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West Tech Fest panel moderator Bonnie Lin (left), with panellists Geoff Pritchard, Kirsten Rose, Marcus Tan and Appbot co-founder Claire McGregor. Photo: Attila Csaszar

Startups face up to the competition

Tech innovators, investors and entrepreneurs descended on Perth during the past fortnight for a series of startup events that sparked wide-ranging discussions about how to strengthen the local ecosystem and compete on the world stage.

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The Perth startup scene has come a long way since the opening of Spacecubed and the first Startup Weekend in 2012, but it's still early days. No real noticeable exits yet (but more deals, such as Health Engine's own $20 million-plus one recently). Once a few exits come, the cashed-up entrepreneurs and techies can recycle their cash and learnings into even more fresh startups. It also provides the 'BBQ set' a chance to brag about the money they've made from local tech. This will then feed more investment, and so the wheel turns. But we're a way from that yet. Meanwhile, congratulations to Paula, Rowan, Larry, Bill and everyone involved in West Tech Fest. A fantastic week of 'startuppy' events.

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