News Pulse for June 20, 2017

A daily download of SME, startup, fintech and tax news from around Australia.

‘Chilling’ fall in global tech rank

Australia’s continued fall in global innovation rankings should send “a chill through the bones” of the local tech and startup communities, according to shadow minister for the digital economy Ed Husic.

The Global Innovation Index 2017, released late last week, saw Australia slip a further four places to 23rd in the world, behind China, New Zealand, Hong Kong and Singapore.

Online shoppers to be hit by GST

The Federal Government’s plan to sting online shoppers with the GST looks set to come to fruition 12 months later than it would have liked.

But they have rejected a proposal from the Greens to use the new revenue to cover the cost of removing the GST from sanitary products, including tampons.

Campaign Monitor experiences management upheaval as chief executive Alex Bard steps down

One of Australia’s biggest startup success stories is undergoing major management upheaval, with the chief executive officer of Campaign Monitor Alex Bard stepping down and co-founders Dave Greiner and Ben Richardson also recently stepping away from their day-to-day roles.

San Francisco-based Bard joined the email marketing startup in 2014, and is leaving the company to pursue a career at an undisclosed venture capital firm.

‘Go where it takes us’: Nick Xenophon penalty rates inquiry could cover supermarket chain donor

Nick Xenophon’s Senate inquiry into major retailers’ penalty rate deals with the shoppies union could end up implicating the senator’s party donor, South Australia supermarket boss Roger Drake.

The Coalition and The Greens voted together on Monday to pass Senator Xenophon’s motion to investigate claims that big businesses use enterprise agreements to pay lower penalty rates on weekends and public holidays, giving them a “competitive advantage over smaller businesses that pay award rates”.

NSW Govt seeks 10 security & fintech startups for Israel accelerator program

The New South Wales Government is looking for 10 cybersecurity and fintech startups to find out more about Israel in an event at TechSydney tonight.

As part of the event, the startups will be offered the chance to participate in an accelerator program based in Tel Aviv, Israel.

Victoria set for new fintech hub that will “send a strong signal” to the rest of the world

Victoria will seek to position itself as a major international player in the fintech sector, with the state government last week unveiling plans for a new hub in Melbourne’s Docklands precinct to boost jobs and encourage startups in this fast growing industry.

The hub will be housed in the Goods Shed North in Docklands and will bring together startups, corporates and researchers under one roof.

New FinTech plan for Melbourne

The Victorian Government is now seeking applications for “experienced innovation hub operators” to establish a FinTech hub in Melbourne.

The hub will be based in the Goods Shed North in Docklands, which also houses Data61’s cyber security and innovation hub. The FinTech hub has been allocated 1500sqm in workspace with options for this to be expanded in the future.

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