Down Under on the up and up

Funding levels for venture capital funding in Australia starts to approach pre-global financial crisis levels.

Venture capital funding levels in Australia are heading back to the levels the achieved before the global financial crisis, The Australian has reported.

According to the report, institutional funding could break A$300m ($220m) within a year with an additional A$150m coming from the significant investor visa programme. The predictions come from Elaine Stead, head of venture capital at investment firm Blue Sky Alternatives.

In 2007, before the global financial crisis, total institutional funding came to A$356.9m. However, following the crisis that figure plummeted to as little as A$100m in 2011 and A$119m in 2014 according to figures from the Australian Private Equity and Venture Capital Association.

In 2014 there was also no public funding for the sector as Joe Hockey, who was treasurer at the time, stopped the Innovation Investment Fund scheme that provided matching funding for venture capital.

Christopher Pyne, head of the portfolio for innovation within the Australian government, and Wyatt Roy, a junior minister, have been given the task of stimulating the industry. A statement is expected from them regarding innovation in the sector before the end of the year. This should detail assistance plans and possible changes to the current setup.

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