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15 Oct

ingogo launch world’s first app-based taxi payment system

by launch-admin Oct 15, 2013 0 Uncategorized



·         ingogo partner with ANZ & Ingenico to provide integrated mobile payment solution

·         250 pilot drivers processed over $1m in payments in 30 day trial

·         ingogo wins CeBIT Future of Payments Start-Up Pitching Contest


Tuesday 15 October, 2013: Australian taxi services provider, ingogo, today launched the world’s first integrated payment platform for cabs, which pairs a bookings system with payments using bluetooth technology. The system allows mobile wallet, eftpos and contactless payments to be processed from a smartphone app through a wireless terminal.


ingogo, the start-up challenging the country’s taxi incumbents, is providing drivers with the new wireless terminals, allowing them to handle payments through the ingogo driver app. Payments from all major credit and debit cards will be accepted, using contactless technology such as tap&go and paywave, EFTPOS chip & PIN, or magstripe, plus virtual wallets.


The system, which is Europay, MasterCard and Visa (EMV) card security compliant, was developed in Australia by ingogo in partnership with ANZ bank and leading provider of payment solutions, Ingenico.


The first 250 pilot drivers to receive the new ingogo system processed over $1 million in payments during a 30 day trial. ingogo plan on rolling out thousands of units across Australia over the next 12 months.


ingogo Managing Director and Founder, Hamish Petrie, said the new payment system will revolutionise the taxi services industry as it is primed for the growing adoption of virtual payments while still catering for those who wish to use physical credit and debit cards.


“Whilst other taxi service providers offer payment terminals, none integrate their payments into an app to interact with a passenger’s taxi booking and record keeping processes. We now offer both,” he said.


“This solution also places ingogo in further direct competition with Cabcharge – it replicates a platform similar to an estimated $10,000 worth of hardware Cabcharge install into one taxi, at a fraction of the cost. Plus, our app has the added benefit of virtual mobile wallet payments and, of course, our booking feature, which lets passengers see exactly where your taxi is on a map and puts you directly in touch with the driver.”


ANZ General Manager Cards and Payments, Marj Demmer, said: “Contactless payments are driving change and innovation across all industries. More than ever, customers want fast and secure payment options and we’re pleased we were able to work with ingogo to develop this new payment app.”

Ingenico Australia Managing Director, John Tait, said: "Ingenico is excited to be partnering with ingogo as one of our global beta customers, supporting them with our solutions as they expand their operations nationally and globally."


Mr Petrie added: “The introduction of these terminals means ingogo is bypassing some significant payment system changes that are about to take place in Australia’s customer services industry. We are already well ahead of the chip and pin security mandates currently mandated by the credit card schemes for the next year.”


The ingogo app also provides users with an instant electronic receipt and their trip history is automatically updated as soon as their fare is transacted.


The new payment system, which recently won the CeBIT Future of Payments Start-Up Pitching Event, follows ingogo’s track record in developing innovative technology. ingogo was the first app approved by Apple in Australia to load and store card details securely for app payments outside iTunes.


All driver’s licenses and taxi authorities are personally scanned by an ingogo staff member, rather than an app, making ingogo the most secure taxi system in Australia.


To download the app:

iPhone app: https://itunes.apple.com/au/app/ingogo/id463995190?mt=8   

Android app: https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.ingogo.passenger  




Media Contacts

Sarah Tsiros sarah@launchgroup.com.au 02 9492 1034 or 0466 805 364

Laura Douglas laura@launchgroup.com.au 02 94292 1002 or 0452 505 859


About ingogo: ingogo is a mobile app which assists customers to easily hail and pay for taxis. It was founded by the successful team behind Moshtix. It allows passengers to communicate directly with registered taxi drivers in their local area, see when drivers are coming and where they are on a map, with the option to pay for rides using ingogo’s safe in-taxi payment terminals or virtual mobile accounts. It currently operates in Sydney and is in a limited pilot stage in Melbourne.

14 Oct

Macleay College boosts education offering with accelerated bachelor degrees

by launch-admin Oct 14, 2013 0 Uncategorized




Macleay College boosts education offering with accelerated bachelor degrees


Macleay announce accreditation for journalism and business bachelors 


Monday, 14 October, 2013: Independent higher education provider Macleay College today announced new bachelor degrees in journalism and business that will provide students with industry-aligned, job-ready education within just two years.


Coursework for the new degrees will commence February 2014 and will be offered in addition to the college’s unrivalled industry-led diplomas. Both degrees will cover the equivalent content of a three-year degree and will be taught at the Surry Hills campus in Sydney, with the Melbourne campus offering the journalism degree.


The degrees have been developed to round out the college’s education offering and as a competitive offering to larger universities in these disciplines.


Macleay delivers an elite education experience with intimate class sizes and a practical, hands-on learning environment. Teaching staff at Macleay are practicing professionals with a focus on industry teaching.


Macleay College Dean, Donna Mack, said extending the college’s unique course offering to now include quality degrees is an exciting step.


“These degrees are a natural evolution of the Macleay offering which focuses on education that will fast track a student’s career in their chosen field,” she said. “Our degree students will undergo rigorous course work and complete over 200 hours of relevant work experience as part of their studies, to ensure they are job ready.


“The content of our degree program is driven by what industry is calling for – both now and in the near future. A big part of the Macleay philosophy and a strong point of difference to our competitors is our focus on making sure our graduates are equipped with vital and relevant skills for the current work environment.”


