Launchpad 2017

GRIFFIN Accelerator is looking for entrepreneurs ready to benefit from intensive work with mentors to get their product into the market and their business ready for seed investment. But very few entrepreneurs can do this without a running start and they are often running in slightly wrong directions or not running as fast as they could. We see a strong need for early entrepreneurs to get better direction at this stage and so we’ve designed a new program to help.

At GRIFFIN we don’t tell you what to do, we challenge you. In launchpad we will give feedback and with you identify the right challenges to focus on.

GRIFFIN Launchpad provides entrepreneurs mentor feedback and direction. The focus is early learning from potential customers and using this to target development of minimum prototype. It is based on our practical experience with hundreds of entrepreneurs. It includes:

  • between 1-6 coaching meetings depending on your progress and needs by experienced mentors
  • feedback, advice and introductions
  • potentially win a shortcut to the GRIFFIN 2017 shortlist

We strongly recommend you also do the Canberra Lean Startup Workshops and all launchpad participants will get a 50% discount.

Apply NOW at the form below – places are limited. Applications will close early Feb but early applications will be considered for early help. We will not be able to help all applicants but will try to get all applicants at least one coaching/feedback session.

Apply NOW, availability is limited so get in first.




GRIFFIN participants for 2016

Today we announce the successful participants in Canberra’s GRIFFIN Accelerator for 2016.

GRIFFIN Accelerator is a three month intensive program run by a group of seasoned Canberra entrepreneurs who invest in, host, teach and mentor selected startups to create successful businesses. This year the Accelerator will invest up to $250,000 in the selected teams. After 3 months teams will pitch to investors then receive an additional 3 months of support.

‘GRIFFIN Accelerator will invest in and mentor five great teams this year. Over the next three months we aim to help these teams validate their products and start fast growth’ said GRIFFIN CEO Dr Craig Davis.

‘We have a wonderful diversity in the startups – from platforms to brands to innovative physical products. All teams have innovations with the potential to make a big impact,’ he said. Selected from over 80 expressions of interest, the quality of the selected teams reflects the strength of startup and innovation in Canberra.

‘The mentors and I are particularly pleased that four of the five startups are founded by women’ said Dr Davis, ‘and we hope that is a sign that the typical imbalance can change’.

The successful teams

Anti Grabbity – Simple device to prevent children climbing over balconies

www.antigrabbity.com

Founder: Hollie Bell. Hollie started her own business doing web design (really badly) which turned into BizzTools 12 years ago, developing online Loan Calculators (successfully) for mortgage brokers and banks. This allowed her an enviable 4 hour work week and time to think of new inventions and businesses. So far she’s invented two sewing tools with one already manufactured and selling, the second one in progress. Anti Grabbity is her fourth invention and hopes to save small kids from falling off balconies and young adults from engaging in risky behavior like balcony hopping during “Schoolies”. Her two other creations are Monty 9 and Claudette 7 (pictured).

CycleLifeHQ - airbnb for cycling experiences

www.cyclelifehq.com

Founder: Charles Black. CycleLifeHQ – AirBnB for cycling Experiences. CycleLifeHQ helps people enjoy cycling rides and tours curated by local experts. Local experts create unique cycling experiences based on local insights that only they know.  Cyclists use the platform to find, arrange, enjoy, and rate their cycling experiences.

www.cyclelifehq.com was released a month ago with initial listings for Canberra. We are now looking for cycling companies and destinations who want to increase the number of customers and tourists.

CycleLifeHQ was founded by Charles Black who left his corporate life of 25 years to change the world by making cycling better for everyone. Matt Ryan, a co-founder, has had extensive experience in building and growing businesses and has established several digital platforms.

Rockstars and Royalty - Online customisable special occasion dresses with Rockstars and Royalty’s signature vintage-inspired style

Founder: Vicky Kidd-Gallichan. For the past 18 years, designer Vicky Kidd-Gallichan has been designing and making elaborate, vintage-inspired gowns. She started Rockstars and Royalty in 2008 when she moved to Canberra from England. Since then, Rockstars and Royalty has grown a loyal following, both locally and internationally.

