Startup Weekend Toowoomba

    Friday, November 13 - 15, 2015

  1. Overview
  2. Schedule
  3. Judges
  4. Coaches and Mentors
  5. Sponsors
  6. Organizing Team
  7. Blog
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Startup Weekend Toowoomba

Friday, November 13 - 15, 2015

Friday, November 13 - 15, 2015
Event starts at 6:00 pm

Canvas Coworking Space
100 Bridge Street
East Toowoomba, Queensland 4350

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Toowoomba's Festival of Audacious Ideas - Global Startup Battle

What is Startup Weekend?

Startup Weekend is a 54-hour whirlwind event where you get to be part of building a business in a weekend, Silicon Valley style.  It's about pitching, business model creation, coding, designing and market validation. The weekend culminates with presentations in front of a panel of judges and an opportunity to win great prizes.
All Startup Weekend events follow the same basic model: anyone is welcome to pitch their startup idea and teams organically form around the top ideas. All ideas, applications and platforms are welcome – remember that the sky is the limit!

How does it work?

We're mashing the geeks with entrepreneurs and everyone in between, and locking them in a building together for a weekend, pouring in a heap of caffeine and free food, to see what new ideas come out the other end.This 54 hour event brings together creatives, technologists, designers and developers to experiment with rapid idea generation, Silicon Valley style.
It is a fast-paced and highly creative event that challenges everyone who attends to make innovative new projects in 54 hours.

Who can attend?

Anyone. Whether you're 8 or 88, a painter, actor, software engineer, writer, graphic designer, geek, entrepreneur, photographer, musician, programmer, museum curator, or startup specialist. Whether you have an idea, or have no idea. Everyone is welcome. (We even allow bankers and used-car salesmen to come along!)

What you will get out of it

The professional and personal challenges, the high and lows, the failures and the success? Startup Weekend is a global grassroots movement of active and empowered citizens who are learning the basics of founding startups and launching successful ventures or products.  Whether participants found companies, find a cofounder, meet someone new, find a creative collaborator, or learn a skill far outside their usual 9-to-5, everyone is guaranteed to have a heap of fun, and to leave the event better prepared to navigate the chaotic but fun world of startups. If you want to put yourself in the shoes of an entrepreneur, register now for the best weekend of your life!


Friday November 13th

6:00 pm
Arrive at the venue and get checked in

6:30 pm
Dinner & Networking
Eat food, share ideas, practice pitches, get to know fellow participants

7:00 pm
Welcome & Speakers
Review agenda for the weekend and introduce speakers, coaches, and community leaders

7:30 pm
Pitches Start
Line up and give a 60 second pitch on your great idea

8:30 pm
Attendees vote for the top pitches

8:45 pm
Form Teams
Teams start forming around the most popular ideas

9:00 pm
Begin Work
Teams set up a workspace and take an inventory of skills. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Saturday November 14th

8:00 am
Arrive for a simple breakfast with juice, tea & coffee

8:30 am
Validation Canvas Session
Learn about Validation Canvas, a lean startup tool

1:00 pm

1:30 pm
After-lunch check-in, status reports, call for help

2:00 pm
Mentors in the house
Mentors help teams one-on-one. They are here to help!

6:30 pm

7:30 pm
After-dinner check-in, status reports, call for help

10:30 pm
Final check in for the day. You may stay and work as late as the venue will allow

Sunday November 15th

8:00 am
Arrive for a simple breakfast with juice, tea & coffee

9:30 am
Mentors arrive. Final opportunity to ask questions

12:30 pm

3:00 pm
Presentation Prep & Tech Check
Final hours of worktime should be focused on perfecting your presentation, tech-check for final presentations also takes place

5:00 pm
Clean Up
Time is up, down tools and clean up the venue and get ready for pitching

5:30 pm

6:15 pm
Final Presentations

8:15 pm
Judging & Awards

9:00 pm

Event Judges

Garry Slik
Field Officer

Garry Slik, Grad Dip OH&S, B. Bus (Man & Int Bus), Dip TAA, Dip Exp Man, Dip Legal, Cert IV Emp Serv, JP Qual. Garry is a field officer with the Many Rivers Organisation who support aspiring business owners with microenterprise development support and access to finance in order to see the potential of people and communities realised. 
Field Officers are able to recommend the approval of micro and small business loans to provide a capital injection, if this is required, to enable clients to establish and grow their businesses. Loans are provided following a successful evidence-based assessment, taking into account the individual’s character, capacity and cashflow. Collateral, as loan security, is not required. Loans require the support of two Many Rivers’ Field Officers and approval by our Chief Operating Officer.

