Entrepreneurs group trek to Antarctica, form 98 start-ups

A recent 11-day entrepreneurial forum held in Antarctica and attended by 106 Aussies has resulted in 98 new businesses being formed. 

A recent 11-day entrepreneurial forum held in Antarctica and attended by 106 Aussies has resulted in 98 new businesses being formed. 

The entrepreneurial movement, known as Unstoppables and the brainchild of Julio De Laffitte, saw 68 per cent of attendees successfully forming new business ventures and a further 40 per cent investing in a fellow member’s business. Prior to departure, Laffitte’s goal was to generate $1 Billion worth of business over the next five years and to create up to 20 new entities that solved critical issues for Australia. Laffitte said this result is proof that, given the right environment, Australian business can flourish.

“The idea for Unstoppables was born out of frustration 18 months ago,” Laffitte said. “I was at a business function held by politicians and they were proposing the best solution for Queensland’s debt crisis was to sell the State’s assets.  To me, this was crazy. Anyone in business knows you don’t sell off your assets in order to create wealth.

“You should be creating businesses in order to drive the economy, and most of the other businesspeople in the room agreed with me. That was the motivation behind Unstoppables, and to now see 98 new businesses formed so effortlessly through the power of collaboration is inspiring. Politicians need to realise, to create businesses that drive the economy, you must bring back the spirit of entrepreneurship. We have an unbelievable wealth of talent chomping at the bit to succeed. As Australians, we just need to foster the right environment.”

And it seems Antarctica was the right environment for Unstoppables to have its inaugural expedition. Laffitte said the isolation and awe inspiring environment, coupled with the concentration of likeminded people, was an entrepreneurial nirvana. “We hand-selected the people on the expedition to ensure we had the right mix of established and up-and-coming entrepreneurs, the right concentration of investors and those looking for investment. Once on the boat, we sat back and watched the unbridled collaboration started to unfold before our very eyes.”

While collaborating to form news business was a key agenda, coming together to help others was of equal importance. “It all comes down to having profit with purpose, which was evident in so many of the collaborations in Antarctica… ‘How can I improve my business, but do it in a more sustainable way, or leave the world a better place?.”

The forum in Antarctica was the first of many unique events the Unstoppables are planning to ignite entrepreneurialism. In 2016, another group will head to the Amazon on a trip with a similar agenda.

For more information, visit www.unstoppables.com.au.

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