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Future founders discovered at Startup Weekend Adelaide

18 November 2019



Techstars Startup Weekend Adelaide winners, 'Kolab' presented with the first prize by ICC Associate Director, Jasmine Vreugdenburg, and Startup Weekend Adelaide judging panel, David Haley (Myriota), Rachel Skinner (Zuus Workforce), Ben Tulloch (Accenture) and Richard Turner (UniSA).

After a weekend full of collaboration and fun, a technology platform designed to create healthy online interactions for children was the fitting winner of Techstars Startup Weekend Adelaide 2019.

On Sunday 17 November, six teams delivered final pitches to a crowd of 70 at UniSA’s Innovation & Collaboration Centre (ICC), bringing Adelaide’s Startup Weekend event to a close.

The winning idea was the brainchild of child psychiatrist and media commentator, Dr Huu Kim Le, who first pitched the idea of KoLAB, an intuitive digital solution to help children be responsible smartphone users.

Dr Le was joined by Dr Anisha Fernando, a lecturer in data ethics who had a similar concept, marketer Loc Tran and lawyer Brooke Reardon to refine the KoLAB business model throughout the three-day event.

The idea aims to create a better, safer internet experience for children while also providing opportunities for conversation and education.

The Startup Weekend event was a great success with dedicated and engaged participants who were provided the skills and tools they needed to launch their own startup ventures.

Ideas ranged from Abled, a platform helping connect job seekers with a disability with mentors, to EcoCherry, a smart home solution to reduce carbon footprint and energy bills.

More than 40 participants spent the weekend speaking to potential customers, rendering prototypes, developing their business models and identifying revenue streams before delivering a final five-minute pitch to the judging panel, including Managing Director of Accenture Australia, Ben Tulloch, CEO and Founder of Zuus Workforce, Rachael Skinner, Co-founder and CTO of UniSA spinout Myriota, Dr David Haley and newly appointed Entrepreneur in Residence at UniSA, Professor Richard Turner.

The Myriota Award went to Shakaa, a sustainable vending and lending machine seeking to improve beachgoers experience. The team will have the opportunity to work with Myriota to develop their idea.

The judges also awarded an honourable mention to CoDogs, who pitched the concept of a centralised rescue dog adoption service to minimise the number of dogs euthanized and streamline the adoption process.

Event organiser and ICC Associate Director, Jasmine Vreugdenburg says the final pitches demonstrated the learnings and commitment of each team over the weekend.

“These types of events are important to run because they engage new would-be founders to test out ideas and meet new people in a risk-free environment.”

This year’s winning team will have the opportunity to further develop and refine their startup concept with six months of mentoring, workshops and support through the ICC’s Venture Catalyst program as well as a free IP session from Madderns.   

The event was sponsored by UniSA’s Innovation & Collaboration Centre, Myriota, City of Adelaide, FIXE, Stone & Chalk, Accenture, Accenture and Maddens, as the kick off event to _SouthStart 2019.

Media contact

Miranda Hurren office (08) 8302 0861 mobile: +61 408 678 326 



Kolab presenting

Dr Huu Kim Le pitching 'Kolab' at Startup Weekend Adelaide.


Team 'Shakaa' being presented the 'Myriota Award'.


Team 'CoDogs' were presented with the 'Spirit of Startup Weekend Award'.

South Australian Government

University of South Australia