Australian founder salaries analysed in global survey

Nearly three-quarters of Australia’s start-up founders are aged between 31 and 40 and are paying themselves just over $US55,000 ($A62,700) a year, an analysis of global founder salaries has found.

Last week data collection and benchmarking group Compass released findings from a survey of 11,160 founders around the world that revealed 72% of founders earn less than $US50,000 a year.

Compass has since released further analysis from the survey, looking at average founder salaries by a start-up’s monthly revenue, age, experience and team size and provided a breakdown for Australia.

It found that Australian founders aged 31-40 paid themselves on average $US55,183 a year, slightly more than the global average of $US50,777.

But Australian founders aged 41-50, who make up 7% of Australia’s founders, were paid on average $US112,500 a year, nearly twice the global average of $US60,456.

Australian founders aged 21-30, who make up 17% of founders, earn an average $US54,333 a year, while the global average is $US36,873.


The survey also broke down how much founders are paid compared with their previous start-up experience, with Australian founders who have had three previous ventures earning the highest average of their local peers at US$111,364 a year, while the global average at that level was $US58,779.

Australian founders on their first start-up were paid an average $US48,117 a year, while those with one previous start-up behind them were paid $US88,904 and two earlier start-ups $US100,000.


The survey also looked into salaries compared with monthly revenues and discovered that Australian founders were paid an average $US54,102 a year while revenues were still zero. Annual salaries fell to an average $US36,207 when revenues were $US1-$US1000 a month and fell again to $US35,313 when revenues were $US1000-$US10,000.

Salaries jumped to an average $US92,647 when revenues reached $US10,000-$100,000 a month, and further to an average $US155,000 when monthly revenue hit $US100,000-$US1 million.


“More revenue coming in means more money available to pay back out again without impacting the long-term sustainability of the company,” Compass said in a statement.

This article first appeared on StartupSmart.


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