The aboriginal and Torrdes Strait Islander entrepreneurs are ready to take their idea/company to the next level thanks to the new business-accelerator program held at The Capital.
Five innovative indigenous start-ups have attended the ‘mini’ four-week business-accelerator program at The Capital – the new digital technology innovation hub at the heart of Brisbane CBD. This pre-accelerator program was in partnership with Slingshot – a corporate start-up accelerator who launched Australia’s first ever indigenous start-up accelerator program called Barayamal.
The participants were Virtual Maiwar, Hum Drum, Spirit of Country, Realty Checks andYulngu App, as reported by anthillonline. Fishburners hosted the mini or pre-accelerator event at its Brisbane space in The Capital. The event which ran for four weeks was concluded in early December 2016.
CEO and founder of Barayamal, Mr Dean Foley, said “an accelerator typically helps start-ups to gain access to business networks, knowledge, expertise and early-stage funding they need to build successful businesses.” Foley, who himself is a Kamilaroi man, said that the support for indigenous entrepreneurs in Australia is lacking.“This [project] came out of frustration. I just felt I wasn’t getting the support I needed to get into business and many other Indigenous people feel the same way,” he said. “A lot of Indigenous people in rural areas don’t know what’s possible and they don’t know how to achieve it.”Source
The Full-Fledged Business-Accelerator Program in mid-2017
The full Barayamal Indigenous accelerator start-up program is similar to, but more intensive than the mini version. It will start from mid-2017. The rigorous and extensive program will run for 12 weeks. It will provide early seed funding to start-ups. Participants will get intimate one-on-one mentoring with successful indigenous and non-indigenous entrepreneurs.
Participants of the Pre-Accelerator Program
The condensed version of the Slingshot program had five participants on board. They were selected through a competitive application process. The following were the indigenous start-ups who took part in the first pre-accelerator program.
- Virtual Maiwar: A start-up entity that develops an app showcasing the First Nations cultural heritage of the Brisbane River as it might have been before First Settlement.
- Hum Drum: A start-up developing tailored travel packages to link tourists to Indigenous culture.
- Yulngu App: A mobile application that aims at creating a marketplace for Aboriginal art. It will allow Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander artists to upload and sell their art direct to customers. It will allow these artists to keep 70% of the sale instead of only 3%.
- Realty Checks: A real estate start-up working on developing a centralised live database allowing for property managers to keep all information in a central cloud-based location. This will allow the landlord to seamlessly view statements, invoices and previous inspections complete with photos.
- Spirit of Country: A start-up developing indigenous tourist packages to international tourists with the objective to distribute Australian indigenous culture to the world.
Launched in October 2016, The Capital is Little Tokyo Two’s fourth site in South East Queensland. Little Tokyo Two is a dynamic community of entrepreneurs, innovators and creators in South East Queensland.
Mr Foley reportedly stated, “Now Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander entrepreneurs will have their own accelerator to turn to for such support”. Source
The idea for the accelerator program emerged after the successful completion of Australia’s first Indigenous Startup Weekend. The event, which took place during 26–28 August 2016 at the State Library of Queensland, was co-organised by Mr Foley. Australia’s first indigenous-focused start-up accelerator program is all set to boost entrepreneurship among indigenous communities.
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