Page 1648 - Week 05 - Thursday, 11 May 2017

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Singapore and Malaysia. We were also joined by Mr Sean Gan, the program manager at VS Industry Berhad, which is also investing in Seeing Machines. These types of engagements are critical to hear firsthand from significant investors about their perceptions of Canberra, intentions for new investment and where future opportunities may exist with Singapore.

I then attended and delivered the opening address at the Canberra investment showcase, an event delivered in partnership with the ACT government, ANU Connect Ventures and the Canberra Innovation Network. The event was designed to facilitate interaction between 15 Canberra-based businesses, entrepreneurs and Singapore investors. A total of 110 investors registered to participate in the investment-pitching event. Canberra companies represented a diverse range of sectors, covering education technology, ag technology, health, physical science, gaming, renewable energy and film.

In addition to the 15 Canberra companies participating, the event was also attended by four companies from our sister city Wellington. An invitation was extended to allow participation from the small group of Wellington companies to support commitments under our sister city agreement and the Canberra Innovation Network’s MOU with the Wellington Regional Economical Development Agency.

This event was the most significant investment promotion activity conducted in the City of Singapore by the ACT government. The short-term objective is to secure growth funding to assist these businesses to prove concepts and to scale their operations. In addition, significant progress was made in developing relations with capital providers who will now include Canberra on their investment watch list.

Collaboration to deliver events of this nature develops a deeper sense of cooperation and confidence in our capabilities and supports our ambitions as a global capital. I would particularly like to thank Nick McNaughton, the CEO of ANU Connect Ventures, and Peter Adamek, the new CEO of the Canberra Innovation Network, for their commitment and tireless effort to make the event possible.

I was then fortunate to have the opportunity to meet Mr Guy Scott, the President of AustCham Singapore, and the new AustCham Executive Director, Kate Baldock. AustCham is the peak body representing Australian businesses in Singapore and is one of the largest Australian business chambers in Asia. The organisation has been a strong supporter of Canberra’s efforts to grow its profile in Singapore, and this was an excellent opportunity to build on this relationship.

Few people may realise that one of Australia’s best known education technology platforms was developed by a Canberra-based entrepreneur, Mr Shane Hill. Mr Hill is CEO of Skoolbo and founder of Mathletics, both widely used in primary schools across Australia and around the world, including Singapore. Mr Hill is an outstanding example of the talent and entrepreneurial spirit that exists in Canberra’s vibrant start-up community. So I was delighted to accept an invitation from Mr Hill to launch a new initiative, preschool play.

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