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Bondies help to build a business in a weekend at Startup Weekend

If you think you’ve got what it takes to collaborate with creative, technologists, designers and developers to create a new business in the space of 54 hours, then Startup Weekend is for you.  

A talented team of Bondies, headed up by the Director of the University's Bond Business Commercialisation Centre, Assistant Professor Baden U'Ren, will be leading the challenge at the rapid-idea-generating event which is taking place at Griffith University from 17 to 19 June.

Joining Dr U’Ren as a judge of the event is Professor Helen Chenery, Executive Dean of Bond's Faculty of Health Sciences and Medicine, with Bond Business student Navdeep Pasricha taking on the role of head volunteer, Honorary Adjunct Professor Clarence Tan acting as judge, and Tres West as a mentor.

The theme of this Startup Weekend is health. With increasing pressures on health innovation like an ageing population and chronic disease, rapid changes are occurring in the technology of health service models.

Bond is fast-establishing itself as a major player in the health commercialisation space, having recently brought together a number of Australia’s most innovative medi-tech entrepreneurs and research scientists for its inaugural Health Innovation Seminar - which focused on how to translate advances in medical technology into viable business outcomes. 

The Startup weekend is about pitching, business model creation, coding, designing and market validation.

Mayor Tom Tate said it was imperative for the Gold Coast to play a role in developing this innovation.

“The Startup Weekend offers an amazing opportunity for people to share their ideas and come up with a real idea that could become a reality in the marketplace,” he said.

City of Gold Coast supports Startup Weekend as part of its Economic Development Strategy.

“This event reflects our long-term efforts to nurture innovation, diversify our economy and support new businesses in helping to make the Gold Coast tick,’’ he said.

“I encourage anyone to attend especially professionals with either health or IT backgrounds.”

Startup Weekend begins with people pitching their ideas and receiving feedback from peers. Teams then form around the best concepts (decided by popular vote) and then it’s a frenzy of business model creation, coding, designing and market validation.

The weekend culminates with presentations in front of local entrepreneurial leaders with another opportunity for critical feedback.

Organiser Tim Barker, Research Governance Leader, Gold Coast Health, said people of all ages and backgrounds were welcome to attend, either as a participant or observer.

“Whether you're eight or 88, a painter, actor, software engineer, writer, graphic designer, geek, entrepreneur, photographer, musician, programmer, museum curator, or startup specialist, you’re invited. Whether you have an idea or have no idea, everyone is welcome,” he said.

Registration is required and the weekend costs between $25 and $99, depending on observer or participant status. 

Startup Weekend is a non-profit organisation based in Seattle, Washington that has hosted thousands of events in 150 countries. It now boasts more than 193,000 alumni around the world. 

To buy tickets or for information, visit Startup Weekend Gold Coast (Health)

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