The Startup of something good!
  • Friday 29 April 2016
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Calling all designers, developers, students, bright sparks and aspiring business people!

The third annual Startup Weekend Sunshine Coast gets underway at Spark Bureau in Maroochydore on Friday evening. Economic Development Portfolio Councillor Stephen Robinson said the council-supported three-day event aims to equip aspiring entrepreneurs with the skills, connections and hands-on experience they need to create and launch their own startup ventures.

“Knowledge and Professional Services is one of seven high value industries that are keys to future employment and economic prosperity on the Sunshine Coast under the Regional Economic Development Strategy (REDS) 2013-2033,” Cr Robinson said.

“Council is very pleased to support initiatives like Startup Weekend, Hackfest and the Mayor’s Telstra Technology Awards because they encourage our bright sparks and outside the box thinkers to emerge.

Cr Robinson said the Sunshine Coast was becoming a hub for a vast range of new technology-based companies.

“The University of Sunshine Coast, the Innovation Centre, the ICT Learning Innovation Centre and Spark Bureau all support this growing industry sector within our region and IT services, games and smartphone application development, architecture and design are all experiencing high growth,” Cr Robinson said.

“An even more diverse range of creative, knowledge, digital, technology and professional services are set to grow on the Sunshine Coast in the future as a result of major capital projects like the undersea cable project, the solar farm and the Smart City development at Maroochydore. So events like Startup Weekend are crucial to ensuring that local people can take advantage of career opportunities that will arise from our region’s big game changer projects.”

Startup Weekend organising team member Racheal Rose-Rehardt, who was part of the 2015 winning team ‘Hitched In’ said the event provided an outstanding opportunity to develop industry-ready skills in an exciting and hands-on environment.

“The Startup Weekend format allows you work on soft skills like teamwork, collaboration, problem-solving and public speaking, which are increasingly required across all industries of the digital economy,” she said.

“That’s especially valuable for students, because those skills can be difficult to practice authentically in a classroom setting. The event also provided a really natural introduction to the region’s startup and entrepreneurial ecosystem, which has been invaluable as I’ve developed my own professional interests.”

The two previous Startup Weekend Sunshine Coast events attracted more than 300 participants, generating 88 pitches and 30 teams. For more information about this year’s event visit: http://www.up.co/communities/australia/sunshine-coast/startup-weekend