Flying start: Why the startup ecosystem is vital for Australia

1 March 2016

Australia’s startup ecosystem has already begun to show immense opportunities and positive impacts on the community. With the ongoing development of startup hubs such as The Capital in Brisbane and others Australia-wide, these will provide new opportunities for every Australian willing to participate in the country’s transition into a world leader in innovation and entrepreneurialism. Australia will no longer be reliant on exporting physical commodities and resources to support the country’s growth, and instead will be driven by an entrepreneurial culture known for its limitless opportunities.

Job opportun­­ities a boon

As the startup ecosystem develops, the greatest benefit to the wider Australian community will be the increased job opportunities. The more support we give the ecosystem, the faster it will develop the potential to produce world-leading startups. The increase in home-grown startups and businesses will provide an enormous influx of job opportunities, and new industries will develop that provide jobs and career paths that previously did not exist. This creates a diversity that will decrease competitiveness in over-populated industries and increase the opportunities for experienced and talented professionals to find job security.

Startups and entrepreneurs help build innovation

Innovation in important sectors

Australia’s health and natural resource sectors are ripe for transformation. A focus on increased innovation and research will provide opportunities for Australia to grow, with the potential to become a resource mine for the rest of the world. Australia’s agribusiness innovations have provided leading tech and research that is increasingly sought by countries across the globe. Innovation in these industries will improve the quality and rate of production of our resources, providing more for our own population and enormous opportunities for our export market.

Good vibes for the city

In the past year, Brisbane’s culture has started to become recognised nationally thanks to a boost in the hospitality industry. Support for creatives, and new opportunities in collaborative working are flourishing, and this culture is permeating the city – significantly changing the overall vibe of Brisbane. But there is a stark contrast between the weekend liveliness of the CBD compared with its surrounding culturally enriched suburbs.

The opening of The Capital in the CBD is set to change this. Startup hubs have the ability to inject an excitement that isn’t always heard by the wider city, which can be unaware of the rapidly changing entrepreneurial landscape in Brisbane. In Little Tokyo Two, weekends are buzzing with members visiting the space, hosting events, people trying out relaxed creative workshops and socialising. Socialising and collaboration are the key components of the startup ecosystem, and conversations spark ideas and movements.

Attracting people and talent

Brisbane’s unique lifestyle constantly attracts people from all over the world. Its relaxed atmosphere, contrasted with the buzz of a fast-moving city, provides an incomparable lifestyle that is second to none. The startup ecosystem will provide immense opportunities for the city’s growth by positioning Brisbane as a leading innovative city that has a lifestyle like no other. The increase of home-grown startups and entrepreneurs is beginning to provide a new attraction for the city, and is facilitating Brisbane in becoming a concentrated hub of world-class talent.

Influence on company culture

Startups and entrepreneurs have begun to lead industries and promote new business models, working styles and innovative business solutions – changing company cultures in Brisbane. The startup ecosystem will become the key trend-setter in Brisbane’s business industry, influencing traditional companies to change their work culture by allowing employees to work from collaborative workspaces.

Changes to company culture are incredible and will provide extensive opportunities for large organisations to redevelop their internal functions and increase their efficiency, which will then influence smaller-scale operators to take risks and implement new business strategies.

A larger focus on creativity, sharing, support and open environments will enable collaboration and engagement across all levels of business.

Opportunities to collaborate and go global

Collaboration is the key to the startup ecosystem and will be one of the major aspects that facilitates Brisbane’s growth into a New World City. The collaboration between small operators working together to create global impacts will become a leading example for collaboration internationally.

Benefits to education and venture capital

The focus on injecting innovation into Australia’s key industries and the country’s rapidly developing startup ecosystem will have enormous impacts on Australian education. The increase in entrepreneurial businesses will influence some of Australia’s largest companies to implement new business methods and inevitably restructure the way Australians learn.

It will be essential for the education system to acknowledge the entrepreneurial developments and pivot to stay relevant. The initial developments will begin in universities and then be integrated into primary and secondary schools to reshape the way that future generations learn.

Brisbane has the potential to set the pathway for the startup ecosystem in Australia. The culture, lifestyle and the startup community’s willingness to take risks is what will ensure the city leads by example, and will create a mentor effect for the rest of the country. Our incredible, interconnected systems will be supported by physical spaces where the all-important entrepreneurial vibe will thrive.

The startup ecosystem is essential to Brisbane’s future.

Jock Fairweather

Founder at Little Tokyo Two

Jock Fairweather spent his idyllic and adventurous childhood years in Papua New Guinea and the Philippines then made the move to Brisbane for his high-school education. Europe was beckoning loudly. For the last seven years, Jock has travelled the globe socialising with some of the world’s most famous fashion designers and built a women’s luxury shoe label that broke records within the high fashion industry. After parting ways with his brand and a Swiss equity group, Jock is back in Brisbane building ‘co-working’ businesses where people from all walks of life have access to his Little Tokyo Two spaces to collaborate, innovate and build their dreams.

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