Startup Weekend: What's Next?

With the new year upon us, you’re likely thinking about what’s next for your startup idea and team.  In reality, you may well find your team changing from the one formed at Startup Weekend as the focus, priorities and even the idea itself changes.

If you’ve not had a chance to chat with your team since Townsville Startup Weekend 2015, now’s a perfect time to have that discussion.  For those forming new teams from bigger teams, we strongly encourage you to have an open and honest talk with all in your original group about the future of your idea.  You never know how people might help you in the long run!  We can’t stress the importance of this tough but crucial conversation.

You’ll earn the respect of others by being upfront and open about what you want to do and who you want to work with.  You can engage former group mates as long term supporters, even if they aren’t continuing as team members.  Doing this will help you get the best outcomes for your concepts.

If you’ve left your team or your former team decides to proceed without you, don’t take it personally; focus on your opportunities going forward!  You can even pursue your original Startup Weekend idea or something similar with a brand new team.  If you’re looking for people to work with, post on our Facebook group, join in the regular Meetups (next one is Wednesday 20 Jan 2016) and talk to others from Startup Weekend and wider startup community.  The 2015 organising team are across all of these platforms, but if you’ve got specific questions, you can also email David, Lauren or John at

For more thoughts, check out The “What Next Monster”, a great post by Nick Stevens regarding what comes next after a Startup Weekend, and helps explain the road ahead.

As a community, we want you to have an awesome experience and help build a strong startup community.  Communities talk, so get the conversations happening – you never know where it’ll lead you!

Go.Park wins Townsville Startup Weekend: Team Spotlight

Parking is a huge problem.  Within Australia, there are over 1.3 million registered boats and caravans, and 16% of occupied homes have more than 3 cars registered. Our cities are growing and getting denser and traditional places to store vehicles are becoming costly and scarce. The solution is Go.Park, turning unused yard space into car park cash!

Go.Park was awarded first place at Townsville Startup Weekend 2015, narrowly edging out the competition, and landing prizes of consultancy, business structuring and a well-deserved social outing!  Here’s what Tim Vlastuin, co-founder and pitcher of the original idea, had to say on the experience of the Weekend:

Talking to John, one of the event organisers, about finding a network of support for my own ventures say him hurriedly telling me about Townsville Startup Weekend. Soon enough at one of the pitching nights I’m thrown into the deep end — but at the same time instantly a part of the welcoming local startup community.

Showing up on the Friday night with a startup pitch ready, everyone rapidly started talking to each other,  eager to find out what was in store for us. Startup ideas were pitched and entrepreneurs grew even closer thereafter, forming teams around the ideas they liked the most.

Tim/Zoe: Townsville Startup Weekend 2015

I pitched ‘Breeze Storage & Parking’, a take on ‘Air Bed & Breakfast’ for storage/parking, and soon enough I found myself surrounded by Zoe, Casey, Elise, Ripan and Jason. All of us were ready to put effort towards the building on the idea over the weekend.

Saturday morning we were straight into action: brainstorming, discussing, chatting, writing down our brainstorming, and then discussing it all. Just when we thought we had it figured, another highly experienced mentor sat down, joined in with the conversation and approached our startup idea from a different (and better!) angle from which we restarted our constructive discussions.

We were quickly encouraged to get talking to our potential customers and we’re so glad we did!  We quickly pivoted away from peer-to-peer storage and focused on parking, creating Go.Park. After conducting a second survey, we were confident that our parking service would work, and we jumped into the website design and concentrated on creating a comprehensive, attention-grabbing pitch for the following day.

Townsville Startup Weekend 2015: GoPark screenshot

A very special mention goes to Casey because of his effort, working through the night putting our web platform together!

Sunday was about creating a 5 minute pitch for Go.Park along with an example of the service. The team chopped and changed the presentation through repeated practice. Before we could think too much about it we were presenting and enjoying the attention we received from such a receptive audience.  Do you have trouble finding car parks at major events? Go.Park!

Townsville Startup Weekend 2015 Judges Townsville Startup Weekend 2015: Go Park

Thanks so much to all the organisers; you clearly put in a lot of effort and made a fantastic event that everyone enjoyed immensely. My perspective saw David in particular needing to be acknowledged, so well done & cheers.

Mentors were terrific, knowledgeable and, best of all, accessible. I feel the input from all of these experienced people made the event a great success. The weekend broke through so many barriers I’ve experienced in the past when trying to simply bounce thoughts off people. You’ve all given me a lot of confidence with my own ability and added more fuel to my fire. Thanks so much for your time.

From here the Go.Park team is going to enjoy dinner together away from the frantic atmosphere of the Townsville Startup Weekend. We’ll be talking about our options moving forward, discussing what a glorious marketing strategy could be. Sounds like some more brainstorming.

Tim Vlastuin

All the best in your endeavours!  We’re stoked to have helped kick start your journey!

Townsville is Collectively Starting Something Creative

creative industries event note-881426_1280

You need a great team when building a startup, and between team members many hats are worn.  One common skillset in startups is creative work – from creating effective online platform formats for tech-based products, to designing products and packaging, to advertisements and more.

