Stone & Chalk’s Lot Fourteen plan to create hundreds of jobs in SA

Start-up incubator Stone & Chalk expects to foster the creation of 300 jobs in the first three years of operating Adelaide’s burgeoning innovation hub at Lot Fourteen.

The not-for-profit was chosen by the State Government as the anchor tenant of the innovation precinct in Adelaide’s east end, and since June has already signed up 132 residents working across 32 local start-ups.

They include Ping, which recently won an Australian Technologies Competition award for its machine learning technology, and CyberOps, which is working with the Department of Defence to develop a security framework for nano-satellite systems in military operations.

Other residents have already secured funding to progress their ventures. Aged care platform CareApp has secured $500,000 to accelerate product development, while local entrepreneur Andre Eikmeier raised $250,000 for his start-up Good Empire, which helps start-ups grow and “be good for the world”.

An official launch party for Stone & Chalk was held at Lot Fourteen last night, where the hub’s ambitious plans were unveiled, including the creation of 300 new jobs in the first three years of operation.

Stone & Chalk Adelaide general manager Chris Kirk, who moved to Adelaide around six months ago, said he was impressed with the pool of talent in Adelaide’s start-up community.

He said Stone & Chalk residents in other cities were also taking an interest in Adelaide, including Sydney’s 1Wordflow, which recently partnered with Adelaide firm Apeirogon, to distribute its AI-powered document management products across the state.

“There’s a real depth of talent here and in the right areas, and a lot of the IP created at the universities is already embedded in companies here early on,” he said.

“You’re now getting the critical mass here and there are some very positive early signs - there’s some very high profile interstate and international venture capital firms that are taking a real interest in Adelaide.”

Since launching its first fintech hub in Sydney in 2015, Stone & Chalk has raised more than $500 million in capital for its resident start-ups.

While the state’s $90 billion shipbuilding program and pending arrival of the Australian Space Agency at Lot Fourteen made defence and space obvious areas of interest, Mr Kirk said Stone & Chalk was “industry agnostic”.

“South Australia has been embedded in the space industry for decades, and with the pending arrival of the Australian Space Agency and Australian Institute of Machine Learning at Lot Fourteen, we have a breeding ground for collaboration within the space and AI sectors.”

Innovation Minister David Pisoni said the State Government was building a “culture of entrepreneurship” in the state, where “talented founders and teams can be supported with the infrastructure and environment to transform their ideas into globally successful businesses”.

“In the past few months the Allied Health building at Lot Fourteen has transformed from an empty building undergoing major renovations, to a vibrant, multi-level start-up hub,” he said.

Stone & Chalk’s Lot Fourteen plan to create hundreds of jobs in SA by Giuseppe Tauriello originally seen in The Advertiser 20 November 2019.
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