A new start-up organisation is marketing itself as a genuine alternative to its tech-heavy competitors, running events whereby entrepreneurs build start-ups with a positive social impact.
Trevor Lu is the co-founder of Social Startup 48, a non-profit organisation aiming to drive positive social change in a business-oriented way.
“We are a team of professionals who have worked in various start-up organisations, and have professional or academic backgrounds,” Lu says.
“We run an event, also called Social Startup 48, where passionate people come together for 48 hours to build start-up enterprises that create a positive social impact.”
“We believe in using innovative business solutions to solve society’s most pressing problems and, unlike similar format events, SS48 has a social focus and does not have a tech focus.”
“Our inaugural event in Sydney was held in May and was a huge success. Participants had an incredible experience of learning and inspiration.”
Following the success of its Sydney event, Social Startup 48 will run its second event in Melbourne from August 31 to September 2. Applications close on August 3.
“We believe that the social sector in Australia falls short of operating at its full potential, and that it needs more attention in the community, particularly from the business and public sectors,” the organisation says on its website.
“Our vision is to be the launchpad for entrepreneurs who will go forth to create significant social impact in cities in Australia and around the world.”
“We aim to achieve this by connecting up people who share similar passions at an exciting 48-hour event.”
“We provide participants with the network, support, tools and resources required to take their giant first leaps into social enterprise.”
Social Startup 48 events are broken down into four parts. Firstly, individuals will be asked at the application stage to describe their own social start-up idea/s.
The ideas submitted need to identify a social impact goal and also include a brief summary of the enterprise that will be the vehicle for achieving that goal.
Two weeks before the event, the best ideas will be shared, along with profiles of each attendee.
Each participant will nominate preferences for the ideas on which they would like to work, along with some of the people with whom they would be interested in collaborating.
Teams will be assigned based on these preferences. This means the weekend event begins with teams and rough ideas ready to go.
Over the next 48 hours, teams will need to come up with the structure that will guide them from conception to achieving their goal.
This means they will have to formulate a growth strategy, a funding strategy, marketing plans, a website, and some of the smaller details such as a company name and logo.
Given the nature of the event, it is expected some teams will evolve quite significantly from their original start-up idea.
According to SS48, the end result “is only limited by the creativity of the team”.