The Game Changers

ToukanLabsIt’s hard to imagine that many of the interactive medical systems we now use to book appointments, get test results and talk to a doctor were once paper based. One such system is the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS), that plays a major part in the Australian health system by providing affordable medicines. In 2012, ToukanLabs developed PharmCIS with the Department of Health – a centralised paperless system that allows streamlined and efficient processing of pharmaceutical products in Australia.

BiometixMost of us are now used to staring deeply into our phones hoping that it will recognise our face and unlock, or using our voice or fingerprints to access our bank accounts, but the technology behind all this is complex and growing rapidly. Having completed his PhD in the mid 90’s in biometrics, Dr Ted Dunstone had always wanted to create an innovative business built around his expertise. So, he founded Biometix in 1998.
“There were a lot of innovative projects happening inside government at that time, particularly around border control. We started our growth by working with the Hong Kong government for around two years as it overhauled its identity systems”, says Ted. In 2001, Biometix implemented the SmartGate prototype in Sydney. SmartGate is the automated passenger processing system that most international travelers are now familiar with. By the time international travel to and from Australia opens up again it is expected that 90 percent of travelers will use this technology.

Endangered HeritageIf there is a disaster anywhere in the world, Victoria Pearce, founder of Canberra company Endangered Heritage, gets notified. The role of first responders is to rescue lives, but second response is critical in the first 48 hours for saving culturally significant, and/or historic buildings.

Nic ReadCapital College was founded in Canberra in 2016 and has been run, shaped, or staffed at different times by a team of education entrepreneurs from Australia, England, Malaysia, Singapore, India, Nepal, China, Japan, Iran, and South Africa. Collectively they have contributed hundreds of years of experience to the College’s cultural diversity and operational excellence. Students from 40 nations study with the College today. The College is growing substantially, adding a campus on the Gold Coast in 2020, and mini-campuses internationally. The growing focus on hybrid delivery models has also seen the College embrace online technology and local in-country partnerships.

Aristotle MetadataIn 2014, Sam Spencer was in the public sector working on metadata modelling and registry design. Several national and international government departments were trying to find a better way to manage their data and sought access to the tool he was using. Knowing that access to government tools is always difficult; Sam saw an untapped market and business opportunity.
Sam spent the next six years developing prototypes and establishing the community behind the Aristotle platform. This was made up of organisations interested in a platform that could track a range of activities including hospital presentations across Europe; education outcomes across school systems across Australia; and financial literacy for migrants in Canada. Eighteen months ago, Aristotle started exporting their platform internationally.
A significant amount of Aristotle’s investment and development has focused on making the platform accessible for the various users of data and providing training to help people understand why their data has value.

ArdexaArdexa is a Canberra-based company providing high-security software and services for the Internet of Things. Formed by George Cora and Dave Mohr in 2013, the company develops their own edge and cloud software to connect small and large machines, automation devices and renewable power plants to the cloud. They work across a range of industries including energy, agriculture, manufacturing, automation and transport.

Kord GroupUS Marine Testing RIC System [Outdoors]Kord Group is a privately owned group of technology companies with its head office in Canberra and offices in Stafford and Ogden in the United States. Founded in 2007, it is comprised of KordTech Pty Ltd and its subsidiaries, Kord Defence Pty Ltd, KordUSA Inc, and Shotdot Pty Ltd.
Kord designs and develops innovative control and shot recording technologies for the Defence, law enforcement and homeland security markets in the US and Australia.

Aspen MedicalWhen the COVID pandemic first hit, one of the major concerns was how well prepared is the world’s health system to respond to an outbreak of unknown scale. How quickly could countries mobilise resources and people power to build facilities, and then staff them, to deal with the very high number of cases that were expected? High wealth countries would be stretched by the outbreak, but the most devastating impacts would be in those countries with poor health systems, ongoing conflicts or existing infectious disease issues.

InstaclustrPeter LilleyWhat do gaming, banking, retail and content providers have in common – data. They create it, they want access to it and they use it to understand, attract, inform, retain and monetise their customers. According to the Economist, data is now the most valuable resource in the world, with 97percent of businesses using data in some way to inform their business opportunities and over 75 percent of businesses using data as an integral part of their business strategy.

PentenA recent international study1 found that during the current COVID-19 pandemic there has been a significant shift in cybercrime from targeting small business and individuals to a focus on major corporations, governments and critical infrastructure. The increasing use of remote systems and networks to support staff during this time has created new vulnerabilities that are being exploited by these adversaries. The level of cyber attack shows no sign of decreasing as the world slowly starts to open up again. In fact the nature of cyber attacks is becoming more sophisticated and multi pronged.

Goterra Goterra is a waste management infrastructure company that delivers modular infrastructure for biological services. Founded by Olympia Yarger, the company is changing the world by re-imagining the interplay between biology and technology.
Goterra supplies hotels, restaurants, farms, supermarkets and hospitals with robot-managed capsules. Inside shipping containers, these shelves of black soldier fly larvae turn food waste into fertilizer. In a perfectly circular and sustainable ecosystem, once the maggots have consumed the waste, they, in turn, become a high protein animal feed.

Just like many businesses, Canberra’s beloved Handmade Market had to pivot their business in a breathtakingly short period of time when Covid-19 restrictions came into effect.

Rob CooreyGeospatial Intelligence is a Canberra-based company turning geospatial data into valuable information. The company started in Canberra almost 20 years ago and is fast developing the reputation as the go-to in terms of bespoke tailored solutions using the power of space-based technologies. The idea to create the company was based on years of experience working in both the public and private sectors. Geospatial technologies around the world are used to support industries like defence and security, and the less obvious like agricultural management, environmental mapping and planning and the movement of people.

Ken TelferThe Covid-19 crisis saw the entire fitness industry shut down pretty much overnight in March this year and while the need for us to keep moving and exercise hasn’t changed, the way in which we could exercise has. What are providers doing to survive until the restrictions are relaxed?

Understanding the size of the impact

According to recent studies conducted into the Australian Gyms and Fitness centres1 and personal trainers2, the fitness industry is worth around $3.5billion and employs around 30,000 people. Of these around 9,000 are self-employed Personal Trainers or fitness instructors. It is also reported that around 30 percent of Australians have a gym membership – although it is not clear how many use their membership on a regular basis.

The fitness industry has grown by around 5percent since 2014 and there are a number of trends leading this growth. The growth, however, is expected to stall over the next 5 years because of increased competition unless the industry continues to drive change in relation to how it delivers services and target customers.