“Boeing Aerospace Xelerated is committed to supporting early-stage founders, regardless of nationality. Partnering with the Advance Queensland team from the Queensland Government allowed us to do just that.”
The Greater Brisbane region is the fastest growing tech jobs creator in Australia, with some 140,000 Queenslanders working in the sector. The inner city contains a digital industry super cluster that includes a large number of startups. Nineteen digital technology companies listed on the Australian Stock Exchange, with a combined valuation of AU$13.29 billion ($8.7 billion). Brisbane has been ranked in the top 10% for its innovation environment out of 500 cities worldwide. The city’s three universities are all within the top 250 universities in the world, with the University of Queensland ranked 43, and Asian markets are easily accessible from a Brisbane base.
What makes Brisbane stand out from other Australian cities is the range of innovation and entrepreneurial activities. Defense technologies, Cleantech, unmanned aerial systems, Medtech, and Deep Tech are all well represented. This variety is reflected in the region’s startup success stories, which include electric vehicle (EV) charger company Tritium, Edtech platform Go1, advanced machinery maintenance business GreaseBoss, video-editing software provider Clipchamp, needle-free vaccine maker Vaxxas, and Deep Tech-driven flood prediction company FloodMapp. The Queensland Government is an active partner in developing the innovation ecosystem, working closely with industry, other government sectors, and universities to build a strong community that will deliver jobs and business opportunities in the future economy.
Boasting 283 days of sunshine a year and proximity to some of the world’s best beaches on the Gold and Sunshine coasts, Brisbane’s sub-tropical lifestyle makes it an excellent place to live, work, and play.
Ecosystem by the Numbers
AI, Big Data & Analytics
Brisbane’s many research institutes include the Queensland University of Technology Centre for Robotics, Griffith University’s Institute for Integrated and Intelligent Systems, the Queensland AI Hub, the Queensland Immersive Technologies (XR) Hub, and the Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing Hub. Canaria has developed an AI earpiece that monitors the vital signs of workers to prevent accidents and fatalities, FloodMapp combines engineering data and AI to predict water flow during flooding, and Smartabase provides a human performance optimization platform for elite sports teams and military organizations.
Queensland’s Life Sciences industry is underpinned by the state’s strong research capabilities. Brisbane-based companies include medical device manufacturers Cook Medical Australia and Impedimed, voice restoration technology company Laronix, digital cardiac rehabilitation startup Cardihab, and vaccine nanopatch developer Vaxxas. Thermo Fisher Scientific and AcuraBio are based in Brisbane, specializing in manufacturing biotherapeutic products for clinical trials. Sanofi has partnered with the Queensland Government, the University of Queensland and Griffith University to establish the Translational Science Hub, focused on mRNA vaccines.
The Advance Queensland strategy includes focusing innovation efforts on addressing environmental challenges, including protecting the Great Barrier Reef, energy and water sustainability, and responding to climate change. Government priorities include a 50% renewable energy target and supporting the development of hydrogen and biofutures industries. Brisbane is home to EV charger company Tritium, Queensland’s first double unicorn. Other local Cleantech companies include Vaulta, which produces recyclable, high-performance batteries; renewable-energy microgrid company eleXsys Energy; energy-storage systems company RedEarth; and Circonomy, which repairs, repurposes, and resells imperfect and unwanted retail products.
Reasons to Move Your Startup to Brisbane
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion
The Queensland Government’s Advance Queensland initiative aims to increase the number of female, migrant, regional and rural, and First Nations’ entrepreneurs in Queensland’s innovation economy and to tackle the inequalities that these individuals face. This includes addressing barriers at the youth, startup, scaleup, and global stages. The field is being leveled in Queensland.
A Forward-Thinking Government
One of the big advantages in moving to Brisbane is the state Government’s intent to make Queensland an innovation powerhouse, drawing on competitive strengths in advanced manufacturing, aerospace, biofutures, biomedical, defense, mining equipment, technology and services, the screen industry, Agtech, and quantum and advanced technologies
Brisbane is home to state-of-the art infrastructure including the Queensland Institute of Medical Research, the EcoSciences Precinct, the Translational Research Institute, the Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing Hub, the Queensland AI Hub, and the Immersive Technology (XR) Hub. As part of the 2032 Games legacy, Brisbane is improving cycling and pedestrian infrastructure and encouraging flexible workplaces to contribute to the goal of a 15-minute city.
Selected Startup Organizations
Startup Genome Members
Advance Queensland is an innovation initiative and investment for a strong future economy from the Queensland Government. Launched in 2015, it supports the creation, scaling, and international success of Queensland scientists, researchers, innovators and businesses. In 2022, Advance Queensland: Innovation for a Future Economy Roadmap 2022–2032 was released. The roadmap sets the direction for Queensland to become a leading and sustainable world-class innovation economy as the state prepares for and drives delivery of the Brisbane 2032 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Key Ecosystem Players
Queensland Chief Entrepreneur
The Office of the Queensland Chief Entrepreneur delivers events and initiatives that showcase Queensland innovation, attract capital, encourage collaboration, and create connections across the state’s innovation ecosystem. It aims to build a sustainable and resilient innovation ecosystem in which communities, people, and the planet are supported, protected, and prosperous and that is inclusive for all.
Located in Brisbane’s Fortitude Valley, The Precinct is Queensland’s leading startup hub. An Advance Queensland initiative, it offers flexible tenancy options for innovators, and tenants can access various programs and events including startup accelerators and incubators, as well as networking and upskilling opportunities.
Queensland AI Hub
Acknowledging the significant economic opportunity in AI, the Queensland Government established the AI Hub in 2020 at The Precinct in Brisbane. Home to some of Australia’s top talent in AI, it is helping to accelerate adoption of AI and build capability across industry and government. The hub will host the inaugural Queensland AI Summit at the Brisbane Convention and Exhibition Centre.
Advanced Robotics for Manufacturing Hub (ARM Hub)
The ARM Hub aims to accelerate the uptake of advanced manufacturing technologies, including robotics and automation, artificial intelligence, machine learning, 3D printing, nanotechnologies, the Internet of Things, sensors, and data analytics. Since its inception in 2020, it has created hundreds of jobs and attracted numerous international and interstate companies to invest in Queensland projects and establish operations in Queensland.
Agtech and Logistics Hub
The Agtech and Logistics Hub, headquartered just outside of Brisbane, is Australia’s premier digital agribusiness hub and is making a name across the sector worldwide. The hub is working with industry to solve some of the sector’s biggest challenges, and is also a site for testing technologies including drones, sensors, and smart bots.
News from the Ecosystem
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