Story image

Melbourne soliciting accelerator programmes to fill 500 Startups gap

29 Aug 17

LaunchVic, the Victorian Government’s startup agency, has today opened its fourth round of funding to attract world-class accelerator programs to Melbourne.

LaunchVic is seeking to invest up to AU$3 million per application in the best Australian or international accelerators and teams with proven track records for running accelerators.

Dr Kate Cornick, LaunchVic CEO, says attracting world-class accelerators would strategically build capability and excellence into Victoria’s local startup ecosystem and replace the gap left by the termination of the 500 Startups contract in August.

“Successful applicants will need to demonstrate their experience in delivering a world-class accelerator that will help Victoria’s best and brightest startups to achieve on an international scale.”

LaunchVic terminated its partnership with 500 Startups earlier this month, following the resignation of 500 Melbourne lead Rachael Neumann.

Warning bells were signalled when 500 Startups became embroiled in a sexual harassment scandal after co-founder Dave McClure was accused of using his influence in the startup ecosystem to make unwanted advances on women.

500 Startups had to apologise to LaunchVic for not sharing its internal investigation into the sexual harassment claims against McClure as he prepared to launch the 500 Melbourne accelerator.

“We said at the time we would reinvest the $2.9 million allocated for 500 Startups to another world-class accelerator program of the same calibre, and we’re doing it,” Cornick says.

Cornick says to date, LaunchVic had allocated 70% of its grant funding to local home-grown programs and would continue to invest at a local and a global level to drive outcomes that will position Victoria’s startup ecosystem as a leader.

Growing talent and expertise is a core part of LaunchVic’s strategy and something that will be essential going forward to achieve Victoria’s potential to be a leading startup destination.

A recently commissioned survey of the Victorian startup ecosystem highlighted the sophisticated and diverse mix of startups across a variety of industries including strengths in health, enterprise and corporate services and media and entertainment.

The funding round will close on Tuesday, October 10.

It will be supported by online information sessions.

How blockchain will impact NZ’s economy
Distributed ledgers and blockchain are anticipated to provide a positive uplift to New Zealand’s economy.
25% of malicious emails still make it through to recipients
Popular email security programmes may fail to detect as much as 25% of all emails with malicious or dangerous attachments, a study from Mimecast says.
Human value must be put back in marketing - report
“Digital is now so widely adopted that its novelty has worn off. In their attempt to declutter, people are being more selective about which products and services they incorporate into their daily lives."
Wine firm uses AR to tell its story right on the bottle
A Central Otago wine company is using augmented reality (AR) and a ‘digital first’ strategy to change the way it builds its brand and engages with customers.
DigiCert conquers Google's distrust of Symantec certs
“This could have been an extremely disruptive event to online commerce," comments DigiCert CEO John Merrill. 
Protecting organisations against internal fraud
Most companies tend to take a basic approach that focuses on numbers and compliance, without much room for grey areas or negotiation.
Telesmart to deliver Cloud Calling for Microsoft Teams
The integration will allow Telesmart’s Cloud Calling for Microsoft Teams to natively enable external voice connectivity from within Teams collaborative workflow environment.
Jade Software & Ambit take chatbots to next level of AI
“Conversation Agents present a huge opportunity to increase customer and employee engagement in a cost-effective manner."