Boost for migrant, refugee start-ups

08 November 2017

Migrants and refugees will be given opportunities to thrive as entrepreneurs in Victoria thanks to LaunchVic.

Through funding of $1.4 million, LaunchVic is supporting five organisations that encourage and enable migrant and refugee entrepreneurs to engage in Victorian start-up businesses.

This allocation – LaunchVic’s third funding round – is based on research that shows that migrants and refugees are particularly well-suited to the start-up world, being twice as likely to start a business as those born locally, and more willing to take business risks.

Hatch Quarter, one of the grant recipients, will create a playbook to help first generation migrants and refugees entrepreneurs get established. It will also deliver meetups to build a supportive community for start-ups with international ambitions. Laika Academy will be funded to create The Generation Launch, an innovative program to support migrants and refugees to actively join the Victorian start-up ecosystem. 

Of the five projects to be funded, three will be rolled out across regional and rural Victoria, to ensure access to resources by multicultural communities across the state. 

These include Free to Feed’s Now to Launch incubator, which will offer 60 start-ups from Melbourne and regional Victoria run by migrants and refugees the chance to take their food start-up concepts from idea to launch. 

LaunchVic funding will also enable Enterprising Partnerships’ Cultov8 program to run 10 hackathons across Victoria, including Geelong, Shepparton, Ballarat, Broadmeadows and Dandenong. Cultov8 will also include a 12-week pre-accelerator to help young migrants and refugees consolidate their start-up ideas and learn start-up skills. 

YGAP will be funded to create YGAP First Gens, a program to support 36 start-ups led by new migrants or refugees. This program will includes a series of workshops in Melbourne and rural centres to help build start-ups that focus on problems affecting at-risk or disadvantaged migrants. LaunchVic is an independent company that supports entrepreneurs to develop and grow businesses. 

As part of its election commitment to establish a new start-up entity, the Victorian Government is providing $60 million in funding to the organisation over four years. 

All recipients will also benefit from cash and in-kind investments, bringing the total combined investment to more than $2 million.

To find out more about the funding recipients visit the LaunchVic website

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