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August 2015

launchgroup.com.au > Blog > 2015 > August
30 Aug

MCN expands creative & strategic division Multiply Dedicated integration team for Ten content

by launch-admin Aug 30, 2015 0 News



Key staff appointments announced for MCN Multiply Integration


Sydney AUSTRALIA, 25 August 2015: Multi Channel Network (MCN) on Tuesday announced an expansion of its MCN Multiply division to more than 60 staff, including the creation of a dedicated Multiply Integration team, as the business prepares to take on representation of Ten Network’s advertising assets from 1 September.


MCN Multiply is the umbrella brand for the company’s activations, integration and production teams. The Multiply Integration unit, which focuses on integrating advertisers into the network’s premium content, will incorporate seven staff from the Ten Commercial Integration team (previously named Ten Generate).


A new team dedicated to Ten assets has been created within the Multiply Integration unit and will report to the National Director of Partnerships and Content, Elizabeth Minogue. The team will be led by Lucinda Milton, who has been promoted to the new role of Head of Multiply Ten. For the past three years Ms Milton has worked across MCN’s channel groups, driving integrated premium revenue for their local productions. Alex O’Shaughnessy will join from Network Ten as Head of Multiply Ten Melbourne.


To lead MCN’s Digital Integration unit, which includes tenplay, MCN have promoted Tori Benzie to Head of Multiply Integration Digital. Ms Benzie has been with MCN for four years and is an expert in driving innovative digital and social brand partnerships and award winning multi-screen solutions.


Ms Minogue said the new staff structure will drive strategy and creativity for the new MCN/Ten media sales offering and help achieve MCN’s mission of delivering powerful cross-network solutions through one client brief.


“Ten will bring a wonderful new dimension to our offering and increased integration opportunities for brands,” she said. “For the first time we can deliver integrated assets across Free-to-Air, Subscription Television and digital video with a single, unified approach, providing one access point to the world’s greatest content.


“We have an amazing team of passionate integration experts who understand not just audiences and content, but the importance of clear insight to create a campaign that delivers an emotional connection. Our campaigns will be delivered across all platforms ensuring we engage with consumers across all traditional, new and emerging devices.”


The new staff structure will take effect on 1 September.


The sales representation agreement between MCN and Ten Network combines MCN’s existing 68 subscription television (Foxtel) channels with Ten Network’s 15 free-to-air metro television channels. Ten Network includes free-to-air television channels TEN, ELEVEN and ONE in Australia’s five metropolitan markets of Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth. Ten’s online catch-up and streaming service tenplay will complement MCN’s existing network of Telstra, Foxtel, Fox Sports and partner digital sites.





Fleur Brown, Launch Group


+ 61 2 9492 1000 / + 61 (0) 419 270 863


About Multi Channel Network (MCN): MCN is a joint venture between Foxtel and FOX SPORTS. MCN is responsible for the advertising interests of 71 television channels brands, 123 websites, 33 m-sites, 59 apps, 3 IPTV services, 3 Digital-Out-Home TV locations and Qantas In-Flight Entertainment.


In September 2015, MCN will take on representation of Ten Network’s television and digital assets.  The agreement combines MCN’s existing 68 subscription television (Foxtel) channels with Ten Network’s15 free-to-air metro television channels. Ten Network includes free-to-air television channels TEN, ELEVEN and ONE in Australia’s five metropolitan markets of Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane, Adelaide and Perth.


In the digital area, the addition of catch-up and streaming service tenplay to MCN’s existing network of Telstra, Foxtel, Fox Sports and partner sites.  For more information: www.MCN.com.au


30 Aug

River City Labs to launch accelerator program in partnership with muru-D

by launch-admin Aug 30, 2015 0 News


Brisbane, 31 July 2015: Startup hub and coworking community River City Labs has today announced a trial partnership with muru-D, the global startup accelerator backed by Telstra, to deliver the inaugural ‘River City Labs Accelerator’ program.


Set to kick off in September, the River City Labs Accelerator program will run over 14 weeks and offer a combination of seed capital, coworking space, mentoring, training and access to global networks, to five local technology companies.


General Manager of River City Labs, Peta Ellis, said: “This partnership with muru-D is an exciting next step for us. It will be fantastic to be able to leverage muru-D’s best practices, resources and guidance to shape the content and inform the delivery of our accelerator program. Local companies will share in the wisdom of some of the most experienced business people in the world. We are thrilled to be working alongside some of the greatest tech minds in the startup ecosystem to deliver our first accelerator program right here at River City Labs.”


Applications to be part of the River City Labs Accelerator program are now open, with a Queensland regional roadshow running from 3-14 August. The roadshow events are designed to give local startups the opportunity to learn more about the program before they apply.


Entrepreneur in Residence for the program, Aaron Birkby, said: “River City Labs’ partnership with muru-D is a major win for local startups and a great endorsement of our growing ecosystem. We’re looking forward to uncovering some world class talent and finding the very best digital startups to fast-track through this intensive River City Labs Accelerator program.”


