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Startup Gladstone named ‘Open Innovation Champion of the Year’ for Innov8ors program

Startup Gladstone has been named the Queensland Chief Entrepreneur’s “Open Innovation Champion of the Year’ for its Innov8ors technology accelerator program.

The award was presented by outgoing Queensland Chief Entrepreneur Leanne Kemp at the 2020 Chief’s Innovation Awards ceremony, which was held remotely on December 17, and coincided with an event celebrating the award in Gladstone.

The award recognises Gladstone’s first accelerator program and its support for the region’s innovation and tech industry through partnership, skills attraction and creation of jobs.

Office of the Queensland Chief Entrepreneur director Craig O’Kane said Innov8ers was a “game changer”.

“The insights it is providing and the connections being made are showing how, through collaboration with corporate enterprises and the community, we can start new companies,” Craig said.

The achievement was celebrated in Gladstone at an evening event hosted by Start Up Gladstone and Here for Gladstone, which is run by Rio Tinto Yarwun, Boyne Smelters Ltd (BSL) and Queensland Alumina Limited.

Startup Gladstone’s Ecosystem Builder, Luis Arroyo, said “It has been amazing to witness the growth of ideas brought to the program in such a short amount of time.”

Innov8ors is funded with support from Here for Gladstone and Advance Queensland.

BSL general manager Leigh Staines said “It is fantastic to have our joint program recognised at these awards and we are excited to be supporting the next generation of Gladstone’s tech entrepreneurs.”

The 24-week Innov8ors program provides tailored mentoring and support to entrepreneurs, including product planning and designing, testing, and launch support.

Innov8ors will support five cohorts over the next two years, with the next program running from June to November 2021.

For further information about the Innov8ors Program, please contact Luis Arroyo at or on 0424 092 537.

Pictured Left to Right: Michelle Coats former Executive Officer for Here for Gladstone, Leigh Staines BSL GM and Luis Arroyo Start Up Gladstone Ecosystem Builder

Community news Innov8or Posted 03/2/2021