MEDIA RELEASE: Gold Coast Innovation Hub Workspace Opens in Robina

A virtual reality company that creates front-row experiences for real-world events is set to collaborate and expand as part of the Gold Coast innovation hub launched today with the support of the Palaszczuk Government.
Minister for Innovation Kate Jones said that Varamore was an exciting part of the great innovation community on the Gold Coast.

“Varamore gives people memorable experiences in the retail, entertainment and tourism industry by transporting them to events through their virtual reality headset,” Minister Jones said.
“The Palaszcsuk Government is pleased to support the burgeoning Gold Coast innovation community through Advance Queensland’s Advancing Regional Innovation Program (ARIP),” Minister Jones said.
“Designed for the local innovation community, the Gold Coast Hub is a three-storey, co-working, incubation and event space.

“Startups, entrepreneurs, creatives and innovative local businesses now have a central place to gather and participate in activities aimed at connecting and growing the diverse and talented innovation community from across the Gold Coast region, as well as hosting international visitors.”Varamore Managing Director Julieanne Edwards said that having an innovation hub on the Gold Coast provided a vital connection point that encouraged entrepreneurs to stay in the region.“The Gold Coast Hub will fast track companies’ ability to add value to the local community while expanding our businesses overseas as export,” Ms Edwards said.“Without the Hub I’d be travelling over 2 hours to attend workshops and local entrepreneurs would gravitate to other cities.”
Gold Coast Hub CEO Sharon Hunneybell said that the Hub would bring positive economic benefits by allowing local innovators to flourish while attracting new innovators to the Gold Coast.
“The Gold Coast Hub will become a manufacturer of innovative companies – increasing well-paid, knowledge-based jobs and providing products and services that address a global market,” Ms Hunneybell said.
“The Gold Coast Hub would not exist without Advance Queensland funding.
“With the $2.5 million investment it will generate $3 billion over the next five years for the Queensland economy.
Gold Coast Hub Chair and Chair of founding partner Opmantek Danny Maher said that the Hub provided a rapid growth platform for innovative local companies.
“The Gold Coast Hub is one of the largest in Australia, and one of the best commercially backed. It provides a place for corporates to get involved, for government to collaborate, for investors to find opportunities and for innovative businesses to flourish.”
Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate said that the Hub was another sign of the Gold Coast being a centre for innovation.
“Our city is the small business capital of Australia with around 64,000 registered small businesses,’’ said Mayor Tate.

“We live and breathe innovation and our start-up community is thriving in areas such as IT, health and knowledge, sports science, fashion design and architecture.

“Having the State Government’s commitment sends a powerful signal to all entrepreneurs – set your sights on the Gold Coast.’’

The Gold Coast Hub will also deliver the Regional Startup On-Ramp Program for the region.

The corporate sector is also getting behind the initiative with leading telecommunications firm Optus lending its support to the project.

Colin Bachinger, State Director for Optus stated that “Optus is extremely proud to be a foundation partner of the GC Hub, developing new businesses idea’s and supporting innovation is a key part of Optus strategy.
Advance Queensland’s $6 million ARIP is part of the $650 million Advance Queensland whole-of-government initiative to transform Queensland’s economy, create knowledge jobs of the future and build the state’s reputation as a global innovation and investment destination.

ARIP is supporting innovative businesses and communities across Queensland in a statewide commitment to boost innovation and entrepreneurship and empower the regions.

For additional details about ARIP visit the Advance Queensland website at: (http://advance.qld.gov.au/small-business/advancing-regional-innovation.aspx)

October 14, 2018