Tuesday, 31 October 2017 01:23

Funding helps innovating start-ups get off the ground

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Funding helps innovating start-ups get off the ground Image courtesy of Stuart Miles at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

Companies developing new ways to diagnose cancer, next generation Wi-Fi chips and quantum computing firmware are among the first to receive investment from Main Sequence Ventures, manager of the $200 million CSIRO Innovation Fund.

The grants were announced on Monday by the Acting Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science, Senator Michaelia Cash, who said the launch of Main Sequence Ventures was an important step to ensure Australia can further harness innovation to create new enterprises and the jobs of tomorrow.

“As part of the Turnbull Government’s National Innovation and Science Agenda, the CSIRO Innovation Fund is designed to ensure our world-class research can be turned into the jobs and economic growth of the future,” Cash said.

Main Sequence Ventures will support new spin-out and start-up companies, and SMEs engaged in the translation of research generated in the Australian publicly-funded research sector.

CSIRO chief executive Dr Larry Marshall said the CSIRO Innovation Fund and Main Sequence Ventures would help develop Australia’s “great ideas and ensure we share in the rewards”.

“Australia has never been short of great ideas, but the value is rarely captured domestically,” Dr Marshall said.

“Australia’s scientists are world leaders, but investing in science driven innovation is hard – it needs the horsepower of Australia’s national science agency behind it.”

Main Sequence Ventures’ first investments in Q-CTRL, Morse Micro, Intersective and Maxwell MRI, are expected to create more than 60 new jobs, and Intersective co-founder and chief executive Beau Leese, who was present at the launch, says this round of funding will help the company compete on a global stage.

"Main Sequence Ventures offers a funding vehicle designed for start-ups like Intersective who are trying to use leading edge technology to tackle big, complex problems. These companies are harder for standard venture capital funds to back, but if successful can solve fundamental problems and have built in competitive advantage on the world stage.”

Main Sequence Ventures is led by venture capitalist veteran Bill Bartee and a team of venture capitalists and entrepreneurs with extensive experience in science and technology.

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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham is a co-founder of iTWire and a 35-year veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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