Both bachelor degree programs offer a unique selection of specialist course-work. The journalism degree focuses on multi-media skills and provides education around investigative reporting, business journalism, sports journalism, music journalism, food and lifestyle writing as well as fashion writing. The business degree includes dedicated units in entrepreneurship, innovation and leadership providing prospective students with cutting edge skills around how to add value to any organisation or to start their own business venture.


Ms Mack added that the introduction of Macleay’s degrees offer even more value for students looking to complete tertiary education.


“Macleay can now provide an additional option for students looking to increase their education qualifications or directly elect for a more applied course, while still receiving the same industry-focused curriculum that Macleay are renown for,” she said.


Fees are: $30,000 per annum ($60,000 for the full degree) for the Bachelor of Journalism degree and $25,000 per annum ($50,000 for the full degree) for the Bachelor of Business degree. Both degrees require an ATAR of 65, relevant professional experience or completion of the Macleay College Diploma of Journalism. The first intake round for 2014 is now open for registration.


For more information visit http://www.macleay.edu.au/




For more information:

Sarah Tsiros

0466 805 364



About Macleay College: Macleay is Australia’s premier independent college, with a focus on making careers happen. The college arms students for job opportunities in the real world by providing the latest industry skills and education, connections and practical work experience. Macleay offer accelerated journalism and business degrees as well as industry-led diplomas. Business courses are developed around specialist interests such as real estate, event management, sports management and travel and tourism with entrepreneurial courses also part of their unique offering. They also offer a comprehensive advertising diploma. Macleay’s tertiary courses have an emphasis on multi-media qualifications, and offer students a hands-on approach, which ultimately helps fast track their career within just 12 months. The boutique college has a primary campus in Sydney and a Melbourne campus, which specialises in journalism education.

Sarah Tsiros, Senior Account Manager 

Launch Management Group Pty Ltd

Room 6 285a Crown St, Surry Hills, NSW 2010


office:                   + 61 2 9492 1034

mobile:                + 61 (0) 466 805 364

facsimile:             + 61 2 9492 1099

website:              www.launchgroup.com.au

twitter:                @sarahtsiros

4 Oct

Launch Group a finalist in 2013 Australian Event Awards

by launch-admin Oct 4, 2013 0 Uncategorized

Launch Group announced as a finalist in the prestigious 2013 Australian Event Awards for communications work on TEDxSydney

SYDNEY, AUSTRALIA – 4 October 2013: Launch Group has been named among the most innovative and outstanding in the Australian events industry as a finalist for the prestigious annual Australian Event Awards to be presented in November this year.


Competing in the award category for Communications, Launch Group was selected from hundreds of entries from across Australia and an incredibly diverse range of industries to make the list of just four finalists in this category. 


The Launch Group submission was for Communications work on annual ideas festival TEDxSydney.


The Australian Event Awards Industry Night of Nights will be held at Doltone House, Hyde Park in Sydney’s CBD on Tuesday 19th November, providing national recognition and celebration of outstanding achievements across the whole of Australia’s thriving events industry, from small-scale events in regional Australia, to multi-million dollar festivals and public events. 


The calibre and range of entries have continued to grow since the Awards started in 2009, and co-chairs of the judges Johnny Allen and Sandy Hollway said that the 88 finalist entries across all categories represented some of the most worthy achievements in an industry brimming with creativity, innovation and professional talent.


“This Awards program now covers accolades for state of the art venues and services through to education and training programs. It celebrates our most talented event entertainers, achievements in design and production, in conferencing and exhibitions through to the most exacting execution of international sporting events. It’s a true reflection of Australian excellence in the events arena,” said Johnny Allen, Foundation Director of the Australian Centre for Event Management.


“The 2013 finalists should all be proud of the invaluable contribution they are making to Australia’s highly successful events industry.”


The 2013 Australian Event Awards is the national awards program to reward innovation, recognise excellence and unite the Australian Events Industry. Entries were open to any event staged between July 1, 2012 and June 30, 2013.

For more information about the Australian Event Awards and to register for updates, visit http://www.eventawards.com.au and follow us on Twitter.

TEDx is a program of local, self-organised events that bring people together to share a TED-like experience. At a TEDx event, TEDTalks video and live speakers combine to spark deep discussion and connection in a small group. These local, self-organised events are branded TEDx, where x = independently organised TED event. The TED Conference provides general guidance for the TEDx program, but individual TEDx events are self-organised. 


TEDxSydney is an independently organised event licensed from TED by longtime TEDster, Remo Giuffre and organised by a network of fellow thinkers and long-time collaborators. TEDxSydney is made possible by the generous contribution of its partners, sponsors & volunteers.


