The Regional Australian Centre of Entrepreneurship and Innovation
In two days time six budding regional entrepreneurs will take the stage for the Beyond Bank Regional Pitchfest in Wagga Wagga, only a 45mins flight from Sydney and Melbourne. So why is it we think you have to be in metro areas to grow business? There are plenty of examples coming out of the Riverina that show this is the birthplace of regional entrepreneurship, and why not, the tribe of startups in the area is growing rapidly. This is evident in the articles doing the circuit like on Domain, StartUp Daily,CeBIT365, SMH Business, SMH to highlight a few. To quote local Start Up Superstar Simone Eyles ' There is definitely something in the water in Wagga'.
Regional Pitchfest will be the first of a series of events to run across Regional Australia and is aimed to highlight the great ideas and businesses that are out there, waiting to be uncovered. Getting an idea like Pitchfest off the ground has been like a mini start up journey for me. Since its conceptualisation late in 2015 there has been a great deal of hustle happening in the background. Knock backs, non believers, early adopters and some great champions, it has been an amazing journey.
Over the past few weeks there have been some great articles highlighting some of the amazing finalists for Pitchfest. Seeing these entrants start their journey and to somehow be a part of that is truly amazing. 36Tee guys from Albury, an arts NFP, a high school kid, a property developer, a mash of mechanics and training then a Refugee with an idea to reduce drowning. The golden rule of the start up culture is to pay it forward. I hope that is what Pitchfest is doing, giving six people in the Riverina Murray time to shine, tell their story and take their innovation to a reality.
Beyond Bank backed me through their sponsorship for the event, their support has really been amazing and their dedication to boosting entrepreneurship in regional centres is as authentic as it is passionate.