ANZ Innovyz START is one of Australia’s leading accelerator programs, taking in new tech ventures, putting their founders through a super intense 13 week program of mentorship and business strategising – and then launching them as companies ready to change the world.
We’re here at Demo Day – the penultimate day of the program. Here, the start-up founders pitch on stage to an audience of 100-150 investors (the important ones) and another 300 observers. It’s Australia’s largest Demo Days, and South Australia’s biggest annual start-up event.
The action starts around 130pm South Australia time, and we’ll be here blogging the event!
3.45pm ACDT (Adelaide Time)
And it’s a wrap! It’s been a whirlwind of pitching, new ideas, new businesses and exciting prospects. It’s been a long afternoon, and I’m sure many beers will be drunk tonight by all those involved in the program. With a hat tip to the Governor of South Australia, Dr. Jana Matthews sends off the attendees. We’ll be back in six months or so for the next demo day on May 8th 2014. Any start-ups who want to grace the stage can apply for the progam until late November 2013 here.
Finishing up the afternoon’s pitching is Belinda Jennings, founder and CEO of Australian Baby Bargains and now developing a new platform Mums Central. Australian Baby Bargains have had incredible growth since graduating the first ANZ Innovyz START accelerator program just over a year ago, she says. The business has used its time in ANZ Innovyz BRIDGE to develop for the next wave of growth – and will continue to diversify its offering to its ten of thousands of mums. It’s a huge opportunity – 301.617 babies were born last year – and success, says Belinda ‘is child’s play’. Great way to round out the day!
Singa is one of the ANZ Innovyz BRIDGE companies, and has experienced some great successes over the past few months. Only six months after graduating the ANZ Innovyz START program the team launched an app with Total Girls Magazine (over 50,000 downloads in the first four weeks). It was featured in Apple’s best new app section, and listed as editor’s choice on the App Store for over a week. CEO Yang Zhang explain that world domination is the goal (he wants to multiply Singa’s users by a factor of 100) with some exciting new partnerships on the way.
3.20pm ACDT (Adelaide Time)
Muvli is a start-up that completely pivoted during the course of the program – from cloud booking software to music video. CEO Ben Smith is on stage now talking about how he wants to help new bands create music videos to share their music with the world. Muvli also have an awesome little corporate mascot called ‘Muvli Bot’. My vote is for Muvli Bot t-shirts.
Broken Arm Games are an interesting venture – a collective of Italian digital designers who have create games for big corporations like Fiat and Samsung, as well as their own games such as KaBoom!. They’re here in Australia to create a new business model around gaming – connecting innovation with corporations and bring new gaming experiences to life. Learn more here about them in this Shoestring.com.au article.
3pm ACDT (Adelaide Time)
Memtell is all about capturing memories using video and sound recording, says founder Jono Birkett. Since graduating the ANZ Innovyz START program six months ago, Memtell have trialled a beta version of their web application and are currently readying a mobile app to launch to market. Bit of #productplacement taking place on stage.
Brisbane-based GoCatalyze want sto do interesting things to your data. The team seem very smart, and have created a platform that allows businesses to roll out their own solutions. It’s all about reducing time and cost barriers – allowing firms to quickly implement. They’ve already got customers and revenues – and are looking for investors to back their accelerated their sales process – onboard more users and move into new markets.
2.40pm ACDT (Adelaide Time)
Skwibl, the Ukrainian start-up that came all the way from Kiev to join the program are now up on stage! Founder Tatiana Protasova wants to make the design process as painless as possible for designers and clients – and capture part of the $44bn design market. Skwibl’s project management tool has already been pegged by Mashable as one of the 14 fantastic free tools for design collaboration. It has 1500 registered users and is growing at 50% per month. For more about Tatiana and the team, read this excellent piece in the Australian/news.com.au here.
Chris Peck, CEO of Insane Gorilla explains how he wants to revolutionise the multi-billion dollar games industry. They’ve got big ambitions and, as he explains, a highly experienced team with global contacts. You can follow Chris and the team at Insane Gorilla on their progress on twitter.
2pm ACDT (Adelaide Time)
Savvas Dimitriou, CEO of Kicktone gets up for the first pitch. A music platform for indie bands, Kicktone launched on October 1st this year, Kicktone is all about social music discovery, helping bands to sell their music to their fans, and build their audience. They had aimed to have 200 bands on the platform within the first month, but smashed that target by attracting 1273 bands to date. Kicktone were also featured online today in the Sydney Morning Herald.
The team from AEGLE life are up on stage now. They want to use smartphones and health monitoring devices to keep people healthy, happier and more productive. Their device agnostic platform takes data from health devices and presents it back to users – allowing them to share with friends, family or even doctors. Healthcare is a big industry, and ripe for innovation. Shoestring.com.au spoke to the team at the start of the program about what they aim to achieve.
1.30pm ACDT (Adelaide Time)
And we’re off! Dr Jana Matthews takes the stage for opening comments. South Australia was founded on a big idea, she points out – and a source of commercial ideas such as wine casks and plastic spectacle lenses. Innovation is not new to Adelaide, and the ANZ Innovyz START companies continue in this long heritage of creative commercial innovation – in the tech, mobile and online space.
When it comes to finding the companies for the accelerator, it’s 10-20% about the idea, and 80% about the team. They need to be committed, coachable, open to change – the program is for entrepreneurs who are not just in love with their innovation, but also looking to learn how to scale and go global. It turns people with interesting ideas into interesting companies.
South Australian Govt. Minister Tom Kenyon on stage, ‘I’m the least interesting person on stage today,” he says modestly. His department DMITRE is a major sponsor of the program – so why is SA investing in start-ups? “We want to nurture smart local firms.” The sharing of ideas and start-up culture that ANZ Innovyz START encourages will be of benefit to the entire SA economy.
11.40am ACDT (Adelaide Time)
Here’s the run list in order of appearance:
Broken Arms Games
Australian Baby Bargains