The Innovation Cluster team have high level expertise in innovation, business growth, entrepreneurship, investor networks, agriculture and research connections.
Dr Natasha Teakle
Managing Director & Co-Founder
Tash is an experienced researcher, facilitator, grant writer and innovation specialist with a passion for sustainable primary industries and new technology. Tash co-founded AgriStart in 2016 and is currently Managing Director for Innovation Cluster, focusing on agtech and regional innovation. Tash has a background as an Agricultural Scientist, with a PhD in Plant Biology and qualifications in university teaching, research commercialisation, leadership and is a graduate of the AICD. Tash founded iPREP WA in 2014, a unique program involving researchers from all 5 WA universities undertaking projects in industry, which won the 2017 Australian Council of Graduate Research award for industry engagement and was a finalist in the Premier’s Science awards in 2016. She undertakes a range of board, advisory and volunteer roles, including the judging panel for WA Innovator of the Year Awards and was recently selected for the GRDC Western Panel.
Claire manages all marketing and communications for Innovation Cluster, including website design and content management, social media, marketing material design, podcast and video promotion. Claire has experience in website consultancy, graphic design, e-commerce and grant administration.
Jayne de Silva
With a Mathematics and Japanese teaching degree and pickleball and tennis coaching qualifications, Jayne has worked in many roles. A keen problem solver with attention to detail, Jayne produces digital and printed materials for Innovation Cluster, develops the website, creates social media content and assists with any other administration projects.
Innovation Cluster has a strong core team and regularly brings in external expertise from our network of affiliates to deliver quality outcomes tailored to our clients’ needs. Over the last 4 years we have utilised more than 50 speakers, mentors and consultants for our various programs.
Melanie’s skills and experience centre on event production, operations management, project management and relationship building. Since graduating from UWA with a Commerce degree she has worked in the sport, arts, entertainment and event industries, providing services such as operations management, sponsorship, event management, funds sourcing and acquittals, ticketing, marketing, volunteer management, guest liaison and compliance.
Lead Financial Advisor
Simona has nearly two decades of experience working with some of the largest companies in the world as well as small start-ups and everything in between. She helps business owners gain more sanity, clarity and freedom in their lives by mentoring them on maximising their opportunities, profit, cash and assets to create sustainable wealth for them and their shareholders.
Agtech and Commercialisation Expert
Liz is based in Emerald, Queensland and specialises in Agtech, Circular Economy and Governance. She is a highly experienced commercialisation expert and has held several non-executive roles. Liz was the founder and former lead of the AgFrontier Regional Agtech Incubator.
Business Strategy Advisor
Peter enjoys engaging with innovative entrepreneurs and companies that have strong differentiators in their tech and the drive and passion to get it to market. Peter has helped many startups and more established companies understand their value proposition, develop culture & strategy, get traction, grow, raise capital and access government grants. Peter's experience in multiple startups across industries, including raising VC funding, commercialisation of deep tech, global expansion and successful exits has informed the way he can assist others to get the best out of themselves and their projects.
Lead Investment Mentor
Greg uses his extensive experience in corporates, SMEs and start- ups to advise founders on how to become investment ready, how to create and capture value, and how to position their ventures to harvest returns for shareholders, investors or stakeholders. In 2020, Greg was recognised as the Australian Angel Investor of the Year and awarded the WA Pearcey Entrepreneur Award.