STARTING LINE: Stephen Saunders, of Coffs Harbour City Council (centre), with 2018 finalists of Startup Coffs Coast.
STARTING LINE: Stephen Saunders, of Coffs Harbour City Council (centre), with 2018 finalists of Startup Coffs Coast. Contributed

Pitch comp to Startup something spectacular

THE stage is set for the Startup Coffs Coast final at C.ex Coffs this Saturday.

The Coffs Coast's newest inventors and entrepreneurs will go head-to-head in a live pitch competition for a share of a $30,000 prize package.

Over the past few months Coffs Harbour City Council's start-up incubator Six Degrees has been supporting local entrepreneurs to hone their pitch skills.

From that pool of talent the finalists were selected and will pitch their ideas to a panel of expert judges and in front of a live audience.

CHCC section leader industry and destination development Stephen Saunders said this year was the biggest field yet, with 21 submissions.

"The judging panel was very impressed with the range of submissions and narrowing it down was no easy feat,” he said.

"We now have a finalists list of seven start-up business ideas, ranging from a sports medicine product to technology and eco-conscious products.”

"This exciting competition is sure to be a highlight of the day.”

Last year's winner, environmental scientist and teacher Louise Hardman, has gained global and even royal attention - her waste plastic recycling machine, The Shruder, caught the eye of Prince Charles.

Startup Coffs Coast is the biggest start-up event on the Mid North Coast.

As well as the pitch competition, the audience will see innovative local businesses in Startup Alley and the Innovation Lab where experts will speak on the Future of Work, surrounded by active robots from Macquarie University.

Pre-register online for free entry on the day at www.startupcoffscoast.com.

2018 Startup Coffs Coast finalists

Thrive (Sarah Pryor) - an app that connects individuals, groups, businesses and organisations to local volunteer opportunities.

Rate Us (Lynne Parnell and Lorraine Chowdury) - app for clients in the aged care, disability and education sectors to give feedback on the service they receive.

Dreamtime Mentors (Matthew Smith) - a zero-waste education consultancy that develops, designs, manufactures and supplies zero-waste reusable products.

Move To My Town (Roger Tindale) - website and app designed for users considering a move to towns and cities in regional and rural Australia.

Kiss Ankle Co (Craig Hubbard) - an ankle brace that works with the joint's own biomechanics to prevent, repair and regenerate ankle injuries.

Smart Trail (Chris Win) - a physical network of low-energy Bluetooth beacons designed to engage visitors via smart devices in the Coffs Harbour area.

Healing Chambers (Peter Stone) - set to manufacture monoplace, state-of-the-art hyperbaric oxygen therapy chambers for global distribution to a growing market.