Tech Me To Australia! 23 May 2018

Riding the wave of the Viva Tech conference in Paris this week, Austrade and ABIE hosted “Tech me to Australia” on Wednesday the 23rd May.  In his welcoming remarks, the Australian Ambassador Brendan Berne, and Honorary President of ABIE France, opened the proceedings with the good news of President Macron’s recent visit to Australia and the EU’s decision on Tuesday to start negotiations for a Free Trade Agreement with Australia.  Ambassador Berne urged the audience to read the recent the joint Vision Statement on the Australia France Relationship as an important reflection of the growing strength of the relationship.

A panel coordinated by Deputy Trade Commissioner Linda Marcheson discussed the benefits of doing tech in Oz.  Young Australian entrepreneurs Lucas Lovell and Jesse Trehane observed that Australians love tech.  Australians are open to tech.  Australians are good at tech.  Their experiences setting up their own startups in France as part of the Business France sponsored “French Ticket” confirmed their view of the ease of doing disruptive tech business in Australia.  Cedric Maisonnier of French Navya agreed, highlighting the Group’s decision to test its automated vehicles in the Australian market. Law firm Partner, Phil Catania highlighted the particularly favorable privacy and intellectual property protections for startups in Australia.   The panel reflected on the challenges of growing your business overseas with the sage advice “When Australians do business in China, we do it alongside our Chinese colleagues”.  If the current momentum continues, it will not be long before we see Australians doing business in France alongside our French colleagues.

The panel discussion stimulated many questions from the audience and exchanges continued over drinks canapés afterwards in the Ambassador’s Residence and on the lovely terrace overlooking the Eifel tower.  Much networking was done and a good time had by all.  Abie thanks Austrade for the opportunity to partnering a very successful event.