If you follow startup news, you may have recently seen an article by Daniel Wirjoprawiro “Six reasons why your startup should expand to Los Angeles”
Naturally, as Sydneysiders for over 20 years, we couldn’t let that lie! And with a business built on assisting overseas companies set up operations in Australia, it seems fitting that we write why your startup should expand to here instead.
Of course, we’re unashamedly biased towards our home town (and very proud), but we’ll try and keep it impartial! So, in response to Daniel’s piece (and with tongue just a little bit in cheek), here’s our own six reasons for setting up your business in Sydney…
1. Welcome to the “ideas boom”
It’s not hard to find new startup friends. To help and nurture our startups, Sydney has many independent grassroots bodies to help entrepreneurs and ecosystem enablers.
Take Fishburners, for example, a non-profit community for startups. Then there’s icentral, a coworking community, specially for tech startups. These, plus the Tyro FinTechHub, are all located in Sydney.
Coworking office space startup, WeWork, will be coming soon to both Sydney city and Pyrmont. There, you’ll be able to rub shoulders with an international hub of 30,000 creators, entrepreneurs and self-starters.
And we’re a city of self-starters ourselves. The recent greats having started right here in Sydney. Glowing examples include Atlassian, freelancer, canva, DesignCrowd, plus Fintech start-ups such as stockspot and Invoice2go.
Transitioning from our resources boom to a new, more diverse economy, the Australian government wants you here too. Announced late last year, $1.1 billion of funding over 4 years towards innovation, as part of its national Innovation and Science agenda.
CSIRO, the national science agency, will now get a new $200 million CSIRO Innovation Fund. This is to support investments in spin-off and start-up companies, with an additional $20 million to commercialise these research outcomes.
University researchers haven’t been left out either. The National Collaborative Infrastructure Scheme received $1.5 billion over ten years for various projects such as ocean monitoring, advanced manufacturing, and medical research.
What about the Australian Synchrotron and the largest radio telescope ever constructed? These two major scientific projects will also benefit from $800 million over the decade.
And if your startup is seeking funding? This innovation agenda includes a range of new tax incentives for early stage investments to direct their funds towards innovative, high-growth potential startups.
2. Look who’s heading our way
Our insatiable appetite for retail hasn’t slowed down – the global retail invasion continues into 2016, with dozens of new luxury international brands to make their entrance into Australia.
Wanting to capitalise on Sydney’s growing momentum, we see more international brands from all corners of the globe looking for retail space in Sydney. Carmakers Audi and Tesla; fashion houses Dolce & Gabbana from Italy; French luxury giant Kering, the owner of brands such as Alexander McQueen and Gucci; and Swiss watchmaker Breitling, all have their sights set here.
These are in addition to other top mark foreign retailers, including iconic brands like Cartier, Sephora, Omega, and Valentino, who all opened stores in Sydney last year.
We also have seen fintech startups and investors such as Robinhood, and Macrovue looking to head to Sydney. This is where the action is!
Did you know that Australian fintech startups alone raised 14% of more than a billion dollars raised around the world in 2015?
With easy access to the Asia-Pacific region, Sydney is the the perfect location to grow and expand your international presence in this region.
It’s no secret – beautiful cities cost a lot to live in. And there’s no doubt that Sydney is an expensive place to live.
There may be hope in the near future for renters, with experts suggesting a rental apartment bubble about to burst.
It has been surmised that pockets around Sydney where there is an oversupply of units from the apartment building boom, will see rent falls.
To help offset the rental costs, our Aussie dollar has been declining against a rising US dollar since 2014. As a result, this has seen a 10% reduction in the cost of doing business in Australia.
With a diverse economy, and a stable, low-risk business environment, Sydney is supported by world class financial and legal systems.
The city is a magnet for business talent, and produces an abundance of opportunities, making it a great launching pad for your company’s future.
Sydney also has over 300,000 students enrolling into university each year, at some of the most prestigious universities in the country.
The NSW Government is also welcoming new international talent, with incentives for new business migrants who plan to set up business, or invest in Sydney and New South Wales. Making it easier to start a business, and encourage business investment in the state.
Sydney is a city that boosts the prosperity of its residents. From world class communications and an emerging transport infrastructure, to access across a range of sectors and skills; Sydney helps people and businesses connect with each other, and with the world.
With a population of over 5 million, its cultural diversity attracts arts, entertainment and food havens from around the world.
There are a myriad of cultural and religious celebrations across the city too, and embracing this diversity has become a positive for its people to create unique businesses.
Not only is Sydney beautiful, but we are also fun to hang out with.
And we have a wicked sense of humour. (Just ask us!)
With mostly moderate temperatures year round, who wouldn’t be happy to live here? Enjoy the surf, the bush, and all the activities surrounding every neighbourhood. Our love of coffee, sport and arts helps us get through the working week – and the daily traffic commute.
With those 6 things in mind, we think it’s clear Sydney has the advantage when it comes to the best location for your startup.
Of course, Daniel himself hails from Melbourne, a small town in the south that Sydney has a friendly rivalry with. So we’ll forgive him for overlooking our fine city this time around!
If you’d like to read Daniel’s original article, you can find it here.