Is Sydney the city of start-ups?

Is Sydney the city of start-ups?

Sydney has become “the epicentre of innovation, economic growth and jobs in Australia,” according to Clover Moore, Lord Mayor of Sydney.

As evidence, she points to not only the increase in Sydney jobs in the last 10 to 12 years, but also the change in the nature of employment. Manufacturing and related jobs have declined in favour of professional, business, financial services (supported by visitor accommodation, restaurants and cafes). But it is in the IT space that the change has been most dramatic.

Since 2013, the number of jobs for IT professionals in Sydney has grown from 7500 to over 20,000. Some are in ‘traditional’ companies, but others are in start-ups. In fact, it is estimated that 64 per cent of all Australian start-ups can be found in Sydney. Small wonder, then, that Moore likes to call Sydney “the tech capital of Australia”.

With Australian tech start-ups set to contribute a whopping $109 billion to the national economy by 2033, generating 540,000 jobs in the process, the City of Sydney is investing to capitalise on the opportunity to nurture the next Amazon or Atlassian – companies that barely existed 15 years ago.

In fact, Moore believes that encouraging entrepreneurs in the sorts of emerging, innovative and disruptive businesses that are reimagining industries across the world from the ground up is critical to creating a city that is innovative, prosperous and lively.

That has been the driving force behind Sydney’s Tech Start-ups Action Plan, launched in 2016. It outlines how Sydney will be competitive in the global marketplace by encouraging more people to become entrepreneurs, increasing opportunities for them to access both investment and talent, expanding hubs of office and event space, creating a better connected eco-system, and reducing the regulatory barriers start-ups face.

The action plan is a continuation of the City of Sydney’s ongoing investment in the tech space, which includes:

  • Supporting women-led high-growth businesses through Springboard Enterprises Australia.
  • Ensuring “the next generation of start-up entrepreneurs” has the skills (from computer coding to creative thinking and 3D printing to digital citizenship) required for the jobs of the future.
  • Planning an “innovation space” as part of a new library in Darling Exchange, Haymarket, and a 3600 square metre business innovation space for tech start-ups at Circular Quay.
  • Helping connect entrepreneurs from within the Sydney ecosystem and beyond.
  • Providing incentives for creatives and nurturing a better environment for start-ups.
  • Partnering with the NSW Government, local start-up leaders, investors and universities.

Moore’s vision is clear: “For Sydney’s tech start-ups to become national and global companies...through supporting the smart, creative and resilient people who are solving complex problems, launching and growing businesses, employing people and creating wealth.”

If you’ve got a great idea for a business (centred in Sydney or anywhere in Australia) our How to launch a start-up ebook can help you turn it into reality. Download it today.

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