ANZA and New South Wales DSRD Host Clean/Green Tech Video Conference

April 28, 2009

Twelve hand-picked New South Wales environmental companies took part in a joint ANZA TechNet/New South Wales Department of State & Regional Development pilot video conference yesterday, linking the companies in Sydney with three environmental experts in Silicon Valley.

The 90-minute video conference was made possible through an in-kind sponsorship with Cisco’s Public TelePresence Suites. Following opening remarks by ANZA CEO Viki Forrest, who was in Sydney for this inaugural event, the Silicon Valley experts in clean energy and storage (Peter Bryant, TransTech USA), green building and infrastructure (Ted van der Linden, DPR Construction, Inc.) and water supply, purification and waste water treatment (Steve Line, ICOMMM, Inc.) gave short presentations on market landscape, competitive environment and funding and partnering opportunities.

Key areas covered included:

  • Why — in spite of the economy — it is still a good time to do business in the clean/green market space (“Think of what’s happening in the US right now as a ‘’ boom” — Peter Bryant)
  • Regional and regulatory complexities in the US market in the clean/green space
  • Capital flow from the 2009 economic stimulus plan (“A perfect storm for green tech — the consumer demand is there and we now have a government that supports it” — Ted van der Linden)
  • What VCs and angel investors are looking for in a business plan and the current state of funding (all experts agreed that funding should pick up in “the next 12 to 18 months”)
  • Partnering opportunities
  • Market entry (“It helps if you have some proven metrics — show potential investors and partners how they can measure the savings or improvements your technology will make” — Steve Line)
  • The role of marketing in the US vs. Australia

The presentations were followed by a Q&A session, with each company having the opportunity to ask the experts for further information. As part of this program, the companies also have access to the experts for one-on-one guidance for a period of one week.

The video conference is part of a larger NSW US market exploratory program with ANZA TechNet that provides in-depth US market research into various innovative tech sectors, provides US expert opinion on each sector and allows for participating companies to have one week of expert input on their company’s technology and market strategy beyond Australia.

Perkler Named to Australian Anthill’s SMART 100

April 28, 2009

Perkler, the start-up that tracks your loyalty rewards, or “perks” has been named one of Australian Anthill’s SMART 100 Companies of 2009. More than 800 companies vied for placement on this list of Australia’s most innovative companies and were evaluated by 1,600 maven judges selected by the market research firm Colmar Bruton.

Perkler was a 2008 ANZA Gateway company.

Bill Clinton Calls for Cost-Effective Clean Tech

April 23, 2009 reports that Former President Bill Clinton urged renewable energy to push ahead with efforts to make clean technologies cost effective and outlined steps the government and the private sector can take to usher in a new green era. The former US president delivered the keynote at Fortune’s Brainstorm Green conference in southern California yesterday, which drew a mostly corporate crowd from firms big and small.

Clinton highlighted the current recession and the economic challenges that it posed, but also said the nation should take advantage of the economic stimulus act to invest even more heavily in clean technology. He noted that China is doing just that: When measured as a percentage of its economy, China is engaged in a larger stimulus effort than is the United States.

“This thing will work itself out,” Clinton said of the deep recession. “The only way for us to come out of this in a better way than we went in is to change the way we produce and consume energy.” (Read more, watch video clips)

ANZA TechNet at Victorian Regional Innovation Conference on April 22

April 20, 2009

ANZA CEO Viki Forrest will speak at the Victorian Regional Innovation Conference on Wednesday, April 22 in Bendigo.

Sponsored by the Victorian Government’s VicStart Technology Commercialisation Initiative, this is a one-day conference focusing on the globalisation of regional economies and emphasising the importance of innovation.

Viki will talk about building strategic alliances and how to choose strategic partners for growth, international alliances and joint ventures. She will give case studies from her work with numerous Victorian companies through the VicStart and ANZA Fast Track programs.

Today in Adelaide: “What’s Happening in the US Innovative Tech Market”

April 19, 2009

ANZA TechNet CEO Viki Forrest joins the panel at this afternoon’s (Monday, April 20) Growing Global Companies’ event in Adelaide.

RSVP: by noon 20 April, Adelaide time.

Date: Monday 20th April, 2009
Time: 3.45pm for 4.00pm start – 6.00pm
Venue: Adelaide Pavilion – Veale Gardens; Cnr South Tce & Peacock Road, Adelaide
Cost: FREE. This is a DTED-sponsored event

Also on the panel:

  • Rahmon Coupe, CEO, YourAmigo (SA Exporter of the Year 2009) will provide YourAmigo’s view of the US e-commerce market now and in the future, as well as an exploration of customer behaviour in the current GFC.
  • Tim Anderson, CEO, Optimatics will give an overview of selling into the infrastructure market in the US.
  • Doug Jacquier, CEO, Connecting Up Australia recently attended the 2009 SXSE Digital Media Conference in Austin TX and will discuss insights into web 2.0 and online market development.

ANZA Technology Network and the South Australian Government have worked together for the past 7 years to assist innovative SA companies achieve success in the US market. The SA DTED aims to help SA companies meet the challenges of entering the US market in 2009.

A MUST attend event for anyone thinking about the US market. Register here.

America Names Tech Czar: Aneesh Chopra

April 19, 2009

Venture Beat reports that President Barack Obama has made good on another one of his campaign promises — he has finally selected a CTO for America.

Aneesh Chopra doesn’t hail from Silicon Valley, as was expected, but instead comes from the state of Virginia, where he was the Secretary of Technology. That job description was to:

“leverage technology in government reform, [promote] Virginia’s innovation agenda, and [foster] technology-related economic development with a special emphasis on entrepreneurship.”

Chopra joins Vivek Kundra who was appointed by Obama as America’s Chief Information Officer back in March. Together the two are expected to provide some much needed tech guidance and advice for the federal government — and no doubt will be consulting heavily with the movers and shakers in Silicon Valley.

The CTO and CIO positions are new to the US government and signal the Obama Administration’s commitment to America’s role in the global innovative technology marketplace. (Read more)

Time to Forget about Australia’s Tall Poppy Syndrome

April 15, 2009

Thought I’d post a link to my colleague Mick Liubinskas’ excellent piece in this week’s Anthill Online.  It’s called “Me, ‘Tall Poppy’? Thanks!” and it’s about — you guessed it — the dearth of Australian entrepreneurs based on that cultural mainstay of ours “the Tall Poppy Syndrome”. Why we like to cut down those who stand tall in their success — an Australianism so pervasive it has stopped an untold number of people with good ideas from even trying, lest they fail and get a big “I-told-you-so” from their mates. It’s bred a degree of risk-averseness in Australia, that fortunately, rapdily melts when Australian entrepreneurs immerse themselves in Silicon Valley where short poppies don’t last long.

Have a read of Mick’s opinion on the subject here, then join the Tall Poppy Pact, a group of Aussies determined to stand tall and help their friends and colleagues do the same.