enthusiasts and large companies, and oriented to different sectors of innovation, will be organised at Lithuania’s Vilnius Tech Park this year.
For more information about Hacker Games Pro, please visit www.hackergamespro.lt. The registration is open until 24 of April.