MEDIA CONTACTS:           

Lucy Harrison
Australian Event Awards
P: (02) 8096 8774
E: lucy.harrison@epicteam.com.au


Laura Douglas

P: (02) 9492 1000

M: 0452 505 859

E: laura@launchgroup.com.au


Best Event Nominations 2013

·       18th Biennale of Sydney: All Our Relations

·       34th International Geological Congress; Carillon Conference Management Pty Limited

·       AGL 175th Gala Celebration; This Space + Events

·       Asia-Pacific Incentives & Meetings Expo (AIME); AIME

·       ASICS Victor Harbor Triathlons & Fun Run

·       Australian Fitness & Health Exhibition

·       Australian Tourism Exchange 2013 – ATE13; Tourism Australia

·       Australian Tourism Exchange Welcome Event 2013; Belle-Laide Events & Destination NSW

·       Blues on Broadbeach Music Festival 2013; Broadbeach Alliance Limited

·       Byron Bay Bluesfest

·       Carlings Incentive 2013 – Thunder Down Under; AZBcreative

·       Dog Lovers Show

·       Ford Go Further at the 2012 Australian International Motor Show; Imagination

·       HBF Run for a Reason; HBF

·       Hyundai Hopman Cup 2013; Tennis Australia

·       Mali in the City – Melbourne Zoo’s 150th Birthday; Melbourne Zoo

·       Margaret River Gourmet Escape ; Brand Events Australia Pty Ltd

·       Mumbrella360 & The Mumbrella Awards; Focal Attractions

·       National NAIDOC Awards Ceremony and Ball 2012; cievents

·       Optus RockCorps; RockCorps Pty Ltd

·       Paspaley Polo in the City; Event Planet

·       Queensland Mining & Engineering Exhibition 2012; Reed Exhibitions Australia Pty Ltd

·       Santos Tour Down Under 2013

·       South Australian Wooden Boat Festival

·       Starlight Five Chefs Dinner; Starlight Children’s Foundation

·       Taste of Sydney; Brand Events Australia Pty Ltd

·       TEDxSydney 2013

·       Ten Days on the Island

·       The Light In Winter; Federation Square Pty Ltd

·       The Rocks Windmill; Sydney Harbour Foreshore Authority

·       Top Gear Festival Sydney; Brand Events Australia Pty Ltd

·       Trucking Australia 2013; Australian Trucking Association

·       Vivid Sydney 2013; Destination NSW

·       Wodonga Children’s Fair; Wodonga City Council

·       Woolworths Limited National Conference 2012; cievents

·       Yarrabah The Musical; Opera Australia


Best Achievement Nominations 2013

·       32 Hundred Lighting for their work on Colour the Bridge – Vivid 2013

·       Adelaide Festival Centre for their work on Adelaide Cabaret Festival

·       Allianz Stadium – Moore Park, NSW

·       ARIA Catering for their work on TEDxSydney 2013

·       Audience Response System by IML Worldwide

·       Auditoria for their work in London, Mersin, Sochi and Dubai

·       Barbara Hines for her work on LEADit 2012

·       Certificate III Events; TasTAFE Drysdale South Campus

·       Certificate III in Live Production, Theatre and Events (Technical Operations); Staging Connections

·       Certificate, Diploma and Advanced Diploma of Events; William Angliss Institute

·       CMS Australasia for their work on Volvo Dealership Network V40 Reveal

·       Diploma of Events; Sunshine Coast TAFE

·       Doltone House – Pyrmont, NSW

·       Framelock™ Crowd Control Barrier System by Colin West

·       Georgeous  for their work on Adelene and Jiaheng’s Wedding

·       Global Traffic Management System by Global IT

·       GreenShoot Pacific for their 2012/13 Body of Work

·       Imagination for their work on the 2012 Australian International Motor Show

·       Laservision for their work in Singapore and Macau

·       Launch Group for their work on TEDxSydney

·       Merivale for their work on 2013 March into Merivale Launch Party

·       MI Associates for their work in London and Doha

·       RACV City Club – Melbourne, VIC

·       Randwick City Council for their work on Randwick’s Eco-living Fail

·       Royal Botanic Gradens and Domain Trust for their work on Harbourlights – New Year’s Eve

·       Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre – Darling Harbour, NSW

·       Sydney Showground – Homebush, NSW

·       The Electric Canvas for their work on White Night Melbourne

·       The Monkey’s Cobbler for their work on the 2012 Media Federation Awards

·       The P.A. People Pty Ltd for their work on 2012 Sydney New Year’s Eve

·       This Space + Events for their work on the AGL 175 Regional Roadshow

·       Trippas White Group  for their work on AGL 175th Gala Celebration

·       VictorsFood for their work on Property Council of Australia Property Congress 2013

·       Volunteer Management by Eventeamwork


Headline Awards Nominations 2013

Young Achiever of the Year

·       Camilla Williams nominated by Eventify

·       Grace Rowe nominated by Our Friends Electric Pty Ltd

·       Ivana Deng nominated by City of Wanneroo

·       Lauren Hayward nominated by Forum Group Events


Entertainer of the Year

·       Dani Quayle – Acoustic Performer and DJ

·       Matt Hollywood – Comedy Entertainer and Magician


Event Manager of the Year

·       Event Planet

·       Focal Attractions Pty Ltd

·       Humm Pty Ltd

·       j2 ideas & events

2 Oct

MCN expand online reach with Eventfinder.com.au

by launch-admin Oct 2, 2013 0 Uncategorized



MCN expand online reach with Eventfinder.com.au


Saleshouse win entertainment platform Eventfinder.com.au from Yahoo7!


Wednesday, 2 October, 2013: Multi Channel Network (MCN) will represent Australia’s fastest growing events guide and ticketing business, Eventfinder.com.au, adding the website to its online network, effective today.


The site was previously represented by Yahoo7! and is the twelfth online platform MCN have integrated into their digital network in the past 12 months.


