There have been lots of issues with parking problems since the very first automobiles were invented. Drivers spend roughly 17 hours a year searching for the parking space. It causes a lot of additional costs, time and headache from the drivers side.
NutiParkla provides the data about parking spot availability, using a machine vision technology. Then they integrate this data into different apps within 48 hours.
Recently, I visited their team in the Tehnopol Startup Incubator and had a chat with their international team members about their amazing idea and easy solution.
Khuldoon Bukhari is a CEO of a company, Tengiz Pataraia is a Software Engineer and works mostly on a Machine Vision technology, Vladimir Kuts is a COO, responsible for the partnerships and Taras Maslych is an API & Web Developer.
They have a very interesting founder story to share with us and, I’m sure, it’s inspiring for everyone who wants to start a startup journey:
Tengiz and Khuldoon started TalTech Integrated Engineering Bachelor program in 2014. On their first semester, they had a class ‘Introduction to Entrepreneurship’. Their project for that class was to make a sensor-based parking management app, which went really well and they passed the class successfully.
Then, in 2017 they started studying Maters in the same university and joined the team to work on the self-driving car project in TalTech — Iseauto. There, they got to work on a machine vision technology every day. In the second semester, they had to do the advanced Entrepreneurship class and they simply decided to use the same parking project idea as they did three years before, but now using the Machine Vision technology, because of the Iseauto experience.
Time to time, they were realising that this was actually a brilliant idea and after teacher’s validation, they decided to make it as a real Startup with their friends.
That’s how the core team was born, let’s dig into their story more and check out the interview with them.
Here’s what we talked about:
How would you describe NutiParkla in the simplest way?
We want to create the Google for parking — the idea is to be a platform where parking and navigation apps can get the data about the real-time parking scenarios.
Right now, there are thousands of parking apps on the market, but the most important job they do is that you can pay with them. Our idea is to make this parking space data available for these apps — We utilize machine vision to provide data about the parking spot availability through an online API and this can be integrated into the apps within 48 hours.
We want to be an API provider so that all the apps can use this data — we want to mainly interrupt with businesses not with customers directly.
The way we do it is easy — our machine vision technology gathers data from the cameras installed on the parking spots and informs us which parking spots are empty in the most efficient and cheap way.
What is the story behind this product?
Everything started from the TalTech Integrated Engineering programme, where we had to come up with a business idea for the Entrepreneurship class. We decided to make a parking app, which would work with data provided from sensors. A couple of years later, we had to do more advanced entrepreneurship class, where we wanted to do a project with the same idea but using the Machin Vision technology this time.
It worked really well and we managed to validate this idea with field experts, which inspired us to make it as a real company and start a startup.
Another point, which showed us the need for this product on the market was when some of us did a 17-day car trip from Estonia to Croatia, stopping in some European cities. And the biggest problem we faced there was parking — we couldn’t find any relevant information anywhere, every place was different and hard to figure out. This was the point when we saw that it is a real problem and we came up with our model after that — we don’t want to provide an app, we would like to gather the data and integrate this into already existing solutions.
So, how we do it is simple — parking providers give us access to their cameras and we extract data out of it
What have been the biggest obstacles that you have faced so far?
The main obstacle we have faced by now should be the camera system around the city. There are only city open-stream cameras that can be used by everyone, which is not enough for this project.
City hall gave us permission to install our own cameras by they don’t plan to do it on their own. So we try to collaborate with them and apply to some European smart city projects, which will help us to set up the systems and test everything properly before going to other markets.
What has been the impact for you from joining different Startup hubs and projects?
We have been working from Tehnopol for a couple of months by now and the experience has been totally amazing! Here, our project was part of a smart cities program and this whole experience has been really valuable for us. They also provide us with Amazon web-services and our tech runs on that.
Other than that, provided mentorship should be mentioned as well! We get great help from the business side and the legal assistance— they suggest many things to sort out, which helps us to maintain the sustainable business model.
What can you tell us about your future plans?
We would like to expand our markets and go to the Western European countries. For example, the market in Germany seems very interesting to us because we see that there is a need of such services — most of the modern vehicles have their screens and it would be great to integrate our data into their systems.
On the other hand, American car manufacturers integrate subscription-based services which represents a great business opportunity for us.
Also, if we take a look at the needs of the electric car owners, we can see that everybody wants to know which charging stations are free to use and our data can be a perfect solution in that case.
We want to integrate our data into the Google Maps, because we see that it can be a perfect addition to this application.
If we think about more further future, our solution can be integrated into the Self Driving car systems as well — they need to have an exact information of where to park, which is the data that we provide to that in the most efficient way.
Finally, what would your message be to the young entrepreneurs who are just entering the field and want to create something big?
If you have an idea you should just try it out and test — there is no point in overthinking about it. Don’t be afraid to fail.
You should ‘Stay hungry, stay foolish’. The more you build, the higher chances of your success are. Ideas worth nothing, execution is the thing that matters.
It was great to visit the NutiParkla founders in Tehnopol. I would like to thank them for finding time to have a chat with us and sharing very motivating and inspiring insights about their initiative.
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