Why Now Is the Right Time to Get Your Million Dollar Idea Off the Ground


With an increased amount of time to work on those projects we’ve seemingly not yet had the capacity for, the time could well be now to launch that million-dollar idea you’ve had on the back-burner for a while now.

Some of the world’s more dominant and successful online businesses like Uber, Pinterest, Slack and WhatsApp were born from the last big recession, so there’s nothing to say your idea couldn’t serve as the silver lining to this tricky time we’re all doing our best to navigate through.

It can be daunting to know where to even begin, but Startmate wants to help with mentor sessions and a program of online events designed to empower and help bolster the brains behind the next big idea.

Start-up accelerator Startmate has launched applications for ‘Office Hours‘ — a free program designed to provide aspiring founders and entrepreneurs access to one-on-one mentor sessions with industry leaders from companies including Atlassian, Adore Beauty, Xero and Canva.

Each successful applicant will be matched to a sector-appropriate mentor for a 30-minute session to discuss goals, troubleshoot ideas and lay down the next steps to bring their idea to fruition. Last year, the program generated 1,170 mentor/founder conversations.

“Office Hours is probably our most important channel for developing future talent, and providing a glimpse into the kind of expertise and support we offer with our Fellowship and accelerator programs,” Startmate CEO Michael Batko explains.

“Particularly now, when there are so many people looking to grow or diversify their experience to ensure future success, Office Hours provides a really valuable stepping stone towards the next level of your business.”

The bi-annual program will next take place in May, and applications are open now for Australia and New Zealand residents.

Submit your application and keep those fingers crossed, but in the meantime, budding founders may find valuable advice and information in the live-stream ‘Demo Day’ event, taking place tonight on Wednesday, April 22.

Previously held in both Sydney and Melbourne with in-house attendees, the reimagined demo day will take place online for the first time in 2020.

Over the course of two hours, from 6.00pm to 8.00pm, audience attendees will have the chance to ask questions and gain insights from 11 companies who will be presenting their investor pitches after a previous Startmate 12-week accelerator program.

Tune in to hear the pitches from the Sydney 2020 cohort, which “includes companies using technology that turns food waste into animal feed and water waste into electricity, to 3D printed prosthetics and an AI bot that teaches conversational English,” the event page reads.

The ‘Demo Day Reimagined’ event is free, but you have to register before attending.

Level up your journey to entrepreneurship with Giants Conference. The free, four-day online event is hosted by Startmate and venture capital fund Blackbird, and runs from April 28 to May 1 with sessions on growth, product, go-to-market, goal-setting and fundraising in a downturned market.

“The conference will provide early-stage founders with the rare opportunity to hear from some of the world’s top technology and startup leaders who have gone against the grain and dug deep through adversity in a series of 30-minute presentations and fireside chats,” the event information reads.

Headliners to the event include Sarah Tavel, general partner at Benchmark who invested in Pinterest in the 2009 downturn, Luke Anear, who started Safety Culture from his hospital bed, and venture capitalist, Bill Tai. Other notable participants include operators and investors from Google, Twitter, Medium, Vimeo and more.

“We believe the best help a founder can get is from those that have gone before them,” Tip Piumsomboon, principal at Blackbird Ventures and project lead on Giants, says in a press release. “Giants is an opportunity to democratise access to legendary operators and investors who backed extraordinary companies through extraordinary times.

“We hope stories of resilience and creativity will inspire the next generation of founders to think in decades, not in days.”

Free sessions are now open for registration.

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