Many new accelerators and incubators for tech startups are popping up in Australia at the moment. I’m not sure if I’ve just noticed more of them because of the media coverage and my interest, or if there’s really a groundswell. I asked around to get some opinions on what’s going on here.

First, here’s a quick list:

There’s a set of opinions in this thread in the Silicon Beach group.

There was no consensus on the reason, but here’s a general overview of thoughts:

  • The cost of entry and risk is lower than ever before in Australia because of the maturity of the technology and methods we use. Australia still has challenges compared to the US ecosystems, but these accelerators are a start.
  • It’s more attractive in Australia that other economies at the moment (in that, for now, the opportunity costs/alternative options have changed)
  • Australian teams are getting recognition because of the success of others (Atlassian, 99Designs, OzForex)
  • Some accelerators have been outstanding in the US and many are trying to replicate this success. It’s probably temporary and many will disappear. See Eric Ries’ Winter is Coming
  • it probably doesn’t matter why. The questions for a startup is whether it’s good money or not? (ie. if it’s available and good money, take it)

My view is that accountability is essential to developing a tech startup, and you never know how much you don’t know. I’ve spent years myself writing code that was never released to be used by another person. Getting involved in an accelerator is an excellent way to overcome these problems and to learn a tonne quickly. I suspect most of the accelerators are temporary, but if I were in a situation were I could use one, I would.