This Week in Australian Startups #29, 20th July 2023 - New product launches from Diolog, Predelo, Papersign and Ignition
This week I take a closer look at some of the new startups and products launched across the ecosystem;
Founded by Amy Benson, Diolog is the is the world's first two-way investor communication software. This comes off the back of 6 months of beta testing, and even winning SmartCompany’s startup competition The Pitch in February earlier this year.
Amy describes in her LinkedIn post:
Diolog has a clear mission: make market communication better. It should be as easy to communicate with the companies I invest in as it is to buy shares in them.
By empowering companies to build stronger relationships with their #investors through effectively scaling two-way #communication, Diolog is taking on the industry norms and breaking the one-way communication pattern that has existed for so long.
Think of us like the Xero for investor relations, bringing an innovative solution to a traditional industry. 😎
Koorosh Lohrasbi founder of Predelo announced their public launch this week, an AI SaaS startup on a mission to make the future accessible through its forecasting platform. He also announced a $3M seed round that was closed in April this year, that included Jelix ventures, Flying Fox Ventures, Upswell Ventures and No Brand.
I was lucky enough to attend an early preview at launch event a few weeks ago, some key takeaways for me:
AI SaaS companies are great at showing the past, very few are good at showing the future - this is what Predelo is solving
The best SaaS solutions are often ones you don’t need to login to - Predelo works its magic without requiring you to actively use it
They’ve taken what consulting firms charge upwards of $100K-1M+ to large enterprises and making it affordable and accessible to any type of company
Predelo wants to make predictions a commodity, and bring forecasting to where work happens
Koorosh goes on to say:
Three years ago, we dreamed of building a 'prediction machine' to empower SaaS companies with next-gen AI features that embed predictive and optimization capabilities into their products, bridging the gap between tomorrow and today.
To make it accessible to everyone, we decided to make it highly affordable and easy to use for all businesses of any size in any market segment and geography. We iteratively reduced the cost and removed complex configuration menus.
But 'knowing' the future doesn't guarantee great decisions. So we designed a context-agnostic optimization/automation solution. Now, Predelo doesn't just predict; it transforms these forecasts into automated, highly optimized actions such as staff rostering and inventory management. […]
Our journey isn't about AI, predictions, and optimization; it's about transforming precision decision-making from an elusive art, an enterprise black magic, to a ubiquitous commodity. We are committed to building one of the most valuable data assets ever as an unstoppable force for good. We want to leave decades of hard logic programming behind and start a new era of software that handles 'tomorrow' as well as it handles 'today'.
They’re also hiring for across multiple engineering and data role.
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Husband and wife founders of Paperform, an online form builder, Diony and Dean McPherson announced their new product Papersign this week.
Papersign is an eSignature service that simplifies the document signing process - taking on established players in the space like DocuSign, Adobe and Pandadoc.
In the announcement, Dean says:
With Papersign, we're not just introducing an electronic signature solution; we're taking a step towards a future where your workflows run smoothly from start to finish, all in one place. It's about saving you time and cutting the admin tasks out of your day-to-day.
Founded by Guy Pearson and Dane Thomas, Ignition is an all-in-one platform for professional services that empowers businesses to get paid faster, and run smarter.
This week they announced new customers in the US and Australia can now accept payment through digital wallets Apple Pay and Google Pay.
VP of Product Jason Prowd quoted:
We’re excited to offer US and Australian customers this new payment option. Google Pay and Apple Pay are two of the most popular mobile payment methods in the world, and this new feature will make it easier for our customers to collect payments from their clients. We believe this will help our customers improve their cash flow and boost their profits, whilst giving their clients a convenient and secure way to pay for their services. In fact, over half (54%) of our customers report improved cash flow since implementing the Ignition platform.
Go deeper → Ignition
“We’re back at 2015-level valuations.” says Dr Michelle Deaker, founding partner and MD of OneVentures (Startup Daily)
Super fund Hostplus adds another $100 million into uni commercialisation fund IP Group (Startup Daily)
CBA’s x15ventures, is on the hunt for startups focused on net-zero carbon emissions for its 2023 cohort (Startup Daily)
MRI Software, which provides real estate software, acquired proptech consulting firm Loci Solutions to offer professional services (ARN)
DroneShield lands $33M contract with unnamed US Government agency (Business News Australia)
Crowd Sourced Funding exceeded ASX IPOs for the first time ever in a fiscal year says Birchal co-founder Matt Vitale (LinkedIn)
Fishburners launches Circular Hub, an accelerator program for visionary founders shaping a circular economy (Fishburners)
A new report by the Tech Council of Australia and Microsoft claims Generative AI could be worth $115bn to economy by 2030 (InnovationAus)
ASIC cancels FTX’s Australian licence (AFR)
Rural auction platform FarmGate closes its first transaction in eAUD, a digital version of the Australian dollar backed by the Reserve Bank (AFR)
Canva founder Cameron Adams, and Lisa Miller announces a new VC fund, Wedgetail financing nature-positive projects to accelerate the Earth’s regeneration (The Australian)
Around the World
Asian tech rivals pare back ‘superapp’ approach as losses mount (FT)
Microsoft still doesn’t know — or want to share — how China-backed hackers stole a key that allowed them hack the US government (TechCrunch)
Monzo in talks to merge with Nordic rival Lunar (UKTN)
Auckland DJ company Serato acquired for $100m+ by Pioneer DJ’s parent company AlphaTheta Corporation (Stuff)
Instagram Threads now has one-fifth the weekly active user base of Twitter (TechCrunch)
Instagram built Threads in five months (BGR)
Wix will let you build an entire website using only AI prompts (The Verge)
Sam Altman Is Not Happy With The FTC's ChatGPT Investigation (Futurism)
Google drops two new big AI announcements: A better Bard and new NotebookLM service (VentureBeat)
Tesla directors agree to return $735m to settle claims they were grossly overpaid (The Guardian)
Gamified e-learning platform Kahoot gets acquired in a $1.7B deal led by Goldman Sachs, Lego and more (TechCrunch)
Twitter Has Begun Paying a Select Group of ‘Creators’ (Daring Fireball)
Amazon feels “unfairly singled out” by EU’s Digital Services Act (The Verge)
Nvidia is looking to expand its silicon empire as it rides the AI boom - the chipmaker is in discussions for a stake in the UK's Arm (Markets Insider)
Meta to release commercial AI tools to rival Google, OpenAI (Cointelegraph)
Stability AI releases Stable Doodle, a sketch-to-image tool (TechCrunch)
Anthropic unveils Claude 2, an AI model that produces longer, safer responses (VentureBeat)
Australian Funding Rounds
Sensor Global, which makes smart home devices, raises $2.65M for residential IoT solutions (SmartCompany)
Verve Money, an ethical investing app by super fund Verve Super (the ethical super fund for women by women), has raised $3M in an oversubscribed Series A round (Business News Australia)
RecycleSmart, the startup that collects hard-to-recycle things from your home, raises $1M on Birchal (Business News Australia)
Diraq received a $3M grant from the NSW government to accelerate its R&D for ultra-powered quantum computers (Manufacturers’ Monthly)
Lumi, an SME Lender, closes $15M Series C with Israel’s largest insurance company, Harel Insurance Investments & Financial Services joining the round. (AFR)
International Funding Highlights
Sylvera banks $57M to put carbon offsetting on a path to Net Zero (TechCrunch)
Herself Health, providing primary care to women 65 and over, raises $26M (TechCrunch)
Collective raises $50M funding to launch AI-powered finance platform for freelancers (VentureBeat)
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