The OzAPP Awards are Australia’s biggest tech development competition and are held once a year in Perth, Western Australia.
The awards seek to stimulate innovative business culture in mobile, web and cloud domains by pairing start-up apps with global investors and experienced entrepreneurs.
This year, the OzAPP Awards were held as part of the West Tech Fest. This is a week-long program of events, which includes the OzAPP Awards, Mai Tai Australia, the Aurelius Digital dinner, Curtin Innovation round-table discussion and Start-Up weekend.
In a tightly contested field of five finalists, shortlisted from just under 200 entries within the Asia Pacific region, the winner emerged out of a little suburb north of Brisbane.
The winning app, ‘Ollo Mobile’, is a software/hardware combination that enables in-home monitoring for the elderly. CEO Hugh Geiger says the team was driven by a “passion for disrupting an industry that has shamefully failed to innovate”.
The runner-up team was husband and wife, Brendt Sheen and Molly Taylor, with their app, ‘Infinite Wardrobe’, a platform for buying and trading new and second hand fashion, with the added feature of social interaction around fashion.
Third place and the winner of the $10,000 Pre-Revenue Prize was ‘Project Tripod’ from NSW, led by Jordan Knight and Catherine Eibner. Their app allows the user to create collections of aligned images that highlight changes over time in a selected frame, creating a seamless time-lapse experience.
The final prize awarded on the evening was the $5,000 Curtin Make Tomorrow Better Prize, presented to the ‘Yugambeh’ app, which aims at preserving and promoting Aboriginal languages.
The Aurelius Digital Dinner held at Must Bar where three selected tech start-ups, including social networking app ‘Tiinkk’, pitched their ideas to investors from all over Australia. Attendees included Curtin Adjunct Professor and international angel investor, Bill Tai, Engineering Director for Facebook’s Graph Search Project and co-founder of Google Maps, Lars Rasmussen, and founder of the app ‘Voxer’, Tom Katis.
The winning apps
A connectivity app that allows seniors to stay in touch with family members while living an active and independent life. “Ollo mobile is developing a smart, wearable care system for seniors. Our mission is to connect millions of older people to their families better, so that they can live more active and independent lives,” says CEO Hugh Geiger.
A fashion networking app that allows individuals to buy and sell fashion items online. “The team has been putting in long hours and sleepless nights to get IW off the ground, and to have our hard work recognised has given the team even more motivation. We are honoured to have been selected as one of the winners for the OzAPP Awards,” says Managing Director, Molly Taylor.
An concept directed by previous leader of the Microsoft Bizspark program in Australia is Catherine Eibner’s Project Tripod. Eibner, a familiar name in the Australian start-up scene, has now joined Blue Chilli as the Lead Startup Advisor. “The entire Project Tripod team is super excited about being one of the top finalists selected for this year’s OzAPP Awards. We really believe that Project Tripod is a great idea, being built by a great team at the right time,” Eibner says.