Avoka leads other Fintechs in Westpac’s 2018 Businesses of Tomorrow
Today two hundred Australian businesses have been named as Westpac’s 2018 Businesses of Tomorrow, recognised for their vision and drive to help shape the nation’s economic future.
Building on the success of the inaugural 2017 program, and joining an impressive alumni, the winning businesses exemplify adaptability, resilience, value to customers, and a readiness to meet tomorrow’s challenges.
David Lindberg, Chief Executive, Westpac Business Bank and 2018 program judge, said this year’s applicants demonstrated the scale of movement of the Australian economy into a digital world.
“The digital economy is predicted to be worth $139 billion by 2020 to the Australian economy – as a key driver of change in the future, this year’s businesses reflect the drive that’s disrupting and shaping the industries they operate in. Almost three quarters of the top twenty businesses are directly involved in technology or software development and this year also saw an increase in micro-business applicants, including early stage tech-businesses, which increased almost three-fold from 2017.
“This tells me leading Australian businesses are capitalising on the opportunities for growth. They’re breaking new markets, developing technology that helps people with autism gain employment, providing better analysis for solar energy users, using technology to make prescription glasses more durable and affordable, and transforming waste into useful materials.
“Over half (59%) of these businesses have an ambition to expand to the global marketplace and I look forward to seeing this great Australian entrepreneurial spirit succeed – because we have great talent and ideas in this country that deserved to be backed.
“As Australia continues to make the transition to a services and knowledge-based economy, it’s increasingly important for businesses to broaden their skills, tap into shared-knowledge and strengthen professional networks. Burgeoning businesses are critical to our success as a nation and to continue our 25-plus years of economic growth. By bringing together the right minds, tools and support, we are backing businesses that will help deliver a stronger, more prosperous Australia,” said Lindberg.
Of the 200 Businesses of Tomorrow, 20 top businesses will receive a two-week study tour to Silicon Valley and a tailored $50,000 professional services package from their choice of select providers offering legal services, PR and communications, customer relationship management and management consulting.
The top 20 will also take part in a mentor matching program with notable Australian business leaders. Among the mentors are John Eales AM, former Wallabies Captain and culture and leadership consultant; Mia Freedman, Mamamia Women’s Network; Tim Fung, Airtasker CEO; and Jo Horgan, founder and CEO of Mecca Cosmetics.
One of this year’s businesses which captured the judges’ attention was Sydney-based Avoka, a technology company which offers a software platform enabling banks to increase sales and build their customer base.
The CEO and founder of Avoka, Philip Copeland, said: “One of our core functions is enabling seamless digital processes so banks can make it as easy as possible for customers to open accounts, apply for a loan or become business customers. Avoka accelerates customer acquisition for banks and allows them to get outstanding customer journeys to market very quickly.
“With the help of Westpac and the Businesses of Tomorrow program, we’re looking forward to increasing our networking capabilities and continuing to improve and expand our product offering. Having been selected for the second year in a row, this time as a top 20 finalist, we appreciate the opportunities Westpac has given our business.”
Several businesses from last year’s top 180 businesses were also recognised this year and awarded a position in the top 20 including, Araza, Metamako, and Whispli, each of which have demonstrated growth and increased potential since 2017.
Sharing his views on last year’s program, 2017 Business of Tomorrow, Healthshare CEO, Rami Weiss, said, “Having Healthshare recognised in Westpac’s Businesses of Tomorrow program was priceless. By connecting a diverse pool of forward-thinking businesses, the program has helped create a strong, enduring network of leaders who continue to share their unique knowledge and experiences with one another.
“The Global Study Tour gave us the incomparable opportunity to learn directly from founders of Silicon Valley giants on the importance of building a company’s culture – lessons which Healthshare has now adopted and turned into practice.”
Putting employees and people first was a key trend for 2018 businesses, “At least 71% of the 200 businesses saw increasingly employee engagement or wellness as a significant priority, which is recognised as a key factor in creating a culture that drives productivity,” concluded Lindberg.
 ACS Australia’s Digital Pulse, Driving Australia’s International ICT Competitiveness and Digital Growth