Plus Eight wraps up for 2018
Last Wednesday night saw our program in Perth (PER2) in partnership with Plus Eight Accelerator come to an end for this year’s 7 standout teams.
Now in its second year, Spacecubed’s Plus Eight has seen a total of 13 teams go through the accelerator. Commencing in March, the program has been a whirlwind 6 months of growth, and overcoming challenges for this year’s cohort. Jumping in with a trip to the US in the first month for 10 intensive days of meetings, networking, and coaching, the teams haven’t slowed down since. SpacetoCo were lucky enough to continue onto Boston, after winning the Masschallenge Accelerator, the global not-for-profit startup accelerator.
Over the course of the program all the teams have seen significant wins for their business with every team experiencing growth, with over $900k of funding raised between them.
Proptech startup, Udrew, is a stellar example of how automation can reduce costs in everyday situations, raising over $500k in funding and being oversubscribed 300% on their seed raise. They were also finalists for Startup of the Year at the WAITA awards, won the People’s Choice Award at the Australian Proptech Summit, are current finalists for the Western Australian Emerging Innovator of the year (to be announced in November), and to back it up have won a place to pitch at Tech23 in Sydney this October.
SpacetoCo, whose platform allows users to list and hire space, saw a 600% increase in spaces committed to listing, surpassed 500 bookings (some into 2019), and tripled the total value of bookings through their platform, not to mention their national appearance on Shark Tank, where they were offered $210k of investment from well-known shark Steve Baxter. “Being part of a cohort with other inspiring founders, has helped us through the startup journey.” says Jeremy Hurst, Co-founder.
Patent-pending modular art startup, Mureus, took their first international order as a result of solidifying their online presence and an increased marketing focus, though the best part of the last 6 months for founder Flora, was the birth of her child. Taking on these multiple challenges created a need to learn to work lean, fast, and focussed, putting Mureus in a strong position for growth in 2019.
Travel app startup, Airguides, successfully pivoted their business over the course of the accelerator to allow for greater clarity of brand and vision, established partnerships with over 150 key travel influences from all over the world (pre-launch), and secured acclaimed ex-Lonely Planet writer Jay Cooke as their chief editor. Getting ready to launch their app next month, founders Bibi Jellema and Paul Rowsthorn are seasoned professionals at the startup game with Airguides being their second venture together targeting the lucrative millennial travel market.
Lily and Fox, who after spending two years in an R&D phase have launched their nail polish alternative successfully in 2018. With only organic growth to date they have already hit over 500 orders per week, and are currently setting up a fulfilment centre in the US to meet growing demand from the market there, which accounts for 65% of their revenue. “We’ve seen phenomenal success in the United States, and look forward to capitalising on that going into 2019” says founder Sean Barry.
Other highlights have included Kooda being named as finalists for the Impact Seed Pitch Night and fast gaining a reputation as one of Australia’s next big forces in the waste management space following on from a flurry of media attention including Today Tonight and features in several magazines, Kin Childcare pitching at Startcon’s Pitch for a Million Dollars as well as far outpacing their anticipated growth through the life of the program – as Nick Lonie, Kin Co-founder put it, “nothing prepared us for the speed of our business growth, fantastic learnings and extensive networking opportunities experienced through the Plus Eight program”.
When asked what the best part of Plus Eight has been they all agree getting to know so many awesome people & businesses. “The best part about the Plus Eight accelerator is the networking. The amount of talented and interesting people you meet during the course of the program is incredible and they are all willing to help.” says Bibi Jellema, Airguides.com Co-founder.