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Aloha 21st Century Boomboxes: a new way to listen to music

Srdjan Pavelic is looking to shift the way we experience music.

Pavelic is the founder of Aloha 21st Century Boomboxes, a wireless boombox that doesn’t rely on smartphones. Instead of using a Bluetooth connection, Aloha Boomboxes directly connects with a wireless carrier giving users the opportunity to listen at any location. In addition, the boombox has a solar charger attached allowing users to travel long distances without worry.

Pavelic’s idea was largely inspired by his love for music growing up. After years of dealing with faulty Bluetooth speakers that never seemed to want to connect, Pavelic developed the concept for the Aloha Boombox. Initially a part of an Iowa State class project, the boombox has evolved to take advantage of the latest wireless technology, giving users the ability to connect to the boombox and queue songs from multiple devices at once.

Srdjan Pavelic showcases the Aloha Boombox at CYstarters demo day.

Taking full advantage of local programs and resources, Aloha Boomboxes participated in the ISU Startup Factory as well as the most recent CYstarters cohort. Aloha Boomboxes was one of five winners at the CYstartes 2018 demo day.

“I learned how to really get down and dirty with customer discovery. and find the golden nuggets of what users are truly looking for rather than just assuming I know,” Pavelic said. “It turned everything towards a very human-centric approach when designing my product as well as my company.”

In addition to participating in multiple accelerators, Pavelic has presented at 1 Million Cups Des Moines and Technori Dubuque.

“That feeling of being part of something much larger than myself really grew to a whole new level,” Pavelic said.

Srdjan Pavelic is aiming to have a viable product ready for market by October and hopes to be selling the product by March of next year through a partnership with T-mobile.

Pavelic says he plans to eventually expand the product line beyond boomboxes and develop other wireless smart devices as well.

Previous coverage

CYstarters: Fifteen companies take the stage at demo day – Aug. 2, 2018

1 Comment

  • cameron
    Posted August 8, 2018 at 2:12 pm

    This makes me really excited! I am rooting for this!

Comments are closed.

Aloha 21st Century Boomboxes: a new way to listen to music | Clay & Milk
A central Iowa ag-tech accelerator has secured more backers and finally has a name. The Greater Des Moines Partnership first announced the accelerator last year, naming four initial investors. On Monday, the Partnership said the program will be called the "Iowa AgriTech Accelerator" and named three new investors. The new investors include Grinnell Mutual, Kent Corp. and Sukup Manufacturing, all Iowa companies. They join investors Deere & Co., Peoples Co., Farmers Mutual Hail Insurance Co. and DuPont Pioneer. Each investor has agreed to put up $100,000 for the first year of the accelerator. Startups entering the program will receive $40,000 in seed funding in exchange for 6 percent equity. Tej Dhawan, an angel investor and local startup mentor, is serving as interim director until the AgriTech Accelerator names a permanent leader. Dhawan held a similar role with the GIA before Brian Hemesath was named as managing director. As interim director, Dhawan said his main job includes hiring the accelerator's executive director, establishing a business structure and initial recruiting for the first cohort. The accelerator will place few filters, such as location and product, on the applicant pool, Dhawan said. "When you’re seeking innovation, innovation can come from every corner of the world so why restrict ourselves," he said. One area the the AgriTech Accelerator won't recruit from is biotech. For its first cohort, the AgriTech Accelerator will work out of the GIA's space in Des Moines' East Village, Dhawan said. A future, permanent home is still to be decided. The accelerator's program will host startups from mid-July through mid-October, ending with an event connected to the annual World Food Prize. The GIA, which the AgriTech Accelerator is based on, also ends with presentations at an industry event. The accelerator has also started lining up a mentor pool. The Iowa Corn Growers Association, Iowa Soybean Association and the Iowa Pork Producers Association have agreed to provide mentors, as has Iowa State University. While the AgriTech Accelerator is loosely based off of the GIA, it will differ in its business structure, Dhawan said. The GIA runs through a for-profit model for both operations and its investment fund. The AgriTech Accelerator will have a nonprofit model for its operations and a for-profit setup for its fund. Dhawan said the nonprofit model is being used so the accelerator can better work with other nonprofit partners, such as trade associations. "These are all organizations that are nonprofits and can be amazing stakeholders without ever having to be investors in the accelerator," he said. "It becomes easier to work with trade associations in their nonprofit role when we are also a nonprofit." When it's up and running, the AgriTech Accelerator would be one of a handful of ag-focused startup development programs in Iowa. Others include the Ag Startup Engine out of Iowa State University and the Rural Ventures Alliance from Iowa MicroLoan. Matthew Patane is the managing editor and co-founder of Clay & Milk. Send him an email at
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