Entrepreneur in Residence at muru-D, Mick Liubinskas, added: “Brisbane has been one of the fastest growing, most active cities in Australia for early stage technology companies. Our goal is to support it by sharing all the things we’ve learned and developed at muru-D to see more successful, global companies over the next ten years.”


Accelerator Program Key Dates

Applications open: 31 July 2015

Applications close: 10pm, 16 August 2015

Class #1 teams announced: 31 August 2015

Program commences: 14 September 2015

Program concludes: 18 December 2015


For more information head to: http://accelerator.rivercitylabs.net/


Media Contact

Laura Blue, Launch Group                                                                                              

E: laurab@launchgroup.com.au | M: + 61 416 699 925| T: +612 9492 1000.



About River City Labs

River City Labs is Brisbane’s premier co-working community and central clubhouse for tech startups. They are a not-for-profit organisation aimed at fostering Queensland’s startup ecosystem.


Current membership sits at over 100 members ranging from early stage startups and founders to established startups and entrepreneurs who have successfully raised capital in the last 18 months.


River City Labs focuses on providing the right environment for entrepreneurs to make valuable contacts while learning from peers, mentors and industry experts helping them to connect, work and grow. 


About muru-D

muru-D is the startup accelerator backed by Telstra, which aims to support the very best tech entrepreneurial talent that the Asian Pacific region has to offer. Through providing mentoring, tailored acceleration services and investment to early stage technology companies, muru-D’s goal is to help Australia and South East Asia become a centre for digital business.

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30 Aug

20 Startup Catalyst participants announced

by launch-admin Aug 30, 2015 0 News


·      The 20 young Queenslanders selected from 131 applications

·      Mission program to inspire next generations of QLD tech entrepreneurs


Brisbane, August 11, 2015: Startup hub and coworking community, River City Labs, today revealed the names of the 20 young tech standouts selected to be part of the 2015 ‘Startup Catalyst’ mission to Silicon Valley (28 September – 7 October). Compared to the 95 entries for 2014’s inaugural mission, this year saw 131 high-quality applications lodged, with candidates hailing from across the state, from the Gold Coast to Cairns to Brisbane.


The sponsors for the 2015 Startup Catalyst mission include:

·       Gold sponsors: QUT Business School and The University of Queensland

·       Silver sponsors: Suncorp Group, Griffith University and Blacksheep Capital

·       Airline sponsor: Virgin Australia


Startup Catalyst is also supported by the Queensland Government’s Startup Queensland grant program.


Fronted by Queensland business leader and main financial backer, Steve Baxter and Ezidebit founder Michael Dempsey, the ten-day mission will see the 20 participants visit the offices of global tech companies such as Facebook, Twitter and Apple, attend networking events with startup founders and student entrepreneurs, meet with fellow Australians who are running startups in the Valley, and take part in educational events to equip them with an understanding of what is involved in launching a globally successful tech startup.


Startup Catalyst’s Joint Mission Leader, Steve Baxter, said: “A huge congratulations to all those who applied for this year’s mission, particularly the 20 chosen to come along in September. Choosing just 20 was a challenge as Project Director, Colin Kinner, and one of the tech masterminds behind the mission, Peter Laurie, were blown away with the quality of the applications.


“I’m looking forward to witnessing how the experience further equips and teaches these emerging entrepreneurs. Queensland’s startup scene will certainly be better for it,” Mr Baxter said.


Startup Catalyst’s Joint Mission Leader, Michael Dempsey, commented: “Startup Catalyst is a trip of a lifetime for all involved, myself included. Thanks to all the sponsors who have contributed to making the event a reality, I’m looking forward to bringing the knowledge and experience back to Brisbane.


“There’s no reason Brisbane and Australia cannot be at the forefront of tech venture capital so I’m hoping this will encourage not only the 20 successful applicants but budding entrepreneurs from all over to chase their dreams. It’s all within reach, just go for it,” Mr Dempsey said.


The 20 young Queenslanders joining the program are:


Jake Andersen  (Tex)


Nick Burge


Samuel Colbran (Sam)


Sidney de Vries


Jaco du Plessis


Marisa Emerson


Jordan Gardiner


Jack Hallahan


Adam Hibble


Astrid Jonelynas


Thea Koutsoukis


Aimee Leong


Sam Lewis


Ben Maggacis


Tom Manderson


Krissy O’Farrell


Chris Rieger


Michael Sive


Tommi Sullivan


Kevin Upton



QUT student, Adam Hibble, said: “Silicon Valley has some of the highest performance tech innovators in the world, I am ecstatic to be able to bring back the experience and share it with students like myself. Maybe one day people will take a trip to Fortitude Valley to visit a company I start, how cool would that be?”


University of Queensland student, Marisa Emerson, added: “I’m very excited to be selected for this year’s Startup Catalyst. As an undergraduate engineering student at UQ, I am looking forward to the opportunity to meet some leaders in the field and hope that the trip will improve my professional network. I am excited to learn about how global tech businesses are created and hope the experience will be able to guide me in my future in tech.” 