Eventfinder.com.au provides users with information and tickets to cultural and music events around Australia. The site, which is owned by the Entertainment Media Group, receives over 500,000 visitors every month[1] and includes personalisation features allowing users to select and share events of interest. Members can also post reviews and gain access to competitions and special ticket offers for concerts and events.


MCN Strategic Integration Director Elizabeth Minogue said the deal is part of the company’s plan to grow its portfolio of online platforms that align with MCN’s core communities of interest.


“MCN specialises in offering advertising solutions that are focussed around communities of interest. Eventfinder.com.au is another channel for brands to interact with consumers who are interested in music, sport, entertainment and lifestyle,” she said.


“Globally, mobile ad spend represents around 14.2% of all digital revenue[2], and here in Australia mobile is becoming increasingly important. Eventfinder.com.au offers a market-leading mobile experience to consumers, and we look forward to building upon this by rolling out innovative campaigns in the very near future.”


Eventfinder.com.au CEO, Mark Dalgleish added: “We’re excited to be part of the MCN network and to be working on projects that connect brands to our users more effectively. Eventfinder.com.au users are planning their entertainment and purchasing tickets to local and interstate events while online or on their mobiles, so getting the right brands and offers in front of them at the right time is a win-win for everyone.”


Advertiser opportunities for the site include brand partnerships, content licensing and event ticketing.


– ends –


Further information:

Sarah Tsiros

(02) 9492 1034 / 0466 805 364



About Multi Channel Network (MCN): Established in 1997, MCN is a joint venture between FOXTEL and FOX SPORTS. MCN is responsible for the advertising interests of 55 national STV channel brands, 72 websites, 61 mobile sites, 40 apps and 3 IPTV services. In addition, MCN is the only media company to offer the complete range of advanced television advertising solutions via the remote control. MCN delivers optimum campaign results for clients by combining high value audiences with an unmatched choice of premium content. MCN specialises in creative solutions, which bring life to ideas and deliver clients a better advertising experience. In addition to being the third largest television network in Australia by commercial audience, MCN has Australia’s largest combined online and mobile network in Australia with a monthly online reach of 8.1m unique audiences and a monthly mobile audience of 4.7m. For more information: www.MCN.com.au


About Eventfinder.com.au: Established in 2012 and published by The Entertainment Media Group, Eventfinder.com.au is the fastest growing events guide and ticketing platform in Australia. It has a monthly online and mobile audience of over half a million event-goers and music fans, and lists over 50,000 events a year across arts, music, sport, lifestyle and culture. The website syndicates event content and gig guides to media partners including Foxtel, Triple J, WAN and The Music Network. Eventfinder.com.au provides free listing, editorial and marketing to event promoters, venues and publicists. The site has its own ticketing platform, aimed at small to medium sized events. For more information: www.eventfinder.com.au


For more information contact:

Matthew Cowley

02 8356 3303 / 0431 917 359


[1] Google Analytics March 2013

[2] eMarketer report, 2013

2 Oct

Leading Australian accelerator program drives start-up success

by launch-admin Oct 2, 2013 0 Uncategorized

Media Release

For Release: 2 October 2013


Leading Australian accelerator program drives start-up success

– Applications for 2014 program now open –


ANZ Innovyz START, the Adelaide-based business accelerator program, today announced that 60% of the start-ups to graduate from the program have raised almost $2 million in seed and angel investment, and secured contracts worth over $2 million.


The announcement comes as applications for the Summer 2014 ANZ Innovyz START program open.


Dr. Matthews, Managing Director for ANZ Innovyz START, said: “We are excited to open applications for our fourth accelerator program in Adelaide. We’ve been operating for 18 months, have graduated two classes, and have a third class currently going through the accelerator program.”

“The fact that our first two classes have already raised nearly $2 million indicates we have been able to accelerate their growth and get them investor ready,” Dr Matthews said.

Companies selected for the Summer 2014 accelerator program will receive a $20,000 stipend, participants’ access to a $20,000 loan from ANZ, and education delivery and support services valued at $500,000.


ANZ General Manager for Small Business Banking, Nick Reade, said: “ANZ is helping develop the start-up eco system in Australia. Our ongoing support of ANZ Innovyz START, coupled with our pledge to lend $1 billion to new small businesses this year, demonstrates our belief that small business is a very important sector of the economy.” 

The Summer 2014 program will kick off on 10 February 2014 and wrap up on 8 May 2014.


“I’ve been pleased to see so many ANZ Innovyz START graduates grow and succeed, and I look forward to hearing from the Summer 2014 participants on Demo Day,” Mr. Reade said.


The ANZ Innovyz START Winter 2013 program is currently underway with companies gearing up to present to over 450 investors and supporters on 4 November at the Adelaide Town Hall. To attend Australia’s largest Demo Day, register here.

– ENDS –

Media Enquiries

Ashford Pritchard | Launch Group | e: ashford@launchgroup.com.au |

p:  +61 2 9492 1000 | m: +61 411 020 680

Notes for the editor


Some of the successful companies to have raised funds include:


·       Bluedot, Melbourne-based firm that develops high precision location-based mobile services and payments technology, has raised $225,000 from local investors on a valuation of $4.5 million and are working in partnership with leading app development company Appster.

·       Captioning Studio Group, leaders in captioning and audio technology, has raised $360,000 in funding from local and offshore investors. The group has used some of this funding to further develop their video search capabilities.

