The way to get started is to quit talking and begin doing.
CO- Founder, Partners
Software Development, IT
How it all started
The story started by chance when Haaga-Helia’s students Kasper and Pyry met by accident during the course, during which common interests and entrepreneurship became common topics.
Pyry talked about his previous experiences with the Young Entrepreneurship competitions and how these competitions would be a potential opportunity to try out entrepreneurship. The next competition would be held in the spring of 2022.
With the themes of the competition strongly focused on the circular economy Pyry proposed a service where consumers could find grocery stores discounted products in advance via website. A similar service had not been tried in Finland, which aroused interest and potential in the idea.
Digitalize in-store individual discounted products
On January 5, 2022, the company’s first board meeting was held, after which the idea was started to be planned seriosly. This coincided with the Korona era, when the first months were spent mainly remotely, which contributed to the development of its own challenges.
In addition to business development, school and work were overwhelmed. In the initial phase, an incredible amount of work was done to create the idea and processes, as well as everything else needed to be planned before the first store experiment. However, additional hands were needed for this, especially in technical matters.
Acting bluntly and honorably
We can get there quickly on our own, but together we get far.
Together we will succeed
Without trust, there is no change and without change there is no success.
Willingness to try and evolve
Developing and experimenting to achieve new things requires courage as well as a willingness to try new perspectives.
Additional shareholder Aaro M.
Software development in modern times pays for fortune and especially in the beginning, we couldn’t afford to hire anyone (everything had to be done by ourselves). Coincidentally, Aaro Mielonen, a future partner of Troa, was found in Kasper’s class and had previous experience in game development and programming.
After a little persuasion, Aaro joined the company and in the following weeks and months he did an incredible amount of work to develop the software while Kasper and Pyry took care of contacting the stores, making marketing materials and other critical issues related to business idea.
Everyone took care of the things where they performed best and operations were purposefully developed further.
First Grocery Store
On April 1, 2022, Troa’s first store experiment was launched, in which the idea was piloted together with K-Market Hakaniemen Herkku. Store owner Pauliina was one of the first to be contacted and her desire to try new innovations and reduce food waste made an impression on us. What was especially great was that the idea was allowed to try out at the real store environment and with the real customers.
During the first store experiment, we tried the processes from generating advance information to our customers and QR code which can be read at the checkout. It was agreed with the store that the cashier will give an additional 5% discount on the special purchases selected for the QR code received through us. The feedback and development ideas received ensured that there is a real demand for the availability of discount products and that there is real potential for the idea.
Second Grocery Store: Alepa
On April 15, 2022, we had our second testing with another retail chain: HOK -Elannon’s Alepa Eliel. HOK Elanto is Finland’s largest grocery chain. After our meeting with the Alepa team leader, we found common interests in how Troa could accelerate sales of bakery section products in Alepa. The main focus of pilot with Alepa were on bakery section.
The results after 2 weeks of piloting were promising: Bakery products during evening discount had been sold more with our advance information and at the same time we managed to reduce food waste and generate more turnover for the store. We also received positive feedback on availability information from store customers, and our test user groups provided us with valuable information for service development.
JA Enterprise of the Year -Finland 🥇
Finland’s most significant youth entrepreneurship competition culminated in the Final on 28 April, where our company Troa represented the higher education category and Haaga-Helia University of Applied Sciences. We were very well prepared for the competition and this was also reflected in the prizes. We won the Best Business Idea and Best Marketing awards in the online competitions, as well as the Finnish Championship in the entire higher education category. Hard work was rewarded and we are very grateful for that.
However, the work is just beginning and we will look forward to the next European Championships when we represent Finland in the university category. Since Finland won the hockey world championship this year, it would be just as great to win the same but in the JA competitions.
Pioneer on grocery stores discounted products
Provide grocery stores with the most efficient and best platform to boost sales of discounted products through digitalization.
JA Enterpise EM -championship
Provide Finland it first gold on upcoming JA European championship competition.
Availability information from all grocery store chains in Finland
An online platform for all individual discounted products in every grocery store.
What does "Troa" mean?
The name of the company “Troa” originally comes from the words “troa mangajo”, which means leftover food in Esperanto.