Executive Dean, QUT Business School, Professor Robina Xavier, said: “QUT Business School is proud to once again be a gold sponsor of Startup Catalyst. Supporting this valuable opportunity for talented young entrepreneurs is well aligned with QUT’s commitment to providing real-world experiences for our students, where they can apply their academic skills in practical industry settings. Startup Catalyst is a fantastic program that allows our locally grown talent to network and learn from the best in the world.”

Head of the School of IT and Electrical Engineering at UQ, Paul Strooper, said: “Startup Catalyst is a fantastic initiative, which is allowing UQ to better support its students by bringing their great ideas and projects to life. I am looking forward to seeing the mission transform the successful applicants from UQ into potentially leading entrepreneurs, and learning from the ideas and lessons that they bring back to Australia with them.”


Over the course of the ten-day mission, the lucky 20 will share their experiences with friends, family and social networks via the Startup Catalyst blog. You can follow their journey at: http://www.startupcatalyst.com.au/





Media Contact:

Laura Blue laurab@launchgroup.com.au 02 9492 1000 / 0416 699 925



About River City Labs:


River City Labs is Brisbane’s premier co-working community and central clubhouse for tech startups. It is a not-for-profit organisation aimed at fostering Queensland’s startup ecosystem.


Current membership sits at over 100 members ranging from early stage startups and founders to established startups and entrepreneurs who have successfully raised capital in the last 18 months.


River City Labs focuses on providing the right environment for entrepreneurs to make valuable contacts while learning from peers, mentors and industry experts helping them to connect, work and grow. 


About Startup Catalyst:


Startup Catalyst is an annual mission to Silicon Valley for twenty young people who have the potential to be Australia’s next batch of globally successful tech entrepreneurs.

The 2015 mission will take place over a ten-day period from 28 September to 7 October 2015 and will immerse the participants in Silicon Valley’s rich culture of high-growth entrepreneurship. The group will visit the offices of global tech companies such as Facebook, Twitter and Apple, attend networking events with startup founders and student entrepreneurs, meet with fellow Australians who are running startups in the Valley, and take part in educational events to equip them with an understanding of what is involved in launching a globally successful tech startup.


To find out more about the 2014 mission, visit the blog or watch the highlights videos

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28 Aug

Blue Knot Day Morning Tea hosted in support of adult survivors of childhood trauma and abuse

by launch-admin Aug 28, 2015 0 News

 ASCA and members of the community come together over morning tea, encouraging all Aussies to host their very own community event


Australia, August 27 2015: Adults Surviving Child Abuse (ASCA), on Thursday hosted the first Blue Knot Day Morning Tea for 2015 to encourage every-day Australians to host similar events in their community in the lead up to their national awareness day Blue Knot Day (Monday October 26 2015).


ASCA is the leading national organisation working to support the estimated five million adult survivors of childhood trauma and abuse in Australia[1]. This year’s Blue Knot Day is focussed on highlighting the instrumental role of diverse groups and communities in helping survivors to recover. That’s why ASCA hosted their own community event – to urge Australians to do the same with friends, family, work colleagues and their own communities.


Recent research from ASCA’s 1300 professional support line showed the severe impact of childhood trauma and abuse on not only survivors but also those close to them. From 4,000 callers to the 1300 line in the prior year, 50 per cent of survivors reported that their relationships with their immediate families were affected, 35 per cent reported impacts on their relationships with their partners and 18 per cent on parenting.


Earlier this year ASCA released a ground-breaking report which showed that as a nation, Australia could save a minimum of $9.1 billion annually by addressing the impacts of unresolved childhood trauma and abuse in adults. The report presented the annual cost per those affected for four of the major challenges faced by adult survivors of childhood trauma: alcohol abuse, mental health issues, obesity and suicide/attempted suicide.


President of ASCA, Dr Cathy Kezelman AM, said the importance of the community in the recovery of the one in four adults living with the effects of childhood trauma and abuse in Australia couldn’t be underestimated.


“Our research details the immense impact of all forms of childhood trauma across the community, not only survivors themselves. This stresses the importance of Blue Knot Day, for survivors in the first instance but also for Australia as a whole.


“Our Blue Knot Day Morning Tea demonstrates the role of the community and of ASCA uniting towns and cities across Australia to make them safer and more supportive. From our research we know that recovery is possible; we want to provide everyone the opportunity to contribute. That’s why we have created plenty of other ways for people within the community to get involved,” Dr Kezelman said.


They include:

·       Host a blue event, such as a morning or afternoon tea

·       Purchase Blue Knot Day merchandise including friendship bracelets and pins

·        Engage in an activity to help raise funds through sponsorship and donations

·       Volunteer and join our generous supporters across the country to help raise awareness and support those adults living with the effects of childhood trauma and abuse

·       Donate and turn your dollars blue. Your donation will help!

·       Get involved on social media using the official Blue Knot Day hashtag #BKD2015

All public Blue Knot Day events will be registered online so people across Australia who want to attend an event can either access information about one or choose to host their own if no event is listed in their area. To register an event or activity, and/or to fundraise fill out the application form online or contact ASCA via email on events@asca.org.au.

