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By the time the StartCon exhibition and conference series closed its doors at Royal Randwick in Sydney on Sunday 27th of November 2016 it had attracted more than 3,100 visitors, cementing its place as the nation’s most important gathering of the startup clans.

The focus of StartCon has changed with the maturing of the Australian startup sector. In 2016 it focused on just on the earliest stage entrepreneurs, but included an imposing line-up of international speakers drilling attendees on world-leading growth strategies.

Now StartCon wants to build a concise two-day event that would deliver actionable insights into the Australian market, with strategy sessions suited to attendees whether they were just planning to start a company, or if they were well into their growth journey.

Speakers on the main stage included Head of Rider Growth at Uber Andrew Chen; SurveyMonkey Senior Vice-President of Growth Elena Verna; Growth Hackers Founder Sean Ellis; Zillow Vice-President of Teams and Growth Nate Moch; and 500 Startups Partner Chandini Ammineni.

Corporate heavyweights included NASA’s Director of Advanced Explorations Systems Jason Crusan; Bloomberg Global Tech Media Specialist Christopher Lowe; Alibaba’s Australia New Zealand Managing Director Maggie Zhou.

Some 88 local and international startups and corporates filled the event’s mini exhibition hall, with members of the Ignite Innovation Team right there in the middle of it all.

For the first time the event included the Australiasian Startup Awards, set up with the University of Technology Sydney, attracting 200 nominations across 14 categories and decided by 50,000 popular votes. Here's who took home the tinware...

 

Startup of the Year: Snooper

 

Technology Company of the Year: Xero

Other nominees: Canva, Envato, Atlassian, Campaign Monitor

 

E-Commerce Company of the Year: Vinomofo

Other nominees: The Inconi, Kogan, Showpo, and Mon Purse

 

Best Mobile App of the Year: PocketBook

Other nominees: Commbank, Clipp, Pocket Cast, Domain

 

Startup Founder of the Year: Christy Laurence from Plann 

Other nominees: Liz Kaelin from Caitre’d, James Jansson from Tapview, Kym Huynh from Weteachme, and Jess Ruhfus from Collabosaurus

 

Startup Investor of the Year: Blackbird Ventures

Other nominees: Mike Cannon Brookes, PAN Group Australia, Elaine Stead

 

Startup Journalist of the Year: Yolanda Redrup

Other nominees: Michael Bailey, Frank Chung, Gina Baldassarre, Paul Colgan

 

Startup Incubator or Accelerator of the Year: Incubate (Sydney University)

Other nominees: Aeona, Muru-D, Slingshot Accelerator, Startmate

 

Best Bootstrapped Startup: Plann

Other nominees: AurBuddy, Going Expert, Vouchify, Knokal

 

Best Startup for Social Good: Uprise

Other nominees: CancerAid, Zottie Dottie, Foodnest, Genomix

 

Best Student Run Startup: WipeHero

Other nominees: The Student Tutor Network, Project Huni, The Sorting Hat, KeyHub

 

Best Fintech Startup: Brickx

Other nominees: CoverGenius, Cashrewards, Estate Baron, Simply Wall St

 

Best Mobile App Startup: Snooper

Other nominees: Brauz, Fit for Battle, Clinivid, Sparrow Flights

 

Best E-Commerce Startup: The Wine Gallery

Other nominees: HART: LDN Home Décor, Spare Workspace, Tapview, WeTeachMe

 

Best SaaS Startup: Health Engine

Other nominees: Collabosaurus, iRecruit Australia, Small Builders, Link4 Australia

Topics: Innovation

Lisa Andrews

Written by Lisa Andrews

Lisa Andrews, after experiencing adversity in her life, decided to focus on positive momentum, intent on taking part in global conversations to make the world a better place. Having a data, engineering and financial background, she is on a mission to pave the way to give everyone a fair start in life and to maximise human potential. A serial entrepreneur, in 2018 Lisa won the Hunter Outstanding Young Entrepreneur of the Year. She is founder and part owner of several companies that all focus on profit with purpose. Lisa is currently working on projects with Singularity University, the United Nations, ACTAI, the Extreme Tech Challenge, Arm, Treasure Data, 2030vision.com, Ocean Elders, Unicef, EO, GSEA and others. Lisa's focus is on projects that aim to solve the world's greatest challenges using exponential technologies, beginning with achieving the UN Sustainable Development Goals. Lisa is passionate about creating a vision for the world for the next 100 years. In her spare time you’ll find her reading, travelling to exotic locations or kite surfing.

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