Filipino Startups Showcase their Innovative Products at Spark Festival 2017

Written by: Tiffany Tolones (IG:@camille_abitofmonica)
Photos by: FJ Daniell Chua  (IG:@personal.danioell)

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It was a festival of creativity, ideas, and innovation.

The Spark Festival 2017 has opened doors for startups and enthusiasts alike. From accessories, bags, shoes, camera, comics, food, liquors, beauty products, to cameras, and what have you, different startup companies were able to present their various products and services.  They had it all at Fully Book High Street’s Top Shelf.

While visitors scanned the exhibitors’ products at the top floor, they also enjoyed different programs prepared by the Spark Project team. The whole afternoon, Spark Project conducted several seminars with esteemed speakers in the private sector. These seminars focused on jumpstarting businesses, strategies on branding, and studying trends. Famous personalities were present in the event like the illustrator Dan Matutina, RJ Ledesma, Baby Ruth Villarama, and also some musicians like Armi Millare from UP Dharma Down and Mito Fabie also known as Curtismith.

Spark Fest 2017 is an event where different startup owners introduce their products to the market while also building their network of connections with the visitors and other entrepreneurs as well. Behind this bazaar is The Spark Project headed by Patch Dulay, its founder and CEO.

Here’s what you missed at Spark Festival 2017 and some startups you might want to check out:

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Hull & Stern

Are you a regular beach goer, traveler, or hiker? Hull & Stern introduces their thermo-sealed dry bags. Aside from filling it with your clothes, you can also use this as a floater when you go to the beach. Thermo-sealed dry bags can store air since it doesn’t have punctures, unlike its sewn equivalent. It is also waterproof because of its tarpaulin material.

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Gouache Bags

From backpacks, duffel bags, laptop and camera bags, to wallets, passport covers, and cord organizers, Gouache bags have it. They offer quality wax coated canvas bags –it’s sturdy and it suits almost any occasion. For millennials, this will complete that hipster #OOTD.

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Some stories are written. But for others, it is worn. Istorya engraves snippets of your life story into fashionable and affordable accessories. These accessories are hand made, manually stamped by the owner herself. They engrave your story into different materials like bracelets, rings, pendants, bookmarks, spoons and bread knives, among others. Prices start at 150 php.

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Risque Designs

“Wear your culture on your feet.” Rique Designs by TAL proudly introduces the Filipino culture through weaved shoes and carved heels. Fresh from Negros Occidental, customized shoes by Risque Designs used handmade weaves by locals and carved wooden heels from artisans of Paete in their designs.

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Filipino Komiks and Art Market (or Komiket) is one of the largest Filipino Komiks and Art market in the country that helps the Filipino komiks industry to thrive in the competitive business world. With mostly independent publishers and artists, Komiket provides another avenue for artists and komiks enthusiasts alike to meet and connect with each other. You should watch out for their upcoming Metro Manila event this October!

Budget Squad Manila

This startup aims to educate Filipinos about financial literacy and personal finance. Budget Squad Manila has its own planner with daily expenses list and monthly finance tracker. For founders Michelle Pecdasen and Sarah Vicente, it is important to know where to start through listing daily expenses, since you can easily check your budget and you can make sure that everything is accounted for. Ten percent of their sales go to teaching financially troubled Filipinos on budget management and personal finance.

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Gugma Weaves

The passion for introducing the Visayan culture is what empowered the minds behind Gugma Weaves. Gugma is the Ilonggo that means love.

They offer various products made of handmade weaves like scarves, wallet, and handbag. This is a community startup that even the Komiks artist Manix Abrera supports.

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Papershoot PH

Light, environment-friendly, organic, and made out of paper. Of all things that could be like what was described, you will never imagine a camera. But what seemed to be out of science fiction paper camera is not just a fantasy anymore.

Papershoot PH introduces their paper-made camera. This mind blowing innovation is imported from Taiwan to the Philippines. The camera is light, because its body is made of stone paper, one of the sturdiest paper materials. It is powered by two AA batteries, and it has a memory card slot (like those of the DSLRs), it is also splash-proof, and has a 5MP camera and fish eye wide angle lens that can be attached through magnet.

But what shocked me the most is that if the camera is beyond repair, you may plant it in a pot. YES, YOU CAN PLANT IT. The stone paper also contains seeds of Coreopsis plant (it’s like a plant similar to daisies). So if you’re tired of taking pictures, you might as well do gardening instead.

These startups are only a few of those who joined the festival that had innovative projects. You should definitely check them out! The Spark Project ignites people’s interest into local brands through crowd funding. Sometimes, the most creative and innovative ideas are just financially lacking. But through this initiative, these ideas may come into reality.

Do you have your own creative and innovative project? Share it with us on the comments below!

The Spark Project


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