Brisbane-based company, Geobotica has a clear and simple vision: to make the world a better place through smart sensors. With almost $100,000 in Advance Queensland Ignite Ideas funding, this dream is fast becoming a reality. Geobotica used the funding to help launch their 3D Cognitive Mapping technology into the mining and major infrastructure inspection markets, creating two new jobs in the process.
We spoke with Geobotica’s Director, Lachie Campbell, about all the great work they’re doing now and the big plans they have for the future.
What inspired you to start your business?
Technology is changing everyday life for consumers in ways we could never have imaged decades ago, yet some industries have not seen much change in decades. We are focused on using Tech for Good; to make positive impacts on traditional industries to increase productivity and safety and reduce their environmental impact and burden they place on the planet.
What milestones have been reached?
Our first product to reach the market is 3D Cognitive Mapping. This product uses artificial intelligence (AI) and high-speed 3D scanning to map infrastructure and locate defects and damage which needs repairs.
This real-time mapping removes people from dangerous locations increasing safety. It also increases productivity by reducing the time needed to perform an inspection, while it also has great social benefit by keeping our major infrastructure functional and safe for longer.
What achievements are you most proud of to date?
We are particularly proud that our first revenue for our product was export revenue to Brazil to customise our system for bridge inspections. We developed a deep neural network capable of detecting sub-millimetre cracks in concrete while mapping the structure in 3D from a drone.
What are your business goals over the next 12-24 months?
Our goal in the next 12 to 24 months is to grow our business by reaching new markets in Australia and internationally. This will generate export revenue and jobs rights here in Queensland.
How will use your Ignite Ideas funding?
Our Ignite Ideas funding is being ploughed straight back into the Queensland economy by delivering employment opportunities in the technology sector. The majority of the funding is being directed to a Commercialisation Manager part time role, while the balance is being spent on content creation, development of marketing collateral, business development and intellectual property (IP) protection.
How will this funding assist your business to grow and/or create jobs?
The direct impact is the creation of two part-time roles during the grant period, but the lasting impact is much greater. We hope this funding will generate enough marketing collateral and commercial momentum to springboard us into the next phase of our business, creating more technology jobs in Queensland as our business expands and grows.
Why would you recommend applying for Advance Queensland programs, such as the Ignite Ideas Fund?
Ignite Ideas Fund is focused on the commercialisation activities of startups with innovative and disruptive products and services. These are the jobs of the future that our economy needs, so accessing this financial support is very useful for a small startup like Geobotica.
If any, what other support have you received from Advance Queensland or the Queensland Government?
This is our first support, but we are looking forward to working more with the Queensland Government, especially to improve the inspection of public infrastructure such as bridges, tunnels and dams.
Why is it important to support Queensland businesses, innovators and entrepreneurs?
Growing the tech sector in Queensland is vital. In a high-cost country, such as Australia, we need to compete internationally on the strength of our ideas. By supporting entrepreneurs, innovators and small business in the technology sector we are nurturing these bright ideas that will help build the future economy we wish to see in Queensland.
What’s your advice for other entrepreneurs and businesses starting out on their innovation journey?
Don’t give up.