So who in the North is at hand to add their creative expertise?  And who in the Northern Australian creative industries is tapping into the region’s growing startup community, understanding its needs as the concepts grow?  These are the questions that led to a great ‘cross-sector mingle’ event between Startup Townsville and the Creative Industries Sector at JCU City Campus recently.

As luck would have it, both groups had arranged events in the same building on the same night.  This was too good an opportunity to miss!

Over a few drinks and nibbles, techies and entrepreneurs met graphic artists, film makers and more.  We talked about the creative process, the benefits of talking early when developing a concept, and some of the common challenges faced by both sectors here in the North.  But what was clear is there is strength in collaboration, and these two sectors are a great match to support, inspire, share and grow together here in the North.

The  Startup Townsville Community would like to extend our thanks to Eileen Larsen and Alex Christopher from JCU’s School of Creative Arts for opening the doors to our yearling community group and we look forward to working together more in the future…to create something great!

Did you miss the last Startup Townsville event?  Don’t fear!  We will be holding another one on 7 October, at JCU City Campus with a focus on idea generation in preparation for this year’s Townsville Startup Weekend on 20-22 November.  Head over to  for more info.

Until then….stay creative

Lauren Heritage-Brand

Co-organiser, Townsville Startup Weekend 2015

So what came from Townsville Startup Weekend 2014?

Ever wondered what the outcomes were from the very first Townsville Startup Weekend back in November 2014?  Let’s take a look back at the event in pictures!

Townsville Startup Weekend Intro photo    Townsville startup Weekend 2014 winners

See our whole photo collection on Flickr!  Thanks again to Budd Photography and Liz Lorelle for capturing the event in stills and on video!

Budd Photography logo    Liz_Lorelle_Logo_Grey1

What about the winners?

The top three teams from the weekend were:

  1. – Your Tutor in the Cloud.
  2. OnWhen
  3. Inspect

Of these, has recently gone live and both other startup ideas are under active development.  Listen in as Caine and Jade, winners from 2014, recap on why Townsville Startup Weekend was the game-changing experience they’d been waiting for.

ARVE Error: id and provider shortcodes attributes are mandatory for old shortcodes. It is recommended to switch to new shortcodes that need only url

The underlying teams may have changed a little in the months that have passed, but passion for all of the above ideas remains as strong as ever!  The Townsville Startup community has also grown by leaps and bounds thanks to the event.

We’re back to do it all again as part of Townsville Startup Weekend 2015.  So if you’ve ever had an idea, or have the passion to work on something amazing and life-changing, come along from 25-27 September 2015.  Register now!

Curious as to what you'll get from Townsville Startup Weekend 2015?

If you’re curious about what you’ll get out of the Townsville Startup Weekend 2015, here’s a few things to get you thinking:

  • Free domain name for a year from
  • $300 credit for use on Google Cloud Platform
  • A year’s subscription to training and education for web professionals, worth $99, thanks to SitePoint!
  • An annual pro subscription to the programming productivity suite, worth up to $150, thanks to WakaTime!
  • An annual Blinkist Premium subscription, featuring best-selling non-fiction books distilled down into just 15 minute packs, worth over to $110!
  • Startup focussed eBook from O’Reilly Media
  • Mentoring sessions with prominent local experts
  • Exclusive blue Townsville Startup Weekend T-Shirt!
    Blue shirt
  • All meals, drinks and snacks across the weekend, from Friday evening until Sunday afternoon.
  • … plus more to come …

Oh and don’t forget this one, it’s kind of a big deal so we’ll write it in bold:

  • Walk away from the Startup Weekend having met co-founders and built a real-life startup!

If you get in now, you’ll score all of the above for just $75 as an early bird registration or Uni student.  If you’re a high school student, you’re in for just $50 — ping us at with why you’d like to be there and we’ll send you back a special discount code!

If you miss out on early bird registration, don’t fret.  $99 is unbelievable value for everything you’ll get out of the weekend.

Don’t miss your chance, though:  register now!

We’re supported by all these fabulous organisations:

Townsville Startup Weekend Sponsors Blinkist-Logo_Black

Meet the Crew: David (organiser) – Townsville Startup Weekend 2015

Ever wondered who’s behind Townsville Startup Weekend 2015?

ARVE Error: id and provider shortcodes attributes are mandatory for old shortcodes. It is recommended to switch to new shortcodes that need only url

David’s an organiser for this year’s event and shares his insight into what inspires him in the startup space and why he’s volunteered as an organiser in 2015.

The video was self-produced at beautiful Pallarenda, Townsville, Queensland, Australia and overlooks Cleveland Bay and Magnetic Island.  It was a little windy, so as a viewer, you get the authentic Townsville waterfront experience.

Stay tuned for more videos in this series every few days!

