River City Labs partners with muru-D to launch its first accelerator program

- July 31, 2015 2 MIN READ

Brisbane coworking space River City Labs has today announced the launch of a trial partnership with Telstra-backed accelerator muru-D, which will see the launch of the first accelerator program at the space.

Set to begin in September, the program will run over 14 weeks and give five early stage digital startups $20,000 of funding in return for 3 percent equity, with muru-D and River City Labs splitting the investment fifty-fifty. The startups will receive mentoring, training, and working space at River City Labs.

Peta Ellis, general manager of River City Labs, said the partnership with muru-d is an “exciting next step” for the space, which also announced the launch of its Sponsored Entrepreneur Program earlier this month.

“It will be fantastic to be able to leverage muru-D’s best practices, resources, and guidance to shape the content and inform the delivery of our accelerator program. Local companies will share in the wisdom of some of the most experienced business people in the world. We are thrilled to be working alongside some of the greatest tech minds in the startup ecosystem.”

Aaron Birkby, Entrepreneur in Residence for the program, said the partnership is a major win for local startups and a “great endorsement” of Brisbane’s burgeoning ecosystem.

“We’re looking forward to uncovering some world class talent and finding the very best digital startups to fast-track through this intensive River City Labs Accelerator program,” he said.

Brisbane is the third destination for the Sydney-based muru-D. The accelerator announced in Asian launch earlier this year, setting up a program in Singapore which is set to begin next month. This move to Singapore was partly a strategic one, falling in line with the international expansion strategy of Telstra Services Group by allowing TSG to grow its global footprint after recent acquisitions and partnerships across the Asia region.

It is also part of muru-D’s greater focus on opportunities for more rapid growth in the huge Asian market; in March, the majority of startups in muru-D’s second intake toured China to scout opportunities and make important connections in the region. Thanks in part to this focus on Asia, the startups in the second intake generated over $2.6 million in revenue between them in the duration of the six month program, while travel startup Tripalocal had closed a seed funding round of $850,000 led by Chinese early-stage investor Euler Capital to help launch its Chinese expansion.

Applications for the River City Labs Accelerator open today, with participants set to be announced on August 31. A roadshow will be setting off around regional Queensland in the first half of August to give startups outside the capital the opportunity to learn about the program first-hand before applying.

Image: The participants in muru-D’s second intake.