Local innovators recognised at Victorian Startup Awards

Published: 29 May 2023

Awards winners standing in a group facing camera, holding their award statuesLeading Victorian startups and entrepreneurs, including those transforming traditional industries like banking and legal wills, have been honoured at the Governor of Victoria Startup Awards.

The awards are proudly supported by Her Excellency the Honourable Linda Dessau, the Governor of Victoria, with the winners celebrated at an intimate reception at Government House.

Popular food ordering app Mr Yum won Startup of the Year for helping local hospitality businesses stay open during the pandemic and now providing an operating system for businesses to grow their brands and offering.

Fintech firm Zeller was awarded Scaleup of the Year for setting an Australian record for the fastest time a local company has hit a $1 billion valuation, more than doubling its staff to over 220 and growing its customer base to 35,000 businesses in its first three years of operation.

Best Newcomer was awarded to Willed – an online tool allowing anyone to create a legal will in as little as 15 minutes. Created by a team of lawyers and tech experts in 2020, Willed aims to make end-of-life planning more affordable and accessible for all Australians.

GippsTech CEO Dr Elena Kelareva was named Regional Ecosystem Hero of the Year for bringing digital innovation to Gippsland through programs such as Startup Gippsland and for establishing a co-working space for regional innovators and entrepreneurs.

Other individual winners of this year’s awards include Emily Casey who won Ecosystem Hero of the Year for her work to enhance the Australian health tech community, and Nick Crocker and Rachael Neumann – named the joint winners of Investor of the Year – for their work activating capital for early-stage founders.

The Victorian Government has continued to back the state’s startup ecosystem in the Victorian Budget 2023/24, providing a $5 million boost for LaunchVic’s Alice Anderson Fund to support more Victorian women-led startups. This adds to other existing investments, including the $2 billion Breakthrough Victoria Fund.

For the list of winners and more about the awards, visit: Governor of Victoria Startup Awards.