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30 Jan

Comment from CEO of StartupAUS, Alex McCauley, regarding the Australia 2030: Prosperity through Innovation report from Innovation and Science Australia (ISA)

by launch-admin Jan 30, 2018 0 News


Comment from CEO of StartupAUS, Alex McCauley, regarding the
Australia 2030: Prosperity through Innovation report from Innovation and Science Australia (ISA)

Australia: 30 January 2018: StartupAUS today welcomed Innovation and Science Australia’s 2030 Plan and its strategy for securing talent for high-growth scaling firms. StartupAUS highlighted the importance of swift translation of the recommendations into tangible policy action.

StartupAUS CEO Alex McCauley said the focus within the 2030 Plan on the role of startups and small to medium sized businesses as job-creators and economic stimulators is critical, adding that it was pleasing to see the 2030 plan align with a number of the recommendations made by StartupAUS in its submission.

McCauley cautioned that the largest hurdle was still to come for the government, which now needed to take the advice of industry leaders and the ISA with confidence and achieve tangible, timely policy outcomes for the sector.

Access to world class talent the leading issue for startups:

“Our aim is to foster a world-class innovation system in Australia, which will deliver a huge multiplier effect for Australia’s economy.  We know that young, innovative, high-growth companies account for almost all the new jobs in the economy and providing these firms with access to world class innovators and technologists is currently the number one issue.

“The 2030 Plan calls for the continued refinement of immigration rules to improve access to specialist skilled talent and attract entrepreneurs. We believe the new skilled migration regime is an ideal opportunity for the Federal Government to update the list of occupations for which skilled visas are available.

“To put it into perspective, in response to the current IT skills shortage, Australia saw a net inflow of 19,600 IT workers from overseas in 2015, with 13,900 of these workers coming to Australia under Subclass 457 (temporary skilled work) visas. According to Atlassian, around 25 per cent of its approximately 1,000 Sydney-based staff are employed on skilled work visas, a trend which is mirrored in other rapidly-growing Australian startups as well as multinationals performing R&D in Australia.

“Rather than presenting a threat to Australian workers, overseas IT workers are helping Australian startups bridge the skills gap and at the same time providing management and product development experience to Australian tech companies as they scale and begin to enter global markets.

“The focus on STEM and education, while too slow to help in the next few years, is also a critical longer-term step to improve our talent inputs by 2030,” Mr McCauley said.

R&D focus needs to be better align with startup needs

“The 2030 Plan addresses R&D in its Industry component but specifically calls for the Research and Development Tax Incentive (R&DTI) program to be better targeted to increase business R&D investment. From our discussions with the startup community, 87.8 per cent said that receiving the R&D Tax Incentive quarterly rather than annually would make a ‘huge’ (77 per cent) or very large (10.8 per cent) difference to their businesses’ cashflow because many are borrowing against future R&D Tax Incentive payments and – in some cases – incurring hefty interest rates.

“Reversing the fall in R&D spend is important. It is critical the scheme does not focus only on the ‘Research’ side at the cost of ‘Development.’ A clear declaration that commercial development from Australian startups, particularly in the software space, will continue to be covered by the scheme would go a long way to providing clarity and certainty for founders.

“StartupAUS would also like to see the Federal Government change payment of the R&D incentive from annually to quarterly to help early-stage startups with cashflow, as outlined in our Crossroads 2017 report. This would help support one of the other key themes of the 2030 Plan – establishing a thriving and sustainable base of high-growth businesses,” Mr McCauley said.

Other high impact recommendations for startups:
“Helping young firms access export markets by increasing funding for Export Market Development Grants is another important recommendation in the Plan. This grant is an important tool to both bring wealth into the country via exports and accelerate the growth of successful startups as job creators. According to StartupAUS research, while over 90 per cent of large scale-ups claim the R&D Tax Incentive, only 35 per cent claimed the EMDG. Better targeting this scheme to help young high-growth startups access global markets is exactly the right move.

“The recommendation around an Australian Innovation Precincts Statement to help shape Australian Government involvement in emerging localised innovation ecosystems in cities and regions is a valuable way to build on the investment made by individual ecosystems by linking these precincts to a network across the country.


“The establishment of secure, long-term funding for national research infrastructure is a vital structural change for Australia which will help move longer-term projects out of the political cycle. This was a key part of the StartupAUS submission to the ISA and is one of many measures that can be immediately put in place to build for the future.

“We also commend the importance of creating more detailed public data around the startup ecosystem and support the development of innovation metrics and methodologies to fully capture innovation and link it to economic, social and environmental benefits.

“Overall we commend ISA for its focus on strengthening Australia’s digital economy to capture the opportunities presented by the ‘fourth wave’ of the internet. Startups are a key player in our economic future and, by definition, if they are to succeed they must innovate intensively. It is therefore critical to make sure Australia cultivates an environment in which startups can attract capital and talent on a large scale.

“Now it is clear that there is broad alignment among innovation experts, within both government and the private sector. But the key measure of success will be the policy outcomes that are born from this plan. This is a great report, but we can’t leave it till 2030 to do something about it. These ideas require action immediately.

“This is a time of critical importance for innovation in Australia. We already have a roadmap established, through the StartupAUS Crossroads Report, to Australia becoming one of the best places in the world to build a high-growth startup. What we need now is rapid action in a number of key policy areas to capitalise on the momentum we have built. This is not only of paramount importance for the sector, it will help secure the economic future of the country,” said Mr McCauley.


About StartupAUS:
StartupAUS is a not-for-profit entity with a mission to transform Australia through technology entrepreneurship. StartupAUS believes a strong home-grown tech sector is vital to future Australian jobs and wealth. But getting there will require a national imperative to create the right environment, with a supportive culture and more entrepreneurs with the right skills.

