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Media release - ocean city labs opens its Maroochydore home


Startup hub provides centre for Sunshine Coast tech innovators



27 April 2023


The Sunshine Coast last night celebrated the launch of Ocean City Labs, a Maroochydore based tech hub bringing together local entrepreneurs to support their journey from inception to scaling globally.


Opened by the Mayor of Sunshine Coast Council, Mark Jamieson along with co-founder Declan Vanderhor; ACS Director of Innovation Labs, Pauline Fetaui; Ocean City Labs provides entrepreneurs on the Sunshine Coast with access to programs and resources, including co-working spaces, and a dynamic entrepreneurial community powered by prominent QLD Tech hub, River City Labs.


Sunshine Coast Council Mayor Mark Jamieson said the Coast was rapidly building a profile as the ideal location for start-ups and emerging technology.


“It’s great we are responding to that demand by having a presence for potential innovators and tech entrepreneurs to come to the heart of Maroochydore and enjoy the benefits of this facility.


“Ocean City Labs is a great example of the work being done to build our innovation ecosystem and ensure that our region remains a leading place to live, learn, work and play,” Mr Jamieson said.


Ocean City Labs (OCL) is a partnership agreement between the ACS River City Labs and Alumni of River City Labs and Emerging Technology Company Tablogs.


Tablogs Founder Declan Vanderhor is a Sunshine Coast resident and saw the opportunity to connect the community of technologists and entrepreneurs in his area, and do this by partnering with River City Labs, with their established network of programs, resources, support for emerging technology companies.


River City Labs programs and services will be offered to all Ocean City Lab members digitally, providing access to critical networks and support to help companies grow.


"We already have a few tech businesses working in Ocean City Labs and we’ve only just opened. It’s exciting working in a space where we all get to learn from each other. We can’t wait to welcome other emerging businesses to Ocean City Labs”, Declan Vanderhor said.


Pauline Fetaui added: “it’s fantastic the Sunshine Coast’s growing ecosystem of entrepreneurs, investors, and technologists are creating a swirl of innovation and harnessing local talent in the local community.


“The Sunshine Coast has so much tech and industry talent innovating together, and we see Ocean City Labs as a great example of how communities around Australia can bring together that talent to connect into the national and global ecosystem of emerging technology whilst keeping it local.”


The official opening was celebrated with members of the innovation and technology ecosystem, including the sponsors McCullough Robertson, Office of the Queensland Chief Entrepreneur and Advance Queensland and the QLD ACS with Mayor Mark Jamieson officially opening Ocean City Labs.  This was followed by a Panel joined by Ben Wood, (Corporate Partner McCullough Robertson), Shahirah Gardener (Co-Founder of Finch and Venture Partner at Skalata), Declan Vanderhor (Founder of Tablogs, partner Co-founder of Ocean City Labs), who explored the current economic headwinds and strategies for emerging technologies globally and locally, moderated by Pauline Fetaui (Director of ACS Labs and Co-founder partner of Ocean City Labs, Something Fest. Something Tech.).


Ocean City Labs is located at 2-4 Ocean Street, Maroochydore and more information is available at https://rivercitylabs.acs.org.au/residents.html.








Further information


Troy Steer


Director of Corporate Affairs and Public Policy


M – 0417 173 740


E – troy.steer@acs.org.au



About River City Labs


River City Labs fosters the growth of startup companies across Queensland wanting to solve big problems. We provide resources to empower, support and connect entrepreneurs. Central to everything we do is a focus on collaboration and connection.


Since 2012 over 950 entrepreneurs have called RCL home. Through our events program we have welcomed more than 32,000 guests into our community by hosting over 1000 events aimed at supporting founders on their entrepreneurship journey.


River City Labs powers a range of programs, events, and engagement opportunities, enabling industry, education, government to innovate differently and connect with the start-up community.


River City Labs is based out of the Fortitude Valley, QLD, and part of the ACS group of Innovation services including The Labs in the Sunshine Coast (Ocean City Labs), Sydney (Harbour City Labs) and Melbourne (Bay City Labs) and Startup Catalyst (Emerging Technology Trade Mission brand).



About Us


ACS is the professional association for Australia’s technology sector and the largest community with 47,000+ members from across business, government and education.


ACS champions the technologies, people and skills critical to Australia’s future, creating value for ACS members, the tech sector and society in four ways:




Our focus is on fostering an innovative and inclusive community that is dedicated to powering positive change through technology.




We set the standard for assessing, developing and recognising the skills and experience of technology professionals.




We create career pathways to guide technology professionals and ensure Australia has a pipeline of talent with the right skills and knowledge.




We assess and support skilled technology migrants to address critical skills shortages, improve diversity and enrich Australia’s workforce.


Find out more at: acs.org.au