Cicada wants in on Sydney tech hub project


By Dylan Bushell-Embling
Thursday, 09 August, 2018
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Cicada wants in on Sydney tech hub project

The CEO of high-technology incubator Cicada Innovations — a joint venture of the big four Australian universities — has welcomed the NSW Government’s decision to build a Silicon Valley style technology hub in Sydney, but urged the government not to forget the start-ups already in place.

Cicada Innovations CEO Petra Andrén welcomed plans for what she said was a much needed long-term home for Sydney’s start-up ecosystem. But she called for greater consultation on the project to ensure a more diverse technology community is created that also includes science-based innovators.

“What we want to avoid is creating yet another piece of real estate for digital start-ups to create yet more apps and marketplaces when we have a whole host of world-class deep technology innovations in this precinct needing specialist facilities, rapid prototyping spaces and support to effectively commercialise their products and scale,” she said.

“Since our inception in 2000, Cicada has been helping to create not just skilled jobs, but whole new technologies, companies and industries with global impact... As the leader of the nation’s deep technology community, I urge the Premier and her Taskforce to liaise with us, and take advantage and scale our globally recognised model to help create a diverse ecosystem and realise our shared vision for a smarter Australia and a smarter NSW.”

Cicada was recently named the top incubator in the world in a recent economic impact study by the International Business Innovation Association in Dallas, beating 2200 incubators, accelerators and entrepreneurship centres for the title.

The incubator is home to over 75 deep technology start-ups and scale-ups, and has worked with over 300 businesses since its exception. Companies in its portfolio have raised over $324 million and filed over 500 patents.

Image courtesy Cicada Innovations.

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