Fishburners & Google announce cohort for inaugural AUNZ ‘GNI Startups Boot Camp’

SYDNEY, Oct. 31, 2022 /PRNewswire/ — Australia’s original startup community Fishburners has revealed the pioneering cohort for the first ever Google News Initiative (GNI) Startups Boot Camp to be held in Australia and New Zealand. 

The 2022 GNI Startups Bootcamp program is a fully remote professional development program designed to provide hands-on support and coaching to aspiring news media entrepreneurs as they establish and grow a new independent journalism venture in Australia or New Zealand. 

The program is open to individuals or teams, and aims to support diverse voices by guiding the creation of platforms for underrepresented communities in particular. 

The nine-week program will include weekly group seminars and one-on-one coaching from Sinorbis CMO Vijay Solanki, BindiMaps co-founder and chief product officer Tony Burrett, and Stem Media co-founder Emily Dawson

It is the first time the program is being held in Australia and New Zealand since launching globally in 2020, with over 50 news media startups having already graduated from the program across North America and Canada. 

As AUNZ program partner, Fishburners will help the participants navigate and balance the creative and business side of running a media startup, including country-specific obstacles such as tax status, business registration and legal preparedness.

All participants will also receive a complimentary one-year Pro Membership to Fishburners Founders Hub, which offers access to startup perks and discounts worth up to AU$200,000, as well as community connections, tools, resources, mentoring, events, and investor connections.

Founders will also gain access to a curriculum based on the GNI Startups Playbook, which is published in partnership with some of the leading practitioners and thinkers in the entrepreneurial news space. 

Successful applicants were chosen because they best reflected diverse voices targeting under-served communities, and those successful applications creating the first AUNZ cohort include:

Ms Migrant: A media company dedicated to ambitious young migrant women to inspire them to choose a high potential and impactful career in business. The Anchor: A short-form animated news channel that delivers bite-sized news parcels across multiple social media platforms, with a comedic twist. Nak-ed: Emerging website dedicated to news across the sexual wellness and sextech space in New Zealand. The Defrag: A platform that explores the intersection of technology, business, politics, and science. On The Up: A digital news and community information service for the Upper Central Coast. NF.Writest: An online magazine for women of colour, incorporating high-impact photography and beautiful visual design. Sikh Media Project: A media startup exploring issues affecting Australia’s Sikh community, targeting people from Sikh and non-Sikh backgrounds. Zero To Done: A platform transitioning millennial Web2 founders to Web3 through short form educational content. AgTech Talks: A tech-focused resource for agriculture to help improve baseline and product knowledge. Talking Twenties: A platform that will put various issues women in their twenties go through under the microscope. 

Fishburners Interim CEO Alan Jones

Alan Jones, interim CEO of Fishburners, said: “We’re excited to be part of the startup journey for these aspiring news entrepreneurs who hail from such a diverse range of backgrounds, and have such unique, inspirational, and important stories to tell. 

“The Australian news media landscape in particular can really benefit from this greater diversity of voices and perspectives. It’s exciting to be able to work on this important project with such a credible industry heavyweight as Google News Initiative.

“By the end of the boot camp, these participants will have a better understanding of their commercialisation model and who their audience is, as well as more grounded expectations of the industry.

“GNI alumni from other parts of the world have been changing the narrative, gaining recognition, and rebuilding trust within their communities. Our AUNZ cohort is in good company and we can’t wait to see them take their ideas to the next level.”

For more information about the program, check out

Fishburners ( is Australia’s original startup community and coworking space. It was founded in Ultimo in 2011 and has supported 2,300 founders who have raised $368 million in capital, generated $378.8 million in revenue, and created 5,300 jobs.

It was one of the biggest anchor tenants of the Sydney Startup Hub, and now also has thousands of active users of its Founders Hub online community platform.

Notable Fishburner ventures include Koala (valued at $159 million in 2020), ASX-listed Jayride ($46 million market cap), V2 Foods (valued at over $500 million in 2020), and Car Next Door (valued at $55 million in 2021 and recently acquired by Uber).