Victorian startup sector awarded for innovation success

Published: 24 February 2022

Victoria’s brightest minds have been honoured at the inaugural 2021 Governor of Victoria Startup Awards.

The Minister for Innovation, Medical Research, and the Digital Economy congratulated the winners, who were announced at an intimate reception at Government House overnight.

The Awards are proudly supported by Her Excellency the Honourable Linda Dessau AC, Governor of Victoria and celebrate Victorian leaders and investors across the state’s $10.5 billion startup sector.

Amber Electric and Seer Medical were named as joint winners in the hotly contested Startup of the Year category, while link-in-bio startup Linktree was recognised as Scaleup of the Year for its work supporting a community of 18 million content creators.

Local angel investor team Aprill and Matt Allen took out the Investor of the Year award in both the People’s Choice and Expert’s Choice categories for Tractor Ventures, Victoria’s first dedicated revenue-based fund.

Tractor’s alternative financing model allows founders to hold onto their equity for longer by loaning startups money in return for a portion of monthly revenue. Since their launch in December 2020, the team has supported 24 startups and expect to be helping close 100 by this time next year.

The Regional Ecosystem Hero of the Year was awarded posthumously to Peter Dostis, Co-Founder and CEO of Runway, in recognition of his outstanding contribution to regional and rural startups across Victoria.

Peter’s work inspired countless entrepreneurs to follow their dreams and build a successful startup, and his legacy continues through Runway’s programs, mentorship, collaborations, and networks.