Day Four

Young Innovators Awards

The YiA Awards are a massive part of Groundswell, and take us back to the roots of where we have come from. This year the YiA team decide to focus on the Awards night – rolling the speeches that usually happen during the Forum in the morning into the evening event. It made for a truly incredible night, the best yet!

After a whole day of working through the top finalist entries, to an audience of over 300, the judges shared their top tips for aspiring innovators, which we’ve compiled into this blog, ‘Take your dreams and turn them into reality, because the world needs you’, a line from what Kirsty Traill, Vice President, Customer of Hootsuite shared with the audience. 

And, of course they announced the winners of the 2019 Young Innovators Awards

Today was also officially day three of the Design Thinking Experiment. The groups worked together to begin prototyping their ideas – exciting stuff! 

Day Five

Rhubarb Executive Breakfast and Rhubarb Innovation Summit

If you wanted to rub shoulders with the who’s who in business and hear from international speakers like IBM, Hootsuite, as well as local trailblazers like BBC Technologies, and controversial commentators like Ben Kepes this year – then we hope you managed to get a ticket to Rhubarb Executive Breakfast or the Rhubarb Innovation Summit. 

Speakers shared insights, stories and views that ranged from fascinating and informative to controversial. This made for great conversation during breaks and frenzied networking, as well as being a 100% value add for those who attended. 

Tickets sold out in a heartbeat, so make sure you buy yours early next year. 

Global Innovation and Entrepreneurship Challenge Final

These guys worked so hard – 12 hours straight on the business case they received, then practicing their presos, and then getting down to their final pitches before their panel of judges …. And the winners are: 

First: Queensland University of Technology, Brisbane

Second: Simon Fraser University, Vancouver

Third: University of Canterbury, Christchurch

Fourth: University of Otago, Dunedin 

Massive congrats to the winners, as well as to Waikato Management School who put so much work into this, and to all the participants. We hope you enjoyed your week in the sunny Bay of Plenty! 

Tauranga StartUp Weekend 

Yet another sold-out event with a large group of people who came together (most of whom who have never done a StartUP Weekend before), do work on ideas that are good for the world, bases around the Sustainable Development Goals

Friday night is a collision of new people and ideas, where strangers become friends and pitch great ideas to the rest of the group, who essentially vote on 8 or 9 to push forward over the next 50 hours of the weekend. Groups formed around some pretty exciting ideas – from the challenge of car centric cities, to micro investment platforms, to political engagement tools for local government to minimising waste created by the fashion industry. 

They work till midnight, and then return back to base at 8am Saturday as they work through a process of empathy, market research, customer validation… the list goes on.  

Day Six and Seven 

Saturday and Sunday of Groundswell featured the Tauranga StartUp Weekend crew doing hard mahi in preparation for pitching to judges on Sunday evening, and four revolutionary Little Inventors workshops. 

Little Inventors 

Last year this event sold-out in 10 hours. This year we quadrupled the size and smashed out four workshops for almost 90, 6-10 year olds over Saturday and Sunday. The amazing Little Inventors team of coaches and technicians that volunteered their time to co-design, collaborate and inspire worked alongside the children to help make their ideas a reality. This year the challenge was creating the ultimate tool for their superhero. 

We’re so grateful to Woolkin who put the hard-yards in on this event, and for support from the likes of Mitre10 who have come on board to make it happen. 

The Pitches – StartUp Weekend

After 54 hours of hard mahi the eight teams pitched to a packed-out audience and three judges. With 5 minutes to pitch and 3 minutes of questions, teams road tested their ideas with clicks of support, and some pretty tricky questions. 

With original ideas, passion and a tad of exhaustion, was a real battle of ideas for who would take the winning place and be awarded winner of StartUp Weekend 2019. 

… and the winner is…… you’ll have to come to the Groundswell Throwdown event to hear their winning pitch! 

Groundswell Throwdown

Sunday 8th September


Tauranga Art Gallery 


Drinks and canapes included

We welcome you to come and celebrate the good, and the awesome of Groundswell 2019.

Hear pitches from StartUp Weekend, Design Thinking Experiment, and the Global Innovation and Entrepreneurship Challenge. Be the first to see the first cut of the Groundswell 2019 video, and have the chance to see 100s of pics from the 40 events during Groundswell. Celebrate with all the volunteers and participants another epic Groundswell Festival of Innovation!