Entrepreneurs take part in Sydney’s first Startup Weekend

29 July 2011

Startup Weekend, an intense 54 hour event, is being held in Sydney for the first time this weekend.

Startup Weekend, from 29-31 July, will bring together over 80 participants at the Australian Technology Park in Eveleigh to build new startup technology businesses.

NSW Trade and Investment is sponsoring the event as part of its efforts to help grow the State's digital economy.

Deputy Premier and Minister for Trade and Investment Andrew Stoner said: "Startup Weekend is an exciting initiative that demonstrates the importance of entrepreneurship and innovation in the development of new businesses and new job opportunities.

"Startup Weekend is a not-for-profit venture that originated in the United States in 2007 and has since hosted more than 200 events in over 100 cities and 35 countries.

"This grassroots event brings together talented people with different skill sets and puts them in a pressure cooker environment to create sustainable digital economy businesses from the ground up in record time.

"Internationally, over 36 per cent of Startup Weekend startups have still been going strong after three months and about 80 per cent of participants plan on continuing to work with their team or startup after the weekends."

Hosted by business incubator ATP Innovations, the Sydney event will include software developers, graphics designers, technology enthusiasts and business people.

Startup Weekend will begin Friday evening with participants pitching their best ideas and inspiring others to join their teams.

Over Saturday and Sunday, teams focus on customer development, validating their ideas, practicing Lean Startup methods, and building a minimal viable product.

On Sunday evening teams demonstrate their prototypes and receive valuable feedback from a panel of experts.

A winning team will be judged and selected on factors including level of innovation, community benefit, and business model strength.

Sydney Startup Weekend facilitator Tyson Lundbech, who won the 2010 Startup Weekends in San Francisco and New York, described the event as "fun, challenging, inspiring and life changing" for participants.

"To create a potent brew of talented people like this, in one place, thinking and building as part of the consumer internet revolution, is an amazing feat in itself," Mr Lundbech said.

"New skills are formed and people learn a lot from working in a tight group, under pressure to deliver over the course of a weekend.

"These are the innovators of society who are willing to have a crack. These people are building the next Silicon Valley right here in Australia."

For further information see http://sydney.startupweekend.org/