For more information visit: www.startupaus.org

3 Jan

Leading finance experts unite to tackle financial literacy for women

by launch-admin Jan 3, 2018 0 News


Female entrepreneurs to prosper through Acceler8 partnership with myprosperity 

Leading financial experts unite with a commitment to boost financial literacy for women 

Australia, 20 November 2017: Australia’s leading cloud-based personal wealth platform, myprosperity has partnered with social enterprise Acceler8 to help female entrepreneurs create a sustainable wealth building program.

The partnership brings together two finance industry experts – awardwinning serial entrepreneur Tanya Titman, who founded Acceler8 based on her 20+ years’ experience mentoring SMEs, and Chris Ridd, former managing director of cloud accounting software Xero, who was recently appointed CEO at myprosperity.

Acceler8 focuses on helping female entrepreneurs to improve their financial literacy and scale their businesses. Titman founded social enterprise Acceler8 as a passion project to educate, inspire and empower women to grow and scale their businesses. To date, Acceler8 has helped hundreds of women achieve their business goals – promising participants a minimum 30 percent lift in profit over the 12-month program.

myprosperity is a one-stop-shop for managing personal wealth, unifying all assets – from property, superannuation and businesses, to personal cashflow, daily expenses and liabilities – providing full visibility over current, independent financial status. 

For Titman, who is also the founder of award-winning SME-focused accounting practice Consolid8, the collaboration provides a critical tool for women to streamline their personal and business finances.

“It’s important that women work on improving their financial literacy, which is often the key factor keeping their SMEs from reaching full potential. Technology is critical to efficient, profitable SME performance and we want to give female entrepreneurs access to the best of breed Australian technology. myprosperity is innovative software with a specific focus on financial and cashflow management, which gives SME owners access to comprehensive financial data. By pulling together data around all their assets, myprosperity reveals the independent net worth of these highly motivated women, unlocking even more potential for them,” said Ms. Titman.

While financial literacy for women has become a high priority for sectors ranging from banking to government, there is still room for growth, particularly when planning for retirement. A 2017 study by The American College of Financial Services, Americas largest nonprofit educational institution devoted to financial services, surveyed an equal percentage of men and women and found that only 20 per cent of women identified as the primary financial decision maker compared to 65 per cent of men.

Chris Ridd, CEO at myprosperity said: “This partnership is an opportunity to support a vitally important program that is inspiring more female entrepreneurs to be confident about their financial acumen. Cloud accounting revolutionised finance for businesses but we’ve yet to see a similar paradigm shift in personal finance, and that’s our aim.”

The partnership will provide Acceler8’s entrepreneurs with a year’s Pro subscription, where participants can use features of the Pro wealth user plan such as monthly updates for online home and motor vehicle valuations, balance sheet/net worth, ASX shares feed and a comprehensive wealth report. The access to Pro saves business owners hundreds of dollars a year, as well as identifying new wealth opportunities for them.

We are incorporating myprosperity into the program for our new intake of female business leaders and see it as another step for them to make strategic and informed business decisions,” added Ms. Titman.

For more information visit: http://acceler8program.com.au


Media Contact:

Sarah Bond, Launch Group: sarahbond@launchgroup.com.au | 02 9492 1041 | 0449 543 181 

About Acceler8 Academy:

Acceler8 Academy is for women who want to improve their financial literacy and accelerate their business growth. The 12-month program is designed exclusively for women in business. Delivered by Tanya Titman and her team of specialists, the program is guaranteed to deliver a 30 per cent improvement in your profits over the 12 months, with a mission to ensure women have more money, more time and less stress in their life. For more information: http://acceler8program.com.au 

About myprosperity:

myprosperity is a cloud-based, personal wealth platform that makes it easy for accountants and advisers to help their clients get their financial world – sorted. Available on desktop and as a mobile app, myprosperity is a white-label wealth portal that boasts live data feeds and digital doc signing, as well as budgeting, cashflow and goal setting tools for an integrated all-in-one approach to personal finance. Founded in 2011, the company is now the leading personal wealth platform in Australia, with over 400 adviser partners and 17,000 end users. For more information: http://www.myprosperity.com.au

About Tanya Titman:

Tanya Titman is a passionate advocate for empowering female business owners with theknowledge of the numbersand using this information to create high growth, sustainable business models. Her focus is on providingreal worldadvice and her experience comes from being involved in many successful businesses over the last 20 years.

With a focus on innovation and technology, Tanya is the founder of accountancy firm Consolid8 and assists many businesses in their transition to the cloud. Consolid8 was awarded as a finalist in the 2012 Telstra Business Awards and is widely recognised for its innovation in providing benchmarking and accounting solutions for franchisees.

As a mother of 4 young children, Tanya is passionate about empowering women in business through her Acceler8 Academy. Through this program, Tanya has witnessed the power that numbers can have in changing womens lives for the better. For more information: http://acceler8program.com.au/team/

20 Dec

StartupAUS welcomes Michaelia Cash as MInister for Jobs and Innovation, calls for urgent action on key startup policy initiatives

by launch-admin Dec 20, 2017 0 News


StartupAUS welcomes Michaelia Cash as MInister for Jobs and Innovation, calls for urgent action on key startup policy initiatives

Australia, 20 December 2017: StartupAUS today welcomed the appointment of Minister Michaelia Cash as Minister for Jobs and Innovation. StartupAUS CEO Alex McCauley welcomed the renewed focus on innovation in the portfolio, and the recognition that innovation and jobs are closely linked. He said with four Innovation Ministers in the less than two years, urgent focus is now required on Australia’s startup policy agenda.

