Spotlight: Adelaide start-up Rogue Lumens take business exhibitions to the next level

You’re at a business exhibition. Imagine it being an immersive experience, like swimming in a pool, walking in a vineyard, or browsing products on a supermarket shelf – on a nine-by-nine metre wide-screen, wrapped around three walls. It sounds like something you’d find in an art gallery before a business conference, but the corporate world is exactly the space in which start-up Rogue Lumens envision their technology being used.

Rogue Lumens co-founders, Andy Roberts and Greg Matthews, say they want to give companies new tools to communicate their ideas effectively, and make conferences more interesting to attendees.

“We are providing in-booth projection, so turning the walls into screens,” Andy says.

“People can then communicate with dynamic content rather than just static content, which makes it far more interesting for people that are going in and seeing it. And it can be adapted day-to-day, so if you attend a conference on multiple days, it will feel like a different experience, not just groundhog day.”

“If you attend a conference on multiple days, it will feel like a different experience, not just groundhog day.”

Rogue Lumens came in second place at last year’s #HWALAB, and were awarded a share in $85,000 of SA Government grants. Both particularly enjoyed the mentoring workshop.

“The mentoring was fantastic. It was really useful getting the perspectives of these experienced mentors, running our business model in front of them and having people take on a perspective from their experience,” says Greg.

“These were really world-class mentors. Having a conversation with Robert Tercek about your product is a real coup. And Mark Pesce actually made time to catch up and do a one-on-one, even though the schedule didn’t have him doing that. So the investment from these mentors was unbelievable,” adds Andy.

Rogue Lumens have a busy year ahead. They’ve just signed a major client contract with an expo-hire company in Adelaide, and are currently developing a user-friendly website where people can design their own presentations for projection.

“The aspect ratio of the screens is unusual. It’s not that easy to [make a presentation like that] with a standard video editor, or  get them all working together if you want one video wrapping the walls. You can use our product in a web browser, upload your content as you go, and build your presentation and timeline,” explains Greg.

“On the day of the presentation – and this is the important part – it’s a service. It’s all running for you, and you don’t have to lug anything there. The projectors will be set up with the media box there,” he says.

Andy hopes that others who want to be involved in a start-up will take the plunge.

“You’ve got to make a decision to do it. At some point you’re going to have to make a decision and jump,” says Andy.

“This is one of those cases where the experts said it:  it will always take longer and cost more than you think it’s going to. Start getting yourself in a position where you can try some things out. But try it on a small scale; try it as quickly as you can; be brutal with yourself and research it thoroughly. Once you’re absolutely convinced, test it with some people you trust, and then give it a go.”

This year’s #HybridWorldADL will take place in late July in the city of Adelaide. For more details on the #HWALAB, and how to apply, click here.