Vicky is now developing an online collection of customisable dresses in the style that Rockstars and Royalty has become known for. Customers will be able to choose a design, and then pick from options such as colour, skirt length, sleeve length and different embellishments to customise the dress to exactly how they’d like it. The dresses will be available in a huge range of standard and custom sizes. Rockstars and Royalty believes that everybody is beautiful and should be able to buy a dress that makes them feel confident and amazing.

Facebook – https://www.facebook.com/rockstarsandroyalty/

Website – http://rockstarsandroyalty.com.au/

Instagram – https://www.instagram.com/rockstarsandroyalty/

Blog – https://rockstarsandroyalty.wordpress.com/

Hometaste – marketplace for delivered meals by local chefs
Founder: Teena Thaliyath

Teena is a Professional Business Consultant with over 9 years of IT industry experience working in public and private sectors. She has been working on various digital transformational projects and strongly believes that technology is a powerful agent in transforming and making everyday life easier and more enjoyable.

Teena’s own need for good comforting food paved the way for birth of Hometaste. Her vision is to provide a smarter and better way to experience food. Hometaste would like to provide a seamless experience for people who love to eat good food for an affordable price in a convenient manner. Teena also believes food is more than just food and it can be a powerful and positive agent of change for communities. Hometaste was released only a few weeks ago and we are glad that we are getting some early customer transactions

https://hometaste.com.au/

https://www.facebook.com/hometaste.canberra/

https://www.instagram.com/hometaste.canberra/

Mashblox – Toy that easily introduces Toddlers to their first solids
Founder: Alix O’Hara

Alix O’Hara is a local Canberra artist and freelance model. Her brainchild “Mashblox” was inspired in January this year, by watching a toddler eating an apple at Dickson shops.

https://www.facebook.com/Mashblox/

Innovation Statement implications for startups

So, what are the key takeouts from yesterday’s innovation statement? What will directly affect startups and entrepreneurs in the early stages? Most of the announcements are about science and its commercialisation which is important, or about very long term building of skills, again very important but not going to shift the startup dial right now.

Angel Investor tax breaks

This is the big one for startups. Hopefully a 20% tax offset and a 10 year exemption from capital gains tax will bring new money into early stage investing. More money can make it easier to raise and it will be interesting to see if it also lifts valuations. But there are a few things to be aware of:

  • Doesn’t start until (probably) 1 July 2016 so this may make capital hard to find in the next six months. It may be that short term debt funding from investors could be negotiated to bridge this gap, and some investors will stay active for quality deals, but this will still be a tricky period. Note that you should start on the raise well before the target completion date so I expect to see pitches restarting in Feb and March.
  • Only applies if the company was created less than 3 years before the investment. So don’t form a company until you need it (against this remember you really should formalise ownership with cofounders, own IP and limit liability as soon as you sell stuff or employ people). If you’re approaching the 3 year point its time to think about your capital strategy – should you do a round before the cutoff or hold until you hit more goals?
  • The 3 year end point means that if you grow slowly or have a couple of false starts you’ll be pitching to Angel investors who will miss out on tax breaks. So plan ahead.
  • The cutoff at $200k revenue (not profit) will hit faster-growing startups. The solution is to plan ahead. Also, note this requirement is for the prior year so if you hit $200k you’ve got a year to go.

There are also breaks for certain registered venture funds (ESVCLP) which may put more money into the game for later investment rounds. But things may still be sticky at the ‘series A’ or 4-10M valuation stage which are often funded by a mix of Angels and Funds but now the angels will have a tax incentive to put money into earlier deals.

Overall message on capital raising – plan ahead to avoid putting early investors in the position of choosing to invest without tax breaks. Remember they will be looking at alternative startup investments which may give them the tax break. While tax should be only a small part of the calculation by a smart investor, their post-tax return will be roughly 25% better if they don’t pay capital gains tax.