Networking & pitching practice: prequel to Townsville Startup Weekend 2015

We’re bringing entrepreneurs together to perfect their pitches and get feedback from peers and mentors before the official start of Townsville Startup Weekend 2015.  This is our very first pitch practice night!  There’ll be fun, excitement & some Pitch Roulette so get your thinking caps on about ideas that interest you.

Date: 17 September 2015
Time: From 5.30pm til late
Location: JCU City Campus, City Arcade; 383 Flinders Street Townsville, Queensland 4810 Australia.

Pitching: it's the core of the weekend

Join us for some real social-networking, meet fellow entrepreneurs and wind-down after a long day!  Register at our event page now.

This event is coordinated by the Townsville Startups Meetup group and hosted by James Cook University.

This is our zeroth (pre-first!) event associated with Startup Spring, a fantastic initiative organised by StartupAus. Check it out!


Townsville Startup Weekend 2015: It's on!

Townsville Startup Weekend logo

Townsville’s Startup Weekend in 2014 (plus photos!) was a smash hit and we’re back to do it again in 2015.

Startup Weekend Townsville 2015
25 to 27 September 2015
Hosted at Education Central, James Cook University in Townsville

This is our largest community-run Startup Weekend to date and has a strong focus on student and school involvement and connecting to the startup community.  The Startup Weekend will feature more than just the weekend, though!  We’re holding a Networking & Pitch Practice night a week before the full Startup Weekend, where anyone can join in to hone their skills and have fun doing it.  After the weekend, the excitement continues with further networking and development opportunities for teams that will keep pursuing their ideas!

Our community, Startup Townsville is just 1 year young and in that time, it’s growing strong and fast!  With this Startup Weekend, we’re going to further ignite the flame of innovation in the region and mentor the next generation of entrepreneurs.   Come along and help make your mark!

Startup Weekend Townsville 2014 - 1

We’re in the process of lining up judges, mentors, and speakers right now, but suffice to say there’s some exciting things in store for the weekend.  You’ll talk to successful local startup founders and CEOs through to design creatives and other international figures.

If you’re in North Queensland or just want to join us for the weekend, come along to Townsville Startup Weekend 2015!    Tickets are available now!

Even if you can’t make it, join our Meetup group, and check out the awesome live updates on Twitter.  We’ll have some super-duper videos and reports out of the weekend too.

This is our first event associated with Startup Spring, a fantastic initiative organised by StartupAus. Check it out!


Event Pics – Townsville Startup Weekend 2014

Guest Post by Roslyn Budd, check original version here.

Startup Weekend Townsville
November 21st, 2014

I was intrigued to find out more about the Startup Group in Townsville so I went along to an info session a couple of months ago at James Cook University.  When I heard that there was going to be a Startup Weekend I volunteered my time to go along and photograph and video the event.   As I wasn’t going to be available the entire time I collaborated with another local photographer/designer, Elisabeth Collier, and together we covered the event for the 54 hour frenzy of activity where developers, designers, marketers, product managers, and startup enthusiasts come together to share ideas, form teams, build products and launch new and exciting startups.  With guest speakers, live streaming with Cairns and Gold Coast Startup weekends, and a room full of enthusiasm and energy, the event was hailed an overwhelming success.  The event would not be possible without the group of sponsors and the hard work of the organisers. Well done to all involved and I look forward to seeing the progression of future initiatives.

Check all the pics at:

Partnership: Startup Weekend and Festival of Innovation and Creativity

Hi all,

Townsville Startup Weekend and the Festival of Innovation and Creativity are excited to announce a partnership in which the teams with the best performances during the weekend will be invited to present their ideas during the Festival in the following topics:

  • Finance
  • Food
  • Fuel

We have also invited key participants of the Festival to be present on Sunday’s pitches, so we can promote an even greater knowledge exchange between the audiences of the two events.

Festival Schedule

Festival Keynote Speakers:

1. Dr John Hewson will be a special panellist in our Second Energy Futures Roundtable. He is among other things the Chair of the global Asset Owners Disclosures Project, which is heavily involved in issues related to the financial risks of climate change, and how to manage them.

2. Dr Steve Mark AM, the retired Legal Services Commissioner of NSW and former President of the NSW Anti-Discrimination Commission, and a seriously “big brain” when it comes of social organisation, governance and public value and creative public policy development. He was for example a key player in the development of social bonds in NSW as a way of funding “non economic” public policy initiatives. He is a recipient of an Order of Australia for services to the community.

3. Dr Pradeep Taneja, Fellow (Regional Relationships) at the Australia-India Institute, University of Melbourne who is a global expert in China and India economic development policies and trajectories. He’ll help us better understand just where the region stands when it comes to how India and China are planning on meeting their energy needs into the future.

4. Professor Kerry Brown, all the way from Curtin University in WA,  is an internationally recognized expert on regional economic development and the role of clusters and networks. If we need a bit of inspiration about ways in which we can “reshape” how we go about things, Kerry will be able to show us the way.

5. Associate Professor Martin Blake, from the UK, who is a world-recognised leader in corporate and social sustainability. He is prolific and global. Just “Google” him!

Don’t miss this opportunity to get great exposure for your business!