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    Coat of ArmsMedia Release
    Minister for State Development, Employment and Industrial Relations
    The Honourable John Mickel

    Smart State’s i.lab incubator still has eye for innovation

    Minister for State Development, Employment and Industrial Relations
    The Honourable John Mickel

    Tuesday, May 29, 2007

    Smart State’s i.lab incubator still has eye for innovation

    Cutting edge innovations continue to emerge from the award-winning i.lab technology incubator thanks to Queensland Government support.

    Attending a breakfast event held by i.lab in St Lucia today, Minister for State Development John Mickel congratulated the Queensland Government-funded facility for its success in helping young high-tech companies turn their bright ideas into profits.

    “A device to monitor snow sport enthusiasts’ safety and performance, a DNA test for identifying bird flu and mobile phone technology that tells you where your friends are – these are some of the latest innovations to come out of i.lab,” Mr Mickel said.

    “Once fledgling Queensland firms begin to commercialise their intellectual property and technologies, they need access to collaborative space, networks, and business advice to thrive.

    “i.lab’s resources, which includes a mentoring program where people can access venture capital, legal, finance and marketing expertise, have helped 70 residential business start-ups and hundreds more external firms since 2000 – and with outstanding results.

    “Innovative i.lab companies have gone on to generate 360 Queensland jobs, and in the past three years, they’ve raised more than $35 million in capital.”

    Up to 30 emerging companies are based at i.lab at any one time, creating cutting edge technology across a range of areas from computer games development, transport logistics, communications electronics, to biotechnology and sports science.

    Mr Mickel thanked i.lab’s 35-strong panel of mentors for their support.

    “Members of the panel are industry experts drawn from a diverse range of sectors. Collectively they have hundreds of years of relevant experience and provide hundreds of hours each year to mentor i.lab clients.”

    Mr Mickel said past and present i.lab members from its Toowong facility and Eight Mile Plains bio.incubator – housing life science and biotechnology businesses at Brisbane Technology Park – were continuing to achieve great things in Australia and overseas.

    “Take Locatrix Communications for example. The company’s Uandme mobile phone social networking service, launched in 2007 in partnership with Telstra, enables friends to share their locations or find places to meet like restaurants or bars on their mobile phones.
    "And there’s also biotech company BioChip Innovations which expects to release a new genetic testing product by the end of the year. This is poised to help hundreds of medical and veterinary research laboratories worldwide identify different strains of influenza – including bird flu – quicker and cheaper than any other product currently on the market.”

    Mr Mickel said SnowSports Interactive and Sound Evolution were also great ambassadors for i.lab-bred innovation.

    “Snow fields in North America are adopting SnowSports Interactive’s high-tech GPS-based tracking equipment to monitor the safety and performance of skiers and snowboarders,” Mr Mickel said.

    “And Sound Evolution recently received an $85,000 Innovation Start-Up Scheme (ISUS) grant to help with the development and commercialisation of new sound editing technology which is almost ready for the market.”

    Mr Mickel said i.lab had helped cut years off the time companies could have expected to grow and attract funding for their ventures outside the facility.

    “The Queensland Government is committed to providing support and opportunities for researchers, innovators and entrepreneurs through organisations such as i.lab.”

    Company contact: i.lab Incubator, contact Anne-Marie Birkill on 3327 9802 or visit www.ilab.com.au

    Media contact: Chris Brown 3224 7349 or Elouise Campion 3224 6784.

    29 May, 2007