In the first of a new monthly feature, Australian entrepreneur Matthew Ho looks into the latest news in the Australian startup ecosystem.
1. Bigcommerce Raises $40M From Revolution Growth
E-commerce platform Bigcommerce has raised $40 million in a series C round from Revolution Growth. Revolution’s founder Steve Case, who is also a co-founder at AOL, will join BigCommerce’s board. This is the largest funding round to date and brings the total funding raised to $75 million.
According to an interview with Business Insider, founders Eddie Machaalani and Mitch Harper plan to use the $40 million investment to grow from 260 to 400 staff by mid 2014. They will also be building new features to allow clients to integrate their Bigcommerce stores with existing marketing, inventory, analytics, and order management software. This is amazing news for the Australian ecosystem and the founders are committed to having the headquarters in Sydney, Australia, with sales, marketing, and customer service run out of Austin, Texas.
2. Pocketbook Launches Finance Mobile App
Pocketbook is Australia’s version of personal finance app Mint. The average Australian uses more than one bank and has two or three accounts, across savings, credit cards, and loans. Pocketbook takes all these and aims to bring them together seamlessly. The startup has a web app and recently launched an iPhone app version (pictured above). The app is currently featured by the Australian Apple App Store and is already ranked second in the finance apps category, beating more established players, including major banks. The team has also confirmed that an Android app is six weeks away.
3. Task Marketplace Airtasker Partners With Jobs Site CareerOne
Task marketplace Airtasker has partnered with CareerOne, one of Australia’s largest jobs websites. This is a first we’re seeing – a job website and a task services marketplace combine forces to monetise latent labour under a single service.
Airtasker founder and CEO Tim Fung said, “Working with CareerOne will offer job seekers an opportunity to monetise their unique skills and available time by completing short-term tasks while hunting for full-time jobs.”
4. Optus Innov8 Seed Fund Looks For New Principal
Principal Rebecca Hay has moved on from the Optus Innov8 team to join a growing startup – her young family. Hay is a well-known member of the Australian startup community having been involved in establishing the Optus Innov8 program and organising Startup Weekends around Australia. Optus Innov8 has made two investments with 121cast and Venuemob. Optus Innov8 is associated with SingTel Group.
The newly vacant role will be to represent Optus Innov8 across the startup community, work with startups in their investment portfolio, as well as be involved with startup ecosystem support activities. For job info, visit the Optus Innov8 website here.