A week of practical 'how to' activities to assist your business
Working from home, operating as a solo or as a micro business brings up many challenges in idea sharing, isolation and over work. The NSW Government invites you to join in Microbiz Week – a week dedicated to you, the home-based, solo or micro business owner.
The week will be held from 30th May to 3rd June 2011 throughout NSW and includes free workshops, seminars, webinars and resources to help your business grow.
Some highlights of the week include:
Monday 30th May 9 am – 1pm HOW TO IMPLEMENT SMALL BUSINESS INTERNET SECRETS Learn how to build your brand online, web essentials, making the most of social media and how to boost the effectiveness of search engine optimisation and Adwords, and measure results.
2pm – 4pm HOW TO EMBRACE THE DIGITAL ECONOMY AND MOBILE TECHNOLOGY. Our digital economy is thriving and technology is changing daily. Is your business able to take advantage of the NBN, our Australian mobile networks or the prolific availability of Smart Phones? Find out the emerging trends and ways your business can start taking advantage of them.
Tuesday 31st May 9 am – 12 noon BUSINESS BASICS SEMINAR Learn the essentials on how to start up your business with ideas for researching your business, obtain the right licences, keeping the right records, protecting your property and hiring staff.
1 pm – 4 pm HOW TO EMBRACE CLOUD COMPUTING and HOW TO PROJECT YOUR ONLINE BUSINESS. If you are a start-up in the digital arena, Igniting Your IT Start Up will inspire you with resources that will get your creative juices pumping.
Thursday 2nd June 3pm – 5pm ARE YOU EXPORT READY? Are you thinking that your product can be sold internationally? Learn if and why you should start exporting in this information session with a real case scenario.
Friday 3rd June 2pm – 5pm HOW TO MAXIMISE THE GROWTH Calling all young entrepreneurs? Learn how to develop strategic partnerships, systems for high growth and develop core objectives for your business whilst networking with like minded Gen Ys.
Take the time out to invest in your business and join us at one or several of the FREE events hosted by an array of partners. Designed to provide practical assistance, the week allows you to meet like-minded business owners, share ideas, network, learn and look at your business from the outside in. If you don't have time to attend an event, join us online in a webinar – it allows you to learn from the comfort of your own office!
This week is designed for you the business owner – we hope you can join us and take advantage of this wonderful opportunity. To learn more, see what is on offer and register for events, log in to www.smallbiz.nsw.gov.au/microbizweek
To learn more and register for events, visit www.smallbiz.nsw.gov.au/microbizweek.
After a break in 2010, we're pleased to announce that MEGA will be returning to NSW in 2011. The course will run on Wednesday evenings and some Sunday afternoons and has been specifically tailored to help first time digital entrepreneurs get a cycle of learning in before they commit and make an approach angels for funding or apply to one of the incubators that now run in the Sydney basin.
The course will also specifically be targeting entrepreneurs wanting to launch businesses with the potential scale globally. Companies with a focus on Mobile, Enterprise, or Cloud are especially encouraged to apply.
Mega is an Entrepreneur course, not an Incubator. Its mentor driven lectures & practical help. There are 19 sessions that run between April 18th – July 28th on Wednesday nights and some weekend afternoons. overall participants receive 60+ hours of content and exercises.
Course Fees are:
Teams (Cost per person) $850
More details can be found here: http://www.mega.org.au/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=141:nsw-2011-program&catid=35:program-outline&Itemid=56
Slides for the offering are here: http://www.slideshare.net/RogerKermode/mega-2011-nsw-info-night
BizSpark Network Partner iPitch.com.au is running a “How to Startup” Workshop on Tuesday 19th, April in Sydney.
For the full day, tickets are $195. There are only 20 tickets to the workshop – a small group, so they can provide personal attention to each attendee. More information and tickets here.
This workshop is for first time entrepreneurs with a web/tech business idea or web/tech seed stage business. It is a hands-on workshop; you need a business idea or seed stage business that you can work on during the workshop.
The day starts with an overview of the startup process, then the iPitch team will step you through this process with a series of lessons and practical exercises where you’ll be working on and developing your business. By the end of the day you’ll leave both with a comprehensive understanding of the startup process, and a clear and focused startup strategy specific to your business.
