Eight incredible smart cities startups have been selected to take part in the CityConnect accelerator program with each receiving comprehensive support, a tech team to bring their idea to life and $25,000 in pre-seed capital. The final selection was announced on 26 September at a special showcase event supported by AdvanceQLD at The Precinct in Brisbane.

Here’s how it happened…


Building the cities of tomorrow

Over the last month we opened the floodgates to entrepreneurs, inviting them to submit their ideas to disrupt the way we live and work in cities. We were absolutely floored by the incredible response generated by the community, fielding more than 200 applications for the CityConnect program.

From these 200, we selected 20 finalists to participate in an intense two week startup bootcamp over Sept 12-25. These impressive smart city startups were put through BlueChilli’s rigorous program where their ideas were pressure-tested, refined and validated to give the founders the best chance to pitch for funding.

By the time pitch day came around, the participants were exhausted but enthusiastic. For many who were scattered across Australia and New Zealand, this meant travelling to meet up with fellow finalists in Brisbane and pitch for a coveted place in the accelerator. Each startup was invited to present their company to BlueChilli’s expert selection panel.

The panel intensely scrutinised the presentations in order to identify the most promising startups to take part in the accelerator. Pitch day ultimately culminated in a celebratory evening event where selected startups were able to share their ideas in front of an audience of fellow startup founders, bootcampers, advisors and investors.

Introducing the inaugural CityConnect cohort

Selecting the 20 startups to participate in the bootcamp was challenging in itself, making the final selection even more difficult.

Each and every startup in the bootcamp pioneered an idea to unlock innovation in our cities, and each deserved support for their ideas.

The successful 8 startups (and their location) in the CityConnect accelerator are:

  • Civic Switchboard – a platform for engagement with residents in a particular area (Brisbane)
  • Coworkally – A virtual co-work community for remote workers (Brisbane)
  • InnDox – digital log books for your property (Brisbane)
  • NAQMap – integrated air and noise quality information for property buyers, accommodation providers, and developers (Toowoomba/Brisbane)
  • Recrew – platform for fast supply of quality subcontractors (Sydney)
  • SciGround – augmented reality for playgrounds (Adelaide/Sydney)
  • Sirius – improved information and engagement around utility bills (Wellington NZ / Melbourne)
  • Smart Linc – transparency of developer contributions (Sydney)

A big congratulations to all those who were selected for the program as well as the startups who came through the intense two week bootcamp. This is only the start of your journey.

Our team of experts in engineering, product, design and marketing look forward to working closely with each selected startup over the next six months to grow and scale these brand new businesses.

Stay tuned as they build the future of smart cities!

Andy Barley from SciGround presenting


What is CityConnect

CityConnect is a six-month accelerator program, with accelerator participants benefiting from a technology team to build their minimum viable product (MVP); an assigned Product Manager; weekly guidance from an a assigned Entrepreneur-in-Residence; a market-proven curriculum; a cohort of peers; co-working space in Sydney, Melbourne and Brisbane; access to subject matter experts and customers; and initial pre-seed investment. CityConnect is supported by Advance Queensland’s industry accelerator program, with the core curriculum components delivered from BlueChilli Brisbane to our offices in Sydney and Melbourne.

CityConnect is transforming cities and communities through entrepreneurship on a global scale. We welcome partnerships with organisations and individuals that seek to benefit from access to the latest innovations in smart cities. Partners can support our CityConnect startups via expertise, market feedback, and piloting of solutions.