·       Australian Baby Bargainsonline parenting community and pre-loved baby and children’s marketplace, raised $250,000 from several local investors within six months of graduating. 

·       Beneath the Ink, a US-based media technology firm that offers publishers and authors the ability to add rich content experiences to eBooks, has raised $305,000 through a convertible note from a group of Australian and US investors.

·       Be intent, a NZ-based corporate wellness and employee motivation tool designed for computer users to enjoy good workplace health and wellbeing. The company has raised $270,000 in seed funding from private investors in Australia and New Zealand.


About ANZ Innovyz START

ANZ Innovyz START is a 13-week accelerator program, and provides a $20,000 stipend to teams of three who are selected to participate in the program. The Program Director works with each company to commercialise its break-through innovation. The program includes mentoring by successful entrepreneurs, learning programs around growing a company, identification of target markets, working and reworking the company’s plan, and a presentation to potential investors on the last day of the program. ANZ Innovyz START is one of 53 accelerators in the Global Accelerator Network. For more info: www.innovyzstart.com.


About ANZ Small Business

ANZ has more than 400,000 small business customers. ANZ supports Small Business with products and services for start ups and more mature small businesses.  We approve 9 out of 10 Small Business lending applications and 7 out of 10 Start Up lending applications.  We also offer business product packages for small businesses including start ups which makes banking with ANZ easier and saves money.  ANZ offers small business customers a range of easily accessible tools and resources to support their business at any life stage, including ‘The ANZ Small Business Hub’ LinkedIn group which provides an interactive and inclusive community for small businesses to connect, share ideas, build profiles and open doors to new opportunities. To become a member of ANZ’s Small Business Hub community, go to LinkedIn.



27 Sep

Liverpool forum gives disadvantaged youth a voice

by launch-admin Sep 27, 2013 0 Uncategorized


Youth put leaders in the hot seat

·       Liverpool Street University launches ‘Backchat’ forum to engage youth in community issues

·       First forum with NSW Treasurer Michael Baird – Friday, 27 September 2pm


Friday 27 September, 2013: Leading youth services provider The Ted Noffs Foundation today launched Backchat, a free forum where Western Sydney youth will have the unique opportunity to hear, learn and challenge politicians, community members and industry experts.


According to the 2011 Australian Bureau of Statistics (ABS) Census, Liverpool City has a significantly higher proportion of young people than the NSW average. In 2011, there were 34,566 young people living in the Liverpool area, which represents nearly one in five people or more than 20 per cent of the Liverpool population[1].


Backchat will comprise of six annual talks from a range of NSW and national guest speakers. Each presenter will provide insights into power and influence and participate in interactive Q&A sessions, hosted by the young people.


The first of the series will take place  Friday, 27 September at 2pm at Noffs’ Street University campus in Liverpool, with New South Wales Treasurer, The Honourable Michael Baird. Mr Baird will discuss the importance of embracing opportunities and share advice on how to accomplish personal aspirations.  (Full details at end of this release).


In 2012 the Liverpool Council produced a youth strategy, which identified the need for additional participation opportunities for local young people, as the majority of young people surveyed indicated they did not feel their voice was valued in the community[2].


Street University Co-founder Matt Noffs said the new Backchat forum will give youth an opportunity to tell their story and express their desires and goals, but also to challenge the people making decisions about issues that affect them.


“This series is all about empowering youth from marginalised areas by equipping them with a fuller understanding of the business and political world and providing them with the chance to engage with influential people,” he said.


“Youth in areas like Liverpool are constantly faced with difficult social issues such as unemployment, drugs, alcohol and crime, and yet they rarely have the opportunity to speak out and discuss these problems directly with the influential members of the community who have the power to really change things. Backchat will offer young people the chance to have their voices heard instead of being spoken for by councils, bureaucracies and members of parliament.”


Mr Noffs said Sydney’s South West is fast becoming a hot spot for young people and innovation however, to keep the hub alive, the community needs to invest more time, resources and funds into the area.


“The amount of talent, creativity and drive coming from Sydney’s South West is invaluable and it’s up to us to embrace and nurture these young people,” he said. “In 10 years they will be leading the West, so we need to start listening to what they have to say and providing opportunities that will allow them to flourish.”


Event details

When: Friday 27 September from 2 pm until 3.30 pm

Where: Noffs Street University Liverpool, 1 Speed Street (Cnr Terminus & Speed Street)

Phone: +61 2 8785 8000

Email: streetuniversity@noffs.org.au


– ends –

Media contact: Sarah Tsiros (02) 9492 1034 / 0466 805 364 or sarah@launchgroup.com.au

About the Noffs Foundation: About the Noffs Foundation: The Noffs Foundation is one of Australia’s leading youth services providers, and an advocate for best practice in drug and alcohol provision, prevention and treatment. The Noffs Foundation was founded in 1970 by the great Australian humanitarian Reverend Ted Noffs to provide essential services for young people who experience drug and alcohol problems and related trauma, and their families. Noffs has pioneered new community outreach initiatives, including the opening of free urban education facilities to support young people who are homeless, using drugs, involved with crime or simply need someone to talk to. Other services include rehabilitation, individual and group counselling, education, training and group outdoor activities. The Noffs foundation supports thousands of people every year.

