Start-ups paid to relocate to Queensland


Friday, 28 April, 2017


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Start-up businesses are being encouraged to move to Queensland under the government’s Advance Queensland Hot DesQ initiative.

The program offers visiting start-ups a maximum of $100,000 in funding to help them relocate from interstate or overseas.

“Hot DesQ is an Australian-first program attracting international and interstate start-ups to Queensland — creating new jobs, mentoring local entrepreneurs and connecting with regional businesses,” said Innovation Minister Leeanne Enoch.

“It’s luring successful international and interstate start-ups to Queensland and is helping to strengthen our start-up ecosystem while leveraging our state’s unique industry strengths.”

There are start-up hubs based all around Queensland aligned with industry strengths including tourism, agribusiness, mining, energy and health.

“Hot DesQ offers everyone from early-stage and established start-ups to successful Australian expats the chance to base themselves in Queensland and share their knowledge, experience and ideas, and give back to the local start-up community,” said Enoch.

In October 2016, Enoch announced the 25 inaugural recipients of the Advance Queensland Hot DesQ initiative, representing a commitment of more than $2 million.

Hot DesQ round one recipients included start-ups from the United Kingdom, Israel, Brazil, Germany and Silicon Valley, in addition to domestic start-ups from interstate.

All the way from Israel and now based in Brisbane, FinTech start-up CRiskCo is revolutionising the credit approval process using artificial intelligence to help credit providers and small businesses understand their credit risk.

“Coming from Silicon Valley and Tel Aviv, I am surprised at Queensland’s vibrant culture of start-ups and innovation. There is so much happening in this space,” said CRiskCo CEO Erez Saf.

“The tech talent that is available here is world class, and we are working with entrepreneurs, universities, investors, businesses and government to understand what’s really possible for our business.

“We already feel engaged in the start-up ecosystem here, having been involved in a FinTech hackathon, attended numerous start-up events — including a dedicated artificial intelligence event — and presented to university students.”

Brisbane entrepreneur Andrew Price, who runs Blender Guru — a local start-up committed to providing video tutorials for 3D software — has been mentored by CRiskCo CEO Erez Saf for the past two months.

“Running a start-up is tough at the best of times. Erez has helped me understand the specifics of how businesses like mine have succeeded before me. His experience from Silicon Valley and Israel’s start-up community has been hugely helpful, as it’s helped me see the bigger picture and the number of extra zeros you should be aiming for as revenue,” said Price.

Enoch said the start-ups have successfully set up shop and are already advancing their work in fields such as tourism, artificial intelligence, mechatronics, robotics and health.

“One Hot DesQ recipient, FinTech start-up FlowPay, arrived in Queensland from Silicon Valley in January and has employed a Brisbane-based developer to join the team,” she said.

“Another recipient, adventure tourism start-up Much Better Adventures, relocated from London in February, and by the end of March had employed an additional full-time local team member.”

Applications for international and interstate start-ups to participate in Hot DesQ round two close on Wednesday, 3 May at noon AEST.  For more information, visit HotDesQ.com.au.

Image credit: ©stock.adobe.com/au/ArtFamily

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