In addition, the workshop also provides a great networking opportunity to meet other serious startup entrepreneurs. 20 tickets only, get tickets here.
From the 24th – 27th of March we ran one of our largest BizSpark Startup Camps ever. Not only did we have a combination of top speakers and judges, but each participant committed to learning 2 new technologies in 2 days, then turning them into applications. we handpicked 10 teams from a large number of applicants, which included teams that flew in from across Australia.
As always at these events I was impressed by how much functionality people managed to include in their applications during the development window between 9am, Saturday Morning and 4pm Sunday afternoon. This time I was even more impressed as they also included functionality from both the phone 7 platform and the Azure platform.
So many of the participants attributed this to how much faster the time to market was with the tools available in both the Phone 7 toolkit and the Azure development toolkits. 3 of the top applications targeted children/teenagers and called out the choice of Phone 7 as a development platform over others due to the price point for the phone & expected uptake in their target age group.
Throughout the weekend we had many helpers assisting the teams to fine tune their business idea & address any technical challenges they had. A big thank you to Nick Randolph of Built to Roam, Andrew Coates from Microsoft Australia, Steve Nagy from Readify, Larry Gregory from Microsoft, Rosemary Stark from Microsoft and Sean Marshall from the Student Entrepreneurs Resource Network.. Each of them volunteered their time and without their help we wouldn’t have had the quality of results we did.
We also had a high calibre of speakers across the weekend, providing tips & tricks on how to achieve success as an Entrepreneur. Thanks to:
Dr Avi Ratnanesan who shared his what drove him to stop being a Doctor and follow his dream of revolutionising the Mobile Film industry to the point where he now runs an internationally recognised Mobile Film competition, ScreenFest.
Jack Delosa’s tips on building a successful PR strategy was not only a favourite by the teams, but you could see the resulting tips & tricks appear in many of the teams final presentations.
Alex Pirouz shared the top 1% of entrepreneurs secrets to success as well as some of his personal journey with the teams.
James McCutcheon gave 6 of the best tips for entrepreneurs I have heard, including reminding everyone that as an entrepreneur you need to remember to take time out & relax as your health and wellbeing is key to your success!
Bart Jellema, As a Successful Entrepreneur, Bart challenged the teams not to keep their ideas secret, but instead to learn to share their dream as an entrepreneur because it helps to form and road test it to the point where the result is more likely to succeed.
In the end we had 10 teams put together proof of concepts, and pitch to the panel of judges.
Our Judges included:
· Dr Anna Liu Principal Researcher and Research Group Leader at NICTA,
Roger Kermode Venture Consultant
Angus Kidman Freelance Journalist and Editor for Lifehacker Australia
Gareth Rose Lead Entrepreneur, iPitch.com.au
Steve Nagy Azure MVP and Senior Consultant, Readify
Nick Randolph Mobile MVP and Consultant, Built to Roam
The teams and their applications (and a few pics!) are included below:
Dark Blue Duck
Sharepoint add on for scanning & viewing documents. Included Mobile front end and Azure storage back end.
A mobile application that used cognitive processes and association of ideas to create a To Do list specifically designed for Busy people.
Based on an experience as a teachers aid noticing a marked improvement in a childs grammar & spelling after trialling a Spelling game to help a struggling student, the team at Boundless creations created the game BuzzWords. They released the App on iPhone a few months ago and spent the weekend porting this to Phone 7.
Based on the success of the tamagotchi the Your Hours app takes the idea of maintaining a character to assisting a child to maintain their Diabetes program. It involved integration with Kinect, Phone 7, Azure, Blood Glucose machines & Doctors.
You Me Coupon
The growing popularity of Coupon sites is creating a growing challenge of increased spamming. The You Me Coupon application aims to socialise Coupons and included a Phone 7 application based on Azure that allowed users to pull aggregated coupon offers based on their own interests and the recommendations of their friends.
A system that empowers local communities to have one place to share information with constituents as well as allow constituents to feed information back to the council for incidents and graffiti.
