Moving to Melbourne – A Guide for Startups and Entrepreneurs

YoStartups Team

The high quality of living and its steady economy has attracted several entrepreneurs, startup job seekers and start-ups to move to Melbourne.  Australia’s startup scene has been touted to have all the potential to contribute revenues that is close to 5% of its GDP. The country has a fast-evolving space sector and is preparing for its first commercial space launch by 2020

The capital of the ‘startup state’ of Victoria, Melbourne is a boiling pot of tech professionals from diverse tech niches. The growing prowess of the tech sector and international recognition of the local startups is making entrepreneurs from around the world move to Melbourne for finding the right launch pad.

Melbourne’s GDP of $235 billion is mostly contributed by prime industries like financial services, information and communication technology, retail trade, biotech,  and healthcare among the other sectors. The city has a young population of 4.7 million people which comprises of people from various countries. Australia’s people friendly government policies and high quality of living have attracted thousands from around the world to move to Melbourne and the other Australian cities.

Melbourne – the Prime Startup Hub of Australia

The country down under is seeing rapid growth of startup hubs like Melbourne. According to the Global Startup Ecosystem Report 2018, the number of accelerators in the city has increased by six times and has 170 co-working spaces indicating a 900% growth in recent years. Moving to Melbourne does not guarantee much in terms of a large market, but the city has several unmatched advantages as a startup hub. There are over 1,100 startups in the city with some of them growing internationally like Rome2Rio, Culture Amp, and 99Designs that are creating a good name both domestically and globally.

Accessible and Innovation Friendly Spaces for Startups & Entrepreneurs in Melbourne

Let’s throw light on the collaborative spaces you get to access when you move to Melbourne. The scale of growth and presence of co-working brands and accelerators has already been mentioned above which gives a fair idea of how well the startup segment in the city has grown.

If you are planning on moving to Melbourne and are looking to collaborate with incubators and accelerators to fast-track the growth of your startup, there are an array of industry-specific and general ones you can choose from. Some of the popular ones include the Melbourne Accelerator Program, Muru-D, BlueChilli, and the Translating Research at Melbourne.

Be a part of an exciting virtual accelerator program from wherever you are with YoStartups. It is a zero-equity-demanding accelerator program which comprises high-value modules and one-to-one sessions with the crème de la crème of diverse industries and entrepreneurial communities. The accelerator program has helped multiple startups across continents to find the right footing to thrive in fast-growing ecosystems.

Presence of global co-working office space brands like WeWork shows how well the startups in Melbourne are growing. Inspire9, Hub Australia, and York Butter Factory are some of the other favorite spaces.  A co-working space that should not be missed out in the list of high impact shared workspaces is One Roof, a brand encouraging entrepreneurship by offering work areas exclusively for businesses led by women.

Another important resource is the innovation labs which encourages to tech-based innovation through their various events and assisting programs.

Move to Melbourne for the Exciting Startup Community

The startup community in Melbourne is one of the healthy sources of support for startups and entrepreneurs moving to Melbourne. The several startup events held in Melbourne has given rise to an active community of startups, entrepreneurs, investors, startup job seekers, and other startup ecosystem players. Melbourne Silicon Beach and Entrepreneurship and Innovation Hub hold some of the largest meetups in Victoria.

There are several smaller niche or specialization specific communities within the larger community of startups in Melbourne and in the state of Victoria. Code Like a Girl, GirledWorld, and the League of Extraordinary Women are some of the women-centric groups that are helping in closing any gender gaps in the ecosystem.

Startups in Melbourne Enjoy Versatile Funding Resources

While initially, Australia saw a slow pace in the growth of investments, the ecosystems in the country seem to have caught up in recent years. Investors within the country and outside are now moving to Melbourne to invest in the  VC worthy startups in the city and other startup ecosystems in the country. $300 million of venture capital investments were made in the country in 2015. The angel investors’ network is also quite robust with close to 1600 angel investors.

A vital funding resource for startups in Melbourne is the Small Business Grant Program that is open to any startup or established business in Melbourne city.  370 and more companies in the city have found this grant helpful which has funded a total amount of $8.3 billion so far.

