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Marianas Variety: Korky Aguon tops startup weekend (November 12, 2019)

KORKY Aguon won the 1st Micronesia Techstar Startup Weekend on Saturday at Northern Marianas College.

Aguon's business idea is the Islander RC, which aims to offer customizable remote-controlled toys.

“People are disappointed whenever they learn that my unit was bought online or off-island, so I decided to bring it here, he said.

“I quickly grew a passion for tinkering and breaking things apart, putting (them) back together, and I hope to produce that same passion with the new generation Aguon said.

A Northern Marianas College student, Aguon will represent Saipan in a competition whose other participants are the Google Startup Weekend winners in the other Micronesian islands.

The regional winner will receive $5,000 seed money and a chance to compete globally.

“I would really like to win that seed money [so] I can quickly start my business, train personnel, and get out there, Aguon said.

On Saturday at NMC, he competed against five other groups composed of students and other aspiring businesspersons.

Aguon received a trophy, a certificate, and two print advertisements in Marianas Variety once he launches his business.

Coming in second place is program developer, Arnel Gruspe whose business idea is called Innovation Factor (CNMI). It aims to offer three products: Arduino Raspberry Pi Robotics, 3D Printing, and Mobile App Development for Tourists.

NMC students Jamerie Paras, Hanelyn Balucos, and Kayziel Mojica placed third for their business idea called One Stop Shop, which aims to offer subscription based co-working space for business startups and professional printing services.

Daphne Leon Guerrero, human resources director for CPL Pacific and one of the competition judges, said they were impressed with Islander RC because Aguon was very articulate and had a well thought out business plan.

“I also like that he is passionate about it, his knowledge about the industry, and about the product that he wants to sell, she added.

The other members of the panel of judges were Laila Y. Boyer, publisher, Marianas Variety; Perry Inos Jr., business development manager, Triple J Enterprises; Carline Sablan, community relations director, Tan Holdings; and Billy Grow, business consultant, Docomo Pacific.

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