15 Startups Leading The Tech Innovation Path Out Of Australia


Australia has a thriving startup ecosystem with many innovative companies making significant impacts both locally and globally. With Sydney, Melbourne, Brisbane and Adelaide as top cities for startup attractiveness, Perth and Canberra and nearby New Zealand are also the top regions for Oceania’s tech hubs.

Startup genome aus
(Startup Genome, 2023)

Fintech, Agritech, and Digital Tech are some of the major sectors for innovation in this region, which is well connected with Asia and North America. Here’s a list of 20 notable Australian startups with their descriptions:

1. Afterpay 

   Founded by Nick Molnar and Anthony Eisen in 2015, Afterpay offers a “buy now, pay later” service. It allows customers to purchase and receive goods immediately but pay for them in four installments without any interest.

2. Canva 

A graphic design platform founded by Melanie Perkins, Cliff Obrecht, and Cameron Adams in 2012. Canva offers easy-to-use tools that enable everyone, from business professionals to students, to create beautiful designs and documents.

3. Airwallex 

Founded by Jack Zhang, Lucy Liu, Jacob Dai, Max Li, and Ki-Lok Wong in 2015, Airwallex provides businesses with a platform to manage cross-border payments, card payments, and more.

4. Culture Amp 

   Established in 2011 by Didier Elzinga, Doug English, Jon Williams, and Rod Hamilton, Culture Amp is a people and culture platform that helps companies take action to improve employee engagement, retention, and performance.

5. Atlassian 

   Founded by Mike Cannon-Brookes and Scott Farquhar in 2002, Atlassian is not exactly a startup anymore but deserves a mention for its massive impact. It offers collaboration tools like Jira and Confluence, catering to developers and businesses worldwide.

6. Zip Co 

   Co-founded by Larry Diamond and Peter Gray in 2013, Zip offers a range of retail finance solutions that provide flexibility in how consumers pay for goods and services.

7. Propeller Aero 

   Founded by Rory San Miguel and Francis Vierboom in 2014, Propeller Aero creates tools that simplify drone data workflows, transforming drone data into visual tools for industries such as mining and construction.

8. Airtasker 

   Founded by Tim Fung and Jonathan Lui in 2012, Airtasker is a trusted community platform that connects people who need tasks done with skilled people ready to do the work.

9. Brighte 

   Founded by Katherine McConnell in 2015, Brighte is a digital credit platform focused on home energy improvements, facilitating the payment for solar panels, insulation, and more.

10. Linktree 

   Founded by Alex Zaccaria, Anthony Zaccaria, and Nick Humphreys in 2016, Linktree provides users with a single link to collate their online content, which is particularly useful for platforms like Instagram that allow only one bio link.

11. Lendi 

   Co-founded by David Hyman, Mark Kalajzich, Martin Lam, and Sebastian Watkins in 2013, Lendi is an online home loan platform that matches borrowers with loan products from over 30 lenders.

12. Flare HR

   Founded by Jan Pacas, Colin Mierowsky, and Saul Kaplan in 2015, Flare HR offers a free software platform for businesses to manage onboarding, benefits, and payroll.

13. Redbubble

   Established by Martin Hosking, Peter Styles, and Paul Vanzella in 2006, Redbubble is a global online marketplace for print-on-demand products based on user-submitted artwork.

14. Siteminder

   Established by Mike Ford in 2006, Siteminder is a cloud-based platform that offers solutions for hotels to attract, reach, and convert guests across the globe.

15. AgriDigital

   Co-founded by Emma Weston, Bob McKay, and Ben Reid in 2015, AgriDigital develops blockchain solutions that bring transparency and trust to the agricultural supply chain.

Australia’s startup ecosystem is characterized by its diversity, ingenuity, and robustness. These startups span a broad range of industries, from tech to finance to healthcare, and they’ve shown resilience and innovation in addressing both local and global challenges.

Credit: StartupGenome.com


Australia also has liberal tax regimes and advantages for new businesses. It is also inviting global talent on visas to innovate in the country. Almost 90% of the land mass of Australia is still inhabited and it has a lot of potential to grow more tech hubs near its seven major cities. With continuous support from both the public and private sectors, the future looks bright for Australian startups.

(Disclaimer: This is not a ranking of Australia Startups or a comprehensive list. Many startups have chosen to move their HQs out of New Zealand to other parts of the world for scale, but many still retain their NZ innovation hubs. )