Inaugural 2015 Central Coast Startup Weekend hatches venture potential

09/28/2015 | By Brian Hill

This post originally appeared on

Startup Weekend Central Coast - September 18th, 2015

[caption id="attachment_31082" align="alignnone" width="1024"]StartupWeekend Central Coast 2015 Attendees celebrate their 54hr achievements. StartupWeekend Central Coast 2015 Attendees celebrate their 54hr achievements.[/caption]

Congratulations to our 1st Startup Weekend winning teams for 2015!

They were:

Winner: MakerToMarket - a platform to better connect makers with higher quality suppliers to help them scale their businesses

RunnerUp: Wheelie - a crowd sourced share bike platform for city commuters leveraging smart locking hardware and route analytics

Honorable Mention: BuzMe - a novel transport option to bridge the gap between taxis and buses with smarter minibus transport

Crowd Favourite: Diruka - an Invoice Factoring and Xero integration for cashflow financing that unlocks the value trapped in your outstanding invoices.

With 8 teams formed during the weekend at Gosford Smart Work Hub, our experienced judges had a tough time of it, listing 6 of them across the panel of 3, forcing a quick showdown to argue their selection merits and shortlist our finalists.

As the first Startup Weekend for Central Coast, the quality of connections that were formed between members of participating teams was memorable. The heart and spirit that were poured into each teams entry was uplifting - to go from complete strangers to coherent teams delivering a polished concept, many of which were online+interactive, over 54hrs is quite an achievement. Our judging panel rated them as equal to pitches they regularly encounter from the Sydney startup community.

Here's what one of our event judges, Tony Burrett, Chief Operating Officer from Blue Chilli (Sydney Incubator and Accelerator) had to say:

"It was awesome - there were some fantastic ideas here. So many more people here than I would have expected coming to the Central's clearly a hotbed of entrepreneurial guys should be congratulated for the quality of the event and the quality of the ideas that came out."

The 58 ticket holders for the weekend experience were diverse, too, with ages from 16 to 60 and plenty of University of Newcastle students participating as a way to sharpen their learning. With the event rating highly for attendee experience and feedback, we know there's an appetite for just this style of event.

We're now looking forward to planning what's next and working with our first Alumni to progress their first rounds of work as they move from Idea to Action.

Thanks for giving it everything folks. You made us proud.