8SX - Great South By Startup Spring 2012 in SydneyAbout this time two years ago, Sydney based entrepreneur and investor Pete Cooper told me about an event he was putting together for people in the startup scene in Sydney.

Pete Cooper - founder of SydStartThat became the first SydStart event in 2010 at the Australian Technology Park, with about 165 startups, students, investors and others participating and very positive feedback.

The event has sure grown.

Just two years on, SydStart Spring 2012, is expecting somewhere in the region of 1,500 to the exhibit and around 1,000 inside the auditorium at the Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre, Darling Harbour, on September 10.

SydStart Spring 2012 will be the main event for a range of events in Sydney, nationally, regionally, being grouped as 8SX.

Why 8SX?

In Pete Cooper’s words:

It is modelled on (South by South-West, in the US they call it simply ‘South-by’) based in Austin Texas. Since we are in Australia – also known as the ‘Great (gr8) South Land’ – we call it Great South By, or 8SX for short. And we think there are infinite opportunities for startups in South-East Asia.

The 8SX vision is to build out from SydStart a national and regional startup movement encompassing Asia and Oceania.

8SX as a focal point for innovation in this populous region.

What’s been the experience of participants in SydStart?

Check out this video for some sound bites and energy that jumps off the screen.

How to book

Sydney Convetion and Exhibition CentreGiven the exponential growth of interest in SydStart over just two years, my hunch is it would be a good idea for anyone interested to grab a seat now for September 10. Attendance prices are very reasonable and the early bird prices even more so.

In the meantime, you can keep up with developments by following SydStart on Twitter and like the 8SX Facebook page.

And if you have your own startup event in Australia or the region, why not see about linking it up with 8SX?

Image credit: Sydney Convention and Exhibition Centre, by JamesatUni, Flickr, CC BY 2.0

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Des Walsh is an executive coach. He helps business owners and entrepreneurs worldwide deal effectively with the feeling of being left behind or overwhelmed, or both, about social media – especially LinkedIn - and how to engage safely and effectively with social media to help grow their business. Connect with Des on LinkedIn, Google+ and Twitter. And to stay in the loop, get Des’s weekly Social Business Bites (select snippets of his "best of the week" online finds).