Broadband cable attracts new business connections
DIGITAL start-up innovators Ron Hill and Simon Knapp want to attract the next generation of technology-focused businesses to the Coast.
Their global accelerator program, SunRamp Australasia, will offer businesses the opportunity to access international mentors through US connections.
SunRamp has roots in Boulder, Colarado, through innovation lab CableLabs, which focuses on the international cable and internet connectivity industry.
Sunshine Coast Council has attributed the SunRamp expansion to its international broadband submarine cable project.
That cable is touted by the council to become Australia's fastest internet connection to Asia and second fastest internet connection to the US when it comes online in 2020.
Mr Hill, who is SunRamp's managing director, said the Coast was the perfect place for the new business venture.
"The similarities between Boulder, Colorado and the Sunshine Coast, Australia, with the smart city planning, the entrepreneurial energy and terrific outdoor lifestyle are uncanny," Mr Hill said.
"It's exciting to bring such a well-supported and connected accelerator program to Maroochydore to be part of the fantastic vision Sunshine Coast Council has for the region."
He said he would be looking for up to six companies to be a part of the 13-week program at any one time.
The program is scheduled to run twice a year.
"The target is for a minimum of two companies from Australia with the remaining from overseas, in particular the US and Asian markets.
"Via a very rigid qualification process, the program will find, support and accelerate world class early-stage technology businesses through focused education and training, ultimately helping those companies secure opportunities in the internet connectivity space or with partner industries.
"Selected companies will each receive up to $100,000 seed funding by the program and have regular access and sessions with world class mentors and sponsors."
Sunshine Coast Mayor Mark Jamieson said the program was world class.
"This program will showcase the potential of our healthy, smart, creative region to domestic and international businesses, helping raise the profile of the Sunshine Coast," Cr Jamieson said.
"This program is the first investment outcome linked to the recent announcement of the international broadband submarine cable and we are confident the global market will open the doors to further investment both in the short and long term."