All funds raised will support the primary prevention work of ASCA through workshops for survivors, 1300 counselling support and specialist training for professionals and services.


Help and support is available from the ASCA professional support line on 1300 657 380, 9am-5pm Monday-Sunday.

– ENDS –


Media Contact:

Louise Proctor louise@launchgroup.com.au 02 9492 1000 / 0452 574 244

About ASCA: 


ASCA is the leading national organisation supporting the estimated five million Australian adults who are survivors of childhood trauma, including abuse, their families and communities. ASCA provides hope, optimism and pathways to recovery for those affected.

At the forefront of pioneering trauma informed policy, practice and research, ASCA has been instrumental in supporting the work of the Royal Commission into Institutional Responses to Child Sexual Abuse and people engaging with it. This includes the training of key workers and practitioners.

In 2012 ASCA released Practice Guidelines for Treatment of Complex Trauma and Trauma Informed Care and Service Delivery, a global first in setting the standards for clinical and organisational practice. In 2015 ASCA released an Economic Report, The Cost of Unresolved Childhood Trauma and Abuse in Adults in Australia, leading the conversation around the economic imperative of providing the right services for adult survivors.

Formed in 1995, ASCA provides a range of services including professional phone support with trauma informed counsellors, a referral database, resources, advocacy, research, educational workshops for survivors and family members, partners and loved ones, along with training, professional development and other services for workers, organisations and professionals, including those from health and legal sectors.


[1] Estimated from a range of key resources

18 Aug

ingogo launches Pay RIGHT AWAY mobile payment platform for SMEs

by launch-admin Aug 18, 2015 0 News

ingogo launches Pay RIGHT AWAY mobile payment platform for SMEs
Australia; 13 August, 2015: Australian taxi app and mobile payment provider, ingogo, today announced that its highly anticipated wireless payment platform – Pay RIGHT AWAY – is now live as a fully viable commercial product for small-medium sized enterprises (SMEs).
Today’s launch fortifies ingogo’s expansion beyond the taxi industry and follows on from the initial pilot testing, which started in February 2015. The payment solution has now completed its beta trials and is ready to transform the way SMEs – such as tradesmen and small business owners – operate their business transactions by providing a fair and seamless mobile payment solution that improves cash flow while integrating with Xero’s global accounting platform. The system is available on iOS and Android.
The Pay RIGHT AWAY solution is the next stage in ingogo’s mission to revolutionise how businesses and consumers conduct payments, having already launched the world’s first app-based payment platform in October 2013, providing wireless terminals in taxis. To date, ingogo terminals have processed over $200 million and over five-million taxi transactions.
With on-the-spot payment processing and next day settlements, business owners will receive their money faster than ever before, as Pay RIGHT AWAY offers a flexible, time-effective way to improve business cash flow and reduce admin.
Payments from major credit and debit cards will be accepted, using contactless technology such as Tap&Go and PayWave, along with full EFTPOS chip & PIN or magstripe. Pay RIGHT AWAY’s integration with Xero minimises time-consuming administration by auto-reconciling settlements, managing payments transacted on-the-go and creating and sending automated and itemised invoices and receipts, all while integrating with Xero’s inventory management system.
Hamish Petrie, founder and CEO of ingogo, said: “We’re excited to announce that our Pay RIGHT AWAY platform is now live as a commercial model. The feedback from the initial integration and beta testing proved that this payment solution is long overdue in the SME market, as busy business owners don’t have the time or resources to manage their day-to-day invoicing and account collections.
“The partnership with Xero and integration of both our market leading mobile payment and accounting software creates a seamless blend of flexible, accessible technology that will streamline the payments process from start to finish.
“The service will provide owners with a tool to free themselves from unnecessary admin and spend less time chasing outstanding payments, and with no monthly terminal rental fees, the solution is completely cost-effective,” said Mr Petrie.
Chris Ridd, Managing Director of Xero Australia, said: “ingogo’s mobile point of sale system is another example of best-in-class technology providers choosing to launch fully integrated platforms with Xero. We’re excited to see a number of providers in each region building solutions to help Xero’s subscribers reduce the time it takes to get paid, and reconcile their transactions quickly through their accounting software.”
Media Contacts:
Sarah Bond sarahbond@launchgroup.com.au 02 9492 1041 or 0449 543 181
Laura Douglas laura@launchgroup.com.au 0452 505 859
About ingogo:
ingogo is an integrated mobile payments company, currently in the Taxi and SME markets in Australia. Its mobile app assists private and corporate customers to easily book and pay for taxis through their mobile phones. It allows passengers to communicate directly with registered taxi drivers in their local area, see where their driver is and their estimated arrival time, with the option to pay using ingogo’s secure in-taxi payment terminals or virtual mobile accounts. It currently operates in Sydney and Melbourne, and has recently launched in Brisbane, Perth and Adelaide. 
ingogo has extended its payment platform into other industries beyond taxis, for business owners and SMEs, via a partnership with Xero, the leading cloud accounting platform.
About Xero:                                                                                                  
Xero is beautiful, easy-to-use online accounting software for small businesses and their advisors. The company has 540,000 subscribers in more than 180 countries. Xero seamlessly integrates with over 400 third-party tools, and was ranked No. 1 by Forbes as the World’s Most Innovative Growth Company in 2014 and 2015.
Pay RIGHT AWAY is a mobile payment solution ideal for SMEs, enabling small business owners to improve business cash flow as well as save on time and money. Available as a mobile application on iOS and Android, the system provides secure on-the-spot payment processing using contactless and EFTPOS technology, with users able to receive next day payment settlements as well as create and send receipts and invoices. Pay RIGHT AWAY is a Xero Add-on partner integrating with Xero’s inventory management system. 
18 Aug

