Published on Jan 4, 2016

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As Australia forges a path into the brave new world of the Ideas Boom, startups and the role they play in the age of innovation is in the spotlight.

A key element of the Government’s innovation statement focused on making Australia more startup friendly by opening up crowd-sourced funding equity, developing an incubator support programme, and reforming employee share schemes and insolvency laws.

At this point it might be helpful to identify exactly what a startup is. While the startup identity has a definite tech-skew, a business does not have to develop apps or software to qualify as one – although digital savvy in the startup world is a must.

Most experts agree a core element of a startup is a repeatable and scalable business model without geographical constraints. And, perhaps it’s important to note that while a small business can be a startup, not all startups are small businesses.

The distinction lies in the aspirations of the business. Where a small business might be happy to be just that—small—a startup is generally founded with the intention to go big, fast.

Australian Startup Snapshot

The Startup Muster 2015 Report was released recently, and reveals some interesting facts about Australia’s startup sector:

It’s an educated man’s world. 76 per cent of startups were founded by men, and 82 per cent of founders had at least Bachelor-level education (41 per cent had post-graduate qualifications).

Quarter-life crisis or New Year’s resolution? More than half of startup founders were aged between 25 to 40. The most commonly cited reason for pursing a startup was dissatisfaction with previous job (33.3 per cent). Interestingly, 20 per cent of startups were founded in January.

Startups actively seek support. A quarter of startups used an accelerator or incubator program, and 63 per cent had a mentor.

Read the full Startup Muster 2015 Report. Find out more the Government’s plan to create an ideas boom at the National Innovation and Science Agenda website.

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