Our startup scene should be the most innovative and explosive in the world, but there’s a long way to go. Now’s the time to tell us how we can help.
Sydney is home to two-thirds of Australia’s tech startups. But we’re far from being global leaders.
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Australia has one of the lowest rates of angel and venture capital investment in the world. And we’re the only developed nation that does not offer entrepreneur visas.
Cities such as Berlin, London and Singapore have supportive government investment and their tech startups are seeing the benefits.
The City of Sydney’s new 10-year action plan is all about creating an environment where entrepreneurs can start and grow successful global businesses.
The plan’s author, Charnelle Mondy, said tech startups are vital for Sydney’s future.
“Successful tech startups such as Atlassian, Campaign Monitor and Canva have put Sydney on the map,” she says. “We want to build this entrepreneurial culture and support access to skilled support networks, funding and markets.
“Our goal is to support a flourishing ecosystem that is open, inclusive, skilled and highly connected.”
Actions focus on providing a strong support network, business and entrepreneurship education, and infrastructure and financing opportunities.
Proposed projects include a visiting entrepreneur program, business seminars, a Sydney tech startup festival and investor recruitment events.
Sydney-based entrepreneur, OneShift founder Gen George says that while the Sydney startup community is inclusive, the efforts made by City of Sydney should open it up to more aspiring business owners.
““This tech startup action plan is about increasing the amount of tech startups in Sydney, and looking at how we can support them so they have the best chance for global success.”
George explains that things have come a long way for startups, but there is more to do.
“When I started three years ago there was a completely different environment. I didn’t even know there were startup hubs like Fishburners, where you could go jump on a desk next to another startup. No one knew about these resources.”
For George, the bigger picture is to create skilled entrepreneurs for the future.
“I would like to see compulsory coding in schools, and replacing the old business course with an entrepreneurial course.”
The City is looking for input from the startup community to finalise the plan. You can view the plan and give feedback at sydneyyoursay.com.au until 10 November. You can also join the conversation with #startupsyd.