“The pairing of jobs with innovation in Minister Cash’s new portfolio makes a lot of sense. We know that young, innovative, high-growth companies account for almost all the new jobs in the economy, so these issues are inextricably linked. Recognition of that link in the new portfolio is an important step.

“This is a time of critical importance for innovation in Australia. We already have a roadmap established, through the StartupAUS Crossroads Report, to Australia becoming one of the best places in the world to build a high-growth startup. What we need now is rapid action in a number of key policy areas to capitalise on the momentum we have built. This is not only of paramount importance for the sector, it will help secure the economic future of the country,” said Mr McCauley.

“Minister Cash has a strong track record in this area. She’s been actively engaged in the innovation agenda in previous portfolios and is a natural fit here. I expect she’ll approach the new role with energy, vision, and expertise. Those qualities are very welcome at a time when the national innovation conversation needs a kick-start.

“It’s also important that the Government has retained an Assistant Minister for Science, Jobs and Innovation, a role that really has strong potential to engage closely with the startup community. It’s encouraging to see someone like Zed Seselja, who has previous Ministerial experience, take on that role. I’m looking forward to working with him.

:We see 2018 as a really critical year for startups. We need to get back on the front foot with innovation policy, and we’re looking forward to working closely with the new Ministers and their teams to amplify the positive impact of technology-led innovation on Australia’s economy,” continued Mr McCauley.

The announcement follows the recent release of StartupAUS’ annual Crossroads report, which detailed the synergy between startups and job creation. You can download a copy of the 2017 Crossroads Report here: https://startupaus.org/crossroads/

– ENDS – 


Sarah Bond sarahbond@launchgroup.com.au 02 9492 1003 / 0452 574 244

About StartupAUS

StartupAUS is a not-for-profit entity with a mission to transform Australia through technology entrepreneurship. StartupAUS believes a strong home-grown tech sector is vital to future Australian jobs and wealth. But getting there will require a national imperative to create the right environment, with a supportive culture and more entrepreneurs with the right skills.

For more information visit: www.startupaus.org

11 Dec

Regus opens business hub at Canberra Airport

by launch-admin Dec 11, 2017 0 News


Regus opens business hub at Canberra Airport

Regus supports Canberra’s 3.1 million airline passengers with a brand-new airport location

Australia, 5 December 2017: Global workplace provider Regus has landed at Canberra Airport, the second Australian airport to benefit from its range of serviced offices following the success of its debut at Sydney International Airport in April 2016. 

Canberra Airport has joined the ranks of other global business hubs with Regus airport centres, such as New York, Japan, London, Amsterdam and Munich.

The Regus Canberra Gateway Business Centre boasts 900m2 of prime lease space and features a contemporary and fully equipped business lounge, private offices, meeting rooms, and kitchen.

The Centre provides an efficient drop-in workspace dedicated to keeping business professionals productive when they’re on the move, as well as private offices offering companies a state-of-the-art workspace at the airport. The new centre is ideal for meeting clients before or after a flight, where you can book a meeting room by the hour or simply drop in and use the lounge facilities.

Located within Canberra Airport’s award-winning redeveloped terminal precinct – the architecturally designed location features an abundance of natural light and contemporary facilities. Amenities surrounding the centre include an airport hotel, cafés, showers, plenty of parking, public transport and the nearby Brindabella Business Park, which offers childcare facilities, sporting fields, tennis courts and a gymnasium.

Commenting on Regus’ second Australian airport offering, Regus Country Head for Australia and New Zealand, Damien Sheehan, said it would facilitate a more flexible and connected global workforce.

“We’re excited to announce that Regus has launched its second airport offering for the Australian region,” said Mr. Sheehan. “The growth in this space is testament to how Australian businesses are becoming more globalised and connected both interstate and internationally. 

“As the nation’s capital, it makes sense that we expand the Regus terminal-side offering into Canberra – particularly to provide resources to those who fly in and out on the same day and need an efficient, convenient location to fulfil their business needs while on-the-go.

“This is another way that we are helping our customers to maximise their productivity.”   

Global business travel spend growth is expected to rise above six percent in 2018, ending an “era of uncertainty” among corporates regarding spending, with revenue predicted to reach a record $US1.6 trillion in 2020. Canberra is living and breathing this rate of travel with Tourism Research Australia showing close to 3.1 million passengers were at the Airport in the 12 months to 31 July 2017.

Co-working is a worldwide phenomenon, with an estimated 14,000 co-working spaces operating globallyAustralia was one of the earlier adopters of the co-working movement outside of the US, and Regus continues to be one of the leading providers in this space. The need for flexible working options such as co-working spaces, pay-as-you-go offices, virtual offices and drop-in business lounges has seen Regus’ global network continue to expand.


For more information contact:

Sarah Bond sarahbond@launchgroup.com.au + 61 2 9492 1041 / + 61 (0) 449 543 181

About Regus

Regus provides an unparalleled global network of workplaces, operating 3,000 locations in over 1,000 towns and cities, across more than 100 countries, serving 2.5 million members.

Through our range of office formats, as well as our growing mobile, virtual office, and workplace recovery businesses, we help people and businesses to work where, when and how they want, with a range of price points.

All members of the Regus community enjoy exceptional work flexibility and have the opportunity to work across every town and city in the network at no extra cost.

Our customers include some of the most successful entrepreneurs, start-ups and multi-billion dollar corporations.

For more information please visit: www.regus.com.au

5 Dec

Global Digital Media Expert Nic Jones to Head Pureprofile

by launch-admin Dec 5, 2017 0 News


Global Digital Media Expert Nic Jones to Head Pureprofile 

New CEO Appointment paves way for further revenue growth, product innovation and disruption in the media market 

Australia, 6 December 2017Nic Jones, the current chairman of Advertising Week APAC’s advisory council, has this week joined global media, data and insights company Pureprofile as Chief Executive Officer.

