This article is part of our Innovation Around the World series. To see past posts click here.
Australia now has more than sun, surf and sand to offer – it has a booming startup scene that is showing no signs of slowing down.
Over the past few years, Australia has seen a steady increase in the number of startups, the revenue they generate, and the investment they attract.
In the past year alone, early stage investments in local startups exceeded to $1 billion AUD, shooting up from $620 million AUD in 2015-2016.
Much of this growth is due to increased support from the Australian government like facilitating connections between startups and large businesses, tax incentives and incubators.
These factors coupled with its remote location fuel Australia’s need for local innovative solutions. It is that need that drives the Aussie startup scene forward.
Helping the Agriculture Industry Through Innovation
Australia has a large agricultural industry valued at more than $155 billion a year.
Beyond feeding the local population, Australia is a large exporter of farmed goods. Climate issues such as the drought that the continent is experiencing are having a significant impact on local industry.
As a result, many startups have sought to come up with innovative solutions that address these issues.
The Yield is an AgTech startup founded in 2014 that uses IoT solutions to transform the Australian farming scene and improve the information farmers have about their produce.
Last April, The Yield completed their Series A funding round, adding $6.5 million to their previous $5 million investments.
Another local startup looking to make a difference in the agriculture scene is Agersens. Rather than focus on the farming, they seek to improve the way farmers monitor and control their livestock. IoT solutions help farmers keep tabs on the whereabouts and welfare of their cattle.
As long as the agricultural community continues to suffer, more and more Australian startups will likely enter the AgTech space to try to solve the massive problems the country faces.
Powering Australia Amid an Energy Crisis
In recent years Australia has been experiencing an energy crisis, with two of Australia’s states already experiencing electricity shortages this past summer.
Despite being the second largest exporter of liquefied natural gas, the sweltering heat and increased demand was too much for the local infrastructure to bear.
To help reduce energy usage and to educate the market, Sydney-based energy efficiency startup, CIM Enviro, created a platform that relies on machine learning to help consumers reduce their energy consumption.
Other companies are looking to provide new energy sources by capitalizing on the abundance of solar energy Australia has.
Power Ledger lets individuals trade their renewable energy using blockchain technology to ensure the transactions are transparent, secure and auditable. Their revolutionary peer-to-peer marketplace for solar energy trading has helped them raise $35 million in two funding rounds.As the energy crisis in Australia continues to worsen, the innovative solutions being created today will end up powering the future of the country. Click To Tweet
GreenSync is another Australian startup looking to connect energy resources throughout the country to create a dynamic grid. GreenSync has already raised $12 million in three funding rounds.
Leveraging Technology to Improve Health
HealthTech is changing everything from the way patients and doctors interact to the way medical information is managed, and even surgical procedures worldwide. Australia is no exception.
HealthEngine was founded in 2006 in Perth, Australia to improve the patient healthcare experience. The platform helps patients navigate the local health system, book appointments, find health care providers and more.
Beyond providing patients with a better experience, the platform helps healthcare providers by optimizing booking management, improving relationships with patients and growing their practices.
In April 2017, HealthEngine completed their Series C funding round, bringing their total investment up to $37.8 million AUD.
SoundScouts is another Australian company looking to make a difference in the local healthcare arena using innovation.
Their solution simplifies hearing test administration for children through a mobile game that assesses hearing while aggregating information. By simplifying preventative testing at such an early age, SoundScouts can help diagnose hearing issues that may impact future learning and development.The Australian startup scene is experiencing rapid growth and will likely continue to do so, solving local problems and global needs at once. Click To Tweet
Another company making a difference in the preventative healthcare field is CancerAid. The application was designed to improve the lives of cancer patients, clinicians and caregivers.
It does so by digitizing medical treatment and diagnostic information, providing accurate information about treatments, simplifying symptom recording and creating a community for cancer patients to connect and stay informed.
The company has expanded to the U.S and U.K, and in Q3 of 2017, closed their seed round of investment, raising a total of $1.9 million.
The Land Down Under Is Coming Out On Top
In addition to innovation that is focused on local problems, many startups from Australia are making a difference in the global community.
Drag-and drop graphic design platform Canva has transformed the digital design industry with their easy to use platform and has already raised more than $83 million.
Linius Technologies, creator of the patented Video Virtualization Engine that is available on Amazon Web Services, IBM Cloud and Microsoft Azure, went public in Q1 of 2018 on the Australian stock exchange, bringing their total equity raised to $16.5 million.
Overall, the Australian startup scene is experiencing rapid growth and will likely continue to do so, solving local problems and global needs at once.