Australian tech ingenuity on show in US

Australian tech ingenuity on show in US article image

Australian innovation and ingenuity will be on show in the US this week with Austrade leading a delegation to South by Southwest (SXSW) Interactive 2017 in Austin, Texas.

SXSW, which began in 1987, has evolved from being an annual music festival and conference for emerging music talent to one of the largest events for interactive media and emerging technologies.

At this year’s show, to be held from March 10-15, Austin’s fabled conference will profile Australia as a source of technology and innovative solutions and showcase the capabilities of seven participating companies.

Nicola Watkinson, Austrade’s Senior Trade and Investment Commissioner for North America, said SXSW Interactive has grown into a global forum to discuss the technologies of tomorrow with global brands like Twitter and Foursquare launched at past events.

“This has seen Austin emerge as a technology hub and SXSW Interactive regarded as a coveted global launching pad for start-ups, a hunting ground for tech investors, and a laboratory for innovative and forward-thinking companies,” Ms Watkinson said.

Ideal platform

“SXSW Interactive is also an ideal platform to showcase Australia’s large and expanding technology capabilities, supported by the country’s multi-faceted digital economy with e-ready government, industries and consumers, and its accomplished and innovative ICT R&D sector.

“Since 2009, there has been US$3.1 billion worth of funding exchanged at the event and last year alone, over 400 venture capital and angel investors from 82 countries participated.”

Last year there were about 37,000 badged participants at SXSW Interactive and 70,500 people attended its technology exhibition.

During the five-day conference at SXSW Interactive, Austrade will hold a range of events to showcase Australia’s innovation ecosystem and highlight existing opportunities for collaboration and investment.

Key events include:

  • Two pitch events for Australian start-up companies – focused on either software and apps or hardware and service – to promote their products to a large contingent of interested investors and industry leaders
  • An Australia Lounge enabling delegates to showcase their products and capabilities and meet with global influencers, entrepreneurial talent, and potential technology partners
  • A networking event which will bring together targeted companies, influencers, and venture capitalists from around the world to interact with delegates and
  • A virtual reality showcase of Australian nature, coastal and wildlife experiences which explains why Australia is the ideal holiday destination.

Participation at SXSW Interactive 2017 forms part of the G’Day USA program, supports the Australian Government’s National Innovation and Science Agenda (NISA) initiative and also builds on the work undertaken at the recent RSA Conference 2017 in San Francisco.

Additionally, this is linked to the ongoing work being undertaken through Australia’s Landing Pads program which commenced with San Francisco and now has five global locations.

The Landing Pads program, managed by Austrade, is part of the Australian Government’s NISA program to help Australian entrepreneurs bring their ideas to market and build high-growth, high-return enterprises. With a network of six offices in New York, San Francisco, Washington DC, Boston, Chicago and Houston, Austrade is well placed to assist Australian businesses. 

Visit Austrade’s US Market Profile for more information about doing business in the United States.


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