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Pitch night caps off 100 startups for ilab

Last week, Brisbane startup hub ilab hosted its seventh pitch night, and celebrated over one hundred startups to have been accepted into its Incubate or Germinate programs.

Held at Customs House last Wednesday, the night mirrored the format of previous events, with a crowd of  over ninety investors and startup personnel addressed by the seventh crop of Germinate startups, MP Chris Whiting, ilab director Bernie Woodcroft, and Artesian Capital’s Jeremy Colless.

Pitches  ranged from high-powered drones to shed tech, and detailed each startup’s corporate history, team, competitors, financial/marketing needs, and future outlook. The night also celebrated ilab’s one hundredth startup, Incubate member and energy storage provider Redback Technologies, which made a short presentation along with Incubate graduate and software-as-a-service startup Working Mouse. Only one Germinate 7 member, personal budgeting platform Tanjo Money, did not pitch.

Woodcroft also gave an update on other ilab initiatives, from Mentor Blaze to the recently launched Startup Mackay, while Colless concluded the night with a rundown of the state of Australia’s VC ecosystem.

Colless said that while our ratio of VC funds to GDP pales in comparison to the US’s, we are well placed to grow through corporate venturing (such as the Slingshot and NRMA backed Jumpstart accelerator), crowdfunding, significant investor visas (SIVs) and superannuation funds.

Check out the Germinate startups below.

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The Problem: Australia’s shed retail industry has been operating the same way for 40 years i.e. producing and selling fixed sheds.

The Solution: ShedProject providers customers with the ability to post individual requirements such as shed location, size and material, and retailers and manufacturers then have the chance to provide feedback and quotes (find out more in our profile here).

Status: The team have launched their MVP and are working on releasing a polished version in January 2016. They are looking for investment but founder David Masefield said they will be in a better position to discuss funding post 2.0 launch.

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The Problem: Remote condition monitoring and reporting on industrial machines.

The Solution: MOVUS Machine Intelligence’s new product the “Fitbit,” a compact data collection, analysis and communications device for monitoring fixed, portable, and mobile machines and equipment; these include everything from locomotives and construction machinery to smaller items such as as generators, fans and pumps.

Status: MOVUS are already in discussion with companies across the transport, mining, oil and gas, construction, and water and agriculture industries, namely Origin Energy, Sydney Water, and BHP Billiton. They are looking to seed their marketing, technology and, if Origin gets on board, contract funding, and plan to finalise their first funding round between October to December.

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The Problem: Complimentary issues with the two standard types of drone: quadcopters, which have vertical lift but limited range; and fixed-wing drones, which have high endurance and speed but no vertical lift.

The Solution: Skyborne’s three-rotor hybrid “Cerberus” drone bridges the gap between the two drone technologies; it has a competitive flight range compared with most fixed-wing drones, as well as the quadcopter’s maneuverability and ability to go vertical. Specific applications include beach patrol, remote asset inspection and surveying.

Status: Skyborne have submitted a patent on drone tech, built and tested the second Cerberus prototype, and completed a small capital raise. They have also received revenue with Cerberus as a real estate tool. The team are working on manufacturing their next model, Chimera, and hope to start a funding round in Jan 2016 with an aim to raise $2 million.

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The Problem: Sourcing independent reviews of investment strategies for Self Managed Superannuation Funds (SMSFs).

The Solution: SMSFCheck provides online questionnaires for investors looking to validate their SMSF investment strategies. The system prepares summary reports on investment objectives, risk profiles, asset allocation, and insurance and estate planning.

Status: SMSFCheck is currently in operation and have a number of potential partners, including Starts At 60 and Australia Wealth. They are looking to fund their marketing and product development.

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The Problem: The burden on geneticists and other scientists to have computer programming skills when analysing the structure of genomes (an organism’s complete set of DNA).

The Solution: genomicOS’ computing platform can perform full genomic analysis in “2-clicks”. Their distributed cloud computing technology can perform genome assembly, variant discovery, sequence alignment pattern recognition and data sharing.

Status: genomicOS will be user testing their MVP throughout November and December. They are currently looking for a business manager, backend developer, and android/iOS developer. Finally, they are in talks to use Google Genomics credits in trials, and aim to have earned $4.3m in revenue by the end of 2016.

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The Problem: Stress, and decreased productivity, in the workplace, specifically within SMEs.

The Solution: Dynamic Conversations produces online training videos for SMEs. Their videos emphasise fun, and reflect their core belief that people are more receptive to change when they are emotionally engaged (find out more in our profile here).

Status: Dynamic Conversations have produced two videos, one on communication and the other on bullying, and are looking for more host sites and partners. They intend on eventually introducing a subscription model, but they are currently growing organically through Youtube, blogging etc while they concentrate on marketing.

Photos: ilab.

About Chris Woods

Chris Woods (@tophermwoods) is the Tech Street Journal's Editor-in-Chief. He lives in Brisbane, has worked in places like Sydney and New York (State of), and will someday update his media-news blog.