Start-ups to benefit from deals with major venture capital firms

Deputy Premier, Treasurer and Minister for Trade and Investment The Honourable Cameron Dick
  • Queensland Venture Capital Development Fund closes first deals with Antler, Five V Capital, Main Sequence, Mandalay Venture Partners and Salus Ventures
  • Local start-ups to score up to $200 million in global investment
  • Partnerships already bringing major venture capital firms and top talent to Queensland

The Miles Government’s Queensland Venture Capital Development Fund (QVCDF) has locked in deals with five major venture capitals firms Antler, Five V Capital, Main Sequence, Mandalay Venture Partners and Salus Ventures.

The deals mean Queensland start-ups will have access to up to $200 million in new matched funding as these investors grow their presence, focus and investment in the local innovation sector.

In response to significant demand for the QVCDF, managed by Queensland Investment Corporation (QIC), the Miles Government has committed a further $55 million to the program.

The first investments to close in the Matched Funding stream are:

  • Antler

A global early-stage VC operating across six continents, investing in startups from day zero and supporting them for the lifecycle of their business. Australian portfolio includes Pathzero, Upcover and Xailient.

  • Main Sequence Ventures

Originated by CSIRO to bridge the divide between research and commercialisation, Main Sequence aims to accelerate deep tech development. Queensland portfolio includes Gilmour Space Technologies, Endua and Rainstick.

  • Five V Capital

The growth partner to some of Australia’s leading companies, Five V invests in market-leading, innovative businesses in industries with strong tailwinds, including Brisbane-based MarTech start-up Dataweavers.

  • Salus Ventures

Australia’s first early-stage fund dedicated to the intersection of critical sovereign technology and its commercialisation, Salus will leverage Queensland’s strengths in aerospace, defence, artificial intelligence and cybersecurity.

  • Mandalay Venture Partners

Queensland-based venture fund backing farm-to-fork innovation to deliver food security and sustainability, including carbon sequestration, on-farm efficiencies, supply chain automation and future foods.

Quotes attributable to Deputy Premier, Treasurer and Minister for Trade and Investment Cameron Dick:

“The Queensland Venture Capital Development Fund is already delivering for Queensland start-ups.

“As a result of securing a deal with the Fund, Antler, Five V Capital and Salus Ventures will appoint Queensland-based staff to spearhead local investment activity.

“They join established Queensland investors Main Sequence and Mandalay Venture Partners in our renewed push to close the identified early-stage funding gap and attract even more third-party investment.

“Our total $130 million commitment will generate up to $200 million in start-up funding for Queensland’s best and brightest.

“In making more capital available, businesses do not need to leave our state to pursue funding elsewhere – they can establish, grow and remain in Queensland.

“Together, we can nurture Queensland’s famous entrepreneurial spirit and let the brightest minds shine in the Sunshine State.

“Also, because of the huge interest in the Fund and Queensland’s strong budget position, the Miles Government is investing a further $55 million into the program.”

Quotes attributable to Antler Australia Partner Mike Abbott:

“The QVCDF will enable Antler to assist Queensland founders in establishing more than 15 companies over the next four years at the forefront of Australian innovation.

“Our newly appointed Queensland Director and Queensland Venture Partner will spearhead our local initiatives, backed by the entire Antler Australia team.

“This local engagement, supplemented by our global expertise and network, ensures that Queensland start-ups receive the best of both worlds – deep local insights and global scale opportunities.”

Quotes attributable to Five V Capital Head of VC Ed Bigazzi:

“As Five V is a specialist investor in business software start-ups, the QVCDF funding will mean we can invest in more of these businesses, have greater reserves of capital to back our winners, and further embed ourselves into and support the Queensland start-up ecosystem.

“We have appointed three Queensland based venture partners who bring a wealth of experience, existing networks, a diversity of skillsets and perspectives, and the ability to offer practical on-the-ground assistance to the Queensland start-ups we back.”

Quotes attributable to Main Sequence Investment Manager Alezeia Brown:

“Main Sequence has been investing in Queensland deep tech companies since we were founded in 2017 and have partnered with a number of world-leading Queensland companies like Emesent, Gilmour Space, Endua and Plotlogic.

“We believe there are great opportunities to build entirely new industries in Queensland and catalyse the transformation of the state’s traditional strengths into sustainable leaders.

“By drawing on world-class research and talent, these industries will benefit Queensland and Australia with new jobs and create the valuable planetary positive companies of the future.”

Quotes attributable to Mandalay Venture Partners Partner Timothy Hui:

“The QVCDF is an amazing initiative because it is more than just capital – having QIC as a limited partner is an enormous vote of confidence behind the firm and is a strong signal for future limited partners.

“Being based in Queensland places us at the centre of the national activity across the agrifood sector alongside the most promising startups, best universities, most dynamic RDCs and most active Hubs across the country.

“As a VC, we partner across the landscape to become a key capital provider and invest to fast-track the commercialisation of promising tech.”

Quotes attributable to Salus Ventures General Partner and Co-founder Dan Bennett:

“This collaboration extends beyond a pure financial investment into aligning resources, networks and expertise towards a shared goal of growing a globally prominent technology ecosystem.

“Queensland-based trailblazers like Go1, Safety Culture and Gilmour Space pave the way for the next generation of visionary founders poised to conquer global challenges and deliver outsized returns.  

“Salus is positioned to be an active teammate, tirelessly supporting these ambitious founders on their transformative journeys.”  

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