Overhead shot of two male students discussing, with notebooks laid out on the table

What exactly does it take to launch a startup?

29 September 2021

Attend our annual Sydney Innovation Festival to find out

This year’s Sydney Innovation Festival features an outstanding line-up of panellists from Australia’s best innovators and startups. If you have an idea in mind, or want a taste of innovation, we have rounded up the top 3 sessions you should attend.

It’s true that it’s never too late to learn something new, but in the startup world, it’s never too early either. University years are the best time to experiment – so if you've got something in mind, why not try being your own boss and seeing where it leads you?

While it’s exciting to see your idea brought to life, starting something from scratch is still a challenging path that all aspiring entrepreneurs will have to navigate. The good news is all businesses start from somewhere, and every successful businessman and woman would have once been in your shoes.

This year’s Sydney Innovation Festival spans three days, from 12 to 14 October. We've brought together some of the best of the start-up world in Australia, from Canva, Afterpay, to Google’s Wing and Zip. Think about it as the research phase, it’s time to gather some intel for your future businesses and get inspired.

Here, we have selected the top 3 sessions that you do not want to miss, the full program is available on our Sydney Innovation Festival event page.

I hear the word ‘innovation’ a lot, but what does it actually involve?

What is a startup and why should Australia make more? Thursday 14 October 1 – 2 pm

Profile shot of Fenella Kernebone, Lachlan Andrews, Livia Wang, Lee Harnett

Featuring Afterpay, Canva, Sydney Ideas and investors, this session is perfect if you want an introduction into Australia’s startup ecosystem. The culture, the incubators, the funding opportunities, are all part of the panel’s agenda. Jump onto the session and ask the panel your questions.

  • Fenella Kernebone, Head of programming, Sydney Ideas (Moderator)
  • Lachlan Andrews, Global Communications Lead, Canva
  • Livia Wang, Co-Founder and CMO of Access Corporate Group
  • Lee Harnett, Executive Vice President, Afterpay

I want to solve real-world issues with my startup

Your wellbeing innovated. Wednesday 13 October 2:15 – 3:15 pm

Profile shot of Natasha Munasinghe, Nicolas Brown, Danielle Owen Whitford, Adam Spencer, MC

The past year has severely impacted youth’s mental health, connection to community and overall wellbeing. But did you know that there are startups and people addressing these issues right now? Find out how innovation and wellbeing connect with CEOs, Directors and MCs all tackling the issue.

  • Natasha Munasinghe, Director of Franked.io 
  • Nicolas Brown, Batyr CEO
  • Danielle Owen Whitford, CEO of Pioneer & Genesis Winner 2021
  • Adam Spencer, MC, mathematician and comedian

I want to hear from student entrepreneurs

Innovation for students, by students. Tuesday 12 October 2:15-3:15pm

Profile shot of Matilda Langford, Audrey Thehamilhardja, Muskan Jain, Rishabh Jain, Adam Miller

What is it like to work in a startup? Ask a student. How can I be involved in a startup society? Ask a student. What stories can we learn from Australia’s best innovators? Ask a student! This panel consists of recent graduates and students involved in innovation across the University.

  • Matilda Langford, University of Sydney Student Ambassador
  • Audrey Thehamilhardja, Canva graduate
  • Muskan Jain, Enactus President
  • Rishabh Jain, SUSMI President
  • Adam Miller, The Sachin and Adam Show

The full program is available here, join hundreds of other students and register for the Sydney Innovation Festival, 12-14 October. 

Keen to mak a career in the startup space? Register now for the Startup Careers Fair on 14 October, straight after the Innovation Festival. 

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