That was the rooom year 2020
At the beginning of the year, rooom AG makes its way to Freiburg for the Telekom TechBoost and receives the award as Start-up Winner for its charming and technically convincing pitch! Not only did we gain new international contacts, but we also won Deutsche Telekom as a reliable partner for future collaborations. Our vision of making 3D, virtual and augmented reality suitable and accessible for the mass market is becoming a bit more real.
We begin the second month of the year creatively and enthusiastically with the renovation of the OneHub. After four years, we give our own four office walls a modern and stylish makeover and create space for our growing team. Within a few days, a workplace to feel good in is created - modern meeting rooms, lounge-like meeting places, cozy areas of relaxation and plenty of space for concentration and creativity. The design of the space is developed entirely by our team of 3D experts using 3D models and augmented reality.
A few weeks later, everything is ready to move in and receive the first VIP visitors from the EU delegation. This strengthens our status as the "digital location" of the city of Jena and we receive many compliments from the invited guests for our new location. The members of the EU Parliament and the Bundestag are particularly enthusiastic about our virtual reality lounge, where we can take a short break and dive into virtual worlds. Put on your VR goggles and off you go!
The infection numbers due to the Corona pandemic increase dramatically. Due to government regulations, our entire team has to move to the home office. A time of change and problem solving begins. From now on, our team meetings take place online and even the coffee machine in the office remains unused. However, thanks to good equipment and quick action, all employees are well equipped even in the home office.
A new children's book for our free app rooomBOOKS is launched: The book "Regentroepfchens Reise" ("Rain Drop's Journey"), designed together with author Iris Gottschlich and Knabe Verlag. It combines the exciting story about the weather's origins with vivid 3D illustrations. With the help of a smartphone, the little animated raindrops come to life and dance across the letters on the pages. By the way, the animations were created by our designer Antonia Gluschak.
It's getting into the busy phase of the development of rooomEXPO-X, our platform for virtual events. Due to the restrictions of the Corona pandemic, the demand for digital events is growing more and more. Even from MDR our solution is presented and complimented because it creates a great value for many companies in times of crisis.
The first events with our event platform start: For example, the InvestorDays Thuringia take place this year as a "Digital Edition" with our system. The event is a huge success: more than 10,000 interactions in terms of video calls, virtual business card exchanges, appointments and much more come about. As we also participate in the live pitch at this event, our CEO Hans and CTO Hendrik present the benefits of our platform and earn enthusiastic applause for their professional and entertaining performance.
As the number of new employees grows, so does our in-house dog family. For this reason, we have been awarded a certificate from the German Animal Welfare Association as a "dog-friendly company". So your dog is always welcome here! :-)
But our doors are not only open to the dogs, but also to the governmental visitors. Representatives of the Bundestag and the Federal Ministry for Economic Cooperation like State Secretary Norbert Barthle and Johannes Selle (MdB) show great interest in our solutions and visit our offices.
Outside the office, the digital castle gates of the Osterburg in Weida (Thuringia) open in July. Our app "Osterburg 2.0", equipped with 3D content, makes an interactive exploration of the museum possible both on site and at home in a 360° tour.
We are opening our own self-designed „streaming rooom“! For a long time now, we've needed a place where we can produce tutorials on how to use our platform without being disturbed. With the growth of online events this year, we also need a new stage to present ourselves to the outside world. We now record professional live pitches and streams in front of our new green screen using state-of-the-art technology.
In GlassDollar's ranking, we also reach the 10th place of the fastest growing startups in Germany. It's no wonder that Wolfgang Tiefensee, Germany's Minister of Economic Affairs, will not miss the opportunity to visit us in August.
Wow, what a project! Unlike numerous other events, the IFA 2020 is not to be cancelled this year. Instead, it will take place in a hybrid format with our help. Wow, what a project! Unlike numerous other events, the IFA 2020 is not to be cancelled this year. Instead, it will take place in a hybrid format with our help. The number of participants on site is very limited, but online, numerous visitors from all over the world can take part in the event. Thanks to livestreaming and personal chat functions, exhibitors can present themselves and their new products and maintain contact with the public. Preparing for the virtual IFA is a particularly big challenge for us, because the event format requires a lot of adjustments. But the effort and sleepless nights of our team are worth it. IFA 2020 as a virtual "Special Edition" is making a statement:
"It is a symbol that together we can look beyond the pandemic and its consequences," said IFA head Jens Heithecker.
We make our hometown Jena a bit more digital and support local construction projects with the possibilities of 3D and augmented reality. In order to show residents the development of public spaces and the new soccer stadium in advance, we build 3D models that can be placed in the real environment using AR. The 3D view helps residents learn more about the construction projects in their hometown and get actively involved. All of this is made possible by the App we developed, which is going online in October.
And another app of ours is coming to the app stores: the SCHOTT Villa App, with which we bring Otto Schott, founder of the Jena-based SCHOTT Group, to life using augmented reality. In the exhibition at the SCHOTT Villa in Jena, he takes visitors along on an audio guide and personally introduces himself and his life's work.
We are a four-time winner of important business awards, clearing the Thuringian Innovation Award, the Digital & Open Source Award Thuringia, the Digital Champions Award as well as the KfW Award Gruenden - What a great appreciation! With virtual reality, we rescue many trade fairs and give many companies a hopeful outlook. We as a team are also growing enormously in our tasks and challenges due to the increased demand.
We have achieved an incredible amount this year, have overcome hurdles, and have grown together as a team despite the physical distance. Now it's time to celebrate all the achievements of 2020 virtually! This year's Christmas party, including Secret Santa and fun-fair action, is taking place online in our private living rooms. The entire team meets via video chat and comes together in the virtual rooms of the OneHub, built using our virtual event platform. With a joint mulled wine punch, Secret Santa gift unwrapping and an after-hour DJ, we end the year in the best mood and celebrate our familial and inseparable team.
We are already looking forward to 2021 and all the new employees, challenges and projects that await us!