Victoria reveals board members for startup booster LaunchVic


news The Victorian Government has announced the board members of its new startup launch pad, LaunchVic.

The $60 million project was announced in December, and is aimed to help accelerate startups, drive new ideas and create jobs in Victoria.

Making the announcement, Victoria’s Minister for Small Business, Innovation and Trade Philip Dalidakis (pictured, above left) said the board will be chaired by Australia Post managing director and group CEO Ahmed Fahour.

“I’m excited to chair the board of LaunchVic which is made up of many talented business innovators and entrepreneurs who are committed to providing the best environment for business start-ups to thrive and grow right here in Victoria,” said Fahour.

Notably, aligning with the state government’s commitment to have at least 50 percent female representation on public boards, there will be six women on the LaunchVic advisory board.

According to a statement from the state Premier Daniel Andrews’ office (Andrews is pictured above right), LaunchVic will have the first board in the innovation sector with more women than men – with female business leaders making up 54 percent of the team.

Dalidakis commented: “The calibre of women on this board should also, absolutely, dispel the myth that government and corporate boards cannot meet a 50/50 target.”

Speaking at the Above All Human startup and entrepreneur conference in Melbourne, Dalidakis further said the Andrews Labor Government had secured some of the country’s “leading” company directors and CEOs from across the tech, professional and financial services sectors.

The appointed board members include:

  • Ahmed Fahour, Managing Director and Group CEO, Australia Post (Chair)
  • Elana Rubin, Director, Mirvac Group (Deputy Chair)
  • Jo Burston, Managing Director, Job Capital
  • Tim Fawcett, Director Corporate and Government Affairs, Cisco Systems Australia
  • Dominique Fisher, Executive Chair and Managing Director, CareerLounge Pty Ltd
  • Con Frantzeskos, CEO, PENSO
  • Phillip Kingston, Managing Director, Trimantium Capital
  • Jane Martino, Head of Social Segment, ANZ Bank
  • Rachael Neumann, Managing Director Australia, Eventbrite
  • Kee Wong, Managing Director, e-Centric Innovations
  • Susan Wu, Head, Stripe Australia and New Zealand

With Fahour as Chair and a majority of the new board with experience as company founders and venture capitalists, Dalidakis said he was confident the team had the right “innovative and entrepreneurial spirit” to get Victorian firms off to a good start.

“This is an amazing team to steer LaunchVic and is one that has some extraordinary success stories and a wealth of experience in this space – there has never been a more exciting time to be a startup in Victoria,” concluded Dalidakis.

Image credit: Office of Philip Dalidakis