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Australia's best startups win Bridge to MassChallenge national finals

Media release | 22 November 2016

Ten of Australia’s best startup companies - including three from NSW - have been chosen to participate in a Boston-based ‘boot camp’ at one of the world’s most startup-friendly support organisations, MassChallenge, after winning the national competition in Sydney.

The top 15 startups from boot camp workshops held in Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide competed in the national finals of the inaugural ‘Bridge to MassChallenge’ event in Sydney on 14-15 November.

Jobs for NSW and UrbanGrowth NSW partnered with MassChallenge to sponsor the Australian startup competition as part of efforts to support and inspire startup business activity in NSW.

The NSW startups were Green Point company StopRotor which manufactures a new unmanned aircraft combining helicopter and airplane capabilities; Bilgola Plateau company CleverDux which has developed visual identification wristbands for children with asthma or allergic conditions; and Dunmore company Digital Homebrew which has developed technology hardware to help automate the home beer brewing process.

“Congratulations to the ten winners of the national finals including three NSW startups from the Sydney boot camp. It was an inspirational evening that demonstrated the raw talent we have in this country,” Jobs for NSW CEO Karen Borg said.

“NSW is Australia’s startup capital and Sydney is home to nearly half the nation’s startup businesses so we were very pleased to have brought this event to Australia. We want to ensure NSW remains the place of choice for fast-growing companies to succeed by building a strong entrepreneurial culture, and supporting promising startups.”

UrbanGrowth NSW, a major sponsor of MassChallenge, said the calibre of entries this year proves that Sydney is a place of innovation.

“We have some exciting plans for Sydney’s future, including the proposed White Bay Power Station tech hub and the Glebe Island innovation district. So we hope our sponsorship of MassChallenge can help raise the profile of the local start-up ecosystem now,” said Chief Executive David Pitchford.

“Our urban transformation programs, particularly those in The Bays Precinct, will support the long term identity and places for the city’s knowledge intensive workers so they can continue to come up with the bright ideas of the future.”

From over 200 initial applicants, 45 startups were chosen to attend the Sydney, Melbourne and Adelaide boot camps where they received expert training and mentoring. Fifteen progressed to the national finals from which the 10 winners will now advance to a five day boot camp in Boston in February for further mentoring and to compete for spots in one of MassChallenge's international ‘accelerator’ programs offering up to US$3 million in cash rewards.

MassChallenge President Mike LaRhette said: “MassChallenge is very proud to have worked with Jobs for NSW in stimulating entrepreneurial activity, strengthening collaboration, and supporting startups in NSW and across Australia.”

Background

Jobs for NSW

Jobs for NSW is a private sector-led, government backed organisation with the priority to create 1 million new jobs in NSW by 2036. Working with whole of government, we provide tailored financial solutions and broader forms of support, to remove barriers and enable entrepreneurial businesses to grow.

For more information how Jobs for NSW can assist startups please visit www.jobsfornsw.com.au

About UrbanGrowth NSW

UrbanGrowth NSW is the NSW Government’s city transformation agency. Our ambition is to drive world class urban renewal that delivers sustainable housing and jobs growth and improves the liveability of our urban spaces. We collaborate with our government, private and community stakeholders to deliver projects that create a globally competitive Sydney and NSW.

Visit www.urbangrowth.nsw.gov.au for more information on how we are creating resilient, diverse and connected places.

National winners of Bridge to MassChallenge

Sydney boot camp participants:

  • StopRotor - New unmanned aircraft combining helicopter and airplane capabilities for civil, government and military markets
  • CleverDux - 'See & Save' visual identification wristbands for children with asthma or allergic conditions
  • Digital Homebrew - Technology hardware to help automate home beer brewing

Melbourne boot camp participants:

  • Conweigh - Mobile weighing technology to allow freight companies to meet requirements for shipping container weights
  • MyGolgi - Wearable sensor technology connected to a mobile device to provide information about posture and movement to aid injury prevention and rehabilitation
  • Microba - System to help people test microbes in their bodies to help them make lifestyle changes to improve health

Adelaide boot camp participants:

  • Kick.it - Mobile app to allow smokers to track their habit, create a personalised program and team up with other smokers to kick the habit
  • Edufolios - Online system to allow teachers to track and manage their professional development and learning
  • Freddi - Integrated development environment that lets users program business rules, tasks, alerts and apps in the cloud without using a software language
  • Psybersafe (formerly KeySafe) - startup aimed at protecting children from predator grooming online.