News, Insights and Stories from the Australian and New Zealand tech ecosystem.

Best quotes from Shoe String interviews

Over the past two months that I’ve worked at Shoe String, I’ve had the pleasure of interviewing some wonderful startup founders who shared words that were eloquent and inspirational. Here I share with you a collection of some of the best.

Shanil Samarakoon, Executive Director of Empower

Shanil Samarakoon

“If you have an idea or a curiosity, don’t let it gather dust and cynicism in your head or a notebook. In this age of Google, social media, and smartphones – a conversation with a like-minded soul is just seconds away!”

“[T]here is a real hunger within Gen Y to live purposeful lives and utilise their skills and talents towards causes/missions that make a palpable positive impact. It is a generation gradually rebelling against the status quo.”

“No idea grows in isolation and if you really want to make a contribution, you have to have a willingness to be vulnerable and share your ideas/intentions openly. This act in itself, in my experience can open up many possibilities, likely ones you never conceived of initially!”

Article: Leader of Empower shows us what true social entrepreneurship is about

Emma Hoffman, Founder of bigdeal

Emma Big Deal

“Most entrepreneurs will tell you the same thing … they hate failure. The point of difference is how they measure success … Think about what success means to you and go after it. Never give up and never compromise until you’ve achieved your goals. In doing so, make sure to plan effectively and know where you want to be in six month, twelve month, two years and five years. The world is your oyster so dream big and work hard!”

Article: Tech startup bigdeal reinvigorates hospitality and retail industries

Alex Jeffery, Founder of Hoothouse and GettBusy

Alex Jeffery

“We interact with businesses everyday. Everything that we do have some relationship to business; and because of that I think it has potential to change the way we live, the way our world functions.”

“Social enterprises are basically sustainable charitable organisations. The best way to bring change fast is to have a mission-driven company that is profitable and scalable so they are more equipped to making a difference.”

“It’s come to a tipping point in time where things need to change, and it needs to change fast. But to do it fast means you need to scale fast, and you need to be profitable to be able to do that.”

Article: Social entrepreneur brings the business back into music

Murray Hurps, Founder of Leap Touch


“When I was starting Admuncher there was no community around startups, no-one to really connect with … And about five years ago, a community started to emerge, and now we have a community of startups across Australia working together, supporting each other and helping each other out whenever they can. We have places like Fishburners that has 180 people with similar problems; you can just walk across the room and find someone who experienced a problem in the past that you’re experiencing now and they won’t hesitate to help you. With #StartupAus you can do that on a national level. It’s non-for-profit, people volunteer because they genuinely want to help startups, anyone who wants to contribute can, anyone can find contacts and build relationships. #StartupAus is like the Hacker News of Australia. It’s bringing people together across Australia on a platform that’s solely for Australian startups.”

Personal communication. September 1, 2013.

Patrick Acheampong, Founder of ParkMeApp


“The Australian startup scene was very low-key when I first started looking at this idea, so finding resources and a thriving startup ecosystem was initially difficult. But I’ve noticed it has picked up a lot in the past year. Places like Fishburners and iLab have been crucial for me. I’ve learnt that you can’t do it all yourself, so tap into your networks when you can. I’ve also found that networking is key because the Australian startup community is very collegiate, accommodating and passionate about helping fellow Aussie startups succeed. While it is harder to get startup financing in Australia especially compared to the US and the UK, it is still possible.”

Article: Intelligent new app takes the stress out of car parking

Tim Mahendran, Founder of BabyGives

Photo of Tim Mahendran,  BabyGives

“If we were to solely think about making money, there are tons of other businesses and jobs we could shoot for. But as a social entrepreneur, we have the opportunity to be a part of something great, to do something that may one day affect positively in the lives of billions.”

“If you want to make lots of money, start a casino; if you want to change the world, become a social entrepreneur.”

“Now is the time that social entrepreneurs will truly emerge as a driving force for change. Entrepreneurs are revolutionaries after all.”

Article: The startup helping end the plight of children living in poverty


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