Startup Ballarat
Where Startups Strike Gold


StartUp Ballarat seeks to unearth unique concepts and ideas within the Ballarat community, and to support and nurture new or potential Ballarat business founders along their entrepreneurial journey; to take great ideas from a fledging concept to a successful business, which will contribute to our economy and fantastic Ballarat lifestyle. The program nurtures the growth of the idea through the business ecosystem, to subsequently progress the concept to an established business.

Ballarat is an inherently creative city, which has always been home to great ideas and innovation.  In a world of digital disruption, artificial intelligence, automation and global-scale data collection, we want to take Ballarat’s creative spirit, reward our inquisitive citizens and nurture the development of innovative concepts and ideas within our community. It is those innately human creative skills that will keep us at the forefront of innovation and enable us to continually find opportunities in change.

Ballarat has a startup community which is welcoming, supportive and growing – and we invite you to be a part of it.

StartUp Ballarat provides a series of coworking days, meetups, masterclasses and other opportunities which will introduce you to other like-minded people, provide you with an opportunity to make new business connections and equip you with skills and knowledge to take your idea to the next stage.

StartUp Ballarat provides a series of coworking days, meetups, masterclasses and other opportunities which will introduce you to other like-minded people, provide you with an opportunity to make new business connections and equip you with skills and knowledge to take your idea to the next stage.

We invite you to play your part.

StartUp Ballarat is made possible by the City of Ballarat, with support from LaunchVic

News, Videos and Resources


Anyone is welcome to participate in the following free events throughout 2018 and 2019, whether you already have an idea for a new business venture or are just interested in learning more about the process.

Events will be held at either Platypus Coworking (Level 2, 51 Lydiard Street South) or Runway Ballarat (Ground Floor, 124 Albert Street, Ballarat). Some events will require pre-registration via our Eventbrite page. While we will endeavour not to change locations of any scheduled meetings, there may be some unexpected situations where we need to, so it is recommended that you check back just prior to the date to confirm.

Meet Ups

Walk in the door, grab yourself a name tag and introduce yourself to your new startup friends! You could be in for a new business journey together.

Coworking Trials

Work with likeminded startup founders, to cross-collaborate and share concepts and ideas. Please register to secure your space via our Eventbrite page.


We are excited to offer our community the opportunity to take part in a series of 4 masterclasses offering an introduction to human-centred design, design thinking and innovation. They will be delivered by Ballarat's own Splendid Studios. These masterclasses are ideal for anyone currently exploring a start up business idea. The sessions will be highly interactive, offering at least one practical exercise per event. The four sessions will be linked thematically but will be standalone; attendees will derive benefit irrespective of the number of sessions they attend. Lunch and materials will be provided.

Hackathons and workshops

Hackathons are design sprints that typically last anywhere from 1 – 3 days. These design sprints bring creatives and entrepreneurs together to intensely collaborate on a common theme, problem statement or opportunity. Often Hackathons result in new and creative ideas that participants can evolve with the coordinators, public or private sectors to form into new business ideas.

Workshops being delivered through the StartUp Ballarat program include the delivery of Internet of Things (IoT) workshops by the Ballarat Hackerspace. These workshops will introduce concepts of IoT to entrepreneurs throughout the region and how IoT can be leveraged to enhance your business and collect new data. Participants of these workshops will take home their own IoT kit that can be used for their business ideas.

Dates for 2019 will be confirmed soon!

Existing Ballarat business community

Commerce Ballarat is the chamber of commerce for Ballarat. Commerce Ballarat offers a wide variety of services to its members, conducts regular Buy Local campaigns and are the facilitator of the Ballarat Business Excellence Awards, along with many other initiatives including Business Day Out, BisNet Breakfasts, B31 Ballarat Business Month, Business Mentoring Program, After Five, Young Professionals Network and many business development events.

More information and event dates can be found on the Commerce Ballarat website.


It is sometimes difficult to differentiate between a startup and a small business.

A startup differs to a small business largely in its focus on growth, innovation and in its behaviours.

A startup is a business venture which is unique and different from mainstream businesses. They’re highly scalable, disruptive and use innovation. As they expand, they create jobs and wealth, making them an important part of the mix in Victoria’s economy.

Victoria is home to more than 2,700 startups, with more than half within the technology industry. Startups that are exceptionally successful and have a valuation over $1 billion are known as Unicorns. Some examples of Unicorns in Victoria include REA Group, Seek, CarSales, MYOB, Aconex and Envato. Collectively these startups are now worth more than $32 billion.

If you have a business idea or an innovative concept, StartUp Ballarat is available to support you.

StartUp Ballarat targets a mix of people, with the overall objective to facilitate collaboration involving innovative thinking within our community. Some of these community groups may include, but are not strictly limited to:

  • Commuters to Melbourne, who have developed an innovative concept which could progress to an established business within Ballarat
  • Existing business owners, who have an innovative concept within their respective industry and are looking for support to progress the concept
  • Mumpreneurs - Mums within the workforce or at stay at home mums, who have developed an idea or a market gap, but are not sure how to move their idea from a concept to a business
  • Seniorpreneurs - Retired community members who have developed a market leading solution or who have identified a market gap and looking for options to progress the idea to a business
  • Corporate employees who have a business idea outside their corporate role and are consequently looking to establish a business
  • University students who can add value to concepts developed by other community members or who have their own capacity and willingness to progress the idea into a business
  • Other community members who have developed an innovative idea or industry solution which could have the potential to be disruptive within the existing market

Put simply, if you have a great business idea, StartUp Ballarat encourages you to get involved in this exciting new initiative – and become part of our startup community!

This program will introduce you to services available within the Ballarat community, to assist you in developing your concept from an idea to a scalable business.

StartUp Ballarat will provide you with a work space and consequently opportunities to meet other people working at the same stage as you.

It will introduce you to programs and events to help build your skills and develop your concept to an established business.

Scaleup is the phase directly following startup when a business enters a growth phase following successful validation of its product within the marketplace, and economic viability.

Incubators provide reduced cost or free office space to startups and provide focused training and connections to mentoring.

Accelerators provide comprehensive programs run over several weeks to support the entire team in their journey to develop a prototype, validate the market, grow the team and establish the infrastructure upon which the startup will grow.


We would love to hear from you!
send an email to the team.