Crowd source equity funding changes could be a bright point, although it will be a year from now, enabling startups to raise up to $5M. Crowd funding will suit some startups very well, but just like product crowdfunding, its not for everyone so think carefully before depending too much on this in your capital strategy. The maximum an individual can invest under these rules is $10k per company per year, so it really will need to be a ‘crowd’ to raise substantial amounts.

Incubator and Accelerator Support

Incubators and accelerators are a great option to help startups get through the tough early stages and the government has announced some support for new and existing programs at $8M over 4 years. Hopefully this will result in new high quality programs, and expansion of the limited number currently in operation. Meanwhile apply for GRIFFIN Launchpad http://griffinaccelerator.com.au/griffin-launchpad/ and keep your eye out for openings with other top programs including startmate, ATP Innovations, Muru-D, Angel Cube, blue chili, poleniser and more.

Landing pads

There will be five new landing pads in Silicon Valley, Tel Aviv (Israel) and 3 other locations to help you get into those markets with some Austrade assistance. These should connect strongly to the communities of expat entrepreneurs.

Other tax and policy improvements

Companies will be able to keep tax losses even if the business changes – this will help in situations where there is a big pivot. Depending on the details, it may also mean in some situations its smart to use the existing company for a new venture rather than creating a fresh company. However, don’t forget you’ll keep the shareholders, any liabilities or risks, etc as well as the tax loss so don’t do this without careful thought and advice.

The improved rules on depreciation of intangible assets may give some additional tax help in some cases, but probably more relevant for more established businesses.

The Employee Share Scheme setup will be simplified and reporting requirements reduced – this will be very helpful when you are ready to set up a scheme.

Insolvency reform is a great idea, but remember you don’t have any additional protection until the legislation comes into affect. Experts will be needed to clarify the meaning of the legislation once its finalised, but any shift away from the current situation which enforces very risk-averse behaviour on directors is a great thing.

Final Thought – get on with your startup!

As with any new policy, know about it to plan ahead, embrace it where it can help you but do not wait for it or use it as an excuse to slow down growing your startup. Solving real problems for customers by delivering products and solutions that they love is the best recipe for success.

Full details of the innovation statement are at: http://www.innovation.gov.au/page/agenda

 

GRIFFIN Launchpad

GRIFFIN Accelerator is looking for entrepreneurs ready to benefit from intensive work with mentors to get their product into the market and their business ready for seed investment. But very few entrepreneurs can do this without a running start and they are often running in slightly wrong directions or not running as fast as they could. We see a strong need for early entrepreneurs to get better direction at this stage and so we’ve designed a new program to help.

GRIFFIN Launchpad provides entrepreneurs mentor feedback and direction in the early days to give them the maximum chance to reach the accelerator stage as a strong prospect. The focus is early learning from potential customers and using this to target development of minimum prototype. It includes:

  • coaching on market validation by Craig Davis, Petr Adamek and selected GRIFFIN mentors
  • coaching on product development and technology by CTO in Residence David Peterson
  • successful applicants win a shortcut to the GRIFFIN 2016 shortlist

Apply by 9 December at the form below – places are limited.

Launchpad is your best pathway to GRIFFIN Accelerator. Anyone interested in applying for GRIFFIN 2016 should put in an expression of interest at the above form. More information on GRIFFIN Accelerator at: http://griffinaccelerator.com.au

Launchpad complements and is additional to other programs for early stage startups in Canberra such as Innovation ACT, Lighthouse Business Innovation Centre, and the Lean Startup Workshop series. The new Market Ready program includes Launchpad as a subset.



Podio – CRM done right

GRIFFIN Launchpad to help startups to build the right prototype faster

MEDIA RELEASE 3 December 2015

GRIFFIN Launchpad helps startups to build prototypes faster

GRIFFIN Accelerator CEO Dr Craig Davis today announced the arrival of GRIFFIN Launchpad, a program of structured coaching to startups to build prototype products faster and better target customer needs. The GRIFFIN Launchpad will provide a pre-accelerator stage program to budding entrepreneurs to better equip them to apply to the GRIFFIN Accelerator program, which will begin in June-August 2016.

