Sydney Is Finally Proposing An Action Plan For Startups

Frederique Bros
on 5 August 2015

2015 Global Startup Ecosystem Rankings revealed Sydney and Melbourne have fallen sharply down the rankings as centres of startup innovation. Sydney is the only Australian city inside the top 20, at #16, and Melbourne has dropped outside of the top 20.

“This is a great conversation opener and it’s good to see growing recognition amongst our political leaders that startups hold the key to Australia’s economic future.  Startups could contribute up to $US109 billion in growth to the economy, and 540,000 new jobs over the next two decades and Sydney’s local economy stands to gain enormously from this growth,” CEO of StartupAUS, Peter Bradd said. 

“However these outcomes are by no means guaranteed. We urgently need to do more to develop our ecosystem within cities and within the broader state economies to ensure we don’t fall further behind our counterparts in the global startup ecosystem. This means acting now and it means far greater collaboration between governments and the private sector.”  

Mr Bradd acknowledged Brisbane City’s agenda-setting 2020 plan as a valuable example of successful local government-driven startup initiatives. 

“Brisbane Marketing’s 2020 plan has been quite successful and provides a good example of what focused effort at the local government level can achieve.  It would be powerful to see collaboration between cities and states and all levels of government to strengthen our startup ecosystem.  When it comes to attracting and retaining entrepreneurs and investment capital, the real competition is not between Australian cities or states, but rather on the global stage.” 

The City of Sydney’s draft plan outlines a focus on building a strong entrepreneurial culture and community, creating skilled and connected entrepreneurs, increasing the startup ecosystem density, supporting entrepreneurs’ access to funding, and developing technology entrepreneurs’ access to markets.  

Mr Bradd said the City of Sydney plan aligns with the recommendations that StartupAUS’ Crossroads 2015 report, which recommended that Australia’s political organisations look to:

  • Grow our pipeline of Australian entrepreneurs 
  • Improve entrepreneurship education 
  • Increase the number of ICT professionals
  • Increase availability of early-stage capital to startups
  • Address legal and regulatory impediments
  • Increase collaboration and international connectedness
  • Create a national innovation agency 

“StartupAUS would like to see the Plan passed by Sydney Council, and other Australian cities to follow suit.”

“To maximise the success we’d like to see far greater collaboration between local, State and Federal government – to the benefit of all Australians.  

“If the various levels of NSW government were to work together to create a precinct-like environment within Sydney that housed a large concentration of startups as we have seen in New Zealand or the Mars precinct in Canada, then we would enjoy the benefits of scale and collaboration between Australia’s most innovative companies,” Mr Bradd added. 

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Image Credit: DepositPhotos

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