Melbourne Has a Strong Network of Ecosystem Partners for Startups & Entrepreneurs

All the principal players of the startup ecosystem culminate into a larger community of ecosystem partners with some whose contribution stands out from the rest. While the support of LaunchVic which is also a Startup Genome Member has been in the spotlight, there are a few other partners who are pushing the startup culture in Melbourne to its glory. These include:

Rome2Rio

BioMelbourne Network

Startup Bootcamp

Inspire9

York Butter Factory

Startup Victoria

Runway Geelong

ACMIX

A Startup Ecosystem Defined by its Growing Tech Sector

Most of the startups and startup job seekers moving to Melbourne come here for its booming tech sector. With four software companies bringing in exit deals worth over $100 million and eight companies in the life science segment got public in recent years, there has been a lot of funding and exit activity in the tech-based startups in Melbourne. Aconex’s acquisition by Oracle for $1.2 billion in 2016 has been one of the recent high-value acquisitions in the Melbourne ecosystem. Here are some of the crucial sub-sectors that are worth moving to Melbourne for.

A High Output Biotech and Life Sciences Segment

Some of the startups in this sector have gained recognition worldwide for their innovative product offerings. These include Hatchtech’s commercialization deal with Dr Reddy of $280 million, licensing agreements of Starpharma and AstraZeneca of up to  $450 million, and Novartis’ acquisition of Spinifex Pharma for $200 million.

There are close to 180 biotech startups in Melbourne, and a majority of the publicly listed life sciences companies of Australia are from this city. The growth of the biotech and life sciences sub-sector in Melbourne is further fuelled by the presence of one of the top ten educational institutions in the world for  medicine and health – the University of Melbourne.

An Exciting Health Segment for Startups & Entrepreneurs in Melbourne

Melbourne has been touted as the Ultimate Sports City since the past decade owing to the high interest of its communities in sports activities.  This has helped lay a strong foundation for the sports health based startups in Melbourne to thrive. Close to 6% of all the startups in the ecosystem are sports tech-based startups with a significant chunk of them dealing with sports-related health issues.

Moving to Melbourne can especially be rewarding for startup job seekers in the health sector as the segment single-handedly creates a quarter of the jobs in the ecosystem in Melbourne. The contribution to a sustainable jobs market in the region is also attributed to the top-notch clinical medicine and pharmacy educational institution – the Monash University. A lot of innovative startups have been borne out of this reputable institution.

A Boisterous Adtech Sub-Sector for Startups & Entrepreneurs in Melbourne

The adtech sub-sector in Melbourne is a relatively new one but equally fierce as its other tech-based counterparts. There were close to 25 adtech startups in Melbourne as of 2017 which have attracted investments that are worth millions of dollars. Melbourne’s tryst with adtech startups began in 2012 when it hosted the inaugural adtech conference and is now a leading adtech startup sector in the country.  Startup giants in the segment have given the community the best leaders who are now focused on helping other adtech startups in the city rise higher with support in the form of investments and mentorship.

Moving to Australia can undoubtedly be an enriching experience for your entrepreneurial journey. Whether it is the business-friendly tax system or the beautiful landscape of the city, Melbourne is an excellent city to move to on both the professionals and personal front.  The tech sector in the city has grown at an unfathomable rate which has also contributed to a dynamic jobs market making it a good city for entrepreneurs, startups, and startup job seekers equally.

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This article is from Yostartups, YoStartups is a Pre Accelerator, and it empowers entrepreneurs to propel their business ideas into successful ventures. Yostartups’ core mission is to take the message of entrepreneurship to 1 billion people globally by 2020.

In case you are looking at scaling or launching a venture on similar lines, you can apply for our virtual acceleration program Excelrate on our website, Yostartups.com, Yostartups’ Excelrate program will help you in streamlining and structuring your startup idea. We have limited scholarships and discount packs for deserving business ideas, depending on the strength of your startup ideas, you may qualify for a discount.

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