What is Spark Festival?

Spark Festival is a ten program of events and activities which showcases, supports and strengthens the vibrant startup and innovation ecosystem that exists in Sydney, and across all of NSW.

The 2017 festival will run from Friday October 13 through to Sunday October 22.

Most of the events on the program are organised and produced by the community, for the community. So if you've got an idea for an event focussing on startups, innovation or entrepreneurship you'd like to run as part of the program, we want to hear about it!

With such a large program (100 events in 2016 with more than 6000 attendees!), Spark is an initiative which represents an unprecedented level of collaboration between startups, corporates, education and all levels of government.

The Back Story

Spark Festival grew out of the highly successful Startup Week Sydney 2015.

Early in 2016 we reached out to the entire startup and innovation ecosystem to set up a series of meetings. Out of this evolved a group of hard working and passionate people - our Tracks Leads - who put up their hands to run a collection of events in late October that became the Spark Festival 2016 Program. The length and breadth of this program is testimony to the depth of enthusiasm for getting Sydney back on the map as a world class entrepreneurship and innovation city.

Spark Festival had inclusiveness and diversity built in from the start, and this shines through in our program: alongside events for people already working in the startup sector, there are numerous opportunities for those who are curious to find out what it's all about to take a peek and see where their skills might find a new home.

The Spark Festival Mission

Spark Festival is a project of Spark Festival Ltd, a not for profit whose objectives are to

  • provide opportunities for individuals of diverse background, age and gender to pursue and succeed in a career of entrepreneurship through events and other activities
  • connect entrepreneurs, industry groups, government and service providers, leading to the growth of vibrant startup communities across Australia
  • position Australia as a leading startup nation, fostering, attracting and retaining globally- recognised, talented individuals
  • support with industry development to help transition Australia’s industries towards a digital and technology future
  • help to provide training and awareness and skills for individuals of all ages, primary & secondary children and workers from any industry to help retrain and transition to new industries

Who's involved?

As a not for profit, Spark Festival is guided and supported by its board.

The Spark Festival program is developed with the ongoing support and input of the Tracks Leads: a collective united in their enthusiasm for growing and strengthening the Sydney startup ecosystem.

And keeping it all together is Program Director, Maxine Sherrin, the person to speak to if you'd like to get involved in Spark Festival in any way!