Sydney houses achieve record annual growth as other markets retract

by launch-admin Aug 18, 2015 0 News


Sydney houses achieve record annual growth as other markets retract 

Onthehouse.com.au Market Analyst Eliza Owen says Sydney and Melbourne markets continue to drive growth as other states fall behind

Australia, 3 August 2015: New research released today by Onthehouse.com.au revealed that Sydney’s housing market has documented a record high annual growth rate for the current housing boom, growing 20.36 per cent in the 12-month period to June 2015. This is the median rate of growth for all houses in the Sydney region, which stretches all the way from the Eastern Suburbs to the suburbs just before the Blue Mountains.

However, while growth in Sydney as a whole continues to excel, there are suburbs across the region that are outperforming the city’s median.

The following table demonstrates the top five growth suburbs in the year to June:

Sydney Houses



Median Value


June 2014 – June 2015

Last Quarter

Last Month































Source: Onthehouse.com.au

In stark contrast, Perth recorded the worst performance across all Australian housing markets during the same annual period, falling by -1.05 per cent. However, the state’s unit market recorded a growth rate of 0.16 per cent, making it one of four areas where unit market annual growth rates exceeded their respective housing markets. 

Brisbane, Hobart and TAS Country made up the three other regions that recorded a stronger annual performance in their unit markets than their housing markets, documenting unit growth rates of 3.10 per cent, 5.93 per cent and 3.48 per cent, respectively. Darwin suffered the worst contraction in the unit market for the year, falling by -5.31 per cent.  

An Australia wide aggregation of the property market displayed strong annual growth overall, with 6.28 per cent for houses and 6.06 per cent for units, however, it is clear from the data that the Sydney market is the clear driver, with the current median house price of $993,500 falling just shy of the $1 million benchmark.

The following graph demonstrates the housing and unit market performance of each capital city in the 12 months to June 2015:

Source: Onthehouse.com.au

Market Analyst at Onthehouse.com.au, Eliza Owen, said: “Australia’s resource markets – Perth and Darwin – have both suffered a contraction in growth as the decline in volumes and values of iron ore are taking their toll. The impact of iron ore exports on these property markets is clear from available trading data, and unless the resource businesses based in Perth and the Northern Territory can sustain low prices for exports, I doubt there will be an improvement in these markets over the next few months. 

“Unlike the resource states, it is harder to identify the source of change in the Sydney and Melbourne markets. There are plenty of anecdotal reports claiming that foreign investment and baby boomer investors are driving up values – and while these factors may or may not be the cause of the current boom – there is currently no data available to prove this is the case,” continued Ms. Owen.

The following table demonstrates the June market performance for houses across Australia:



Median Value


June 2014 – June 2015

Last Quarter

Last Month











NSW Country




















VIC Country





QLD Country















TAS Country





SA Country





WA Country










Northern Territory










Source: Onthehouse.com.au

The following table demonstrates the June market performance for units across Australia:



Median Value


June 2014 – June 2015

Last Quarter

Last Month






NSW Country















TAS Country















VIC Country





QLD Country




















SA Country





WA Country





Northern Territory










Source: Onthehouse.com.au

To learn more about Onthehouse.com.au’s State Market Reports head to www.Onthehouse.com.au


Media contacts

Sarah Bond: E: sarah@launchgroup.com.au / T 02 9492 1041 / M 0449 543 181

Laura Blue: E laurab@launchgroup.com.au / T 02 9492 1000/ M 0416 699 925

About onthousehouse.com.au

www.Onthehouse.com.au is Australia’s most transparent and comprehensive real estate portal, empowering consumers to make informed property decisions by providing them with free access to information. Over 1.8 million unique visitors search for listings and view in-depth property data a month, making it Australia’s third most popular real estate platform. 

Onthehouse.com.au is the flagship consumer offering of Onthehouse Holdings (ASX:OTH), the 360-degree property market services group that provides comprehensive real estate agency solutions, information and analytics services. Onthehouse Holdings businesses together help over half of Australia’s real estate agencies, as well as being used by financial institutions and other property-related professionals. 

18 Aug

Eat healthy in the workplace with reality star Ash Pollard

by launch-admin Aug 18, 2015 0 News


Eat healthy in the workplace with reality star Ash Pollard

Melbourne, 4 August 2015: This year’s My Kitchen Rules (MKR) star and current Dancing With the Stars contestant, Ash Pollard, will be instilling healthy workplace eating habits into Melburnian professionals at Regus’ inaugural Workplace Wellness event on Wednesday, August 5.

