21 February 2017
“Today started off at 8:15 a.m. sharp. We immediately hit the road to drive all the way to the American University of Sharjah (AUS) located in Sharjah, a neighboring city of Dubai. There, we met and spoke extensively with a host of entrepreneurial-minded people including the Director of Business Development of AUS as well as the marketing and outreach manager of SHERAA, an entrepreneurial initiative that teams with startups to give them access to funding, guidance, and legal help. Through talking to the Director of Business Development, we learned about the existing hydroponics initiatives that are already taking place in and around the country; this proved to be a great brainstorming session as it opened our eyes to unique ways in which we can build interest in our idea.
As common for most group projects, much of work time during the latter part of the day was spent arguing over semantics; after all that we’d learned in our brief time here, it was necessary to integrate our findings with our current state of affairs. After much deliberation, a conclusion was made: we would split the project up into three major phases. The first phase would be targeted towards businesses that can benefit from the product and would be similar to the system we’d been designing and prototyping. The next phase, ideally starting around year two, would involve a business to consumer approach in which we will be selling StackFarms for personal use; at this point, there would need to be a slight redesign to increase aesthetic appeal. Further R&D will be done. The third phase, in which we see ourselves in five or so years, is going to be expanding beyond the UAE and opening ourselves up to the international market.”