Victorian startups are going gangbusters – and that’s a big win for the local economy

- August 25, 2023 2 MIN READ
Kate Cornick
LaunchVic CEO Dr Kate Cornick
 An updated report from Deloitte Access Economics has found the Victorian startup ecosystem has out- performed growth expectations from forecasts made in 2020.

The report,“Scaling up: Growing the economic opportunity for Victoria’s startup ecosystem”, commissioned by startup agency, LaunchVic, concludes that pandemic tailwinds were kind to the sector with its value nearly doubling from $50 billion three years ago to $91 billion now.

And while Victoria’s population dropped for the first time in nearly three decades, the local startup workforce grew by nearly 50% from 37,000 in 2020 to 52,000 FTE jobs in 2022.

LaunchVic CEO, Dr Kate Cornick said startups accounted for a significant share of productivity growth and had become a critical ingredient to the state economy’s performance.

“In a period of just two years we have seen startup jobs grow by 20% annually and in fact double from those recorded between 2018 and 2020,” she said.

“The fundamentals are in place for strong ecosystem growth in Victoria but to keep this momentum going and build on this rapid growth to date, continued investment is essential.”

Benchmarking the state’s economy against international examples of startup ecosystems, such as Singapore and Tel Aviv, Deloitte concluded that growth in startup density and scaleup success rates will have significant impacts on productivity, employment, and the broader Victorian economy over the next 20 years.

The state is home to tech unicorns Airwallex, CultureAmp, and Afterpay, among nearly 20 companies worth $1 billion or more and LaunchVic is already pressing to create another 30 of them as part of its 30×30 mentoring program to take that figure to nearly 50 by 2030.

Deloitte estimates that if Victoria’s startup density grows to the level of Singapore by 2042 it would add $6.9 billion to the local economy or $10.2 billion higher if it matched Tel Aviv.

That also equates to between 19,400 and 30,200 additional jobs (cumulatively) by 2042, or between 8,150 and 12,350 additional jobs annually over the modelled period.

The full report is at launchvic.org/impact