Boasting an impressive career spanning over 30 years, Mr Jones’ previous roles include Managing Director of Yahoo! Australia & New Zealand; Managing Director (News Digital Media) at News Corp; Managing Director (Digital) AUNZ, Chief Digital Officer (EMEA) at Starcom MediaVest Group; and most recently as Chief Revenue Officer of music video publisher, Vevo, based in both London and San Francisco. Mr Jones holds a bachelor’s degree in Social Psychology and Sociology and brings a wide and deep range of experience in online and digital media. 
The Company’s Executive Chairman, Andrew Edwards said Mr Jones was chosen for his deep knowledge of the digital media landscape and his wealth of experience in monetising digital assets, and is an excellent addition to the senior management of the Company and the Board.

“No one is better placed than Nic to understand the needs of the players within digital media. As Chief Digital Officer at Starcom, he was responsible for the digital media strategy of clients across the EMEA region. As Chief Revenue Officer of Vevo, Nic built the revenue base for the largest music video platform in the world, which attracts over 24 billion views every month, and was also directly responsible for Vevo’s global commercial strategy, launching and leading its service in 13 countries,” said Mr Edwards.

Mr Jones expressed his vision for Pureprofile, which is well-established in Australia and has continued potential for growth in international markets, particularly the US and UK.

“Pureprofile is well placed to disrupt the status quo and take market share within these barely tapped, billion-dollar industries. I look forward to taking the company to truly global heights and establishing it as a globally dominant company with a range of elegant and innovative digital products.”

Mr Jones added that it is an exciting time to be joining Pureprofile: “Its range of innovations across the Data and Insights, Programmatic Media and Performance Marketing business units presents many opportunities to monetise digital assets. In this respect, the Company has positioned itself strongly against its competitors who struggle to deliver satisfactory solutions for clients and stakeholders within the digital media industry.“

Mr Jones will replace current CEO Paul Chan, who founded the company and will continue his role as Chief Innovation Officer. Mr Chan will focus on the Company’s product suite in his new role. It is also expected that in due course, Mr Jones will be appointed to the Board of Directors as Managing Director.

Mr Edwards said the management changes will drive the Company’s growth and international expansion strategies.

“We are delighted to have Paul focused on the Company’s product vision as Chief Innovation Officer. And with Nic at the reins to spread that vision as CEO, it makes for a compelling combination. I look forward to working with, and in, this new team,” said Mr Edwards.

– ENDS –

About Pureprofile (ASX: PPL)
Pureprofile Limited (ASX: PPL) connects brands with empowered consumers across the world by finding, understanding and engaging them through direct-to-consumer technology platforms. The Pureprofile group is now a global leader in data insights, programmatic media, big data, and quantitative research, as well as consumer lead generation through the recently acquired Cohort group. Pureprofile delivers next generation marketing solutions for more than 700 brands, publishers and research groups worldwide.

Media Contacts

Sarah Bond

Launch Group

02 9492 1041 | 0449 543 181


Lizzie Babarczy


0437 358 571



4 Dec

StartupAUS Crossroads 2017 Report: Australia’s Startup Economy Gathers Pace, But Policy Adjustments Required to Become Internationally Competitive

by launch-admin Dec 4, 2017 0 News


StartupAUS Crossroads 2017 Report: 
Australia’s Startup Economy Gathers Pace, But Policy Adjustments 
Required to Become Internationally Competitive 

2017 Crossroads Report officially launches at StartCon 2017 (5pm Fri, 1 December) 

Australia, 30 November 2017: Australia’s startup community has enjoyed a record-breaking year of achievement, but improved access to global talent is critical to the growth of an internationally competitive local tech sector, according to the fourth annual Crossroads Report, released today by StartupAUS, Australia’s national advocacy group for startups.

Since the first Crossroads report was released in 2014, the industry has moved well beyond the fledgling stage with key 2017 milestones including a record of $1.32 billion raised in Venture Capital, significant State Government investment in innovation precincts, strong growth in the number of accelerators, incubators and coworking spaces, and the attraction of high-profile events and investors.

Releasing the comprehensive review of the nation’s startup ecosystem, StartupAUS CEO and lead author Alex McCauley said a laser-like focus on a number of key areas will ensure Australia continues to build momentum as a top-tier global player.

“Startups are now recognised as leading job creators worldwide and high-growth startups are the primary driver of Australia’s new jobs growth. Startups have the potential to contribute as much as $170 billion to Australia’s economy by 2020.”

However, Mr McCauley said the many successes of the sector in the past 12 months had been put at risk by stagnation or backwards movement in some areas, particularly when it came to visas and the R&D tax incentive.

“Australia has come a long way in a relatively short space of time and we are pleased to see the momentum building.  What we must also recognise is the speed of our global competitors and the intensity with which governments are focusing on supporting startups around the world. It’s clear that by pulling a few big policy levers we could rapidly shift Australia’s startup economy to the next level of maturity and potential – making it one of the best places in the world to build a tech startup. But if we don’t act now, particularly on visas, we risk getting left behind.

“Talent is the single biggest challenge facing Australian startups, and there is currently no mechanism for these fast-growing tech companies to attract overseas workers to fill a range of high-demand digital roles, particularly in product development and management. At a time when Australian startups are crying out for talent and top-tier tech workers are considering roles outside the US, this gap requires immediate attention,” said Mr McCauley.

