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Applications for this year’s Cicada x Tech23 have opened for deep tech startups

- March 21, 2024 2 MIN READ
Sally-Ann Williams
Cicada Innovations CEO Sally-Ann Williams
Deep tech incubator Cicada Innovations is on the hunt for the nation’s 23 most promising deep tech ventures, to showcase their world-changing innovations at the country’s largest deep tech conference, Cicada x Tech23.

Applications are now open for the next three weeks April 12. Founders keen to take part and present at the event are asked to explain the problem they are solving, and what makes their approach and technology unique. The day will feature 23 startups.

The groundbreaking innovations featured at Tech23 impact the lives of almost every Australian. But Cicada CEO Sally-Ann Williams said she’s seen that many startups might not realise their groundbreaking, science-driven projects, addressing major global challenges, actually qualify as “deep tech”, making them eligible to apply.

“So many instead think of their companies as siloed into subsets of very specific industry verticals, rather than also falling under the broader deep tech umbrella,” she said.

“Yet the reality is, to be ‘deep tech’ you don’t have to be a technical founder living in a capital city, with a PhD in your pocket and spinning a research project out of a university. Our Cicada x Tech23 2023 Insights report demonstrated that founders can emerge from unexpected places, including from farms and other regional areas, meaning we must broaden our national support and commitment to include a more diverse talent pool.

“So we urge all founders and innovators to ask themselves, ‘am I deep tech?’ – then put themselves in the running to join Cicada x Tech23.”

More than 300 investors and tech leaders took part in the 2023 Cicada x Tech23 event, with one startup taking part receiving significant funding and new partnerships as a result.

Williams said the founders taking part will gain exposure to a wide network of investors, ecosystem leaders, potential partners, and more.

“We’ve come a long way in bringing the term ‘deep tech’ into the mainstream, and demonstrating the value of a wide range of Australian deep tech innovations to everyday Australians, such as Wi-Fi, cochlear implants, ultrasound, solar panels, and more,” she said.

“You’d be hard-pressed to find someone whose life hasn’t been impacted by at least one of these technologies that we now take for granted. Yet they are the result of decades-long deep tech endeavours that we as a nation must support by taking an interconnected, holistic approach.

“This is the type of support we hope to provide at Cicada x Tech23.”

The final 23 will be announced on May 17, and the day will be held on August 7 at Cicada Innovations HQ at South Eveleigh, Sydney.

Apply here by April 12.

NOW READ: Here are the 23 startups chosen by Cicada Innovations for 2023’s Tech23