The Global Startup Ecosystem Report 2023

Insights, Rankings & Ecosystem Pages

Oceania experienced a 60.7% increase in early-stage funding amount over 2018–2022, the highest of any global region for this period.

After enjoying significant growth in 2021, Oceania experienced declines on multiple fronts in 2022: 31% year-on-year decline in Series B+ deal amount, 10% decline in the number of Series B+ deals, and 13.6% decline in early-stage funding amount. However, longer-term patterns are much more positive. Oceania experienced a 152% increase in Series B+ deal amount, 81% increase in Series B+ deal count, and 60.7% increase in early-stage funding amount over the period 2018–2022, the highest of any global region for this period, indicating significant overall growth in the funding landscape.

Both Australia and New Zealand have established dedicated national policies to support local entrepreneurs and attract international talent to the region. These include the Australian government’s Entrepreneurs' Program and the Incubator Support Program, which provide funding, mentoring, and networking opportunities. Additionally, the ESVCLP program offers tax incentives for eligible venture capital funds to invest in early-stage startups. Among New Zealand’s policies are a visa scheme designed for entrepreneurs to develop their businesses in the country, the $300 million Elevate NZ venture capital fund aimed at increasing the number of tech unicorns, and an initiative to grow economy-wide R&D activity. Local governments and ecosystem support organizations also play a large part, and international collaboration such as the New Zealand – Ireland Agritech Summit brings expertise to the region and facilitates knowledge sharing.

Key Findings

  • Sydney has maintained its top position as the highest-ranking ecosystem in Oceania, tied at #21 with Bengaluru-Karnataka. Its Ecosystem Value grew 50% from the GSER, with the number of unicorns increasing from three to four with the new addition of Gaming platform Immutable in 2022 valued at $2.5 billion. Canva remains the highest valued at $40 billion. Exits over $1 billion increased by one: SaaS provider BigCommerce had an IPO at a valuation of $1.6 billion.
  • Melbourne, the second largest ecosystem in the region, moved up six places to #33. It saw a sharp 43% increase in Ecosystem Value, to $25 billion. The number of early-stage deals grew 29%, exits over $50 million 27%, and exits over $1 billion 50%, including Judo Bank’s IPO at a valuation of $1.7 billion. The highest valued of Melbourne’s three unicorns is Fintech Airwallex, valued at $5.5 billion.
  • New Zealand moved up from its previous 31–40 range to #20 in the Emerging Ecosystem rankings. It experienced a 29% increase in exits over $50 million (from seven to nine) and saw the birth of a new unicorn, Cleantech Lodestone Energy, which is valued at $1.3 billion.
  • Brisbane also produced one of Oceania’s biggest exits: the electric vehicle charger manufacturer Tritium’s IPOd at a valuation of $1.3 billion in January 2022. This helped the ecosystem move from the 61–70 to the 41–50 range in the Emerging Ecosystem ranking.