Wednesday, 03 October 2018 11:48

Victorian Government invests $4.8m to grow state’s healthtech sector

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The Victorian Government is investing $4.8 million in a move aimed at accelerating the growth of Victoria’s health and life sciences start-ups.

The government says the investment is also aimed at bolstering Melbourne’s reputation as “Australia’s HealthTech capital”.

Announcement of the funding initiative follows LaunchVic’s State of HealthTech – a report highlighting that health start-ups receive the largest amount of funding from VCs compared to start-ups in other sectors.

Delivered by the state’s start-up agency, LaunchVic, seven successful recipients will receive funding to deliver accelerator and education programs across Victoria.

The successful recipients are:

  • The Victorian Medical Device Partnering program by Flinders University.
  • The Victorian Health Network Accelerator (VHNx) by The Royal Melbourne Hospital.
  • Scaling Medtech Innovation from Victorian Hospitals program by The Actuator.
  • The Victorian Angel Investor Education project by Artesian Venture Partners.
  • The HealthTech Export Strategies for Asia Markets program by Australia China Health Accelerator.
  • The HealthTech Reimbursement: Getting Paid in the US program by BioMelbourne Network.
  • The B.R.I.G.H.T Future for Digital Health Innovators by ANDHealth.

A number of the programs will leverage the state’s largest hospital networks to ensure innovation and validation of health start-up problems.

The selected programs are designed to build capability in health start-ups that will enable them to thrive in the global market to drive further growth into what LaunchVic says is Victoria’s booming health sector, which contributes $30 billion a year to the state. Two programs will also support growth of the HealthTech angel investor community.

According to LaunchVic, one in five Victorian start-ups are in health, wellbeing or sports and attract more investment than any other sector, while also providing over a quarter (26%) of jobs within the Victorian start-up ecosystem.

Victoria’s Minister for Innovation and the Digital Economy Philip Dalidakis said, “Accelerating the growth of Victoria’s health and life sciences start-ups will generate a range of economic and health benefits including employment growth, more efficient health services and better patient outcomes for all of Australia and the Asia-Pacific region.”

LaunchVic chief executive Dr Kate Cornick claims Melbourne is fast becoming the leading HealthTech start-up hub in the Asia Pacific region”.

“By funding proven providers of accelerators and education programs, LaunchVic aims to build the support services that Victorian health start-ups need to succeed on a global scale,” Cornick said.

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Peter Dinham

Peter Dinham is a co-founder of iTWire and a 35-year veteran journalist and corporate communications consultant. He has worked as a journalist in all forms of media – newspapers/magazines, radio, television, press agency and now, online – including with the Canberra Times, The Examiner (Tasmania), the ABC and AAP-Reuters. As a freelance journalist he also had articles published in Australian and overseas magazines. He worked in the corporate communications/public relations sector, in-house with an airline, and as a senior executive in Australia of the world’s largest communications consultancy, Burson-Marsteller. He also ran his own communications consultancy and was a co-founder in Australia of the global photographic agency, the Image Bank (now Getty Images).

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