‘GRIFFIN Accelerator is looking for entrepreneurs ready to benefit from intensive work with mentors to get their product into the market and their business ready for seed investment. But few entrepreneurs can do this without a running start and they are often running in slightly wrong directions or not running as fast as they could,’ said Dr Davis.

‘Many entrepreneurs struggle to get development of their prototype going at the right pace, cost and flexibility,’ he said, ‘our CTO In Residence David Peterson can help them get on the right track.’

‘We also help startups to shape their business and product development using lean startup principles,’ said Davis.

GRIFFIN Launchpad provides entrepreneurs mentor feedback and direction in the early days to give entrepreneurs the maximum chance to reach the accelerator stage as a strong prospect. The focus is early learning from potential customers and using this to target development of minimum prototype through:

  • coaching on market validation by Petr Adamek GM of KILN Incubator, Craig Davis and selected GRIFFIN mentors
  • coaching on product development and technology by CTO in Residence David Peterson

GRIFFIN Accelerator is a three month intensive program run by a group of experienced Canberra entrepreneurs who invest in, host, teach and mentor selected startups to create successful businesses. Roughly half of the teams that have completed GRIFFIN Accelerator have raised substantial investment from angel investors. GRIFFIN initially invests $25,000 but has funds to invest further up to $100,000.

Canberra Innovation Network supports a unique collaboration of organisations supporting entrepreneurs including Entry 29 co-working space, Lighthouse Business Innovation Centre, KILN Incubator and the Lean Startup Workshop series. GRIFFIN Launchpad is part of a combined program called Market Ready that brings these together for comprehensive support to entrepreneurs.

Media Contact and interview opportunity: Craig Davis PH 0412 819 376

More information: http://griffinaccelerator.com.au/griffin-launchpad/

GRIFFIN Alumni shine at AIIA iAwards

MEDIA RELEASE

GRIFFIN Accelerator alumni shine at AIIA iAwards

Canberra’s GRIFFIN Accelerator CEO Dr Craig Davis today congratulated current and former participants in the business incubator on winning multiple awards at the Australian Information Industry Digital Canberra iAwards overnight.

‘I’m very proud of SignOnSite, which received the Undergraduate Student Innovation Award, a Certificate of Merit in the New Product category, and the Hills Young Innovator Award,’ said Dr Davis.

‘SignOnSite was accepted into GRIFFIN Accelerator in June this year, and are already achieving great outcomes for the construction industry,’ he said.

Davis also congratulated GRIFFIN alumni Enabled Employment on winning the Startup Company Award, continuing their success in employing people with disability and Australian Defence Force veterans.

‘It’s great to see our startups being recognised by the formal awards for Digital Canberra, and these two companies are achieving outstanding results in their startup,’ said Davis.

‘Both startups will attend the National AIIA Digital Awards in Melbourne to represent GRIFFIN Accelerator and Canberra’s startup community,’ said Davis.

GRIFFIN Accelerator is a three month intensive program run by a group of experienced Canberra entrepreneurs who invest in, host, teach and mentor selected startups to create successful businesses. Enabled Employment completed the program last year, and SignOnSite is a current participant.

SignOnSite https://signonsite.com.au/

SignOnSite helps organisations safeguard their employees, contractors and visitors by leveraging the technology already in their pockets.

Enabled Employment http://www.enabledemployment.com
Enabled Employment provides people with a disability or Australian Defence Force veterans with flexible working options with inclusive employers through their website.

First Wednesday Inspire Workshops

FIRST WEDNESDAY INSPIRE STARTUP WORKSHOPS

Start-ups are disrupting our world. They are fast, agile, lean and they have the power to affect change of entire industries and economies on global scale. To stay relevant in this fast changing world, everybody needs to learn in practice how to innovate like a startup. Come work with others under guidance of professional startup mentors.

VALIDATION

Learn in practice how start-ups validate business concepts with potential customers to find market opportunities and gain early traction. Build experiments to learn how to match your product with needs of your customers.

