Startup Central Victoria hosted a Showcase Celebration on 6 October when 25 teams completed a pre-accelerator program.
25 teams comprising 37 individuals from across six local government areas explored a startup idea during the 13-week program of masterclasses delivered by business professionals from within the region. The teams were also supported by experienced mentors. Funding was provided by LaunchVic and the six local government areas.
By the program’s conclusion, eight startups had commenced early operations and others were in various stages of progression.
Consortium Chair, Craig Hunter from Clear Dynamics, believes that Central Victoria has the potential to be the next Silicone Valley. To demonstrate his point, Ligantic, a new software company aiming to democratize technology, was launched on the night of the Showcase.
“We had really robust conversations as part of the pre-accelerator program that helped to align us and determine what direction to take our startup in,” said Ligantic co-founder Steph Cola from Bendigo.
Encouraged by Steve Sammartino, Master of Ceremonies, three other excited teams pitched their ideas to the audience seeking partners to take their startups forward, also attracting a lot of attention.
“The pre-accelerator program opened my eyes up to look at where this small idea started from, as to what it could be,” said Jen Latch from Maryborough.
“I’m not scared of failing like I was before,” said another participant. “I now know how to set myself up. I had no idea before.”
Program Manager, Kerry Anderson, paid tribute to the masterclass presenters, speakers and mentors who provided their time pro-bono. “There is so much business talent and experience right here in regional Victoria. Our aim is to build a stronger ecosystem that will support startups and scaleups long into the future.”
For those interested in exploring a startup idea or wanting to scaleup their existing business, there are free events and online meetups held each month featuring businesspeople sharing real life experiences. Expressions of interest for the next pre-accelerator program will open in May 2024. Interested people are encouraged to sign up for news updates via the website.