La Trobe takes regional business global

Regional Victorian business will have access to global opportunities, networking and mentorship thanks to new funding granted to the La Trobe University Global Markets Accelerator Program.

The Department of Industry, Innovation and Science has announced $337,800 in Incubator Support funding for the initiative, which aims to develop entrepreneurial talent and introduce regional businesses to national and international markets.

An extension of the La Trobe University Accelerator Program, the Global Markets Accelerator Program will boost growth and commercialisation potential of Australian start-ups, particularly in regional areas where the University has a strong presence – Bendigo, Mildura, Shepparton and Albury-Wodonga.

Accelerator Program Director Dr Cerasela Tanasescu said the global talent-boosting program focusses on four industry domains – Health and Wellbeing, Agri-Food, Cybersecurity, and Information and Communications Technology.

“Regional entrepreneurs accepted for the La Trobe Global Markets Accelerator Program will receive close mentorship opportunities to help nurture and develop their start-ups into global and commercially independent businesses.”

Dr Tanasescu said La Trobe has collaborated with three international accelerators – imec.istart (Belgium), Singtel Innov8 (Singapore), and SKALA (Indonesia) – to deliver the Global Markets Accelerator Program.

“Innovation and entrepreneurship are collaborative phenomena that thrive when exposed to a diversity of cultures and ideas, and these international partners will bring that to our program,” Dr Tanasescu said.

“Sixteen regional start-ups will be shortlisted through a market feasibility study with the help of experts, mentors, and interns. This study will advise them on the potential success of their products in European and Asian markets.”

Eight start-ups will be selected each year for exchange programs in Belgium, Indonesia and Singapore.

Dr Tanasescu said the new Federal funding will further La Trobe’s strong track record in supporting start-ups and creating established networks.

“We’ve already helped over 100 start-ups across Victoria and created a strong regional footprint of successful entrepreneurs,” Dr Tanasescu said.

La Trobe Pro Vice-Chancellor (Industry Engagement), Dr Megan Fisher, thanked the Department of Industry, Innovation and Science for funding the initiative.

“Innovation is one of our fundamental values at La Trobe, and this funding enables the University to extend work we are already doing through our Accelerator Program,” Dr Fisher said.

“We are excited to continue working with our collaborators on this project and assist creating connections and opportunities to support regional start-ups access global markets.”

Media contact: Dragana Mrkaja – 0447 508 171 – d.mrkaja@latrobe.edu.au

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