News & Analysis

Brisbane’s Startup Weekend for creative tech sees focus on the sharing economy

- March 23, 2016 3 MIN READ

Brisbane’s Creative Tech Startup Weekend event, held at the Queensland University of Technology’s coworking space this past weekend, saw the development of a number of sharing apps that take look to advantage of Australia’s sharing economy, with event organisers QUT Creative Enterprise (CEA) naming musical instrument swapping app Shario as the winner of the competition.

Shario allows users to share and swap musical instruments and accessories either temporarily or permanently, giving musos the ability to meet fellow musicians and build up a broader communities and networks. The platform has been dubbed the ‘Gumtree for Musos’ and is all about expanding online and social networks for musicians.

“A key takeaway and challenge for the Shario team was the need for market segmentation and a deeper understanding of the niches within our target market…the bigger picture for us now is to move from the prototyping stage towards having a functional web service and application in our hands. It’s a really exciting time for team Shario,” said Ellen Hartwig, cofounder of Shario.

The Startup Weekend saw 115 participants take part and gain insights from mentors including Dwight Gunning, Anna Rooke, Steve Baxter and Elaine Stead.

Coming after the creative tech weekend, Brisbane coworking community River City Labs today has announced the launch of chain-trade app BandyFlip.

BandyFlip gamifies swapping and sharing items by allowing users to list and ‘chain-trade’ their belongings with other users. All items are listed in a shared trading pool where users can indirectly share and swap items with others, meaning the valuation of each item is determined based on the want and need.

Dan McCarthy, cofounder of BandyFlip, said that the app gives users the power to trade their items up in value incrementally with no limit to how many trades that can take place.

“The more flips in the chain, the greater the value of the final settled item. Think ‘one red paperclip’ but from the comfort of your couch,” he said.

The idea of chain trading and bypassing money was first inspired by the story of a man trading in a red paperclip and 14 trades later, trading in for a house. It works off the saying one person’s trash is another person’s treasure. The sharing and trading economy is growing in each sector, with many new apps like Quid Pro Quo and Yordrobe trying to harness the power of second hand products.

BrandyFlip is also the fifth and final startup to enter River City Lab’s three-month CUA Sponsored Entrepreneur Program, through which it will receive mentorship, training, and access to networking events.

General Manager of River City Labs Josh Anthony said the program will be part of BrandyFlip’s launch, with River City Labs to work directly with the team over the next couple of months to help them accelerate and reach their growth.

“We are over a month into the Sponsored Entrepreneur Program and all the teams are performing really nicely. Their progress is testament to what can be achieved when you have a group of very committed and collaborative entrepreneurs working towards a similar goal,” he said.

The other four startups selected for the Sponsored Entrepreneur Program include:

Kapiche: An advanced analytics company that facilitates organisations, both large and small, in managing their enterprise using the startup’s automated unstructured analytics platform.

Methodic: Provides ‘big-data’ solutions to turn big data into directly actionable insights, enabling enterprises to market more effectively to their client base.

My Ice Box: An ‘online legacy’ platform that allows families to store and manage their personal facts and information, including insurance policies, bank accounts and estate issues.

SportUPs: Makes it easy for individuals to play team sport without the need for a team, on a pay-for-play basis.

Image: River City Labs Team. Source: Supplied