The report’s foreword, contributed by Atlassian co-founder and Co-CEO Scott Farquhar, also highlights visas as an area for urgent reform. Mr Farquhar notes “there is a global gold rush at the moment that is generating intense international competition to attract the best tech talent, and Australia needs to lift its game.”

The 2017 Crossroads Report outlines that, to compete internationally, Australia needs to:

1. Produce larger numbers of startups; 

2. Ensure some of these startups go on to achieve significant global growth; and

3. Ensure the most successful startups retain a sufficient connection to Australia so the nation can benefit from their success.

The StartupAUS Crossroads Report 2017 is supported by a broad consensus of corporate and community partners, including StartupAUS’s Leadership Partners, Google and UTS, alongside leading investors, scale-ups, and established corporates. It features a State-by-State brief on the progress of local ecosystems, an analysis of the effect of innovation-boosting measures already in place, and milestones for Australian startups.

The 2017 Report makes nine key recommendations to address issues holding the industry back: 

(1)   State Governments should continue to build and connect innovation precincts

(2)   The Federal Government should pay the R&D Tax Incentive on a quarterly rather than annual basis

(3)   The qualification criteria in the entrepreneur visa should be altered and simplified

(4)   Options issued under Employee Share Schemes should be exempted from the 20/12 Rule

(5)   The skilled worker visa should be expanded to include digital skills and reflect startup needs

(6)   Federal and State Governments should work together to expand the school curriculum for digital skills, giving students more options in computer science and computational thinking

(7)   A copyright safe harbour for all online content providers should be implemented

(8)   Entrepreneurship programs should be implemented and expanded in high schools and universities

(9)   Governments should establish dedicated policy teams focused on emerging technologies

Venture Fundraising

Figures from the Australian Private Equity and Venture Capital Association (AVCAL) reveal the 2017 financial year is the second consecutive record year for Australian venture fundraising, with around $1.32 billion raised since July 2016.  Venture fundraising reached a record high in 2016 of $568m, compared with $154m in 2013.

According to AVCAL Head of Policy and contributing author, Christian Gergis, for Australia to firmly establish itself as a leading location from which to grow a global technology company, venture capital investment as a percentage of GDP must increase.

AVCAL’s research report, The Venture Capital Effect, states this investment is 0.023 per cent, less than half the OECD+ average, and less than a tenth of the size of Israeli or US markets, leaving Australia ranked 18 out of 30 OECD+ nations. 

“While the recent growth in local venture has been significant, it must be acknowledged that it is coming off a very low base… [the] Australian venture capital sector remains small, both in absolute terms, and relative to its international peers,” said Mr Gergis.

“Ambitious high-growth young companies will lead Australia’s move onto the world stage, and a thriving local venture capital sector is critical to supporting their growth and helping them remain in Australia. The data in this year’s Crossroads shows for the first time that Australian startups are now much less reliant on overseas investors, which is a very positive step in the right direction added Mr McCauley.

Key startup statistics from the Report: 

Crossroads 2017 was backed up by original research from StartupAUS looking at a cohort of 47 of the country’s most successful scale-ups. The research provides a statistical snapshot of what Australia’s most successful young companies look like:

·      92% of companies are backed by angel or VC investment

·      86% of businesses are looking to hire international talent within six months

·      91.3% of startups are claiming the R&D Tax Incentive

·      29.8 years is the average age of startup founders

·      57% of startups were founded by immigrants or children of immigrants

·      15% of startups have at least one female founder

·      4% of startups have an all-female founding team

·      57% of all startup founders had at least one previous business

·      76% of startups have at least one founder with a previous business

This year’s Report includes a deep dive on the startup sector of NSW, in partnership with the NSW Government, highlighting key growth areas including fintech which has attracted 25 per cent of all NSW capital since 2015. It notes the continuing emergence new NSW technology sectors with Health and Life Sciences, Software as a Service (SaaS) and Sharing Economy / Marketplace businesses all attracting significant levels of investment.  The NSW ecosystem now extends substantially beyond Sydney, with more than one in ten NSW startups now based regionally.

Commenting on the report’s release, NSW Deputy Premier and Minister for Small Business John Barilaro said: “We want startups and people with great businesses ideas to know that Sydney, not just Silicon Valley, is a place where their entrepreneurial spirit can thrive and their vision can become a reality.

“Sydney is already one of the top three startup locations in Asia, but we are working hard to establish Sydney as a startup capital on a global scale. The investments we’ve made in the Sydney Startup Hub and the newly-opened Sydney School of Entrepreneurship are just two examples of the work we’re doing in this space.

“At the end of the day, we know no government can do everything on its own. Rather, a good government is one that brings smart people from various sectors together, and provides them with the support and the strong economic conditions they need to develop their ideas and bring them to market.”

Engineering Director, Google Australia Casey Whitelaw said: “Australia’s startup community is an engine of job creation, supporting the creativity and innovation that will help Australia thrive as technology changes.”  

Professor Attila Bungs, UTS Vice-Chancellor and President, said: “This timely report once again highlights the key issues facing the Australian startup sector, most crucially talent attraction and retention alongside bolstering vibrant precincts remain the biggest issues facing startups. Precincts are critical to provide the cultural and infrastructural support to startups, as well as providing energising links to the surrounding communities.


“I welcome current efforts by government and industry to boost the sector; we need to maintain our focus on this and work quickly to ensure Australia remains a leader in this space. Initiatives like R&D tax incentives and to expand and co-ordinate startup precincts are vital; we must continue to do more. We are training the next generation of entrepreneurs – we need to ensure they have an environment in which they can thrive here in Australia,” said Professor Bungs.

The official launch of Crossroads will be held at StartCon 2017 in Sydney beginning 5pm, Fri, December 1. 

