We’re heading to Colorado and California!

The first Startup Community Leaders Mission is scheduled to the USA for 29 January – 5 February 2017, with 18 participants taking part, including 13 from regional Queensland, 2 from Brisbane, 1 from Byron Bay, and 2 from Perth.

The objective of this mission is to explore different models and programs used overseas for providing support to startups, while building global awareness, discovering international best practices, learning about the latest trends, and building strong global connections, all to better support the startups in our local Australian startup communities.

What are we doing?

During the mission participants will meet with fellow startup community leaders, including mentors, managers and staff from accelerators, co-working spaces, tech hubs, maker spaces, meetup groups, and other startup support organisations. Participants will also connect with the Australian ex-pat community.

Scheduled meetings include TechStars (accelerator), 500 startups (accelerator), Rockies Venture Club (investor club), Runway (co-working and accelerator), RocketSpace (coworking), the Commonwealth Landing Pad, and many more.

Why are we doing it?

Australia has a long history of innovation and a strong track record of entrepreneurship in traditional industries such as property, resources, tourism, and agriculture. We also have a large number of “small business” entrepreneurs who run organisations that provide employment for many Australians. However, our track record in forming tech companies that scale globally is limited, and we currently have fewer tech startups per capita than the majority of other developed economies.

With this mission we want to help those that are in-turn helping startups.  By connecting these community leaders with their counterparts overseas, they can better support, advise, and connect the startups in their regions to go global.

Why Boulder and San Francisco?

San Francisco, and the associated Bay Area, is home to Silicon Valley – the epicentre of startup activity – where an estimated 27,000 startups and 15,000 investors operate in an area roughly equivalent to the the Brisbane-to-Gold Coast region, and with a population of roughly 7 million people. Some of the top startup accelerators, incubators, co-working spaces, maker spaces, investor groups, and founder support groups are located in San Francisco, making it the ideal location to visit.

Boulder in Colorado is the home and birthplace of TechStars, and for a population of just over 100,000 people, it has one of the highest per-capita rates of startup participation.  It also has a robust sense of community, and is a leading example of how robust startup communities can be built in regional areas.

The Participants

The 18 mission participants are:

NameRegionOrganisation
Ayla SoutarRedland and LoganLogan Startups & Misfits
Baden U'RenGold CoastBond Business Commercialisation Centre
Chad RenandoIpswich & West MoretonFire Station 101
Damian ZammitFar North QueenslandtheSPACE
Daniel SwanByron Bay NSWStartInno
David ColeNorth QueenslandNQ UAV
Eleanor CareyWide Bay BurnettThe Generator: Bundaberg
Fiona CrowePerth WASt Catherine's College, UWA
Jarryd TownsonMackay Isaac WhitsundaySplit Spaces
Joy TaylorDarling Downs & MaranoaCanvas Coworking
Kristine ArnoldOutback QueenslandCWQ RAPAD
Michael BlackSunshine CoastMic's Lab
Nicholas MathiouGold CoastGriffith Enterprise, Griffith University
Peter LaurieBrisbaneJunta
Shannon ZiegelaarPerth WABloom
Sharon HunneybellGold CoastStartup Apprentice
Troy HainesFar North QueenslandtheSPACE
Aaron BirkbyBrisbaneStartup Catalyst

Mission Sponsor

The mission is being supported and sponsored by Advance Queensland, which is a Queensland Government initiative to support startups and innovation. Under this funding, ten regional Queensland participants were selected to receive sponsored (funded) places on the mission (excluding their return international flights and personal spending money).

Advance Queensland

A competitive online application and selection process was used to select the 10 recipients from an application pool of 35. The other participants on the mission are each paying their own way to attend.  The applications for the Advance Queensland funding for the mission were broken down as follows:

The breakdown of funding applications from regional Queensland

Follow along

You can follow the mission via Twitter and Facebook, and via this blog, where participants will be sharing their experiences and insights – before, during and after the mission.

We will also be hosting public debrief events post-mission in Brisbane, Townsville and the Gold Coast, so stay tuned for announcements about when and where you can attend those.

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1 Response

  1. Jess says:

    Bummed to have missed out on this trip but looking forward to following along. Thanks for sharing 🙂

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