I dropped in to eGroup WA last Tuesday evening to find a new and exciting dynamic. I must admit, it has been a few years since I last attended. Kids and a move to the hills have restricted my evening meetings. So I was in for a few surprises…
The first and biggest difference is the new location. No longer overlooking the city from the lofty eaves of Freehills in QV1, eGroup now resides in the leafy business district of West Perth. Utilising the generous support of Wrays IP Lawyers in their well appointed offices, eGroup is onto a good thing – with less traffic, free parking, ground floor and spacious meeting rooms.
Ever since its official inception in 2009 – it had been going for a few years before that in an ad hoc fashion – eGroup WA has encouraged an atmosphere of support and confidentiality for its members, which consist of managers, owners, investors and creators of digital businesses in WA and further afield.
This aspect has not changed and I was welcomed in, offered my name tag and shown the drinks and snacks, always one of my first stops.
I was now ready to chat with the old crowd.
Looking around I noticed the next big change, over the years the group had attracted a whole new bunch of members. There were still a few I recognised, but about 90% were new to me, and they were a lively bunch!
After a brief chat with Claire McGregor from the Founders Institute and a couple of other business owners it was time to get started.
Group president Greg Riebe began with a welcome and overview of the club’s purpose and then we had some member announcements. First up was Rob Nathan announcing the formation of a Perth Accelerator Working Group that aims to help create and secure investment for successful tech startups via establishment of a technology accelerator here in Perth. Good news indeed!
Next was Graeme Speak of GoPC, with great news about winning a funding round! This is a long story well worth telling in another article. Well done Graeme!
Claire reminded us that the Founder Institute was still open for applications, but be quick for this years intake. //SN will be soon be bringing you an interview with Adeo Ressi, CEO of FI.
Yours truly then had a quick self plug about //Startup News, encouraging everyone to get on board, get in touch and share their stories.
By this time my beer was gone but with no time to resupply, Grant Bissett from Pin Payments was up to tell us his journey, pains and achievements in rattling the online payment industry … especially the banks. If you want to catch this presentation he will be doing it again at Morning Startup tomorrow (9th April 2014).
eGroup’s own pitch pretty much sums their role in the WA startup ecosystem…
“Connecting with eGroup means your business is connected to a whole network of online businesses in WA and around Australia. We carefully select our members, speakers, and topics. This is why eGroup stands for high quality networking, trustworthy peer support and world class speakers and events.”
Over all, my reintroduction to eGroup WA was a nostalgic look to the future of the startup ecosystem in Perth. Keep it up eGroup!