Phew! We’ve made it to the end of the year. And what a year it has been!
I’m humbled to have been able to work with incredible team members, entrepreneurs and corporate partners to help bring their ideas to life.
I really do see BlueChilli as helping build new entrepreneurial ecosystems by partnering with domain experts and helping them build their tech, pilot new ideas with our corporate partners, raise capital and hire their teams.
Our efforts to build an inclusive culture have panned out this year; in 2018 we again achieved parity, with 50 percent of our startups either lead or co-led by a female entrepreneur. This was largely aided by our award-winning and internationally recognised SheStarts program where we showcase the journey of incredible female founders in the SheStarts 2018 Documentary Series and this year we’ve partnered with Google For Startups to take our SheStarts program globally.
Personally, I’ve been privileged to work with some amazing forward-thinking enterprises and corporates who have all committed to making a difference through investment, providing pilot opportunities and also for bringing an entrepreneurial culture within.
Through our partnerships, 70 percent of all startups achieved at least one pilot and we were able to demonstrate a return on investment in just a few months.
We broke records with our bootcamp programs, with BlueChilli running the largest bootcamp in Australia with 40 Xcelerate participants, and then broke our own record with later in the year with 60 founders in the Stockland Accelerator bootcamp! This work has seen us support startups in New Zealand as we start to expand our reach to globally-focused organisations.
Our Technology Team
Our technology team now does not charge for its time or services, bringing true alignment between our founders and our team. By the numbers, BlueChilli invested 19,124 hours of engineering to bring 44 new projects to life.
We’ve continued to invest in our technology capability and this year saw the first of hardware startups being developed, with four in the portfolio.
Our hardware lab manufactured 40 prototypes which have resulted in orders for over 1,000 devices for our startups.
Our startups have continued to achieve success in investment. Over the course of 2018, the BlueChilli team facilitated $11.5M in new capital across 17 startups. The average amount of seed capital for each startup was $680k.
Highlights this year were cybersecurity startup and Westpac Disrupt alumni, Responsight who closed a $2M seed round from Cathorna, electrical safety compliance provider QuickSafety closed over $400K and business-sharing economy platform BenchOn closed $650K in an oversubscribed seed round.
This year also saw us partnering with Hatcher in Singapore with a commitment to invest in the next 240 startups from the BlueChilli ecosystem.
Overall, 2018 has been a fantastic year for the BlueChilli team. We’ve employed 16 people and have had six straight months in the top 10% of all tech companies in terms of culture and engagement.
Our goals for next year are ambitious, we’re expanding our reach internationally and will be doubling down on our hardware tech capability. Our startups are getting bigger and more mature, and I’m really looking forward to seeing what our team, our startups and our partners build together.
Here’s what 2018 looked like By the Numbers:
- Number of new startups started: 32
- Number of corporate pilots: 25
- Percent of corporate pilots across the BlueChill portfolio: 70%
- Total capital raised for our startups: $11.5 Million
- Average seed capital raised for our startups: $680,000
- Applications received: 1,300
- New people employed: 16
- Number of tweets: 1,835
- Number of events we ran: 11
- Number of national conferences we were involved with: 13
- Number of ecosystem events at BlueChilli Sydney: 84
- Number of people through BlueChilli: 3,384
- Number of CCA drinks consumed: 2,916
- Number of CCA Coffee Capsules used: 1,920
- Number of media mentions: 135
- Number of hours of product development: 19,123.9
- Number of lines of code committed: 4,485,096 *
- Number of projects launched: 44
- Number of hardware prototypes manufactured: 40
- Number of hardware components consumed 3,400
- Meters of PETG filament used. 1650m
- Amount of data downloaded: 31.56 TB downloaded
*We believe Lines of Code should NEVER be used as a success metric (we focus on outcome rather than output)