MODELLING

Even with a validated product-market fit many start-ups fail to find the right business model. Learn in practice how to work with tools that help lean start-up founders prototype and test business models.

PITCHING

Learn in practice how to design and deliver a winning pitch. A validated business model is no good for a founder if they are unable to “sell” to investors, early employees, business partners and most importantly to customers.

WHAT WILL YOU GET

This series of 3 intense half-day workshops will lead you through an early part of the lean start-up journey. You will work in teams on case studies that we will source from Ideaswatch. You will learn to use open source tools, such as the Validation Board, Business Model Canvas and Pitchplanner. You will be challenged and stretched by short dead-line, dynamics of your team and lack of domain knowledge about the case ideas. Just like any start-up founder.

HIGHLY INTERACTIVE PRACTICAL METHODS OF LEARNING

TOOLS

The tools we will use are available online for free to any start-up team in the wolrd. You will not only learn how to use those tools, they will become your daily com-panions in your efforts to structure, test and present any innovative idea.

EXPERIENCED FACILITATORS

Petr Adamek, KILN Incubator Director has 20 years of international experience in business growth and innovation con-sulting. Petr has worked as a business growth advisor or mentor with over 60 startups in Europe and New Zealand.

Dr Craig Davis, GRIFFIN Accelerator CEO, a scientist and an entrepreneur who has been involved with start-ups as a co-founder, CEO, director, investor and mentor for over 20 years. Craig is passionate about helping entrepreneurs make a difference.

WHEN?

From 1:00 pm – 04:30 pm on:

01 July 2015, Market Validation

05 August 2015, Business Models

02 September 2015, Pitching

WHERE?

CBRIN events room, Level 5, 1 Moore Street, Canberra

HOW MUCH?

Price: $350 per person / workshop

KILN incubator & GRIFFIN accelerator will sponsor your first INSPIRE workshop. Apply: http://bitl.ly/INSPIREvoucher

Register NOW, places are limited: http://bit.ly/INSPIREworkshops

GRIFFIN Accelerator is supported by and KILN Incubator is a project of CBR Innovation Network.

2015 teams announced

Today, 1 June 2015, Canberra’s GRIFFIN Accelerator CEO Dr Craig Davis today announced the successful participants for the startup incubator.

‘GRIFFIN Accelerator will invest in and mentor seven great teams this year. Over the next three months we will help them validate their products and start fast growth,’ said Dr Davis.

‘We have a wonderful diversity in this year’s successful startups – from apps to platforms to brand-led to science-driven and including physical products as well as scalable technologies. All teams have innovations with the potential to make a big impact,’ he said.

Eighty-four startups pitched to participate in the program in 2015. GRIFFIN Accelerator selected the final seven teams who will receive investment of up to $300,000 over a three month period.

‘The mentors and I are particularly pleased that four of the seven teams have women co-founders,’ said Dr Davis ‘and we hope that is a sign that the typical imbalance in the ratio of male to female entrepreneurs can change’.

GRIFFIN Accelerator is a three month intensive program run by a group of experienced Canberra entrepreneurs who invest in, host, teach and mentor selected startups to create successful businesses.

GRIFFIN Accelerator’s portfolio includes last year’s substantial successes Enabled Employment, Quizling and Madefor.me.

GRIFFIN Accelerator Teams 2015

Hact http://hs.hact.io/

Magic moments in tech. Inspiring young people to use technology by empowering them to make real things through both local events and online.

Solution Solution www.solutionsolution.com

ART. SCIENCE. LAUNDRY.

Advanced laundry products researched and developed in partnership with CSIRO.

OzGuild http://ozguild.com.au/

With integrated computer vision technology, OzGuild is fusing the physical and digital realms of Magic: the Gathering

Dilkara http://www.dilkaraessenceofaustralia.com.au/

Dilkara Essence of Australia is a Canberra- based, Indigenous owned and inspired Australian made company who specialises in boutique, naturally-derived hair and skin care products using Australian Indigenous cultural heritage ingredients to achieve the best for your hair and skin.

myBUZZ App http://mybuzzapp.com/

myBUZZ smart paging system is a mobile app that saves businesses time and money by instantly notifying their customers, via their phone, that their order or table is ready.