Hosted by Regus, the flexible workplace provider, reality star Pollard will demonstrate a variety of quick healthy lunch fixes using grab-and-go ingredients. Guests of Regus will have the opportunity to watch, learn and then taste the prepared dishes during their lunch break.

Recent Regus research revealed that unhealthy eating habits and a lack of exercise are the leading causes of workplace stress for Melburnians, with 19 per cent of local respondents placing these factors above understaffing (17 per cent) and technology issues (16 per cent).

The survey revealed that, as a whole, Melburnian respondents are more than twice as stressed compared to five years ago (53 per cent) – a significant and concerning jump.

Market Director of Victoria, South Australia and Western Australia, Georgia Mitchell, said: “We are continuing to see overwhelming evidence that stress levels are mounting due to a combination of factors including poor dietary regimes and not having adequate time to exercise and recalibrate. 

“We’re thrilled to invite our Regus customers to spend their lunch break with Ash, where we’re sure her tips and tricks will help our guests adopt healthy workplace eating habits, and also show how this can have a significant impact on workplace health and happiness,” said Mitchell.

Pollard hopes to spread the message of healthy eating in the workplace and highlight the long-term benefits it can have on people’s overall health and wellbeing.

“You must give your body the respect it deserves, after all, it’s going to carry you a long way in life. Fuel it with all the ingredients it needs to survive those long days at work by eating smart, healthy choices that will help elevate your mood, self-esteem and energy, which in turn will reduce anxiety and stress,” Pollard said.


For more information contact:

Sarah Bond sarahbond@launchgroup.com.au 02 9492 1041 / 0449 543 181

Louise Proctor louise@launchgroup.com.au 02 9492 1003 / 0452 474 244


Regus is the global workplace provider.

Its network of more than 2,000 business centres in 104 countries provides convenient, high-quality, fully serviced spaces for people to work, whether for a few minutes or a few years. Companies like Google, Toshiba and GlaxoSmithKline choose Regus so that they can work flexibly and make their businesses more successful.

The key to flexible working is convenience and so Regus is opening wherever its 1.8 million members want support – city centres, suburban districts, shopping centres and retail outlets, railway stations, motorway service stations and even community centres.

Founded in Brussels, Belgium, in 1989, Regus is based in Luxembourg and listed on the London Stock Exchange. For more information, please visit: www.regus.com.au

17 Aug

Tax time: 7 deadly excuses for delaying your personal tax return, from MoneyBrilliant

by launch-admin Aug 17, 2015 0 News


Personal tax deadline is 31 October


Sydney, 4th August, 2015: Thousands of Australians delay the inevitable by waiting to the last minute to file their personal tax return. Perhaps we love living on the edge or perhaps it is due to fear of the unknown. Either way, the consequences can be devastating – from unnecessary stress, to accruing tax office penalties. More insidious, says MoneyBrilliant, is the impact of this issue on your broader financial health and security.

CEO of online personal finance hub, MoneyBrilliant, Jemma Enright said: “Putting off filing a tax return is an all too common issue. More often than not, it comes down to that feeling of dread when you’re not on top of your finances. The only way to get back in control is to take the bull by the horns and get organised. Otherwise you can face some hefty risks, including late lodgement fees.”

Here are some of the top excuses Aussies use to justify their tax time procrastination, and why they need to change their perspective.

1.       If I ignore my tax it will go away.

This isn’t true. Tax is one thing that never goes away. Procrastinating will only leave it looming over you for longer. The only way to turn the issue around is to take action.


2.       I’m going to get a huge penalty for being late.

You may incur a late fee just like back in the old days when you got library fines for returning books late. However the Australian Tax Office (ATO) can be pretty understanding. Have a chat to them and see what you can work out.

ATO Assistant Commissioner, Graham Whyte, recommends letting the ATO know about any struggles: “If you’re worried that you might not be able to meet the deadline, it’s important to that you give us a call on 13 28 61 and let us know about your circumstances,” he said.


3.       I probably owe the tax man a lot of money.

Mr Whyte said it is “important to remember to lodge on time, even if you can’t pay by the due date”.

If you’re on the correct tax code, things should work out fairly correctly for you. In fact, 77 per cent of Australians get a tax refund.[i]

If you’re really scared about this, have a chat to your employer or the ATO to see how this can be best worked out to minimise the hit to your wallet. The ATO have a handy calculator to help with this.


4.       I can’t afford to pay my tax right now, so I will delay my return.

This will unfortunately only make things worse and you’re likely to rake up fines the longer you leave things. Mr Whyte advises to call the ATO office to discuss your circumstances or enter a payment plan online. “While most people do pay on time, we understand that sometimes people run into short term difficulties and may not always be able to pay their tax in full by the due date. If you ever find yourself in this position, we encourage you to contact us as early as possible to work something out,” he said.


5.       I can’t handle the stress of completing my tax returns right now.

It’s much more stressful leaving this uncompleted. Your finances – and therefore your tax return – need to be a priority. The longer you leave it, the worse it will get. Set aside some time to action this and you’ll feel all the better afterwards.