The team at Ultimate connect showed 2 applications they had worked on, one called iReward.com.au a cash back program that integrates with Facebook as well as iSeekOpinion, a survey polling tool.
My Driving Lessons
The My Driving lessons aimed to address the ever growing challenge of 17-23 year olds being over represented in the road death tally. They used Phone 7 to track the routes and performance of drivers using the GPS and accelerometer. The results were used to provide tips & advice to the driver & their supervisor.
The Cloud Speed team presented their Framework that provides a database driven development platform for increasing development time to deployment on the Azure platform.
Taxi Apps Aiming to solve the ever growing challenge of drivers trying to increase the number of passengers they can assist, and Passengers struggling to find taxis, The Taxi Apps team created a Phone 7 and Azure solution that used the phone GPS to “flag” nearby taxi’s and for Taxis to locate nearby potential passengers.
And the winners are…..
As a result, 4 teams were called out for their work…
In 3rd place, was Your Hours, with their application for helping Children manage their Diabetes.
In 2nd Place, Boundless Creations for their application to help address the challenges of illiteracy in primary school children through the use of games.
Highly Commended: My Driving Lessons for their Mobile application to log Learner Drivers driving history and provide realtime feedback and advice to both them & to their supervising driver.
And the Overall Winner was:
Taxi Apps – an application that aims to connect taxi drivers with passengers using the phones GPS and an Azure backend.
Well done to all the teams and a big Congratulations to Taxi Apps!!
When you purchase a ticket to the Melbourne Unconvention being held on the 16th April, Microsoft will buy one for you to give to a guest!
Australia's top entrepreneurs, investors, top tier business brands and 300 high-growth companies are all coming together for what has become known as Australia's largest event for entrepreneurs under 35; The Young Entrepreneurs' Unconvention.
CLICK HERE for details and to see a short video trailer!
In order to redeem your free ticket, simply reply to your confirmation email (with the venue address in it). Include your BizSpark ID, the name, email address and mobile number of your guest so that they can receive their complimentary ticket from Microsoft.
Hear From Australia' Best Ruslan Kogan has been listed on the Young Rich List with an estimated wealth of $29 million at the age of 28. Ruslan's online retail store Kogan has revolutionised the way electronic goods are sold.
Domenic Carosa floated his company, Destra, when he was 25, becoming Australia’s youngest publicly listed CEO in Australian history, then building Destra to annual revenues north of $100m.
Andrew Morello has been running his own businesses since the age of 15. Now having won The Apprentice, he is working with the famous Mark Bouris at Yellow Brick Road Wealth Management as Head of Business Development.
Jack Delosa in 2009, with his business partner Reuben Buchanan built one of Australia's fastest growing ventures. MBE Education, grew by more than 500% to revenues north of $1m, being listed in the Smart Company Fast 50.
Stuart Cook is the CEO of Zambrero. Under Stuart’s leadership Zambrero has grown from 2 to 14 stores, ultimately being listed in BRW as Australia’s Fastest Growing Franchise. He now oversees 170 staff and over $10m revenue.
CLICK HERE for further details
So why do you need to make sure you're there with us?
• Mix and mingle with 300 like-minded people exchanging business cards, idea's and opportunities
• Hear from Australia's top entrepreneurs including Creel Price in Sydney, who sold his business for $109m, and Ruslan Kogan in Melbourne, a BRW Young Rich List Member at the age of 28
• Pitch your business to the panel of speakers, investors and audience of 300 to win a $10,000 Business Accelerator Package
• Liaise with some of Australia's top business brands
• Speak with investors and potential mentors about your growth path
What exactly is an Unconvention?
The Unconvention has become known as Australia's largest event for entrepreneurs and executives under 35 to network with one another and gain access to Australia's best.
- Hear from 5 dynamic speakers with real success in the business world
- Network with 300 high growth companies in the many breaks and networking exercises throughout the day
- See real businesses pitch to a panel of real investors and experts
- Gain VIP access the Unconvention after party at a nearby venue
All of the Unconventions held in 2010 were sold out well before the event date so feel free to forward to any friends you would also like to come, before it’s sold out.
CLICK HERE to see the details for when the event is in your city!