Aussie founders in Silicon Valley

There are over 17,000 Australians living in San Francisco and the Bay Area (Silicon Valley). And some of these Aussies are making their presence felt in the Valley’s high-tech scene.Back in March 2009, when I arrived in the Valley full-time, I had no clue about the extent of the Aussie footprint here. As time ticked on and I got familiar & orientated around the tech scene the area has to offer I got fired up and inspired. I started to see what fellow Aussies were up to, the impact they were/are leaving and great opportunities this area provides.

Below is a list of these Super Aussies and the companies they are running (have run & sold) in the high-tech scene of Silicon Valley.

Founder/s Company Notes
Mike Cannon-Brookes & Scott Farquhar Atlassian Known for Jira, Confluence etc. 26K customers from 144 countries use Atlassian tools. Operates in Oz & SF.
Andrew Lacy Tapulous Acquired by Disney.
Bardia Housman & Adam Broadway Business Catalyst Acquired by Adobe. Bardia is soon to launch and soon to launch StartupHouse.
Elias Bizannes StartupBus Also runs Silicon Beach OZ & The DataPortability Project, blog and soon to launch StartupHouse.
Ryan Junee, Simon Ratner & Julian Frumar Omnisio Acquired by Google.
Ryan Junee Inporia See Omnisio above + also a mentor at 500 Startups and StartMate.
Andrew Roberts Ephox Operates in Oz, Palo Alto & Europe.
Sam Chandler NitroPDF Operates in Oz & SF.
James Nicol Fundly
Ben Keighran Chomp
Mick Johnson GasBag & Whereoscope
Lars Rasmussen Google Maps & Google Wave Recently moved from Google (Sydney) to Facebook in Silicon Valley.
Gower Smith Zoom Sytems
Leigh Jasper Acconex
Upcoming startups from my aussie mates.
Denis Mars Currently in stealth-mode. Y-combinator alumni.
Vincent Turner PlanWise Aims to empower consumers with tools for planning and forecasting your finances. Presented at Finovate NYC.
Last updated: Sept 2011 – Global Australians. Global Networks. helps create opportunities for Australians living abroad. They organise events/forums in and around San Francisco / Bay Area to help Aussies to connect together, share ideas, spark mentorship & marketing programs. More here:

Aussie incubator for Australian start-ups – The Startup House

Bardia Housman (see above ref Adobe) has purchased a 36,000 sq foot building (at 880 Harrison Street, San Francisco, CA 94107),  in the heart of San Francisco, to transform it into an incubator for Australian start-ups. It’s currently being built up but will most definitely be a kick ass place for Aussies enterprunrs. More on this project with Elias Bizannes (see above ref StartupBus) in the video below. All the best guys! Looking forward to paying a visit.

Media coverage: Recently published in the Sydney Morning Herald (SMH)

Gold diggers: Aussies strike it rich in Silicon Valley
By Asher Moses, September 15, 2011

  • Tony George from Austrade in Los Angeles helps Australian start-ups get a foothold in the US.
  • Austrade provides grants, helps entrepreneurs with research, advice about market entry, referrals to service providers such as lawyers and accountants, and most importantly hooking them up directly with potential customers.
  • Pollenizer and Startmate are helping the Australian tech start-up scene grown. But the conventional wisdom is still that start-ups needed to go to the US to raise funds and be exposed to the movers and shakers in the tech industry.

If you know of other Aussies in Silicon Valley/SF that are steaming ahead with their product/s please let me know and I will add them to this list above. Thanks!

Aussie Aussie Aussie, Oi Oi Oi!

~ Ernest