Australia's Tech Boom-erang

Grow Your Business, Not Your Inbox

Stay informed and join our daily newsletter now!
Will be used in accordance with our Privacy Policy
Australia's Tech Boom-erang
Image credit: Shutterstock
Circular Quay business district in Sydney Australia.
Founder of Verma Media
4 min read
Opinions expressed by Entrepreneur contributors are their own.

In recent years Australia has been one of the major destinations for startups, as well as international businesses looking to set up new regional offices. The latest statistics reveal that the number of businesses trading in Australia has risen for a second year in a row. On top of this comes the news that Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull is implementing additional tax benefits to encourage even more investment in Australian startups.

How the Australian market is changing.

Five years ago I happened to be in Australia and I discovered just how powerful the economy was. Many of my younger Australian friends had saved up the money to launch businesses by spending a year or two in the mining industry. It involved working in remote locations for much of the year, but the pay was incredible. While the mining boom has tailed off the country has come up with new ways to diversify. Prime Minister Turnbull is intent on increasing tech innovation while enticing more investment from outside its shores in a concerted effort to make Australia the next Silicon Valley.

Related: Palestinian entrepreneurs in Australia hit the sweet spot with knafeh.

Major changes are afoot.

In recently passed legislation new tax breaks are available for anyone investing in startups up to $200,000 per year. So anyone investing in Australia can expect a 20 percent rebate with a 10 percent rebate with investments for growth. The maximum amount that can be claimed in rebates is $200,000, which is incredible news for startups in the tech industry.

Will it actually make a difference?

In the past Australia has suffered from its geographically disadvantageous position. At the other side of the world from the U.S.. and other Western markets, many westerners had dismissed the idea of beginning a startup down under. Add on the immense costs involved with operating in Australia and employing expensive labor and you had a recipe for people wanting to look elsewhere. But thanks to the digital economy, the issues over geography are a thing of the past. And tax rebates should, in theory, mitigate the cost of labor and encourage big investors to come to Australia. The question is whether it will convince them to invest there instead of growing Asian economies and the recovering US economy. Within a year it should become clear as to whether investors have responded positively.

Related: Why we chose an accelerator in Australia over one in the U.S.

What makes Australia so attractive?

Despite the high cost of Australian labor, the returns are often worth it. Australia is one of the world leaders in education which produces lot of highly skilled talent which tech companies in particular covet. Australia's largest urban centers Melbourne and Sydney are increasingly catering to the needs of entrepreneurs and small businesses. Those cities have the highest concentrations of co-working spaces in the region, helping startups to reduce their costs. Australia as a country also offers a high and very appealing standard of living. With warm weather all year round and a highly regarded health care system, it’s no surprise to see entrepreneurs flocking to Aussie shores.

Related: Why the most American fast-food chain is using Australia as its testing ground.

Leading Figures Show Faith.

While the main news of the day revolves around the latest rebates, there are other positive changes for entrepreneurs. Turnbull’s board for Innovation and Science, which is part of a major master plan to encourage and rejuvenate the tech industry, has recently appointed Maile Carnegie. She is one of the leading authorities in Australia's tech industry who until recently led Google’s Australian division. She has also taken up a position with ANZ, a joint Australian and New Zealand bank, in order to head their expansion into digital banking. Other big tech names appointed to the board include Bill Ferris, Alan Finkel and Paul Bassat.


The effects of these changes shouldn't’t come into full force for a number of years as it will take time for the injection of funds to really have an impact on the fortunes of entrepreneurs. But most speculators agree that additional changes are sure to be in the offering and taken together they just may revolutionize the global tech industry.

More from Entrepreneur

Get heaping discounts to books you love delivered straight to your inbox. We’ll feature a different book each week and share exclusive deals you won’t find anywhere else.
Jumpstart Your Business. Entrepreneur Insider is your all-access pass to the skills, experts, and network you need to get your business off the ground—or take it to the next level.
Starting, buying, or growing your small business shouldn’t be hard. Guidant Financial works to make financing easy for current and aspiring small business owners by providing custom funding solutions, financing education, and more.

Latest on Entrepreneur

Entrepreneur Media, Inc. values your privacy. In order to understand how people use our site generally, and to create more valuable experiences for you, we may collect data about your use of this site (both directly and through our partners). By continuing to use this site, you are agreeing to the use of that data. For more information on our data policies, please visit our Privacy Policy.