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Riding a new wave

Three budding Sunshine Coast entrepreneurs are seeing their ideas come to life.
GI mentor Cindy Vogels with Georgia Switala


Riding a new wave

Three budding local entrepreneurs are seeing their ideas come to life.

An app that stops drivers using mobile phones, another that helps fashionistas find the clothes they are looking for and a portable mobile phone battery recharger are the top three ideas pitched by budding Sunshine Coast entrepreneurs in the 2018 Generation Innovation Challenge.

Selected from a field of 10 competitors, Ray Steele, Georgia Switala and Te Peina Henare have made it through to stage five of the six-stage competition for young people aged between 15 and 25.

Stages one to four included signing up, designing the concept, making the pitch and promoting the venture. The final three receive seed-funding up to $2500 with an opportunity to raise further funds with help from Generation Innovation (GI) through stage five – crowd-funding.

The three entrepreneurs put their business models to the test, raising more than $3000 combined, and Georgia was ecstatic to have beaten her $2000 target.

The 15-year-old’s business, Fashion Hunta, provides retail fashion consumers with a platform to search the stock of local businesses with ease. With one of Australia’s leading fashion designers, Cindy Vogels, as her GI mentor, Georgia says it has been an amazing experience.

Te Peina’s venture Ziing is a simple-to-use, single-use charging device compatible with all smartphones and Ray’s Driving Mate concept offers incentives for people to put their phone away when they are behind the wheel.

The first of its kind anywhere in the world, the GI Challenge was established by Ted O’Brien, who is now the Federal Member for Fairfax, and connects young entrepreneurs with the marketplace.

Visit to keep updated on the progress of the GI finalists.

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