Companies developing new ways to diagnose cancer, next generation WiFi chips and quantum computing firmware are among the first to receive investment from Main Sequence Ventures, manager of the $200 million CSIRO Innovation Fund.
Acting minister for industry, innovation and science, Senator Michaelia Cash, said the launch of Main Sequence Ventures is a step designed to harness Australian innovation.
“As part of the Turnbull Government’s National Innovation and Science Agenda, the CSIRO Innovation Fund is designed to ensure our world-class research can be turned into the jobs and economic growth of the future,” said Minister Cash.
Main Sequence Ventures is comprised of $70 million in government funding, $30 million in revenue from CSIRO’s WLAN program, and additional private sector investment, with a target total value of $200 million.
CSIRO Chief Executive, Dr Larry Marshall, said the CSIRO Innovation Fund and Main Sequence Ventures will help develop Australia’s great ideas.
“Australia has never been short of great ideas, but the value is rarely captured domestically,” said Dr Marshall.
“Australia’s scientists are world leaders, but investing in science driven innovation is hard – it needs the horsepower of Australia’s national science agency behind it.”
Main Sequence Ventures’ first investments in Q-CTRL, Morse Micro, Intersective and Maxwell MRI, are expected to create more than 60 new jobs.
One of the companies, Maxwell MRI, is working to make cancer diagnosis more accurate and affordable, starting with prostate cancer.
Main Sequence Ventures is led by venture capitalist veteran Mr Bill Bartee and a team of venture capitalists and entrepreneurs with extensive experience in science and technology.
“Our first investments are giving us a great start in backing ambitious entrepreneurs to build important and growing companies,” said Mr Bartee.
“Q-CTRL has the potential to provide the firmware framework for quantum computers, Morse Micro is building the next generation of WiFi chip, and Maxwell MRI is changing the way we detect and diagnose prostate cancer.”
“This is some of the best and most exciting research from the Australian innovation sector, and we look forward to working with them to realise their potential in the commercial market.
“We at Main Sequence Ventures know that this is only the beginning, and many more high-potential companies will be able to grow from our investments. We look forward to working with Australia’s deep tech founders to build epic companies.”