John McVeigh
Member for Toowoomba South

John McVeigh is the Member for Toowoomba South and Shadow Minister for Science, Information Technology and Innovation. John holds a Bachelor of Business majoring in Marketing & Economics (USQ), a Diploma of Export (Australian Institute of Export) and an MBA (Bond University). In 2012 he was awarded a PhD in Agribusiness Management (University of Queensland). He has worked in marketing and management positions for the Bank of Queensland, Elders Pastoral, Cargill Australia and the Department of Primary Industries. In 1996, he established a management consulting practice in Toowoomba.

Coaches and Mentors

Tim Gardner
Startup Hunter

The trouble with ideas is that you're at the bottom of the heap. Everybody has ideas. You need to be able to sell that idea. Find 3 customers. Then slap an MVP together. Continually evolve and iterate according to the customer feedback loop until you have something truly delightful to offer. Pivot if you have to. See, like many, I've had ideas. I've executed. I failed many many times until mild success with And that's okay. I 'flearned' (failure learning). Keep trying. Keep moving. Don't stop. Find what it is that gets you to stay up all night long, OD'ing on coffee and red bull - for 54 hours we're in this together! But don't forget you NEED to sell. Get the cash in the bank... This is Tim's 6th Startup Weekend. Previously mentored in Kenya and Sudan. Expertise: Marketing A+, Design A- Coding C- 

Garry Humphries
Regional Manager N.P.R.S.R.


Regional Manager, Queensland Government, Sport & Recreation Services South West Queensland.

Garry has proudly served Federal, State and Local Government in some of the most remote parts of Australia, from delivering participation programs in the Gulf of Carpentaria to the management of remote outdoor education facilities outside Mt Isa, managing after school centres in Inala, to managing Municipal pools, sports centres and a city wide events program in the densely urban Logan area to sport and recreation services in South Western Queensland covering an area the same size as 1 x Victoria and 2 x Tasmanias.

Read more! 

Leanne Griffin

I have always been a people person, albeit in an introverted sort of way - gravitating towards understanding and furthering our human experience. I recently heard that nobody would care about making money, about the environment, about business without people. As an engagement specialist I could not agree more. Engagement - social, employee, stakeholder however you see it - is the core ingredient for any solution and the one most often overlooked. Learn how to connect, motivate and inspire the people around and learn how to grow positively as a result.

Ben Lyons

Dr Ben Lyons has worked extensively in Asia for the past 20 years, specifically in the agribusiness, textiles, research and education management sectors. He has worked for some of the world's leading brands including Dulwich College International, The Financial Times (UK), The Woolmark Company, the Australian Wool Exchange and the University of Queensland.
Ben has a PhD in economics from the University of Queensland and studied Chinese literature and modern Chinese economic history in Xi'an, Nanjing and Beijing. 
Ben is also active in the local community contributing time as Deputy Chair of the Board of Directors at the Australian Chamber of Commerce in Shanghai . He is fluent in written and spoken Mandarin.

Linda Rossow

Toowoomba Area, Australia. Working with Non Profit Organisations to help them build more resilient communities, increase individual capacity and construct a more sustainable future for everyone.

Jim O'Dea
Director - Pivot Project Solutions

Jim is the Director of Pivot Project Solutions, a project management consulting company which providing independent, objective advice on all stages of the project management of commercial construction projects to builders, consultants and property developers.

Event Sponsors, and Partners

The Startup Weekend Toowoomba team is grateful for the support of local community partners without whom this event would not be possible.
Learn how to become a sponsor here.

Signature Sponsors

The Queensland Government department DSITI is a major event sponsor for Startup Toowoomba's Startup Weekend. Thank you!

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Organising Sponsor

Web IT Support


Organizing Team

Techstars Startup Weekend Australia is 100% led by volunteer community leaders.
Learn how to get involved here

  • David
  • Joy
  • Leisa
  • Nicolas


David Masefield
Assistant to Lead

Director @ Startup Toowoomba, founder of Toowoomba Startup group. Startup Weekend facilitator, Founder of Canvas Coworking. CSIRO ON Mentor, Blogger @ Entrepreneur, Startup Weekend Warrior, Trekkie, GovHacker, all rolled into one. Keen to facilitate or co-facilitate in other countries. I am an older facilitator that interacts well with all ages.

Event Blog

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