6.       I can’t do my own tax returns.

It’s easier than you think doing it online and the ATO can help you out.

Mr Whyte had some good advice for this, he said: “Our big tip is that if you wait until mid-August, almost all your information will be pre-filled for you so if you’re lodging online, this will help you avoid any potential errors. If you’re using myTax, all you have to do is double-check that your pre-filled information is correct, input any deductions and submit.”


7.       I’m already two years late, it doesn’t matter if I miss the October deadline.

Getting your tax in on time does make a big difference to how the tax department views you, to fines and penalties and to refund payments. The ATO has a lot of information on you – don’t you want to have a nice clean record?

Ms Enright commented, “The only time to put your tax sins behind you, and turn over a new financial leaf, is now. I liken it a little to going to the dentist. You put it off thinking it will be painful but you always walk out feel sparkly and wondering what you were worried about. Diarise time to do it, make a plan for dealing with your expected outcome and seek help from the experts should you need it.”

For more information on the virtual financial assistant, MoneyBrilliant, head to:  https://www.moneybrilliant.com.au/


Media Contact
Laura Douglas laura@launchgroup.com.au / 02 9492 1002 / 0452 505 859


About MoneyBrilliant https://www.moneybrilliant.com.au/
Designed with women in mind, MoneyBrilliant understand and really care about the financial wellbeing of the women (and men). They are dedicated to helping you get on top of your finances so you can grow and live well, without sacrificing all the things that make life great.

MoneyBrilliant’s founder, Peter Lord started MoneyBrilliant to help women like his mum, nan and sister who experienced real financial hardship. He was joined by Jemma Enright, now CEO, and an ever growing team of passionate individuals that are devoted to making a difference by helping Australians get ahead with their finances and feel confident in the future.

MoneyBrilliant looks for ways to support Australians financial wellbeing. They want to give you what you need to clearly see where your money is going and get to know your spending style, so you can make smarter financial decisions.


17 Aug

Queensland Government leads the way with Investment in local startup ecosystem

by launch-admin Aug 17, 2015 0 News

Australia, 14 July 2015: Startup advocacy body, StartupAUS, said the funding priority given to startups in the Queensland budget will help create thousands of local jobs and contribute billions of dollars to the Queensland economy.


CEO of StartupAUS, Peter Bradd, said high-growth tech startups could account for $US109 billion in growth and 540,000 new Australian jobs in the next two decades, creating enormous opportunity for state governments to capitalise on.


“It’s a well known fact that high-growth startups generate 70-90 per cent of new jobs. The Queensland government is setting the agenda for other states and territories today with their Advance Queensland policy initiatives aimed at stimulating jobs growth via the local startup community,” said Mr Bradd. 


StartupAUS said the $24 million Startup Queensland program is a significant boost to startup formation and attraction in Queensland.


“We’re pleased to hear Queensland Premier, the Hon Ms Annastacia Palaszczuk MP, is planning to provide an integrated suite of seed funding, co-working space, mentoring, and connection to customers and markets for startups, as well as expanding STEM in Queensland schools.”


Mr Bradd said StartupAUS is keen to see other states and territories echo the Queensland government’s leadership.


“Giving focus and profile to growing our startup ecosystem and entrepreneurial community will help secure the next generation of Australian jobs and boost our economic future. This has to be a priority for all levels of government.


“We need to encourage more students and young people to think about becoming tech entrepreneurs, and contributing to that high-growth tech economy. Australia won’t be the lucky country forever, and we can no longer rely on traditional sectors such as mining or agriculture to prop us up on a fiscal level. 


“Australian political and business leaders need to take a cold, hard look at our economic future and more aggressively back the growth potential within our home-grown startup community,” he said.


The 2015 StartupAUS Crossroads Report identified that Australia records some of the lowest rates of startup formation, and one of the lowest rates of venture capital investment for a developed nation.[1]


Key economic growth recommendations in the Report for Australian governments, business and education sectors include:

o   Grow our pipeline of Australian entrepreneurs

o   Improve entrepreneurship education 

o   Increase the number of ICT professionals

o   Increase availability of early stage capital to startups

o   Address legal and regulatory impediments

o   Increase collaboration and international connectedness

o   Create a national innovation agency





Media Contacts:

Louise Proctor louise@launchgroup.com.au 02 9492 1003 / 0452 574 244


About StartupAUS

StartupAUS is a not-for-profit entity with a mission to transform Australia through technology entrepreneurship. StartupAUS believes a strong home-grown tech sector is vital to future Australian jobs and wealth. But getting there will require a national imperative to create the right environment, with a supportive culture and more entrepreneurs with the right skills.

For more information: www.startupaus.org  



17 Aug


by launch-admin Aug 17, 2015 0 News

The Australian Computer Society (ACS) urges the political parties to make digital economy issues an important part of the debate and discussion in the current election campaign. 

