King Philippe talked to student entrepreneurs and the DO! team

(07-02-2024) On 6 February, His Majesty the King visited the expertise center for entrepreneurship 'Durf Ondernemen' (DO!) at Ghent University. He spoke with the DO! team and with various student entrepreneurs.

The king first spoke with the current DO! team. He then met (student) entrepreneurs who are already active at different levels and different sectors within entrepreneurship or who have just started a project within DO! Four companies were allowed to present their products, while ten student entrepreneurs sat at the table with the king to exchange ideas about success and failure in entrepreneurship.

At the start of the visit, DO! coordinator Jolien Coenraets presented the DO! activities in the presence of the current DO! team (Tom Van Damme, Ellen Eeckhaut, Lobke Van Damme, Alexander Spriet, Gerlinde Van Hauwermeiren and Victoria Buylaert). In addition to the king, mayor Mathias De Clercq, rector Rik Van de Walle and DO! driving force Professor Koen De Bosschere were also attentive listeners.

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Four (student) companies presented their products:

  • Nathan De Baets, François Desmet and Jules Dobbelaere started TAITO during their studies. They designed a safe, durable and comfortable e-scooter on three wheels.
  • Tibbe Verschaffel (Planet B) presenteert zijn producten aan koning FilipWith Planet B, Tibbe Verschaffel wants to turn the Fast Moving Consumer Goods sector upside down by developing and selling healthy and sustainable consumer products. Planet B currently has three brands: 'Wondr Care' (natural care products), 'Klaaar' (sustainable washing strips) and 'Bambooze' (reusable Bamboo straws).
  • Kyanu Delrue, Emilio Van Der Linden and Simon De Geyter joined forces to tackle the problem of overflowing garbage bins and litter. With Rebin they make existing garbage bins smart through a combination of innovative hardware and software solutions. The result is a cost-efficient and sustainable way of garbage collection.
  • Jack Lathouwers decided to make it his mission with Gutsy to produce and sell natural, transparent and Belgian dog food, healthier for the dog and the planet.

In a round-table discussion, ten student entrepreneurs were able to exchange ideas aboutKoning Filip in gesprek met 10 student-ondernemers success and failure in entrepreneurship:

  • Roxanne Kloeck combines studying with making vegan desserts and catering. Her student company Junglicious now supplies small and large coffee shops in and outside Ghent. The king could also taste that it is tasty.
  • With Simpools, medical student Sim Van Langenhove markets simple and affordable wooden frames (terrace, stairs, lounge, bar, etc.) for above-ground swimming pools.
  • With Sang De Pascual, Megin Pascual makes an authentic, artisanal liqueur based on 100% organic Spanish blood oranges that follows his special family story.
  • Astrid De Tender started Studio Safir, a sustainable and handmade-to-order fashion label that wants to be an alternative to the current failing (fast) fashion system.
  • With Print3r, Murat Ergün specialized in a tailor-made service for 3D printing and laser cutting. He also sells 3D printers (with associated materials) and developed a guide with tips and tricks.
  • Yanis Van Eeckhout developed an AI-powered educational platform with BluePrint that generates personalized game-based tutoring. In the meantime, Yanis and his co-founders decided to discontinue the idea. When the next entrepreneurial opportunity arises, they plan to continue together.
  • With Sempl, Lauren Van Hecke built a platform that maps the energy management of swimming pools and makes them more (cost) efficient and sustainable.
  • T-Management from student Tatjana Kouzovkov is an inclusive modeling and influencer agency.
  • Wannes Van Laerhoven reinvented the wheel with his student company Eco Tire Solutions. With a 3D-printed, circular, airless wheel of high quality, it increases the mobility of wheelchairs.
  • Helena Dendooven combines studying with music and theater. She got the artistic gene from her family. She is currently working on her first album, which she will release next summer under the stage name Helena Casella. She was allowed to round off the royal visit with a dash of music and singing.

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