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Startup Gippsland - Official Announcement

Startup Gippsland officially opens!

By Portal Admin - 19th March 2020 - Back to News

Startup Gippsland has formally opened applications for its 2020 program on Monday 24th of February. The program will support hundreds of entrepreneurs across Gippsland to create startups, test business ideas and launch them to market, with the goal of growing their startups to a national or international level and creating local jobs.

Startup Gippsland 2020 is a project by the Bass Coast Shire, Baw Baw Shire, East Gippsland Shire, Latrobe City, South Gippsland Shire and Wellington Shire councils, funded by the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources, and delivered by GippsTech.

The inaugural Startup Gippsland Program 2019 was highly successful, with 113 applications for the 12-week program from a range of industries. 46 startups were selected for the 12-week program, many of which went on to see great success in their businesses as a result of the program, with launching their products, scaling their distribution Australia-wide and internationally, hiring their first staff or setting up factories, and receiving funding to continue to grow their businesses. The key factor that judges were looking for in applications was startups that have the potential to grow nationally or internationally, and thus have good potential for creating local jobs in the future, so any startup founders with big ambitions for their business are encouraged to apply in 2020 Founders that don’t get selected will still get some individual support for their business, with recommendations for one-off workshops and business coaching suited to their needs.

The program was first funded by LaunchVIC, the Victorian Government’s startup agency. The program was deemed highly successful, and has since been funded by the Department of Industry, Science, Energy and Resources to continue in 2020-2021 and grow to include all 6 Gippsland shires.

The 2020-21 program will have three separate components: Open, Incubator and Accelerator Programs designed to support startups across Gippsland at different life stages:

  • A 12-week Incubator Program for early-stage startups to focus, validate and grow their business or idea.
  • A 12-week Accelerator Program for later-stage startups to prepare their business for scale and international expansion.
  • An Open Program of one-off events for startups at all stages to learn business fundamentals like business modeling, pitching and exporting.

All Startup Gippsland activities will be held locally at venues in Bairnsdale, Leongatha, Sale, Traralgon, Warragul and Wonthaggi.

"Startup Gippsland is for those who have an idea and need a start in the right direction," Latrobe City Council Mayor, Cr Dan Clancey said.

"As Yoko Ono once said, "’A dream you dream alone is only a dream. A dream you dream together is reality.’" Startup Gippsland allows people with a dream to do it together. Not just new businesses but also those who are looking to grow and evolve their business, empowering them to think big and scale up.

"Businesses and individuals from across Gippsland’s regional city benefited from the first year of the program in 2019. I would encourage anyone who has an idea and has been considering starting up a business to think about that possibility, tap into the networks, resources and mentoring that Startup Gippsland has to offer and grow that idea."

The delivery partner for Startup Gippsland 2020 is Warragul-based digital innovation consultancy and certified social enterprise, GippsTech. GippsTech is passionate about ensuring the program draws on business expertise already thriving in the region, and helps local entrepreneurs to grow their businesses, reach new markets and create local jobs. Experienced professionals and business owners are encouraged to apply as mentors which also helps to grow capacity for business mentoring across the region.

"Startup Gippsland 2019 was a huge success, with 46 startups across 4 councils going through the program simultaneously which made it to our knowledge the largest regional startup program ever to be run in Australia. 2020 will be even bigger and better, with 6 councils now in the program, and extending the program to support more advanced startups who are ready to scale internationally. If you’re an ambitious Gippslander who wants to grow your business across the region and beyond, we’d love to see you in the program, so apply via Startup Gippsland Website today."

- Elena Kelareva, GippsTech CEO


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