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Regular version of the site

Student Startups

If you’re an HSE student, you’ve probably noticed the high level of project-based activity around campus. The generation of ideas, the testing of hypotheses, meetings with business people – all of this inspires students to launch their own projects. Students minoring in ‘Startups from Scratch’ discuss how they came up with their projects and what kinds of people they would welcome to their teams.

Clothing Customization

Maria Svistunova
‘Fashion’ Programme; Project Brand Manager, Prive

Customization has recently become a real trend in the fashion industry. Since the majority of clothing is mass produced, trendsetters increasingly prefer to purchase unique items that you won’t see anyone else wearing.

That is why we decided to create a service where you can customize your clothes and turn them into something original. Clients send us photos of old or new things, talk about their preferences, and a designer offers sketches. Our project will help reduce excess production and encourage more conscious consumption.

Thanks to the ‘Startups from Scratch’ minor, we were able to draw up a full-fledged business plan, and this year our goal is to create a website builder and launch sales. We already have several clients and three employees on the team, but we are always open to meeting new people.

Contact info: svistmary@gmail.com;  Telegram: @normcored.

Anna Suvorikova
‘Media Communications’ Programme; SMM & PR-manager, CMD

Our project is a platform for finding your own style. It connects artists with clients to create custom-designed clothes.

My friend Artem had the idea for the platform at the beginning of the school year. He studies in the Faculty of History, but in his free time he paints. He has a lot of friends who are also artists, and we thought it would be cool to put together a kind of platform that would bring different artists together in one place. So that’s how CMD (Custom Design) was born. Our site presents different styles and trends, so every client can find something they like. All the client has to do is set up their filters (level of experience, style, and price) and select an artist they like. We don’t have intermediaries—clients and contractors communicate directly. There’s no waiting on hold, telephone tag, etc.

If you would like to join our team as an artist, write to Alisa or Artem. Tell us about yourself— how many years have you been involved in art, what your style is like, and why you are interested in our project. And if you are interested in all things related to advertising, send me a PM on VK.

Preventing Unsold Food from Going to Waste

Alika Ibragimova
‘Law’ Programme; Communications and Customer Relations Specialist, FoodTime

According to statistics, about 30% of all food produced in the world ends up in a landfill. In 2016, a company called Too Good To Go was started in Denmark to help restaurants, cafes, and bakeries find buyers for unsold food by selling them at a discount of 50-70%.

We think that Muscovites, too, are ready to join the fight against food waste, because environmental problems are becoming more and more of a concern in society, especially among students. Therefore, our team decided to create our own version of the business model.

The mechanics are simple: after downloading the FoodTime app, users can view a map that shows the nearest cafes. Users then click on whatever café they like and view that café’s list of available discounted dishes. Then users choose a dish, put it in their basket, and pay for it. After that, they receive a number, which they then show at the counter when they go to the café to pick up their order.

FoodTime plans to enter the market in February. And, of course, HSE students will be able to be the first to start saving food with us, because we are going to begin by working with establishments that work with HSE.

At present, we are looking for a specialist who can help with making our app. And in the future, we plan to expand our team further. If you’re interested in working with us, write to: atayan_alika_22@mail.ru.

Traveling the Far Reaches of Russia

Pavel Demin
‘Sociology’ Programme; Project Manager, Sight Hiker

I had the idea for my project about a year ago when I was traveling around Italy during a semester abroad. After my mobility programme, I went on a 45-day tour of Europe, where I got my first experience with organizing a big trip—from budget planning and organizing the logistics to navigation and excursions.

Soon I realized that I wanted to discover Russia for myself. And it was a literally new world: I independently visited more than 30 regions in the central and southern regions, including all the national republics of the Caucasus. After learning the complexities and peculiarities of traveling around Russia, I decided to assemble a team of active travelers.

We organize car tours, photo tours, historical excursions from local guides, cultural and religious excursions, and outdoor recreation. It’s not about ‘roughing it’, but rather traveling comfortably and visiting unique places of a particular region, debunking stereotypes, and seeing Russia from a new perspective.

Not all areas of Russia are conveniently accessible when traveling on your own. Many areas lack a developed tourism infrastructure, so we use local residents and our own experience to make the trip both fascinating and safe.

In 2020, we plan to explore the Voronezh, Vladimir, Vologda, Pskov and Smolensk regions, as well as Crimea and Karelia. We will be glad to welcome other HSE students to our team as bloggers, photographers, or just plain adventure seekers! For all questions, you can write to the group on Vkontakte, Facebook, or Instagram.

If you think that your project is also worth being featured, or if you are looking for team members for your startup, write to Ekaterina Andreyasheva, Communications Manager of the Innovation Department, at eandreyasheva@hse.ru.


Anna Sagatelova
‘Media and Design’ Programme; Co-founder of Medium Well Production

We had the idea to create our own business quite some time ago. We work in the media industry, and we’ve had more and more customers who, after receiving a product (photo, video, or design), ask us if we have friends who can help make a site, set up advertising, etc.

Over time, we realized that it was worth making a fully working mechanism for this, with a customized ordering system. This allowed us to drastically improve our projects – we no longer assemble them piece by piece independently but rather as a well-coordinated team, and the result is a stylistically more cohesive product.

At the moment, we often receive video orders. For example, we recent did some shooting for the advertising company for the energy drink BIZON. We also provide event support (advertising, corporate identity, etc.). Recently, we’ve been approached by some clients who are going open a club. And our largest order is from an apparel brand that is preparing to launch: we will be providing them full media support, from content creation to promotion.

The ‘Startup from Scratch’ minor has helped us to structure the information in our minds and fully determine the image of the product. If it didn’t involve the kind of homework that it does, we probably wouldn’t have done a competitor analysis. But thanks to the work we did in preparation for our project defense, we have almost come to a decision about how our future site will look and what we will be sure not to include.

We welcome people to join our team who are involved in video production, creating and processing photos, launching advertising, SMM, typesetting, and other things that are necessary in the media industry. And, of course, we are looking for customers!

Search Engine for Jobs in Design

Valeria Teteeva
‘Design’ Programme; Project Manager for Dreamers, Media Designer

About a year ago, I first started looking for work as a novice designer. This was not easy, as there aren’t a lot of jobs right now in the creative field. That’s when I thought of the idea to create a single job search platform focused only on design.

I wanted to build a brand that is based on users’ trust and takes into account all the disadvantages of other platforms. It soon became clear that it’s not just designers who need a good platform. Customers too often spend a lot of time trying to find a good specialist. With the help of our minor programme, we could competently develop our business app and test it on our instructors.

At the moment, we are actively developing our educational media space in Instagram: we talk about creative personalities in an interview format and share relevant information about the digital creative sphere. This is important in order to draw our target audience’s attention to the problem of promoting design in Russia and then redirect it to our website, which could become the starting point for someone’s career.

Now we are starting to develop a demo version of the site, and in March we will test it on Central Asia. Further plans include a meeting with investors from the digital and education sectors and strengthening the brand in the market.

There are currently only three people on our team and we are desperately in need of more team members. We are in search of a business analyst, a developer, a customer relations manager, a sales manager, an editor-journalist for our blog, and an SMM specialist. We welcome all students who find this project interesting.


February 04, 2020