Press Release – Startup Weekend
Last weekend, whilst most people in Tauranga were out washing the car, walking the dog or browsing the shops, 46 StartUp Weekend participants were busy battling it out at BNZ Partners Centre to build a company in the space of just 54 hours.Speakeazy talks it up to take the crown at StartUp Weekend Tauranga
Last weekend, whilst most people in Tauranga were out washing the car, walking the dog or browsing the shops, 46 StartUp Weekend participants were busy battling it out at BNZ Partners Centre to build a company in the space of just 54 hours.
Speakeazy, a public speaking web application for workers who get nervous presenting to a room full of people took the crown winning over $18,000 of prizes including $10,000 of Trade Me advertising, $3500 of accounting advise from KPMG and $1500 of Angel Enterprise market validation support.
The Speakeazy application lets a person submit a video of themselves speaking in public to an online reviewer who can provide honest, professional feedback to improve their presentation skills and confidence. Peter McHannigan, team leader and pitcher of the idea said although he knew he had a great idea to begin with, he was blown away by the win and cannot wait to make the business a reality.
“Moving forward, the team’s plan is to have some sleep and then work through how to get the product to market. We have had some interest from investors but are going to take it step by step starting with some more market research. Having the prizes will definitely help flesh the idea out some more. I’ve been amazed by how supportive everyone in the community has been and cannot wait to get started.”
The judges of the weekend included Trent Mankelov from Vend HQ, Brett Roberts, CEO of Cucumber Software and Chirag Ahuja, Marketing Manager from WorkflowMax and Cheryl Reynolds, CEO of Soda Inc., a business incubator based in Hamilton. Cheryl said that several of ideas presented on the weekend had the potential to become viable, working businesses in the future.
“I was really impressed with the level of teamwork and ideas pitched – it was hard to choose a winner because there were a few killers ideas that, with further research and market validation had the potential to go turn into high growth solutions, companies or platforms.”
“I believe this was most well organised StartUp Event in the country which to me is a wonderful reflection of the passion and energy there is for entrepreneurialism here in Tauranga as well as the Bay of Plenty at large. I would like to congratulate Sheldon and his team for doing such a great job”
In second place was Almighty Choice, a web-based platform that encourages young people without a will to make one the easy way with an online tool that matches them with an appropriate lawyer. The team comprised of Stacey Jones, Ben Smith, Richard Cullwick and Ben Gorringe.
In third place was Smart Care, a service that allows Alzheimer sufferers to regain some of their independence via friendly reminders sent by family and caregivers. The team was comprised of Maria Johnston, Dylan Johnston, Liam Mackie, John Viaene.
Sheldon Nesdale, Head Organiser of StartUp Weekend said that he is already looking forward to StartUp Weekend’s event next year and will be holding several entrepreneurial events throughout the year to keep the momentum up.
“Wow, what a ride! We’re are building the future of Tauranga right here, what an honour. I’m already looking forward to next years Tauranga StartUp Weekend and we’re working on several entrepreneurial events throughout the next 12 months to keep the momentum up. Those who want to stay informed can subscribe on our website: http://tauranga.startupweekend.org/”