Advance Queensland initiative attracts new wave of global entrepreneurs

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The Queensland government has reportedly invited 29 startups under the second round of the Queensland Government’s Advance Queensland Hot DesQ initiative.

Minister for Innovation, Science and the Digital Economy Leeanne Enoch said the entrepreneurial teams were selected from more than 180 interstate and international applications.

“The number (of applications) indicates a real appetite for startups wanting to join our innovation ecosystem,” Ms Enoch said.

“The independent assessors and judging panel certainly had a hard job – and we made offers to startups who have gained direct experience through participation in renowned accelerators including Start-up Chile, MIT Bootcamp and Y-Combinator.

“The connections our round two recipients will be sharing with Queensland will be truly global,” she said.

Ms Enoch said startups invited to move to Queensland were from nine countries, including the US, Chile, Canada, Switzerland, and the UK – as well as from Victoria and New South Wales.

The founder of round two applicant CloudPeeps, Kate Kendall, will be relocating from Silicon Valley under the Hot DesQ program after accepting her invitation.

“With proximity to the digital nomad and remote work hubs in Asia, as well as local talent, we are excited to be based in Brisbane at such a pivotal growth point in the Queensland tech community.

“The Hot DesQ program came highly recommended from a round one participant, and it’s not hard to see why so many entrepreneurs, and fellow founders from the San Francisco Bay Area, were attracted to the program.

Hot DesQ round two applicants will receive up to $100,000 to relocate to Queensland for six months at a Queensland startup host organisation in either Brisbane, Cairns, Townsville, Gold Coast, Ipswich, Sunshine Coast, Bundaberg, Rockhampton and Toowoomba.

This includes four new host organisations who have come on board: The Generator in Bundaberg, Rockhampton’s The Smart Hub, UQ’s iLab and Fishburners in Brisbane.

Advance Queensland is the Queensland Government’s $420 million whole-of-government initiative, supporting jobs across a range of industry sectors.