This 2 weeks short course on Startup Ecosystem in Australia give me a very good learning about their ecosystem. I must admit I am very new in this industry, and also still learning about the startup industry in Indonesia. But I got some highlight that is very important for improvement in Indonesia startup ecosystem:
First, an integrated collaboration between the government (Federal and Local), industries and University
Indonesia startup industry challenge is lack of new innovation, the new startup that created here mostly followers. You can answer the analysis and explanation in Kompas.
The problem with Indonesian ecosystem, we don’t have an integrated collaboration, especially between the academic world and industry. The professors and researchers have an important role to give a bigger picture of new innovation and invention because they spend most of their life to do research and finding something new, and they have the infrastructure to do that. The industry actually does the execution and know what’s actually the problems and job to be done to solve.
I can see almost all the accelerators and innovation hub in Australia has a collaboration of this triangles. The government gives incentives in term of the policy, building etc. Academicians become part of the ecosystem to give a broader point of view to solve any problems, or pivoting toward the startup founders. That’s something missing in Indonesia, mostly the startup ecosystem is running without the support of the expert for example in manufacturing, engineering etc. So almost impossible this startup founder create some breakthrough and disruption in the industry.
I know that many campuses in Indonesia now have their own incubators, but the weaknesses of campus they don’t have a lot of people that have a network with the industry players. It creates another bottleneck that their startup creates something that does not solve real consumers problems. Some examples of how good their integration between government, industries, and academicians is NVI and Lot Fourteen that we visited in Adelaide.
Second, all the stakeholders have the same mindset to leverage their products to an international market
We met with a lot of stakeholders in Australia from the governments, academicians, founders, accelerators, coworking space etc. I knew something that rings a bell, they all have an international-minded, they prepare all this products and services not only for Australia market but to penetrate the international market.
I think this is also a lack in the Indonesian startup ecosystem. I know that we have a very big market more than 260 Million people, but aiming for the international market make the business become more competitive, and innovative because of the competition of course tougher. It will build their muscle, and it must be startedearly when they set up the business.
Third, Australia attracts world-class talent to set up business there
When I visit Adelaide, Melbourne, and Sydney. I can see there are a lot of high caliber talent from all over the world that decide to open the business, or become part of Australia startup ecosystem. They come from Europe, Silicon Valley, even Philipines.
I think Australia really serious to speed up their ecosystem. They are not only inviting big technology company to open a business there or invite world-class venture capital. They offer the best talent for mentors, talented founders etc to Australia.
When I met with someone from Lot Fourteen, she also said that they will attract International Students to study in Adelaide University (as their partner Univerisity) and then facilitate them to create their business in Adelaide. That’s what I call as an integrated approach to speed up the ecosystem.
Fourth, clustering and specialization based on region and ecosystem (such as Accelerator, or Innovation Hub)
Something interesting that I found in Australia is they try to focus and make clustering on the ecosystem. I mean the clustering can be based on region or supporting ecosystems such as accelerator, innovation hub, and coworking space.
For example, Sydney is more focus for the Fintech, and Adelaide will focusing on AI dan Aerospace technology. I also found many coworking space and innovation hub that focusing on certain industries or aiming certain market. We visited on coworking space that curated the only startup that will expand to Asian Market in Sydney. In Melbourne, I met with the founder of WorkingSmith, innovation hub and co-working space that focused on F&B Industry. In Adelaide, I went to St. Paul Creative Centera coworking space for music and creative industries.
That’s some highlight that I think we can improve and implement to speed up the startup ecosystem in Indonesia. I will write more on my learning during my visit to Australia in my next articles.
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