Wednesday, April 24, 2013

Startup Australia

On the 13th and 14th March around 50 people passionate about the tech startup ecosystem in Australia gathered in Sydney for 2 days to engage as a community and put together a plan for how we can grow the startup ecosystem in Australia. The event was the brainchild of Alan Noble and a passionate group of people from Google. A small group of us contributed to planning for the day. Thanks to everyone who commented on my previous post on this topic, your ideas were incorporated into the event and many of you also attended the two days which was great.

As an organising group we didn't want this to turn into another 2 day talk fest that didn't result in action items going forward, and we wanted to ensure there would be enthusiasm to complete the agreed actions out going forward. The two days were facilitated by a PwC group called 'The Difference'. They're amazing facilitators and over the 2 days their facilitation meant that we identified the issues, brainstormed solutions and by the end of the second day had an action plan that involved everyone who had attended the two days. It was amazing to be part of such a productive 2 day workshop.

The document embedded below is a summary of the 2 days. Page 2 outlines our key action items for the 7 different areas we identified to work on over the coming months:

  • Education
  • Making entrepreneurialism exciting
  • Helping existing entrepreneurs
  • Policy & legislation
  • Awareness
  • Research & data
  • Leadership & funding

The last page of the report has a lovely shot of Sebastien Eckersley-Maslin and my socks. :)

StartupAUS - The Journey

Many of the people involved over the 2 days are now busy at work executing the action items in the 7 areas we're working on. We're also in the process now of setting up a not for profit company and interim board to take on the management of the project going forward. Given my recent 360 feedback I'm going to step back my involvement from here (I invested the equivalent of 5 full time days last quarter) and I'll make way for others who are more keen to take my position on the interim board, but I'll stay involved to help out where needed and I look forward to seeing Startup Australia help develop the ecosystem from here.


  1. Nice wrap, Michael. And even nicer socks :)

    I'm super keen to get involved in the Board capacity. As someone who took part in the forum and is deeply engaged in Perth's startup community, I would love to see this initiative fire up and capture all the potential of #startupAUS!

  2. Hi Sam, great to hear. I'll pass that along to the current board. If you haven't already make sure you speak with Peter Bradd about your keenness too. Cheers.