Any UK startup that does choose to relocate to Australia’s ‘supposed land of startup opportunity’ will, however, get to experience the following: a handful of accelerators which take lots of your money and a large chunk of your company’s equity in return for building your product – if they like it – sometimes after you’ve paid to pitch to them. Plenty of announcements of start-up grants in the media which don’t actually appear. The constant hailing of great-Australian-startup, Atlassian, which launched in 2003 - before Facebook and AWS. A string of startup conferences and pitch-fests with no tangible prizes. Potentially-appalling real-estate options. Lectures from genuine experts like AngelCube co-founder Adrian Stone telling you to leave and go to America at the first opportunity.
Meanwhile, some Australian startups and accelerators, like Sakura Sky, are relocating to Singapore where the genuinely start-up friendly Corporate state is tempting people and companies with a tax-friendly innovation-focused environment and a genuine “on Asia’s doorstep” location.
UK startups seeking an antipodean culture whilst on an Asia-friendly time-zone should check out New Zealand’s Wellington which has seized upon Australia’s backwards steps and declared itself a genuine hub of innovation with fibre broadband and relocation grants.
Nonetheless, it’s still worth noting that Australia’s almost complete innovation failure provides in itself an opportunity to succeed – just in a much harsher financial environment and in a country that generally struggles to trust anything new. We also have better weather, friendlier people and the beaches kick arse. So all good and no worries. Except for Sydney’s lockout laws. Which are shit.
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