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Leading incubators and accelerators announce partnership program with oDesk

Wednesday, 18 September 2013 | By Rose Powell

Start-up accelerator programs Startmate, Pollenizer and AngelCube have partnered with international outsourcing platform oDesk in a new support program, oDesk Upstarts.


Start-ups involved in these programs will receive oDesk credits worth $US200 and recruitment support worth $US400.


The start-ups in the program will be able to access mentoring with the oDesk executive online, but also when the oDesk team is in Australia or the Silicon Valley.


Matt Cooper, vice president of business development at oDesk, told StartupSmart they were just moving out of their start-up phase and were looking forward to supporting Australian start-ups to avoid some of the painful mistakes they made.


“We’ve had lots of fits and starts about how do we use our own model to support our business,” Cooper says. “We see Sydney closing the gap with Silicon Valley rapidly. There is a lot of energy and focus, and a lot of great companies coming out of Australia and increasing interest from international investors.”


The idea for the program was born earlier this year when members of the oDesk executive were in Australia. This is the first country they’ve rolled it out in. Cooper says they intend to run similar programs internationally.


“We realised the vibrancy of the start-up ecosystem in Sydney, and all the great people, and we wanted to find a way to help them and become a more integral part of the start-up community here,” Cooper says.


Cooper says they’re looking forward to being part of the increasing start-up community cross-pollinisation between Sydney, where Pollenizer and Startmate are based, and Melbourne, where AngelCube is based.


Cooper says start-ups have always been a core market segment for them, and this program formalises historically strong relationships to the start-up community.


“What we’re most excited about is it puts some real structure and meat around this relationship. The start-up ecosystem is well known for helping each other out and if we’re going to become central to how start-ups build their business, we want to make sure we fire the first volley and help these companies get up and running,” Cooper says.