StartupAUS Crossroads is a comprehensive analysis of the startup ecosystem. For more information and the full report visit: www.startupaus.org/crossroads


Further information: Fleur Brown (02) 9492 1000 or mobile: 0419270863

About StartupAUS 
StartupAUS is a not-for-profit entity with a mission to transform Australia through technology entrepreneurship. StartupAUS believes a strong home-grown tech sector is vital to future Australian jobs and wealth. But getting there will require a national imperative to create the right environment, with a supportive culture and more entrepreneurs with the right skills. www.startupaus.org

24 Oct

High Stakes for Implementation of ConstructionTech in Australia

by launch-admin Oct 24, 2017 0 News

High Stakes for Implementation of ConstructionTech in Australia

StartupAUS report reveals huge market opportunity for construction organisations to become more innovation active

Australia, 24 October 2017ConstructionTech startups will be a key driver for change in Australia’s $134 billion construction industry according to Digital Foundations: How Technology is Transforming Australia’s Construction sectorreleased today by StartupAUS, Australia’s peak national advocacy group for startups.

StartupAUS produced the report on digital construction technology (ConstructionTech) in collaboration with AconexLendlease, EY and the Victorian Government. It will be officially launched at ‘Construction Technology Summit 2017’ in Melbourne on 25 October.

The report sheds light on a rapidly growing area of innovation, with over $98 million invested in ConstructionTech startups since the start of 2016 in Australia.
The Australian construction sector is the largest non-services sector in the Australian economy – contributing $134.2 billion to the economy (8.1 per cent of GDP) in 2015-16 and employing 1.1 million people. Successful digital solutions could provide an increase of $25 billion year on year within the decade.
International demand is vast. Global construction output was valued at over US$8 trillion in 2015 and forecast to grow to US$15.5 trillion by 2030, creating many opportunities for Australian startups to export their technology overseas.

StartupAUS CEO Alex McCauley says we are on the threshold of a new age of innovation in the construction sector.

ConstructionTech is a thriving startup sector that has so far been flying under the radar. Australian startups are providing world-leading innovation in the construction space and between mapping technologies like Building Information Modelling (BIM), Virtual Reality (VR), project management technology, licensing and workplace safety software, and digital hardware like drones, there are a wealth of ways in which technology can have a huge impact on this sector, both here and overseas.
“The collaboration here between large tier one firms and startups is particularly exciting. Startups can’t take on billion-dollar construction projects by themselves – instead, they’re looking at ways to integrate with existing firms to use digital technology to increase safety, quality and efficiency,“ said Mr McCauley.

The industry’s current growth trend is positive – with the Australian Bureau of Statistics’ Construction Work Done, Australia data for the June quarter showing a 9.3 per cent increase in the seasonally adjusted estimate for total construction to $51.7 billion.

The Victorian Government has already used digital technology like advanced building information modelling, 3D drafting and virtual reality components in key construction infrastructure projects such as the Victorian Comprehensive Cancer Centre, Melbourne Park Redevelopment and the Level Crossing Removals project. 

The report draws on detailed discussions with 42 individuals from 31 organisations in the construction sector and construction-focused technology space. The interviews included 16 representatives of the startup community and 26 construction stakeholders – including tier 1 and 2 construction company representatives, engineers, investment asset managers and sub-contractors. 

Minister for Industry and Employment, Ben Carroll said: “Victoria is the nation’s leader in construction technologies thanks to a massive pipeline of infrastructure projects. Through our Future Industries Fund, we are investing in high-growth sectors of our economy to secure Victoria’s future as the innovation capital. We will continue to get behind ConstructionTech startups, and I congratulate StartupAUS, Lendlease , EY and Aconex on this important report” 

Steve Thomas, General Manager Applied Insight, Lendlease Building, said: “The smarter use of technology in the design and construction space has the potential to be a major game changer, particularly in terms of project design, procurement, manufacture and delivery. 

“As an international property and infrastructure group, Lendlease has a vested interest in supporting the emergence of new technologies that will help us create the best places and continue to push the boundaries of our building and development projects globally. But we also have a responsibility – to challenge and change the industry for the better. 

“That can only be achieved through disruptive thinking and increasingly, the availability and adoption of digital solutions. We’re confident this report will drive innovation and help unlock the potential of the industry.”

EY Real Estate & Construction Market Segment leader Selina Short said: “EY were the lead researcher on the report. Property developers and construction companies are entering a new phase for their industry.

“The existence of a healthy start-up community in Australia means local property developers and construction companies can put themselves at the leading edge of the digital evolution of the industry. The opportunity here is considerable. One of our largest industries that has historically been slow to innovate is now on the precipice of major change. The future will be defined by the impact of the successful innovators and implementers.

“Organisations need to ensure their culture evolves as quickly as their technology does. This cannot be about just plugging in a tech solution, it has to be about changing the way the organisations operate,” said Ms Short.

Dean of the UTS School of Design, Architecture and Building, Professor Elizabeth Mossop, said: “StartupAUS’ latest industry report on the status of ConstructionTech is an important and timely showcase of Australian R&D in digital construction technologies. The sector’s ability to respond to changes in our environment and global market depends on Australia’s capacity to grow innovation. The initiative brings together contributions from individuals and organisations who are striving to make a difference to the sector and deliver the benefits of technology-led innovation across the built environment. The report will assist organisations by providing a snapshot of success across the Australian construction tech landscape, and demonstrating how new opportunities are being captured via investment in digital innovation.”

