G’Day USA 2012 launches pitch competition for Aussie start-ups

This year’s G’day USA program will feature a host of events including Digital Australia Shootout, a pitch competition for Australian start-ups in media, entertainment and technology.


Held in the United States, G’Day USA is an annual program designed to showcase Australian business capabilities in the US, in a bid to enhance the relationship between the two countries.


More than 200 Australian companies are showcased every year.


The 2012 program, held from January 11-29, includes events in San Francisco, Dallas, Los Angeles, San Diego, New York, Houston and Chicago.


Austrade, which is heavily involved in the three-week program, will focus on raising awareness of Australian capability in the fields of digital technology, green building, defence and energy.


Gerard Seeber, Austrade senior trade commissioner in New York, says the program builds on the themes of Australia’s new national brand Australia Unlimited, introduced last year.


“Americans know Australia as a land of big spaces. We want them to know it is also a land of big ideas,” Seeber said in a statement.


“G’Day USA is an opportunity to show how Australia’s culture of innovation makes it an ideal place to invest and do business.”


Events include Digital Australia Shootout, to be held in Los Angeles on January 18, which is a pitch competition featuring Australian start-ups in media, entertainment and technology.


It will be judged by representatives from Silicon Valley Bank, Rustic Canyon Ventures, Pan Pacific Capital, New Medici and Boost Mobile USA.


Another noteworthy event is Digital Down Under, also in LA, which will feature keynote presentations highlighting the connection between the two “Silicon Coasts” – Australia and LA.


Meanwhile, two conferences are being held to explore the lessons learned from energy efficiency efforts and the greening of schools.


On January 11, the Australia Consulate-General Los Angeles, along with Stanford University’s Precourt Energy Efficiency Centre, hosted a forum on successes and challenges in getting US and Australian businesses to use energy more efficiently.


On January 17, the Consulate-General, the US Green Building Council of Los Angeles and the Green Building Council of Australia will sponsor a dialogue on school environmental programs.


The forum will examine the educational, community and financial benefits from greening school campuses through case studies from both countries.


“The carbon-reduction efforts and technological developments being pursued in California and Australia provide valuable lessons for policymakers, business and academia globally,” Australian Consul-General Chris De Cure said in a statement.


“These events allow us to harness the expertise of those at the front line of these world‐leading efforts, and share that with like‐minded leaders in both countries.”


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