[2] Council’s Education Options Survey conducted in 2010


27 Sep

Four trends shaping the PR agency of the future

by launch-admin Sep 27, 2013 0 Uncategorized

Four trends shaping the PR agency of the future

11 September, 2013 Fleur Brown

Description: our trends shaping the PR agency of the future

For an industry that excels in repositioning, our PR industry looks spookily similar to what it did 10 years ago.

Brands are still mostly buying traditional publicity campaigns from PR agencies (albeit with more online media titles).

In many ways the GFC averted an identity crisis for the PR industry. Despite watershed changes to the mediascape, clients have preferred ‘safe,’ devil-you-know campaigns and services with tangible results and hardcore reporting.

In this environment innovative PR offerings like social campaigns are treated as a mere value-add – linked to delivering short-term marketing metrics rather than exploring broader brand building outcomes.

The good news is PR agencies didn’t over-invest in innovation during a time when clients weren’t prepared to pay for it. The bad news is that other players in the communications sector did and are now poised to reap the rewards.

Entire industry sectors have sprung up around digital communication offerings and social media channels are working directly with brands. Advertising and creative agencies are also starting to focus more attention on influence and below-the-line dollars. 

What unique territory can PR occupy in this evolving communications world? And will the market pay for it?

Here are four factors I believe will help shape the future success for PR:

1. PR people get news value – and news continues to drive the consumption of a significant percentage of online content. Whether former journalists, frustrated journalists, or pros who’ve had the concept of what makes news beaten into them by unresponsive media, PR people understand the subtleties of the news environment and the best of them have a strong instinct for news values and news creation.

The appetite for news will never disappear – whatever physical form it takes. And there will always be a place for news brokers – where news agendas can be balanced against the views and interests of corporates, causes and individuals.

PR pros of the future will continue to be content creators in earned media environments, where the story value takes central place in any negotiation.

2. PR provides the best integrated offering with social media – PR and social media dwell comfortably together. The drivers are similar and both are focused around news, information and entertainment with results best gained via an ‘earned’ position rather than a paid one. When these two disciplines work together and work strategically, the results are significantly amplified. Where marketing and broader corporate agendas can often be at odds, effective PR people know how to drive promotion and manage company reputation and issues seamlessly as part of the same campaign.

3. We can dwell in ambiguity: The world of PR is, by nature, a murky one, which can involve endless pivoting and repositioning. Historically, PR people have been dismissed as superficial or masters of spin. In today’s frenetic decision making environment, where there are more questions than answers, providing an agile communication service that can respond to corporate issues in real-time is a highly prized skill. 

4. … and still keep our feet on the ground: The inability to pin down a PR brief or contain PR activities to one box kept it free of reporting scrutiny for decades. 

However, the GFC and the advent of social media has created an environment where PR in all its forms is now subject to robust KPI reporting – with a much clearer contribution to marketing and company objectives. 

As a result, clients now get the best of both worlds – a flexible communication service with measurable outcomes against KPIs.

The Australian PR industry is mostly represented by independent or boutique PR operators – with a handful of bigger Australian brands and multinationals. Some are claiming that the future of PR is to align with or sell out to bigger advertising or creative agency brands, creating a one-stop-shop. However, whilst this may be a fiscally smart move, PR is a specialist field that has much to gain from the emerging communications environment.

We should never compromise or dilute our strengths.

The answer is not to blend in, but to stand firm in our areas of specialisation. The market needs that offering.

Fleur Brown is CEO of Launch Group.

To read more about the state of PR, see the current issue of B&T magazine, out this week, which includes a main feature dedicated to the sector. 

See the B&T article here


25 Sep

Zenogen clinches $435,000 in angel funding, appoints new chairman

by launch-admin Sep 25, 2013 0 Uncategorized


Media Release           


Zenogen clinches $435,000 in angel funding, appoints new chairman


Clean-tech start-up rethinks hydrogen production with backing from Sydney Angels and private investors


24 September 2013: Australian clean-tech start-up Zenogen has announced an additional $330,000 in funding from angel investment group Sydney Angels, increasing the company’s total investment capital from this round to $435,000. The new investment will be used to help Zenogen introduce their revolutionary technology to both local and international markets.


Zenogen has pioneered a potentially industry-changing technology that aims to disrupt the world’s energy markets by making zero-emissions hydrogen production economically viable. As an alternative to the expensive precious metals that are currently used and consumed during gas production processes, Zenogen has developed an electrocatalyst to improve the efficiency of hydrogen and other gas production.


The new investors include Sydney Angels members Donald Bunnell (Co-Founder of Synthesis Energy Systems, Inc. and former Asia Business Development Vice President for BHP Billiton’s aluminium group), Adrian Bunter (Executive Director at Venture Advisory) and Andrew Stead (Director, New Ventures at NICTA). The Sydney Angels Sidecar Fund also contributed funds.


They join existing investor Ignition Labs, Australia’s first clean technology accelerator. Ignition Labs is run by ATP Innovations, whose four parent companies are the University of Sydney, Australian National University, University of Technology Sydney and the University of New South Wales.


Investor Donald Bunnell said that Zenogen’s new carbon-based technology stands to save electrolysis-based hydrogen producers billions of dollars lost each year through much greater energy efficiency and lower material costs.


