A truly international week at Darwin Innovation Hub with visitors from across the world and events for Darwin’s diverse communities – alongside connections made for 2024 with local stakeholders.
Monday, December 4 2023
Exploring Opportunities for Export with Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia and Brunei
Darwin Innovation Hub welcomed Michael Png and Kuku Saputra from Austrade’s offices in Singapore and Indonesia to share insights on those looking to expand their Territory businesses into Southeast Asia. With ample demand for premium Australian food and beverages, minerals, expertise and technology, the region just north of us is bursting with opportunities. We also heard from Iain Forrest, the Territory’s TradeStart officer and the first port of call for local businesses seeking to start their export journey.
Tuesday, December 5, 2023
A $50,000 boost for Territory Innovation
This week was significant for local innovators who may not apply for a $50,000 investment in their startups through our StartNT program.
As part of our Incubator, a startup may apply for this initial seed investment to help to further develop their ideas and be able to spend dedicated time on their business along with support from myself and the team at the Hub. While we welcome conversations with all new and prospective startups in the Territory, we are looking specifically for those who fit the Paspalis Innovation Investment Fund criteria.
Our first pitch was held on Thursday later in the week. Keep following our social media and website for the results to be announced soon.
Wednesday, December 6, 2023
Working to celebrate and educate office professionals in 2024
I had the pleasure of meeting with members and supporters of the NT branch of the Australian Institute of Office Professionals on Wednesday. The topics covered included the provision of professional development and digital skills webinars from Darwin Innovation Hub to members along with co-presenting a number of our regular workshops and networking events alongside AIOP and our other presentation partners such as Territory Proud.
Darwin Innovation Hub will also host the annual AIOP Office Professionals Breakfast in April/May 2024.
Thursday, December 7 2023
Celebrating our local Bangladeshi students and their achievements in 2023
We were joined in the Hub by the vibrant and motivated CDU Bangladeshi Student Association, who celebrated their year in style, remembering the year that was, bidding farewell to graduating students and welcoming future leaders for 2024. The Bangladeshi community in Darwin is strong and colourful, with many former students like Rifat Mahmud forming growing businesses in the Territory and even receiving recognition in this year’s NT Digital Excellence Awards.
Local startup pitches for $50k
We also hosted the first of our refreshed StartNT program pitches for $50,000 of seed funding. This fledgling AI business presented a compelling product that is the first of its kind in Australia with a potential global scalability. Watch this space for an update soon.
New connections with self-employment support providers
Some days align perfectly – and Thursday was one of those. A lunchtime meeting with Andrew William from MyPathway renewed our strategic partnership in 2024. MyPathway delivers the Self Employment Assistance program in the Northern Territory, Far North Queensland, Mackay and North Western Tasmania. The program helps Australians start new businesses with mentoring support, access to a certification and financial support for those who qualify. Darwin Innovation Hub will assist MyPathway in delivering several digital and business skills workshops in 2024, along with pathways to investment for those looking to scale.
Directly after this I met with Di Henry from Many Rivers, who provides mentoring and micro-financing for businesses that are looking for initial support and funding to become viable. Similarly, Darwin Innovation Hub will provide microbusiness digital and business skills support through workshops and networking opportunities for Many Rivers participants in the Darwin region.
The result of both meetings? Darwin Innovation Hub will be part of a strategic alignment with these organisations, working together as a team to grow the capacity for entrepreneurship in the Territory, bringing obvious economic benefits and empowerment for some of the most vulnerable in our communities.
Friday, December 8, 2023
Growth for GSUP participant
Good news from one of our Graduate Start-Up Program participants, Yuxuan “Sakura” Song, who reported significant activity with her new business, Redmancy. The online store imports crochet flowers for celebrations such as weddings, graduations and other significant events. Sakura has formed supply agreements with several Darwin-based businesses and has been successful in securing customers interstate, from weddings in Sydney to graduation celebrations in Brisbane.
Dante St James, Expert in Residence