Future Recommendations for ConstructionTech

The StartupAUS report identifies six recommendations for Australian ConstructionTech to reach its full potential, noting the priority of each.
1.     Develop a consistent set of standards around technology adoption and use, with support from government. Very high priority – immediate action required.
2.     Federal and State governments to lead by proactively incorporating adoption of new technology for large infrastructure projects. High priority – set minimum requirements for government projects within six months.
3.     Ecosystem to establish a dedicated coworking space for ConstructionTech startups, alongside a ConstructionTech accelerator program. High priority – investigate implementation within six months.
4.     An independent review into the implementation of the universal adoption of BIM in the UK, with a view towards adopting a similar mandate in Australia. High priority –action required within a year.
5.     Government and industry to support and expand events focused on identifying technology opportunities. Medium priority – networks to continue to be developed.
6.     Provide additional support for collaborative research initiatives focused on ConstructionTech. The CRC for Construction Innovation came to a close in December 2009 and – according to a 2012 Allens study of the program – contributed $7.5 billion to the Australian economy. Medium priority – development over the next year expected.



Sarah Bond sarahbond@launchgroup.com.au 02 9492 1041 / 0449 543 181

About StartupAUS

StartupAUS is a not-for-profit entity with a mission to transform Australia through technology entrepreneurship. StartupAUS believes a strong home-grown tech sector is vital to future Australian jobs and wealth. But getting there will require a national imperative to create the right environment, with a supportive culture and more entrepreneurs with the right skills.

For more information visit: www.startupaus.org

12 Oct

Girl Geek Academy partners with General Assembly to boost women developer talent pool

by launch-admin Oct 12, 2017 0 News


Girl Geek Academy partners with General Assembly to boost women developer talent pool 

100 women unite: #SheHacks Showcase provides platform for launch of second scholarship initiative

Australia, 11 October 2017: Australia’s Girl Geek Academy has partnered with education and career transition pioneer, General Assembly, to launch their second Web Development Immersive Scholarship in order to help boost the number of women developers in Australia.  

Launched during Girl Geek Academy’s #SheHacks Showcase event, the scholarship – worth $15,500 – will provide one woman aspiring to code with the opportunity to undertake the three-month course and learn pivotal skills needed to kick-start a career as a developer; from programming fundamentals to launching full-stack web apps.

The #SheHacks Showcase provided the ideal platform to launch the initiative, with an audience of over 100 women from the Victorian startup ecosystem in the room, united to raise a glass to women in tech and celebrate the role women play in changing the face of the industry.

Sarah Moran, CEO and co-founder of Girl Geek Academy said: “We are grateful for the support of General Assembly for bringing this opportunity to life, and we are thrilled to be able to use our #SheHacks Showcase as a platform to get the message out that these courses exist. We need more women applying to help boost the talent pool and increase participation in the startup space”.

Last year’s scholarship winner, Duyen Ho, had been trying to make a career change into web development for a full year and spent every spare dollar teaching herself to code. After graduating from this scholarship opportunity, Duyen achieved her career goal as a Front End Developer at Deloitte Digital Australia. 

Monique Brasher, Regional Director, General Assembly Melbourne added: “In the past, female enrolments in our Web Development Immersive courses have been reflective of what’s happening in coding roles in industry. For the first time ever, enrolments in our current course have an equal male-to-female ratio, and we want to see this diversity continue across all tech courses moving forward.

“This is why we partner with valuable organisations like Girl Geek Academy, who help to build and foster a community and run events that help attract more women into tech. Our female graduates are quickly landing roles at leading organisations, all through our courses teaching them the foundations of full stack web development and giving them the skills and confidence they need to land a role.”

Leading mentors from the Victorian startup community led the success stories at the #SheHacks Showcase before two new startups unveiled their businesses following their graduation from the inaugural eight-week #SheHacks incubator (created in partnership with key industry experts). These new startups highlighted the real, tangible outcomes of the #SheHacks initiative in creating more women-led businesses in Australia. The founders of each startup first connected in July, at the hackathon event, and in just over two-months have developed a business model with real market potential.

The Web Development Immersive Scholarship is open for any women in Australia who is passionate about pursuing a career in web development. The team at General Assembly will follow a six-step selection process to assess the candidate’s motivation, technical ability and overall suitability for the course. Entries close on 24th October with the winner announced later this month.

For more information please visit: https://generalassemb.ly/education/web-development-immersive


Media Contact:

Sarah Bond, Launch Group: sarahbond@launchgroup.com.au | 02 9492 1041 | 0449 543 181

About Girl Geek Academy:

Girl Geek Academy was founded by five skilled female digital professionals who want to increase the number of women with successful STEM careers. The team work to see an increase of women in tech, women in games, women who make, female designers and female founders. Initiatives include coding and hackathons, 3D printing and wearables, game development, design, entrepreneurship and startups.

Girl Geek Academy also works with teachers, schools, corporates and startups to increase the number of women with professional technical and entrepreneurial skills.

About General Assembly:

General Assembly (GA) is a global educational co-feed company on a mission to empower a global community to pursue work they love. Focusing on the most relevant and in-demand skills across data, design, business and technology, GA is confronting a skills gap through best-in-class instruction and providing access to opportunities.

GA works with students online and in person on more than 20 campuses in 6 countries. GA also works with employers to help companies source talent, assess talent and transform talent. Additionally, GA’s focus on affordable and accessible education combined with our education-to-employment approach is helping to create a diverse talent pipeline.

For more information, follow us @GA or on LinkedIn.


4 Sep

What Dads Want: Father’s Day brunch, but no toiletries please

by launch-admin Sep 4, 2017 0 News
Screen Shot 2017-08-22 at 3.37.10 pm.png

Media Release

What Dads Want: Father’s Day brunch, but no toiletries please 

As Father’s Day approaches, new research reveals dads prefer personal acknowledgements to toiletries, socks & jocks

Australia, 1 September 2017 – This Father’s Day, dads can expect a gift voucher from their daughters … and a hug from their sons, according to new research by global data and insights company Pureprofile.