“Zenogen is definitely an industry changer – both in the chlorine space and in the hydrogen space. You’re talking about significantly cheaper materials and greater efficiencies. I think Zenogen can develop win-win partnerships that will build value for both the company and its partners; making Zenogen a very valuable company,” he said.


Mr Bunnell has a thorough understanding of the energy industry and a proven record in helping start-ups to achieve scale and success. He will guide Zenogen through the company’s expansion plans and will also help provide access to further capital funds. In addition to the investment, Mr Bunnell has also been appointed as a Director and Chairman of Zenogen.

Zenogen Founder and CEO Daniel Zafir said that working with Sydney Angels allows start-ups to find more than just early stage funding, which is vital for building a platform for growth.


There are people who come to you with just money, and that’s the most that they can give you. It doesn’t really get your business any further. It’s great to have an investor like Donald on board, with a depth of understanding in the clean-tech space and the ability to raise capital, he said.


Sydney Angels Committee Member Richard Dale, said that Zenogen’s success in securing angel funding shows that Australian investors continue to be interested in ideas that reach beyond web- and app-based technology.


“Zenogen had an overwhelming response from Sydney Angels members, and the fact that so many investors wanted to back a clean-tech start-up is a great sign for Australian entrepreneurs. Zenogen combines innovative technology with a strong management team, and this investment demonstrates the appetite for new and different types of industry disrupting innovation.” 





About Zenogen: Zenogen is a clean-tech start-up company that has developed graphite electrodes for water electrolysis: the only commercially viable zero-emissions method of producing industrial gases such as hydrogen. Until now, this process has required prohibitively expensive metal catalysts, such as Platinum, in order to attain a production efficiency that is economically viable. Zenogen has a proprietary manufacturing method for graphite that allows it to replace these expensive catalysts at a fraction of the cost whilst simultaneously improving electrical efficiency, with significant savings in energy consumption.

Zenogen’s graphite electrodes have been demonstrated as a fully functional proof of concept and the technology is now ready for implementation in small-scale industrial electrolysis applications.­­


About Sydney Angels: Sydney Angels is an angel group whose members invest in innovative early-stage companies with high growth potential. Sydney Angels provides its members with quality deal flow, a collaborative investment process, and an opportunity to support entrepreneurs and the early-stage ecosystem. Sydney Angels offers entrepreneurs an efficient path to capital, expertise and experience from its members, who are backed by the $10 million Sydney Angels Sidecar Fund


Media Contacts

Ashford Pritchard ashford@launchgroup.com.au 02 9492 1040 or 0411 020 680

Carmen Cita carmen@launchgroup.com.au 02 9492 1004 or 0432 088 784

5 Sep

Brand advocacy experts Social Soup and Pollinate launch umbrella brand: The Influence Group

by launch-admin Sep 5, 2013 0 Uncategorized


Brand advocacy experts Social Soup and Pollinate launch

umbrella brand: The Influence Group

·      Andrew Handosa appointed Group Business Director

·      Hosting exclusive breakfast with Geno Church – Word-of-Mouth expert

Thursday, 5 September, 2013: Global word-of-mouth agency Social Soup and innovative research house Pollinate today announced a further alignment of their businesses under a new umbrella brand, The Influence Group. Both companies will retain their existing brands and services, with The Influence Group providing an integrated consultancy exclusively focussed on increasing knowledge and the application of influence.

As well as providing thought leadership and expertise, The Influence Group will offer brands an end-to-end solution to support the product cycle from idea to launch, with services including research, word-of-mouth and brand advocacy. The group draws on insights from a community of more than 140,000 influential consumers in Australia, New Zealand and the UK.

The group is co-chaired by Pollinate Founder Howard Parry-Husbands and Social Soup Founder Sharyn Smith. Andrew Handosa has been appointed Group Business Director for the group and will be responsible for growth and operation of the brand.

Andrew joins The Influence Group from London-based brand and digital consultancy, Corporate Edge, where he was the Lead Creative Strategist. He brings valuable experience from working in major client, vendor and agency roles creating solutions for iconic brands in the UK, European and Australasian markets. Andrew has developed and launched multi-million dollar product portfolios for ZTE and Optus Group, managed large-scale integrated marketing campaigns as well as the brand transformation of Telstra.

The Influence Group Director Howard Parry-Husbands said the group is dedicated to going beyond brand awareness to drive behaviour change and brand advocacy both on and offline.

“Influence is the most powerful way to change behaviour. With more than ten year’s experience in influence driven co-creation and hundreds of successful advocacy campaigns across three continents, we have proven that influence is a fundamentally better way to advertise ” he said.

“Influence generates lasting behavioural change and provides a proven return on investment because it empowers people as the trusted media channel is peer groups. The influence model engages consumers to help shape, decide, create and then share the future of brands.”

To celebrate the launch of The Influence Group, the company will be hosting an exclusive industry breakfast with world-renowned word of mouth expert and co-author of Brains on Fire: Igniting Powerful Sustainable, Word of Mouth Movements Geno Church on October 23rd in Sydney.

Church’s talk, The Passion Conversation: Inspiring Your Staff and Supporters to Love Your Brand, will weave the latest academic and marketing research with practical, real world case stories to demonstrate how to spark and sustain word of mouth marketing, build a thriving community, drive meaningful conversations and ultimately impact the financial success of a business.

