The CSIRO is creating a $200 million fund for Australian science start-ups

Bolt out of the blue, Peter Enright, Coolum Beach, Queensland. highly commended submission to the 2014 Australian Museum New Scientist Eureka Prize for Science Photography.

The CSIRO, Australia’s peak science body, is setting up a $200 million fund for startups to commercialise excellent science ideas.

Larry Marshall, the CSIRO chief executive, says the fund will be a bridge to meet industry half way with an investable proposition which industry can more comfortably take to market.

“When the customer isn’t buying the product, the entrepreneur doesn’t waste time blaming the customer — they change the offer,” says Dr Marshall.

The fund, part of the National Innovation and Science Agenda released today, will use new revenue from CSIRO’s WLAN licencing plus private sector investment to raise $200 million.

The government announced it will provide $70 million over 10 years to a CSIRO-managed innovation fund aimed at bringing to market early stage commercial opportunities based on science.

The CSIRO is also getting $25 million a year increased funding dedicated to its data science efforts through Data61.

Data61 has a mission of unleashing the potential in Australian industry, specifically focusing on cybersecurity, data analytics, a data research network to link business with researchers, and improving the data literacy of Australian business.

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