The Government has announced it will launch the fourth of its five global landing pads for entrepreneurs in Berlin, with the European hub joining San Francisco, Tel Aviv, and Shanghai.
Announcing the news in Berlin overnight, Minister for Trade and Investment, Steven Ciobo said Berlin is a low-cost business centre and the “startup hub of Germany.”
“With its vibrant, creative culture and extensive ecosystem of incubators and accelerators, the city is ideally positioned as a landing pad site for emerging Australian companies,” Ciobo said.
Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science, Christopher Pyne added, “Berlin is an emerging major tech hub with an increasingly international startup community. Placing landing pads in innovation hot-spots will help entrepreneurial Australian companies access complementary entrepreneurial talent, mentoring, investors and a wider connected network of innovation hubs.”
Berlin, which is home to European behemoth Rocket Internet and an estimated 3,000 active tech startups, was last year ranked ninth in the Global Startup Ecosystem Ranking released by Compass, jumping up from 15th place. The report found Berlin is the fastest-growing ecosystem in Europe, growing quicker than London and Tel Aviv.
Valued between US$24.7-$30.2 billion, the Compass report also found that Berlin is the most gender equal and second most diverse ecosystem in Europe, with 49 percent of employees foreign and 27 percent women.
Ciobo said the landing pad will help Australian businesses develop stronger ties with Europe’s largest economy as Australia looks to begin negotiations for a free trade agreement with the European Union, while Pyne also highlighted existing collaborations between Australia and Germany in the field of science, with 516 active bilateral agreements between institutions in the two countries.
“Both our countries see the importance of innovation, science and technology as drivers of economic prosperity,” Pyne said.
The details of the four landing pads, such as exact locations and functions, are for the most part yet to be revealed; the San Francisco landing pad opened at Rocketspace, a location in the heart of the city, in February. The government has said the landing pads, which have been allocated $11.2 million in funding through the National Innovation and Science Agenda, are designed to provide market-ready startups with a short-term operational base to help them develop new markets and sustainable growth on a world scale.
The location of the fifth landing pad will be announced soon.
Startup Daily recently talked to Pyne about how the landing pads will help further the government’s National Innovation and Science Agenda:
Image: Steven Ciobo.