Luckily for the sons, the majority of fathers (34%) who responded to the survey said they would prefer spending time with the family or a personal acknowledgement to any presents.

The new data, taken from a nationally representative sample of more than 1,063 Australians, revealed dads’ most loathed gifts (toiletries) and most loved gifts (a meal in or out). But overall, most fathers (51%) say they are always happy with their gifts, no matter what – with 17% saying their most disappointing experience is being forgotten and receiving no gift or acknowledgement on the day.

The survey also highlighted the gender differences in selecting the right gift for dad. The top three gifts planned from daughters this year were: gift voucher (25%); clothing (21%); and no present, just a hug or other personal acknowledgement (14%). Sons opted for: no present, just a hug or other personal acknowledgement (25%); clothing (16%); and a gift voucher (15%).

Interestingly, approximately 13% of respondents aged under 39 are planning to treat dad to a new gadget this year, compared to only 5% of those aged over 40, perhaps reflecting the younger generation projecting their own gift preferences onto their parents.

Pureprofile Managing Director, Kelvin Kirk said: “While modern technology is significantly impacting our lives and lifestyle choices, traditional values still reign supreme in family dynamics, with most fathers valuing spending time with family above all else.”

Age also played a part in Dad’s preferences: younger fathers (44 and under) tend to desire clothing, food, and handmade gifts — while those aged 45 and over leaned toward books, hardware and tools.

“It’s interesting to see how fathers of different generations place value on gifts. Almost half of dads aged 18-24 value a handmade gift above any other, compared to an average of 24 per cent for all older fathers. Gift vouchers seemed to be favoured much more by fathers aged over 40 than their younger counterparts, and almost no dads aged over 55 desired clothing or food as their annual gift,” continued Mr Kirk.

For those who are considering a last-minute shop, here are dad’s top 5 likes, dislikes … and the top 5 planned presents: 

Dad loves:

(1)   Spending time with the family or a personal acknowledgement (34%)

(2)   A home cooked meal or meal out (27%)

(3)   A handmade gift (23%)

(4)   Gift vouchers (22%)

(5)   Alcohol (14%) 

Dad loathes:

(1)   Being forgotten, no gift and/or no acknowledgement (17%)

(2)   Toiletries (11%)

(3)   Clothing – including socks, underwear, shirts, trousers (10%)

(4)   Alcohol (7%)

(5)   Just a hug or other personal acknowledgement (7%) 

What children are planning to give this year:

(1)   A gift voucher (20%)

(2)   No presents: just a hug or other personal acknowledgement (19%)

(3)   Clothing – including socks, underwear, shirts, trousers (18%)

(4)   Alcohol (13%)

(5)   New gadgets (11%)

– ENDS –

About Pureprofile (ASX: PPL)
Pureprofile Limited (ASX: PPL) connects brands with empowered consumers across the world by finding, understanding and engaging them through direct-to-consumer technology platforms. The Pureprofile group is now a global leader in data insights, programmatic media, big data, and quantitative research, as well as consumer lead generation through the recently acquired Cohort group. Pureprofile delivers next generation marketing solutions for more than 700 brands, publishers and research groups worldwide.

Media Contacts

Sarah Bond l 02 9492 1041 l 0449 543 181 l sarahbond@launchgroup.com.au

beach, coast, dad

31 Aug

StartupAUS says Federal Government Response to IP Review is only the beginning

by launch-admin Aug 31, 2017 0 News


StartupAUS says Federal Government Response

to IP Review is only the beginning


Copyright safe harbour high on the agenda 

Australia, 31 August 2017: Australia’s peak advocacy group for startups, StartupAUS, has called for Productivity Commission recommendations on intellectual property systems to be fast-tracked. 

The Federal Government asked the Commission to prepare the year-long review, which was delivered in September last year and publicly released in December. Last week, the Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science, Senator Arthur Sinodinos, and the Minister for Communications, Senator Mitch Fifield, delivered the Government’s response to the review’s findings, commenting favourably on the Commission’s recommendations.

StartupAUS CEO Alex McCauley welcomed the Federal Government’s positive response to the recommendations but highlighted the need for concrete steps to be taken. 

“This is an important area of reform for Australia. We need a copyright safe harbour regime if we want to unlock the potential of emerging digital businesses while also providing an effective mechanism for protecting the rights of copyright holders.

“This review is the latest in a string of reviews that have recommended this sort of reform over the years, and it’s now time to act. We’ve already seen draft legislation this year, and we’ll certainly be pushing strongly in the coming weeks and months to see the recommendations return to Parliament so that these reforms can become law,” said Mr McCauley.

Mr McCauley added that a number of Australia’s most promising startups were being held back by the current copyright regime in Australia, which he said lagged other similar countries.

“In places like the US and the UK, copyright safe harbour has been standard for many years. That’s allowing businesses to grow fast, employing large numbers of people in those countries. Businesses like Facebook, Twitter and Google would not exist without these laws. It’s time Australia caught up and unlocked the very real potential job creators we have right here at home.”



Sarah Bond sarahbond@launchgroup.com.au 02 9492 1003 / 0452 574 244

About StartupAUS

StartupAUS is a not-for-profit entity with a mission to transform Australia through technology entrepreneurship. StartupAUS believes a strong home-grown tech sector is vital to future Australian jobs and wealth. But getting there will require a national imperative to create the right environment, with a supportive culture and more entrepreneurs with the right skills.

For more information visit: www.startupaus.org

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