Belarusian startup NeoSound recently became the first winner of International Investor Day Startup Pitching Competition that took place on 19th of March in Vilnius. NeoSound team impressed everyone with the voice recognition technology implemented in their application and worthily took the first prize of €2000 in cash. VCEE Startups had an exciting interview with NeoSound and learned more about the bright Belarusian startup.
How many people do stand behind NeoSound? Please, tell more about the team and the initial idea of creating the app.
Our core team consists of 5 people and hopefully we will continue cooperation with one more talented Android developer Slava Tysianchuk, who has recently joined us during Hackathon event that took place in Minsk 18-20 March and created Android client prototype for our project.
Here is the core team:
- Alex Lednik – came up with the idea as the theory was described in his graduation work and he is a singer in an amateur rock band so in the first place this solution would be useful for him personally.
- Denis Ardabatsky – was inspired by the idea, gathered the team and launched the project to prove the concept technically and check that the solution can be brought to life by proper implementation and adjustment of the algorithm.
- Andrew Matusevich – as mathematician and programmer he put a great deal of efforts in implementing the algorithm, dug into music theory and made the first recognition of the product real.
- Alex Astafyeu – experienced in promoting young bands in Belarus, so being related to the industry, he acted as the Product Owner, building product vision, managing requirements together with Andrew and promoting the project while getting his MS’ degree education in Denmark.
- Nadzea Karaban – iOS Developer, she has created the first client prototype on iOS so we could play with that before moving to the next project iteration.
Apart from the core team, there is still a number of great and kind people and without their contribution, it would not have been possible to achieve the current stage. Lots of thanks to all who provided our team with server infrastructure support, creation of the promo video, some graphical design and text editing basically for free. Even though these people are not part of the team, they are very welcome to contribute and work with us as we are happy to make the world better while working together with good friends who you can always trust and rely on.
How long did the algorithm development last? What is NeoSound business traction?
We started working on the project last year and focused mostly on the science part. Our main goal was to prove the concept because we have checked the market and nobody has done it in such a way as we proposed. During this time, it was kind of a hobby as we worked on the project in our free time and weekends.
We participated in a number of events e.g.:
Venture Cup, Denmark last year – the place where we’ve got our first mentor;
Startup of the Year, Minsk 2015 – 6th place in Pitch Competition.
Recently the project received a new life when we discovered that new competitors appeared on the market. That was Chordana made by CASIO. We compared the way it works and found out that our unique voice recognition algorithm in some cases exceeds similar Casio technology. A possibility to create a product that may compete with such a well-known company gave us, even more, enthusiasm.
Have you found any partners by now?
We have just started looking for partners and we will always be open for considering interesting opportunities.
Please, share your plans for the future development of NeoSound. What about the IIDV award?
Considering recently received IIDV award, we decided to spend the money on traveling to new events, meeting new partners etc. That is, for those kinds of project needs that cannot be satisfied by pure passion only, those that require money. The majority of work we have done so far was pure enthusiasm of the team as it normally happens to startups at the initial stage. Future developments will involve at least two types of activities: to continue with product development
PR work to find partners and apply for accelerator programs As for product development, we will definitely continue improving the core algorithm and then implementation of the client application is the next priority task that can be implemented quite fast compared with the rest of activities.
Looks like a good start for a promising technology! Congrats, NeoSound! Keep going and achieve further heights!
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