Spaces for the breakfast are limited, for more details or to register interest visit: http://theinfluencegroup.co/

– ends –

For more information contact:

Sarah Tsiros


02 9492 1034 / 0466 805 364

About the Influence Group: Founded in more than a decade’s expertise into what influences Australian consumers, The Influence Group houses the collective wisdom of insights agency Pollinate and leading advocacy and WOM agency Social Soup. The Influence Group provides an entire suite of influence solutions, from idea to innovation, communication through to action. The group offers research, knowledge and expert advice on influence, drawing on a community of over 140,000 of Australia’s, New Zealand’s and now the UK’s most influential consumers. They have completed over 500 successful advocacy campaigns across three countries and have established partnerships with leading academics and international experts. http://theinfluencegroup.co/

About Social Soup: Founded in 2006, Social Soup is Australia’s leading influence agency. Born out of insights that personal recommendations are more trusted than traditional advertising, Social Soup was the first Australian agency to harness the power of word-of-mouth and influence as a marketing channel. Social Soup specialises in connecting brands with influential consumers, working with a community of more than 140,000 influential consumers who try out products, help shape them, and then share their experiences with their social networks. Social Soup has worked with companies in every major marketing category. Clients have included the Commonwealth Bank, Panasonic, Arnott’s, Coca-Cola Amatil, Kimberly-Clark, Nestle, Kelloggs, Unilever, LOreal, CUB, Pernod Ricard, Heart Foundation, the Australian Red Cross and Reckitt Benckiser. Soup is a 2011 BRW Fast Starter; winner of the Telstra Business Awards People’s Choice NSW; and winner of the best ‘Business to Consumer’ campaign at the 2011 Australian Marketing Institute (AMI) Awards for its work with the Commonwealth Bank.http://thesoup.com.au/

About Pollinate: Pollinate is Australia’s leading strategic research agency. Founded in 2004, Pollinate pioneered co-creation with influential consumers in Australia to develop innovative ideas, products and campaign concepts for brands. Pollinate understands how messages travel through a community, from the media, to advertising and word-of-mouth. The use of influential consumers uniquely positions Pollinate to develop paradigm-shifting innovations for brands, amplifying the effectiveness of media and communications. http://www.pollinate.com.au/

4 Sep

Audi and SKY NEWS drive 2013 election coverage

by launch-admin Sep 4, 2013 0 Uncategorized


Audi and SKY NEWS drive 2013 election coverage


Wednesday, 3 September, 2013: Multi Channel Network (MCN) today announced Audi as the exclusive SKY NEWS broadcast and digital partner for the channel’s 2013 election coverage this Saturday, 7 September.

The partnership sees Audi sponsor SKY NEWS award winning political team on-air from 5.30am. From 4pm, Political Editor David Speers will anchor SKY NEWS coverage joined by a panel of special guests. The partnership also extends to SKY NEWS Election 2013’s online properties as well as BigPond’s online election news coverage.

Saturday evening’s sponsorship is part of Audi’s wider election based campaign with the news channel, which has seen the luxury German car manufacturer also sponsor election related programs The Nation and Showdown in the lead up to the big night.

MCN Director of Strategic Integration, Elizabeth Minogue, said: “On September 7, the nation will be looking for extensive political reporting and in-depth analysis around the election. Audi’s partnership with SKY NEWS’ across broadcast, tablet, mobile and online means Australians can receive the most up to date and comprehensive election coverage from the country’s leading political correspondents on multiple screens,” she said.

The campaign aims to increase general awareness of Audi as the most progressive and forward-thinking motor brand in Australia.

Audi’s General Manager, Marketing, Kevin Goult, said the decision to support the election coverage on SKY NEWS was an important one for the brand, as it would see Audi strategically align with a leading news platform that had a clear focus on leadership around the country.

“SKY NEWS is a leader in the news space during this important time, and as a premium car manufacturer, we are interested in supporting the voice of experts and progressive thinkers in the Australian landscape. This partnership is an ideal brand fit, and an important link to technological leadership in this country,” Mr Goult said.

Audi media agency representative, Mediacom Group Director, James Sneddon, said: “Audi is a pioneer within the industry globally, designing vehicles that are innovative and prestigious. The SKY NEWS Election partnership is the ideal opportunity for Audi to demonstrate its forward-thinking position in the Australian marketplace as a premium brand.”

“Similarly to the SKY NEWS brand, Audi is a technology leader. The company is focussed on delivering the best-possible products and services to consumers, and this includes supporting the delivery of key information to business leaders throughout the federal election,” he said.

TVCs incorporated in the campaign promotes Audi’s leading technology and progressive design.

– ends –


Further information:

Sarah Tsiros

(02) 9492 1034 / 0466 805 364


About Multi Channel Network (MCN): Established in 1997, MCN is a joint venture between FOXTEL and FOX SPORTS. MCN is responsible for the advertising interests of 55 national STV channel brands, 72 websites, 61 mobile sites, 40 apps and 3 IPTV services. In addition, MCN is the only media company to offer the complete range of advanced television advertising solutions via the remote control. MCN delivers optimum campaign results for clients by combining high value audiences with an unmatched choice of premium content. MCN specialises in creative solutions, which bring life to ideas and deliver clients a better advertising experience. In addition to being the third largest television network in Australia by commercial audience, MCN has Australia’s largest combined online and mobile network in Australia with a monthly online reach of 8.1m unique audiences and a monthly mobile audience of 4.7m. For more information: www.MCN.com.au