StartupSmart Awards 2015 – Phase1 – StartupSmart


Till Entries Close

Entries Open


The StartupSmart Awards are an annual celebration of Australia’s new companies with big dreams and smart plans. With new businesses launching every year and spanning every industry, the awards are an opportunity to showcase the variety and vibrancy of Australia’s start-up sector.

Because no start-up is easy, we’ll be naming the leading start-ups at a ticketed event where start-up leaders will share their biggest mistakes and how they survived.

It only takes 10 minutes to enter (plus it’s free). With a range of prizes, including business advisory packages with start-up experts DFK ANZ and a $10,000 advertising package with Private Media, this is your time to shine.

Proudly brought to you by StartupSmart and DFK ANZ.

Key Dates

Entries Open

Tuesday January 13th 2015

Entries Close

Friday March 13th 2015

Finalists Selected

Friday 20th March 2015

Winners Announced

Thursday April 16th, 2015 (time TBA)

Awards Ceremony & Event

Thursday April 16th, 2015

Benefits of Entering


It only takes 10 minutes to enter (plus it’s free).


Shine a spotlight on how your business or venture is shaking up he way we live and work.


Profit from national media exposure and recognition as one of Australia’s best start-ups.


Attracting the attention of potential investors and customers for the future.

2015 Email Notification Sign-Up

For the latest updates and news about the StartupSmart Awards, register for the StartupSmart daily email.

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DFK ANZ is providing business advisory packages to all entrants, finalists and winners so you can tap into the experience, expertise and connections of their members across Australia and the world.

A Private Media advertising package worth $10,000

Featuring in the ‘finalists’ yearbook, shared with industry and investors


Best Start-up

Demonstrate significant growth in terms of customers/users and financial over the past few years. Have an innovative product or business model, disrupting a particular industry and be already well on the way to achieving global scale.

Best New Start-up

Launched after January 1 2014, the Best New Startup will have an innovative product or business model that will have already achieved significant traction.

Best Start-up Idea

Identifies a unique problem and applies an innovative solution, with a huge potential market.

Best Disruptor

The startup most disruptive of the industry it services, that has ongoing potential to significantly change the industry or problem space it’s focused on.

Best Social Change Entrepreneur

An innovative approach to solving a significant social issue in the community.

Fastest Growing Start-up

Demonstrate the highest percentage revenue and/or user growth over the past four years.

Best Regional Start-up

Demonstrate success outside a capital city while overcoming challenges of distance from major population centres and startup hubs.

Start-up Hero

Goes to a start-up founder with an inspiring story behind them and their business.

Stephen Bushell

Chairman of DFK ANZ

“Our independent firms are all SMEs too, so we understand what’s required to successfully operate and grow a business in this space. The enthusiasm, commitment and vision of the business owners involved in the awards last year was inspiring and we’re looking forward to providing support to this year’s entrants and winners too.”

Best State start-up

Australia is full of innovative, interesting and creative start-ups. To celebrate this and to ensure that all start-ups get the recognition they deserve, we are introducing state based categories for the first time.


Watch this space! An exciting group of panellists who will be discussing the ‘state of the Australian Startup Ecosystem’will be announced soon.


Stephen Bushell

Chairman at DFK ANZ

Stephen is a Chartered Accountant and has extensive experience advising the SME sector across a broad range of topics. As a Partner of the Perth based DFK member firm, Gooding Partners, Stephen has assisted many clients to grow from start ups through to mature, profitable businesses.

Laura McKenzie

Chief Executive Officer, Scale Investors Ltd

Laura is the inaugural CEO of Scale, a female focused angel network with 60 investors. She has 15 years experience in corporate finance, microfinance and venture capital across three continents.

Bronwen Clune

Editor at Large, StartupSmart

Bronwen Clune is the editor-at-large at StartupSmart. She has extensive experience in startups having run her own, worked at Australia’s leading startup incubator and as digital director at a local VC fund.

Rick Baker

Co-founder, Blackbird Ventures

Rick is a co-founder of Blackbird Ventures, a new venture capital firm in Australia. Blackbird invests in Internet and software companies forming in Australia. It has been built around a group of Australia’s most successful tech founders, combined with close ties to Silicon Valley.

Sponsor Messages

DFK Australia New Zealand (DFK ANZ) is an association of 14 independent accounting and business advisory firms. Our members understand what it takes to start and grow a business because they built their own businesses from the bottom up.

We believe you can take any leap and face any challenge with the right support and connections.

We’ve developed a strong reputation for providing not only a complete range of accounting, taxation, audit and assurance, business advisory and consultancy services, but also for our ability to connect our clients with other key specialists to facilitate business growth. Our national and international alliances are both broad and deep, opening doors to venture capital, R&D funding and more.

Working with us means you receive the world-class accounting solutions you’d expect of the big firms, with the close and personalised service you’d expect of smaller organisations.

Your privacy is important to us. By entering the StartupSmart Awards, you acknowledge that you may be contacted by StartupSmart and/or DFK.

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