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Overseas start-ups find fresh pastures
Melbourne, not Sydney, should be the destination of choice for fast-growing overseas tech start-ups entering Australia, according to the boss of Switzerland- headquartered alternative lending start-up Tradeplus24.
Tradeplus24 recently chose Melbourne as its home in Australia to begin a global expansion strategy.
Its new Australian managing director, Adam Lane, said Melbourne was an easy choice over Sydney due to the Victorian government’s far greater commitment to tech initiatives, larger pool of available venture capital and a superior ability to attract talent.
“After successfully launching and scaling our operations in Switzerland, we saw global expansion as a natural next step, and the choice of Australia had clear benefits for our business in particular,” Mr Lane told The Australian.
“As an alternative lender to SMEs, we were looking for a market that had a thriving business sector which did not yet have easy access to the credit.
“However, we also needed to set up operations in a location which provided access to resources and took innovation seriously.”
Mr Lane said the company’s research found that Melbourne, home to more than half of Australia’s top tech companies according to InvestVic research, was on top in almost every aspect.
Some of the state’s homegrown start-ups include Afterpay, Airwallex, Culture Amp, Envato and 99Designs, with some overseas companies to pick Melbourne including Zendesk, Slack, Square and GoPro.
Mr Lane said while Sydney had a larger and more valuable fintech ecosystem than Melbourne — $64 billion compared to about $40bn — the distance was short and relatively easy to commute.
“It’s important for any tech company to have access to other companies within its own industry vertical, and in the industry it’s seeking to disrupt,” he said.
Originally published on The Australian Business Review
Date: 23 July, 2019