Austrade's Landing Pads: Innovate. Accelerate. Go Global

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As part of the National Innovation and Science Agenda, Austrade have launched five Landing Pads, in Tel Aviv, Singapore, Berlin, San Francisco and Shanghai, to help Australian startups expand into overseas markets. Margaret Donoghue and Karen Surmon, manage Austrade’s Landing Pads in San Francisco and Shanghai and will be discussing the innovation ecosystems in their markets and what the opportunities are for startups.  This session is a great opportunity to learn how to access Austrade’s Landing Pads and take your startup go global. 

 About the speaker

Karen Surmon, Austrade Trade Commissioner/Commercial Consul in Shanghai. Karen leads Austrade’s China Innovation Strategy, working with Australian startups across a range of sectors, as well as advanced manufacturing and high tech exporters, and R&D institutions seeking to commercialise their IP in China. Karen has extensive experience working with China’s dynamic innovation ecosystem and believes that the opportunity for Australian startups is enormous. Margaret Donoghue Austrade Investment Director in San Francisco. Margaret manages the San Francisco Landing Pad at RocketSpace and Austrade's innovation relationships in the USA. Margaret works closely with the Landing Pad startups, assisting them to achieve their business goals.   A Silicon Valley native, Margaret has been immersed in the Bay Area’s evolving innovation ecosystem for most of her life and draws on her local insight and network to link Australia with one of the world’s most innovative communities.

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What you will learn
  • Learn more about the Landing Pads program
  • Hear about the innovation ecosystems in Shanghai and San Francisco and the opportunities for startups
  • Find out how to access Austrade’s Landing Pads and take your startup global


York Butter Factory

Vendor since 2012

The York Butter Factory is the co-working space for Melbourne’s high-potential early-stage technology entrepreneurs.

Established in 2011 inside an 1850s heritage-listed space, York Butter Factory is home to upstarts with bold, global ambitions and clear intentions to change the world.

Named after the original 1855 building, the York Butter Factory is situated on King Street at the base of the Rialto. This brilliant bluestone warehouse is the ultimate juxtaposition of old and new, building tech startups out of one Melbourne’s oldest structures. The 577sqm space is across two floors and has an open plan coworking space, informal collaborative area, meeting rooms, an industrial fridge and room for up to 60 entrepreneurs.

Opening its doors in October 2011, it has established itself at the center of a rapidly growing startup ecosystem in Melbourne. York Butter Factory was co-founded by the partners of Adventure Capital, who run their VC fund out of the space.

YBF already hosts nearly 50 startups largely in the Consumer Internet space. Opportunities to access funding is through its owners’ tech-focused VC fund as well as seed funding provided directly to deserving startups and via the Aurelius Digital angel investment network. There is a culture of collaboration, resource sharing and tough love. Tenants are curated with a view to fill the space with high-potential digital media and web 2.0 startups with a global ambition.

The vision is to become the central hub of the Australian tech startup ecosystem.

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Refund & Cancellation Policy

York Butter Factory requires 48 hours notice via email prior to the start of a class or event for a full refund or transfer.  Refunds and transfers will not be processed if cancellation occurs within 48 hours of the event commencing. We do not offer refunds for missed classes. There are no fees for refunds or transfers. For cancellations prior to the 48 hour cut off, email York Butter Factory to organise a refund or transfer

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Terms & Conditions

Anyone partaking in any classes or coming to any events at York Butter Factory or organised by York Butter Factory must agree to these terms and conditions.


I agree to take on full responsibility for any damages, injuries and for physical and/or personal property, which I might incur whilst participating in classes and/or events organised by York Butter Factory.


I agree to give York Butter Factory unrestricted publishing rights for any photographs or videos taken at York Butter Factory classes and events or on York Butter Factory's premises. (For use of York Butter Factory marketing materials).


York Butter Factory requires 48 hours notice in writing prior to the class for a full refund or transfer. 


In the event that a class is cancelled, students will be notified via text message or email and entitled to a full refund or credit.

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