The 8 Australian startup founders selected for the women-only Springboard accelerator

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Eight Australian startup founders have been selected for the next women-only Springboard Enterprises Australia accelerator program.

SBE Australia, a not-for-profit with the first female-only startup accelerator in Australia, says the founders lead successful businesses in industries including healthtech, agritech, real estate, wellness and fashion.

The Springboard Enterprises Australia Accelerator program has helped 45 founders in the six years since its founding. It is the only female startup accelerator that does not take any equity stake in the businesses.

“Because the tech space is heavily led by men, SBE Australia advocates for gender parity in order to give female led tech businesses more of a voice in the space,” says Topaz Conway, an angel investor and chair of SBE Australia.

“The contribution female founders make to the Australian economy is significant and diversity is good for business.”

The eight founders:

1. Anastasia Volkova at Flurosat (NSW). An agriculture tech company which monitors crop health using satellite and drone imagery.

2. Barbara Sharp at Pax Republic (VIC). An artificial intelligence-powered solution that harnesses large group emotional intelligence for good problem-solving.

3. Bernadette Olivier at The Volte (WA). An online platform connecting designers and stores with customers to rent or borrow designer dresses around the country. The Volte allows lenders to rent their items to borrowers with peace of mind.

4. Claire Morris at Prezzee (NSW). An online e-gift card solution for buying, sending, storing and redeeming e-Gift Cards from Australia’s top retailers. Prezzee consolidates them all in one place and allows customers to redeem their gift cards straight from their mobile device.

5. Georgie Drury at Springday (NSW). A cloud-based marketplace bringing together the best wellbeing providers, challenges, activities and programs to companies. The platform engages and motivates users, employees, patients and members to move more, reduce stress and improve their overall health and wellbeing.

6. Kylie Legge at Place Score (NSW). A platform allowing communities to share what they most care about, rate their own places, and so help governments and developers prioritise investment in neighbourhoods, town centres and workplaces.

7. Mel Gollan at RIP Global (NZ). RIP Global is a cloud-based expense reporting and bookkeeping solution. The service eliminates the need for scanning and uploading receipts and holding onto paperwork. It instead starts tracking and reconciling expenses as soon as a purchase is made and reconciles invoices directly with bank account statement data.

8. Sabrina Bethunin at MadeComfy (NSW). MadeComfy is a property management service for short-term rentals. Its services include marketing the property, managing the rental process to maximise rates and occupancies, coordinating cleaning and linen change-over and acting as primary guest contact.

Noga Edelstein, founder of UrbanYou, an accelerator program alumni and recent new board member of SBE Australia, says participants will learn new tools and techniques used by entrepreneurs to better understand customers, test business models, lead teams, build a brand and manage growth and risk.

“The value of the program is not just gaining access to SBE Australia’s network but it is also reaching those ‘a-ha’ moments through the help of a dedicated team of smart and savvy business mentors guiding you and challenging you through every step of the process,” says Edelstein.

The program includes a four-day bootcamp in Sydney and eight weeks of coaching from Australian and US high value networks, culminating in a final pitch session to stakeholders, investors and corporate executives at SBE Australia’s Dolphin Tank event in June.