Attention Australian startup founders

Edit 7/2/12: Enter!

Someone was recently chatting to me about the lack of awareness of Australian startups by VCs (even local ones), with poor national press coverage doing us no favours. I agree with this to a large extent and as result have been posting more about our startups here and also over on The Fetch Blog. However, I also think Australian startups need to stand up and own the fact that they’re Australian. I think we can often be obsessed with trying to appear global and appeal to certain markets, like the US, rather than pushing our own story and roots. What I’ve witnessed in other startup communities around the globe is that they have a real pride and bond around origin – particularly their city. New York is perhaps the best example of this – and likely a result of the ever-present dominance from the West Coast. ‘Internet Made in NYC‘, which lists all the NYC-based startups is one of the most useful startup resources to have. It’s visited by job seekers, journos and investors alike.

You can read more about the list in the FAQ at the bottom but the following will give you an idea about the structure.

“What do these companies have in common?

  1. They are mostly coded in nyc
  2. They have 10K+ people use or visit their site monthly
  3. They display “Made in NYC” as prominently as its copyright — and it links to this page ( [Optionally, (a) spell out “New York City” and/or (b) precede with an adverb/verb]”
No denying where Skillshare is based

In Australia, I believe a crucial step in evolving our ecosystem is bonding cross-city and providing transparency around who’s here. We should create our own version of ‘Made in NYC’ as ‘Made in Oz’, and pop links in footers everywhere! It’s good to see leaders like 99designs have kicked things off.

99designs is "Proudly Australia" (although only on the domain)

Perhaps we could even add some green and gold into the mix… ;)

So cheesy it's back in fashion

And one for good measure – 6wunderkinder wearing the badge:

A proud Berlin-based startup 6 Wunderkinder (check out Wunderlist & Wunderkit)

Thoughts, commentary, discussion?

Have a good weekend.



What’s on in Sydney

So, today marks the launch of The Fetch Sydney! And of course, it follows on in the 80’s style tennis fashion of The Fetch Melbourne. The biweekly email curates the same style of content, so you’ll find a neat summary of what’s on in the business, digital and creative communities. There’s also a dose of news and articles, cool jobs and yet-to-be-seen interviews and profiles. Feel free to subscribe via the site. You might have seen the post about the search for a curator over on theFetch blog? Well, I’m happy to announce the amazing and super approachable Hannah DeMilta will be the go-to person from now on. You can submit items to her here or shoot me an email with collaboration opportunities. I’d be especially keen to hear from you if you’re interested in taking The Fetch to your city!

Fluro inspiration
Sydney's first fetch

Social media doer needed

You might have seen my tweet on Sunday in relation to finding someone to work with me on various social media related projects.

Emails are hitting my inbox regarding social media and digital communication projects and after six months of working what feels like non-stop, I’d now like to collaborate with an upcoming social media doer. Yes, exciting times!

I’d like to let the relationship evolve fairly organically in terms of what kind of arrangement it would be. But I will say, I’m not looking for someone who is already consulting in this space full time, has their own agency, or someone who classifies themselves as a “social media expert”. I’m looking for someone who would like to grow their already-awesome skills, is addicted to learning and wants to get experience with the approach I use for social media. I’m not about building hollow numbers or implementing short-lived gimmicky campaigns – I take a deep content and community focus that’s consistent. Social media can be a hard slog requiring patience, and it certainly shouldn’t be viewed in isolation from the broader marketing mix.

There is plenty of opportunity to work together on great innovative and experimental brands (including many of Australia’s latest startups) so who knows where this could lead! Where I haven’t been able to take on jobs so far due to workload, I’ve been referring them to my network. Ideally, this collaboration will lead me to understand and trust how the person working with me operates, so we’ll be able to manage the work ourselves.

I’m currently overseas, so am looking to move things forward online in the next couple of weeks.

So, without further ado, get in touch if the following sounds applicable:

  • You are curious and interested in the world around you
  • You like helping people and being useful
  • You are a strong and efficient communicator
  • You use social media daily, and understand it’s not just Twitter and Facebook
  • You can spell, story tell and smile
  • You don’t ride high on ego
  • You have alternate income streams and are a self-sufficient individual
  • You are creative and have amazing ideas, but can get things done
  • You like researching and uncovering the best of the web
  • You are contactable throughout the working week and are able to execute tasks during office hours (e.g. tweet for clients)
  • You can meet up once a fortnight/month in-person and cowork together
  • You love the work you do, and can turn tasks around quickly
  • Optional: You have a desire to co-organise social media events, workshops and do speaking gigs

I’d love to find out more about you if we haven’t already met. If you could email me a bit about yourself, some links to your online presence, how much time you have free per week, how much you like to be paid per hour/project and anything else you feel applicable.

Thanks – I hope this is the beginning of a flourishing relationship!


On the go

I thought I would do a quick update about what’s been happening in the world of Kate. I’ve got a few posts saved in draft but want to give them more attention before publishing, and it’s been difficult  at the moment to find that attention time.

So, I’m currently in the Golden Bay region on the South Island of New Zealand with the team at Adioso. We’re here on a 10-day productivity sprint. Think beautiful weather, amazing valley views, hearty home cooked meals, pristine air, flowing creative energy and… cider in plastic bottles. Yes, they have beer in them too!

Before coming to NZ, I was in Sydney for the weekend. In fact, I’ve nearly been up to Sydney every week for the past month. When I get back to Melbourne, I’ll be there for two weeks before heading away to Fiji with a group of friends for 10 days around Christmas. Confused? My iCal is too.

By the end of 2010, I will have spent a third of it travelling and working remotely, both domestically and internationally. I want 2011 to pretty much look the same. In rough chronological order, the plan is to get to Southeast Asia (Vietnam, Cambodia, Laos and Thailand), the US again (LA, SF and Austin), India and UK/Europe for the majority of the Northern Hemisphere’s summer. I’m at a stage in life where I have the opportunity to do as much ‘digital nomading’ as possible and naturally, I want to take it.

Anyway, what posts have I got in the works for the oft-neglected blog? Here’s the list below:

  • Escaping the digital ratrace, which encompasses thoughts on my one-week silent Twitter retreat,
  • The beauty and simplicity of food featuring my balanced and courageous housemate Tresna Lee,
  • Experiencing a year’s worth of writer’s block and what that means for creative expression,
  • A list of female founders and influencers of the Australian tech scene (I’ll then do media), and
  • Closing thoughts on 2010 – areas of change, growth and evolution.

Take care and hope we meet again soon,