SignOnSite https://signonsite.com.au/

SignOnSite helps organisations safeguard their employees, contractors and visitors by leveraging the technology already in their pockets.

Solar Bare http://solarbare.com.au/

Solar Bare is a new label that creates beautiful sun protection apparel.  Solar Bare’s range makes covering up a fashion statement.

26 May 2015

MEDIA ALERT

GRIFFIN Accelerator CEO Dr Craig Davis will announce the successful participants in this year’s program on Monday 1 June 2015.

From 84 applicants, GRIFFIN Accelerator has narrowed the field down to the final ten teams who have been selected to participate in the business accelerator in 2015.

GRIFFIN Accelerator is a three month intensive program run by a group of seasoned Canberra entrepreneurs who invest in, host, teach and mentor selected startups to create successful businesses. This year the Accelerator will invest up to $300,000 in the selected teams.

A media release will be issued on the day of the announcement and pre-announcement interviews and coverage are encouraged.

Date:        1 June 2015

Event:      GRIFFIN Accelerator 2015 successful applicants 

PHOTO AND INTERVIEW OPPORTUNITIES:

Dr Craig Davis, CEO, GRIFFIN Accelerator

Successful teams including a social enterprise, and with female founders will be available for interview

VENUE:                    Canberra Innovation Network Function Room

                                    5th Floor

                                    1 Moore St

                                    CANBERRA CITY ACT 2601

 

Media contact:        Dr Craig Davis

                                      CEO GRIFFN Accelerator

                                    0412 819 376

GRIFFIN Accelerator launch

Friday 13th February 2015

MEDIA RELEASE

GRIFFIN ACCELERATOR LAUNCHES 2015 PROGRAM

 

ACT Chief Minister Andrew Barr today launched the GRIFFIN Accelerator 2015 program intake at the Canberra Innovation Network at 1 Moore St in the city.

 

“I look forward to watching a new group of innovators progress through GRIFFIN this year”, said the Chief Minister.

 

“The ACT Government has placed the acceleration of innovation central to its economic development agenda. We know that entrepreneurs and smart businesses are essential to expanding the city’s economic base, diversifying our economy and creating new jobs for the future”, he said.

 

GRIFFIN accelerator is a three month intensive program run by a group of experienced Canberra entrepreneurs who invest in, host, teach and mentor selected startups to create successful innovative businesses.

 

“We’re looking for entrepreneurs with ambitious and innovative ideas we can work with to make an impact on the world.” said GRIFFIN Accelerator CEO Craig Davis.

 

The GRIFFIN Accelerator will invest up to $300,000 worth of private venture capital into this year’s selected teams.

 

The business incubator is seeking up to ten teams of passionate entrepreneurs who want their innovation to have a big impact.

The successful entrepreneurs will be coached through the process of establishing a viable business, and then pitching to investors, and be supported in their startup journey by mentors who have already been successful in their own startups.

All GRIFFIN Accelerator mentors bring substantial experience in working with entrepreneurs, startup investing and raising capital, sales and business development, and significant industry and investor networks.

GRIFFIN mentors provide the capital which is invested in the accelerator startups, and their vision is to make Canberra the innovation capital.

“We’re thrilled that the Chief Minister Andrew Barr has chosen to champion the innovation community in Canberra, and is launching the 2015 intake today,” said Davis.

Startups and entrepreneurs can enter their ideas into the GRIFFIN Accelerator startup selection process by contacting the program through the webpage http://griffinaccelerator.com.au.

GRIFFIN Accelerator will conduct a series of pre-program workshops open to all entrepreneurs prior to selecting the ten successful startup teams in 2015.

These cover a range of basic aspects of startup business but also aim to give deeper insights based on the experience of expert presenters, and entrepreneurs are encouraged to attend.

MEDIA CONTACT: info@griffinaccelerator.com.au