Tech start-ups to vie for $150k at Tech23

Tech start-ups are being encouraged to exhibit at innovation showcase Tech23 for the chance to win one of five awards worth a total of $150,000.


Backed by the NSW Government and organised by Slattery IT Consulting, the event will be held in Sydney on August 23. It will give 23 companies the chance to pitch their technologies to an audience of around 400 potential investors, mentors, entrepreneurs and customers.


Industry leaders associated with the event include representatives from Southern Cross Ventures Partners, One Ventures and Intel Capital, in addition to online gurus from ninemsn and RedBubble.


Companies chosen to exhibit at Tech23 will be given five minutes to pitch their technologies to an expert panel, followed by discussions on investment opportunities and business models.


They will also network with investors, mentors, customers and advisors and be given space on Innovation Island to further demonstrate their products and services.


Innovation Island represents an opportunity to exhibit in the foyer where Tech23 is held, providing companies with maximum exposure throughout the day.


Andrew Stoner, Deputy Premier and Minister for Trade and Investment, says five companies will share in $150,000 as part of the event.


“[The funding] will help new technologies into the marketplace and create smart jobs and economic benefits,” Stoner said in a statement.


The awards include the following:


  • Broadband Innovation Award – $25,000 for the company whose business model, product, service or solution has the best ability to drive demand through broadband services.
  • Outstanding Collaboration for Innovation Award – $25,000 for the company which best demonstrates active engagement in a business partnership or collaboration contributing to the development of their innovation.
  • Community Contribution Award – $25,000 for the company best demonstrating how their innovation will significantly and measurably benefit their local or national community.
  • Greatest Potential Award – $25,000 for the company which best demonstrates how they will progress their business model to the next level providing the greatest potential for growth and progress.
  • Innovation Excellence Award – $50,000 for the company judged the best of the Tech23 by demonstrating how their innovation is unique, underpins company performance, industry dynamics, productivity change and economic growth.

To be eligible for Tech23, companies must be Australian-owned and less than five years old. Companies also need to demonstrate the following:


  • Explain why the company is unique.
  • Highlight how technology is at the heart of the company.
  • Provide evidence of the potential of the company’s business model.
  • Provide information about clients and partners and provide a reference to support the company’s application.


Stoner said Tech23 award-winners typically report “good progress” after the event, citing Marathon Robotics as an example, which won the Innovation Excellence Award in 2010.


“Marathon Robotics has used its award to help establish a development and test facility… to service a $57 million contract with the US Marine Corps to trial robot technology for training American soldiers in live firing exercises,” Stoner said.


As the tech start-up scene heats up in Sydney, Melbourne-based tech companies are being invited to attend Founder Friday, a networking event hosted by Women 2.0 and held in partnership with Startup Weekend.


Women 2.0 is a global network for the future founders of tech start-ups, whose mission is to increase the number of female founders of these companies.


Startup Weekend is a speed-networking and ideas event for entrepreneurs held over a period of 54 hours, taking place for the first time in Melbourne this weekend.


Founder Friday host Kate Kendall says the event will be held this Friday as a lead-up to Startup Weekend, and both men and women are invited to attend.


Details can be found here.


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