2019 Jobs for NSW Regional Pitchfest Orana heat judges revealed

Article taken from the Daily Liberal - original article can be found here

Date: 2 July, 2019

Two small business founders at Dubbo are among the four-person panel that will judge the region's best pitches.

Saddler & Co co-owner Jemima Aldridge and Small Business Rules creator Mathew Dickerson are playing key roles at the Orana heat of the 2019 Jobs for NSW Regional Pitchfest on Wednesday.

They'll team up with Taronga Western Plains Zoo director Steve Hinks and Charles Sturt University strategic advisor on regional engagement and former deputy Nationals leader Fiona Nash to judge the pitches made by seven grassroots finalists.

The concept aims to unearth start-up talent outside metro areas and enable entrepreneurs to realise their potential.

It sparked my interest because having founded a business at Dubbo and being in business for eight years, there's nothing more exciting than hearing about new ideas and start-ups.

Saddler & Co co-founder Jemima Aldridge

The Exchange, in partnership with Regional Development Australia (RDA) Orana is hosting the event.

"Regional Pitchfest is looking for regional Australia's innovators and entrepreneurs, and The Exchange is excited to be not only providing them a platform to launch from, but also, a spotlight on the great opportunities in the Orana region," The Exchange community manager Minna Demetriou said.

"We'd like to thank our partnering sponsor, RDA Orana, and our supporting sponsor, Dubbo Regional Council, for supporting us on this initiative.

"We are thrilled to announce that we will have a panel of four incredible local judges for our 2019 Jobs for NSW Regional Pitchfest - Orana heat.

"Each judge is passionate about the region and all have an interest in the small business and start-up sector."

Mrs Aldridge welcomed the invitation to be involved as a judge.

"It sparked my interest because having founded a business at Dubbo and being in business for eight years, there's nothing more exciting than hearing about new ideas and start-ups," she said.

"It takes a lot of courage to launch a small business idea and I know first hand it takes a lot of determination and perseverance to turn it into something flourishing and successful."

Dianna Somerville