CEO Reflections 2017
With holidays only weeks away, it is time to begin to reflect on our journey over the course of the year and where we are heading as well.
I will leave the final wrap of the numbers for the last note of the season but they are certainly impressive!
Over just the course of the last few weeks we have expanded our resident numbers and welcomed in:
- 12 EIS students
- 2 IRT startup companies
- 12 new startup applicants
All of the new groups will take the Acceleration Program with the EIS students working in project teams through the summer term. This is the second year for the EIS program and it is now offered as a minor subject on the 4-year degree – a unique offering in Australia!
The IRT teams were nominated into iAccelerate as part of a collaborative effort to help promote the development of solutions that are aligned with the IRT and staffed by employees who believe strongly enough in the development of these ideas that they are leaving their normal roles for the duration of the program to test out these new business ideas. IRT’s involvement of course has the opportunity to open doors to other startups here at iAccelerate and we look forward to seeing new relationships develop as a result.
Our new startups are once again a highly motivated group that span a broad range of sectors. We look forward to being part of their journey!
Speed Networking at iAccelerate
For the first time we also had our first iAccelerate “speed networking” session where we matched MBA students with resident startups. A total of 11 MBA students will work on well defined projects with the startups over the next months with clear benefits for both.
For Arts Sake
The last months also saw iAccelerate become an art gallery – first in support of SCARF and then of Greenacres. The comments I heard were so positive that we will look to keep doing these through 2018 with possible longer-term installations included as well.
World Innovations Forum
I was recently appointed ambassador for the Swiss-based forum that is looking to help motivate international collaboration in entrepreneurship. The forum will take place in June of 2018 in Lucern and we are looking to nominate 2-3 companies plus investors and supporters to attend the forum and also take in the Austrade Landing Pads in Berlin and London. We will discuss more about this op
An ongoing challenge to our staff is the provision of ongoing barista services at iAccelerate. We know that such a service does help to activate our lobby and the interaction of our residents. Unfortunately several attempts to work with providers were short-lived. We are still hopeful of a solution for early in the new year.
Frank Becomes an Angel
Some of you may now know that our very own Entrepreneur In Residence, Frank Marzanno, is no officially a member of the Sydney Angels – an investment network for startups. His standing with them will allow us unique insights and opportunities for having interactions with that well-regarded group of investors.
Space And Time
With the increase demand for space from various activities, iAccelerate will be stepping up its assessment of companies in the building and those that are no longer actively working on their new business will need to consider alternative accommodation. It’s not because we want to see people leave, but we do need to keep iAccelerate as a place to explore, launch and grow new businesses. Once that is done, we have to move companies out though we hope not far away.
Remember to Breathe
This time of year is stressful for startups and founders in particular as many business and personal pressures both peak and collide. Please remember to preserve perspective and to prioritise what is most meaningful to you. Take a walk, grab lunch on the beach, do something for yourself during this hectic time – feed your soul.
In the next issue we will run through numbers and recipes (just kidding), but if you are taking an early mark for the holidays we hope to see you early in 2018!