The Story of Poko


Every year the Estonian Investments Centre encourages students to take part of a contest called "Negavatt" and to come up with an idea that would save energy and resources for their University (Check it out here!). This is where the story of Poko began. A couple of students from the University of Tartu wanted to reduce their plastic bag consumption but they couldn't seem to carry all their reusable bags with them all the time. The idea was chosen as one of the 10 best and so Poko was born...

The Prototype

After working on our project plan and basic project management skills at the finalists bootcamp, it was time to take action. In April, 2017 the first prototypes of Poko were made.

We experimented with numerous materials and methods to achieve the best possible balance of functionality, aesthetics and environmental impact and finally perfected the design of Poko.

The more curious reader can find out more about the design and its impact on the environment here.

The First Customer

Ah yes, the very first people to start reducing plastic pollution by using Poko.

In May, 2017 Poko found its way to the first customers at the birthday event of Paljas Pala, the first packaging free store in Estonia and the Baltic states.

Paljas Pala is also one of the supporters of Poko!


Formal Recognition

Again in May, 2017 Poko participated in the business and project ideas competition "Kaleidoskoop" by IdeaLab and made the top 10 going to finals.

This was also the first time the idea of Poko was pitched.

In the finals, Poko was granted the Ecoinnovation prize!

The Big Catalyst

May was an extremely prolific month for Poko. From early March, Poko was created, developed, and enhanced into a solid eco-friendly business. 

It was time for the Negavatt finals. Through hard-work and persistence we made it, third place in the finals, the greatest achievement for Poko so far!

This helped us drive environmental change and reach the subsequent milestones!

The next journey

On a quest of bettering ourselves and the environment, the Poko team doesn't stop.

In June, 2017 Poko participated in the Estonian finals of Climate Launchpad and enhanced their business management skills.

9 days of professional training later, our skills and sense of direction reached new heights!

It's official!

In June, 2017 Poko finally became a registered company!

Gaining fame!

Again in June, 2017 Poko was featured in a newspaper for the first time!

Poko appeared in newspapers again and again in September and October!

It was a busy summer vacation for the members of Poko...

Making it big!

In July, 2017 Poko started working on its first big order by the University of Tartu.

This was a challenge that taught us how to provide quality in large quantities!

Increasing sustainability!

In August, 2017 Poko explored ways of improving the product further

We started making Poko key-holders from felt which makes it more eco-friendly and a softer feel with more design possibilities!

Raising awareness!

In October, 2017 Poko held a photography competition about the plastic surrounding us!

The 10 best entries were featured as a gallery at the University of Tartu and of course the best entries received some nice prizes...

Find out more about all the sponsors of the event here!