What happens when a group of like-minded innovators get together on a cold winter’s night to share pizza and a few drinks in the heart of Kingston?
Answer: they hatch a plan to create Logan’s own virtual innovation hub to help local startups connect with the support they need to make their big idea a reality.
That gathering in June was the first meeting of the Logan Entrepreneurs Group, a collection of representatives from local startups, social enterprises, businesses and entrepreneurs, along with Griffith University, Logan City Council and the Queensland Government. That night—huddled in Substation 33 and sharing ideas—these innovators quickly identified the need for an online innovation hub designed specifically for Logan.
Among members of the new group is Tony Sharp, founder of Substation 33 and Griffith University’s Social Entrepreneur in Residence, who says it’s time to stop the migration of ideas out of Logan.
“We’ve got hugely successful businesses here in Logan supplying products to Tier 1 companies, who are going into Brisbane to mentor startups. That means our local startups and inventors are following them.
“Logan has so many successful business people who want to give back to the community, and until now there hasn’t been a vehicle for them to do that.”
Tony says the role of the Logan Entrepreneurs Group is to change the conversation about Logan.
“We’re proud of the great things happening in Logan. Our message to startups is that if you want help to design, develop and manufacture your products, come to Logan. And if you’re a Logan local – you don’t need to take your ideas anywhere else.
“There is a community of experts here in our city to help you and, as INNOV8 Logan gains momentum, more and more people are going to come out of the woodwork to add their support and expertise.”
As an innovation mentor at Substation 33, Tony knows there are great ideas bubbling up all across Logan.
“For some people, they’re afraid to talk about their big idea because they’re not sure how to go about developing it. INNOV8 Logan and the Logan Entrepreneurs Group offer that missing link in the entrepreneurial ecosystem.
“We give you a safe space. It’s your idea: we’ll support you to get up and running, and connect you to the people and services you need every step along the way.
“We’ll offer rock solid guidance and mentoring from the get-go, follow you along the design, development and manufacturing journey, and then sing your success from the rafters.”
INNOV8 is just the start in Logan. Once Logan City Council’s $6m KBF Innovation Hub at Kingston launches in December 2019, the city will also have a physical space to bring big ideas to life.
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