Getting Australians to launch companies at a younger age is one of the goals of Sydney Uni’s startup program Incubate.
Incubate founder James Alexander has just revealed the latest cohort of young entrepreneurs who will participate in the 14-week program which involves mentoring, workshops and pitching to investors.
So far, it hasn’t had a too bad a track record, with a bunch of startups gaining some traction after completing the accelerator program including cancer treatment startup Breathewell, which just raised $400,000 from Sydney Seed Fund, and wearables company Tzukuri, which has raised over $1 million to date.
“Incubate proves that with more support from universities, industry mentors and experienced seed investors, young entrepreneurs can launch innovative and globally competitive tech companies from local university campuses,” Alexander says.
This will be the sixth time the program has been run since it was launched in 2012. The latest round of eight startups include a mobile app called FirstStep Investing which is similar to Acorns and lets you invest your loose change from everyday purchases.
There’s also a water management startup called Abyss Solutions which uses data to cut your hot water energy bills, Uprise, a mental health platform and school organisation app Fluid Education, which streamlines timetables, homework and assignments.
One of the startups in the program, a sports media platform called Basketball Forever, was co-founded by Alex Sumsky three years ago when he was just 17 years old. He started creating visual basketball-related content and today the community averages 23 million unique impressions per month across all social platforms. Next he wants to turn it into a global media sports business.
Similarly, the co-Founders of Fluid Education, Giorgio Doueihi and Declan Scott, met and developed their product whilst they were still in high school. They’ve just started uni this year and are testing their app, Backpack, at St Aloysius College with over 1000 active students, bringing their timetables, calendars and class resources together into one place.
In the same vein, the FirstStep team started investing when they were just 13 years old and thought other kids might want to do the same by enabling them to invest in a diversified, low-cost portfolio.
While another startup which has been recruited into the program, Persollo, which enables people to create payment forms in one click and then copy and share them, is the brain child of 16 year-old Ukrainian resident Stas Prisiazhnuk and his co-founder Kyrylo Medvediev.
It’s a cohort which can quickly make you feel like you haven’t done enough with your life.