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Innovators to land in Berlin

27 April 2016

Joint media release with the Minister for Trade and Investment, the Hon Steven Ciobo MP

The Turnbull Government will establish a landing pad for Australian startups in Berlin, a leading source of global innovation and disruptive technology.

It is the fourth landing pad to be announced as part of the Coalition’s National Science and Innovation Agenda (NISA), joining San Francisco, Tel Aviv and Shanghai.

Minister for Trade and Investment, Steven Ciobo, made the announcement in Berlin overnight. He said the landing pads were designed to provide market-ready startups with a short-term operational base in innovation hotspots, helping them develop new markets and sustainable growth on a world scale.

“Berlin is a low-cost business centre and the startup hub of Germany. With its vibrant, creative culture and extensive ecosystem of incubators and accelerators, the city is ideally positioned as a landing pad site for emerging Australian companies,” said Mr Ciobo.

Minister for Industry, Innovation and Science, Christopher Pyne said the landing pad would help market-ready startups with access to local partners with expertise, infrastructure and innovation and marketing networks.

“Berlin is an emerging major tech hub with an increasingly international startup community. Placing landing pads in innovation hot-spots will help entrepreneurial Australian companies access complementary entrepreneurial talent, mentoring, investors and a wider connected network of innovation hubs,” said Mr Pyne.

Mr Ciobo said the Berlin landing pad would help Australian startups think globally, tapping into entrepreneur, industry and capital networks.

“It will also contribute to stronger ties with Europe’s largest economy as Australia seeks to begin negotiations for a free trade agreement with the European Union,” he said.

As an emerging major tech hub, Berlin has a significant presence of major corporations and world-leading innovation research institutions like the Fraunhofer-Gesellschaft and the Hasso-Plattner Institute School of Design. With US$2.2 billion invested into startups in 2014 and some of the world’s highest public and private sector investment in research and development, the city has overtaken London as Europe’s leading venture capital hub.

Germany is also one of Australia’s key science collaboration partners, with 516 active bilateral agreements between Australian and German institutions.

“Both our countries see the importance of innovation, science and technology as drivers of economic prosperity,” said Mr Pyne.

Media contacts: Mr Pyne's office 02 6277 7070, pynemedia@industry.gov.au Department media: media@industry.gov.au