Drawn from across ON Accelerate1 and 2, teams RapidAIM, Vaximiser, Cardihab, Hovermap and FutureFeed took to the skies, selected for the tour based on their perceived market-fit for the US and performance against milestones in incubation.
Five days spent in the start-up capital Silicon Valley gave teams access to a range of potential customers, partners and commercialisation experts to help explore market appetite and demand for their big, Australian-led sci-tech innovations.
From ag-tech to defence, bio-security to health-tech, teams worked tirelessly to squeeze as many customer conversations and pitch opportunities into their packed agenda as possible.
The ON delegation was hosted by AusTrade as part of the 'Silicon Valley Landing Pads' initiative, a program designed to offer an immersive environment for Australian start-ups in some of the most exciting and innovative business environments in the world.
Liza Noonan, Executive Manager, Innovation at CSIRO said the experience was both high-value and energising for teams.
"The purpose of the tour was really to understand the US marketplace and provide an opportunity for teams to build connections and get partners to help explore commercialisation opportunities outside of Australia.
"It certainly delivered on that, but more than that, I’d argue the greatest value came in the frank and fearless feedback teams received on just what it takes to do business in the US.
"Constructive advice from the likes of the Silicon Valley Executive Network on sharpening the economics of their business case and nailing the pitch and proposition before you even set foot in the US was like rocket-fuel to our teams. You could see the spark in their eyes and the energy lift as they mapped just how to apply that feedback and grab the opportunity with both hands."
From here teams will be putting feedback into action - adapting their business models and looking differently at the paths to runway for their sci-tech innovation both locally and overseas. The US offers a wealth of opportunity, not just in the Bay Area but beyond and, for most, it was a real eye-opener to hear just what those opportunities might look like.
The ON team would like to thank its partners in Austrade, Silicon Valley Executive Network and the Aussie Founders Network for bringing this tour together and say 'watch this space' for further international commercialisation exploration experiences in future.