We live in a digital world where information and communications technology (ICT) sits at the heart of most of the products and services we now consume, and digital technologies are critical drivers of productivity growth, innovation, and higher standards of living.  Successful economies therefore need Governments that place a high priority on developing and sustaining a digital eco-system that ensures an adequate supply of ICT skills, a digitally-literate workforce, and ongoing collaboration between academia, industry, government and the community. 

For Queensland, a focus on digital economy issues is critical.  With the economy undergoing significant change, particularly as the resources sector moves from the construction phase to the production phase, we need to create new industries, new competitive advantage, and new opportunities for employment and growth. Digital technologies provide the essential foundation stone on which this growth will be delivered.   

ACS urges the next Queensland Government to have as its goal to make Queensland the leading digital economy in our nation.

To achieve this, the ACS recommends a focus on four key issues.

1                 Digital Economy Ministry & Digital Ministerial Advisory Council

To help build a world-leading digital economy, ACS calls on the incoming Queensland Government to establish a dedicated Digital Economy Ministry headed by a Cabinet Minister.  Further, to assist that Minister in this role, the Government should establish a Digital Ministerial Advisory Council.   The Council would provide the Minister with access to the relevant expertise, experience and insights from those in industry, academia, the education and training sector and the community sector.


ACS suggests the remit of the Council be to provide advice on issues and initiatives related to:

·       the demand and supply for appropriate ICT skills;
·       digital literacy of the workforce generally, but particularly Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs) and Not-for-Profits (NFPs); and
·       workforce development planning with a particular focus on researching the ICT skills and qualifications Queensland is likely to need in the next 5-10 years given the “disruption” being created by rapidly-advancing technologies.  
·       assisting key Queensland industries to become more competitive in a digital economy.

Membership of the Council should include representatives from the ICT industry, the ACS, broader employer representative groups, the education sector and relevant community groups.

2                 Digital Skills 

The help ensure Queensland has an adequate supply of the skilled ICT professionals, an incoming Government needs to ensure there is a stronger emphasis on learning and using digital technologies in the education system. 


Specifically ACS recommends:

·       Including a Digital Technologies subject as a mandatory element of primary and secondary school curriculum;
·       working with VET providers to encourage a greater focus on preparing students for a rapidly-changing job market disrupted by digital technologies. This, in part, means ensuring all students are required to attain some minimum level of ICT skills and competencies; and
·       establishing a process for Government, industry, employer and education stakeholders to work more collaboratively to help ensure ICT students (tertiary and VET) have greater exposure to work-integrated learning opportunities (eg internships).  The objective is to make graduates more work-ready by ensuring they possess the important ‘soft skills’ like project management, problem solving, stakeholder management, and strategic and creative thinking.
3                 Digital Literacy of Small to Medium Enterprises (SMEs)

Queensland has approximately 410,000 small businesses, representing over 96% of businesses State-wide, and employing approximately 50% of all private sector workers.  Given SMEs represent the vast majority of businesses in the economy, driving higher growth requires Governments to create an environment where these businesses can thrive.  In today’s world that means they must have certain minimum levels of digital competence and literacy.


However the findings of a PayPal Research project in 2013 on small business digital literacy indicates 3 in 5 SMEs claim low levels of digital literacy are preventing them from running their business more efficiently, and 4 in 5 suggest there should be more help and guidance to assist them embrace the digital economy[1].

To address this issue, the ACS recommends an incoming Queensland Government move beyond the usual education and awareness type campaigns Governments have typically pursued.  ACS instead suggests a more “hands on” program which firstly works with individual businesses to benchmark their digital literacy and identify their specific areas of weakness and then, based on the benchmarking results, help broker relationships between the businesses and relevant “best in breed” ICT suppliers and ICT professionals.


4                 Digital Cities

ACS recommends that to help promote the emergence of a truly digital economy and to also create heightened interest and expectation in the community about the benefits of digital technologies, an incoming Queensland Government commit to building one or more digital cities in Queensland by 2020.  A digital city deploys ICT technology deeply and extensively to generate significant community benefit and amenity through for example:

·       using physical infrastructure (eg roads, built environment) more efficiently and to support stronger and healthier economic, social, cultural development;
·       improving learning, adaptability and innovation;
·       improving community ability to respond more effectively to changing circumstances;
·       allowing citizens to engage more effectively in governance and decision-making through open innovation processes and e-participation; and
·       promoting a higher concentration of the creative industries, supported by strong knowledge and social networks and voluntary organisations in a low-crime setting.  


The Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE) – which is the world’s largest association of technical professionals with more than 400,000 members – defines Digital or Smart Cities as:


“A smart city brings together technology, government and society to enable the following characteristics: smart cities, a smart economy, smart mobility, a smart environment, smart people, smart living, smart governance[2].”


About the Australian Computer Society (ACS)

The Australian Computer Society (ACS) is Australia’s peak body for ICT professionals with around 22,000 members nationally.  A core function of the ACS is the assessment and accreditation of its members as Certified Technologists or Certified Professionals.  ACS also conducts research-based advocacy on behalf of members on public policy issues.

For more information about the ACS, please see www.acs.org.au.


Enquiries to Dr Nick Tate, Chair, Queensland Branch of ACS – 0412 674010