Stone & Chalk lands in Adelaide

Stone & Chalk lands in Adelaide

Startup incubator Stone & Chalk is making its way down to South Australia with the announcement of a new innovation hub in Adelaide.

To be situated in Lot Fourteen, Stone & Chalk hopes to tap into Adelaide's growing entrepreneurial scene, currently dominated by players in the space, cybersecurity, defence, AI and robotics industries.

Stone & Chalk is an established developer of startups, having secured over $330 million in funding for its residents and alumni in Sydney and Melbourne, and has created over 600 direct jobs.

Lot Fourteen is situated alongside the Adelaide Botanic Gardens, within five minutes walking distance from the University of Adelaide, the University of South Australia, and the Adelaide CBD.

Speaking with Business News Australia the incoming general manager of Stone & Chalk Adelaide Chris Kirk says the opportunities in Adelaide are irresistible for the incubator.

"There's been an absolutely unprecedented amount of energy, investment and focus on entrepreneurship in South Australia at the moment," says Kirk.

"There's already a cluster of really great entrepreneurs there doing really fantastic stuff, and our model is essentially to help build the innovation ecosystem."

"There's people working in the cybersecurity space, and a number of people working in the space industry which is incredibly exciting."

The space sector in Adelaide has received significant support, from both the local and federal government. The newly created Australian Space Agency is a centrepiece of Lot Fourteen, and with entrepreneurs like Flavia Tata Nardini leading the charge and even rumours of space tourism becoming a large part of Adelaide's local economy it was a sector that Stone & Chalk naturally wanted to take part in.

"There are opportunities within the space sector for Australian companies to really perform on the global stage. There's a lot of areas where we have natural capabilities in," says Kirk.

Stone & Chalk CEO Alex Scandurra (pictured) says that the Lot Fourteen start-up hub will connect start-ups, scaleups, mentors, corporations, researchers, investors, creatives, and academia in a curated ecosystem that forms a "marketplace for supply and demand in innovation."

"Stone & Chalk might be most readily known for its leadership in nurturing and scaling high-growth fintech companies that are transforming the way we consume financial services," says Scandurra.

"However, underlying this is a broader capability in building thriving innovation ecosystems where communities of mutual benefit form and produce the type of high-growth companies that are creating the industries and jobs of our future. Achieving this requires far more than the simple provision of space.

"It requires an ability to help large organisations including governments identify the problems that are best solved from the "outside-in" and orchestrate commercial outcomes between innovators and partners.

"It's also imperative to play to the individual strengths of each different community. In Sydney for example we have a strong marketplace across fintech, insurtech, cybersecurity, data sciences, and regtech. In Melbourne this expands to incorporate agtech, medtech, and the creative industries. And in Adelaide we'll leverage our capability to help develop and nurture spacetech, defence, cybersecurity, artificial intelligence, and smart cities."

Stone & Chalk is expected to be open for business in October 2019.

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