Another great DutchSA innovation night with Andrew Downs, Terry Burgess, Joe Thorp, Anton van den Hengel and Nam Nguyen
We look back at another exciting innovation event with a great turn out of roughly 70 people. For many attendees it was the first time they came to the Tonsley Innovation District and the tour of the facilities and the presentation by Tonsley chairman Terry Burgess answered a lot of their questions. It made perfectly clear why the award winning Tonsley Innovation District is nominated for no less than 4 Property Council of Australia awards, including national development of the year!
The company visit to Sage Automation showed how a company that loses its original manufacturing clients (like Holden and Bridgestone) can successfully reinvent itself as an international technology integration powerhouse. Andrew Downs, the founder and managing director of Sage Group, also explained how Sage staff was involved in designing their perfect workplace in the Tonsley Innovation district. A simple but not very common approach to mobilise all internal knowledge to make excellent collaborative decisions. We suspect this is a cultural trait that is at the basis of the success of Sage Automation.
Joe Thorp, the Chief Executive of TechInSA, the government incubator, gave a powerful overview of the capabilities and activities to create an ideal startup climate in South Australia and presented a large number of inspiring new ventures. Joe's presentation highlighted the 4 major capabilities driving innovation in the state, of which our DutchSA innovation event covered 2: the Australian Institute for Machine Learning and the Tonsley Innovation District. Joe mentioned taking a lot of useful learnings from his visit to Amsterdam which took deliberate steps to become a prime hub for startups and investors.
One of the most revered innovation districts in the world is Brainport in The Netherlands, centred around the Philips high tech campus in Eindhoven and now housing 100's of startups and multinationals like ASML, Intel, IBM, NXP, Bosch, Boeing, DAF, TNO.
When Brainport set out the ambition to also create the smartest urban district in the world, they asked Malik Institute from Sank Gallen in Switzerland to help them with the complex decision making process to develop a holistic and effective smart city strategy in a few days. Dr. Nam Nguyen is the Adelaide based APAC director for Malik Institute and also a visiting research fellow of the University of Adelaide. Nam presented the Brainport smart district strategy development using the Malik Syntegration process.
The last talk was from professor Anton van den Hengel, the director of the Australian Institute for Machine Learning. Anton was born in The Netherlands and migrated at the age of 4 to Adelaide. He returned to live and work in Amsterdam a few years ago, but the summit of his career is the machine learning institute he is heading up based in Adelaide. in the old Royal Adelaide hospital building. The institute is one of the most renowned in the world and has a massive potential to spin off new businesses based on artificial intelligence and machine learning. Anton's talk was about getting us to understand the basics and importance of machine learning, which was highly successful. Many are now considering a change of careers.
As always the networking section of our event was great and many new connections were made and old ones refreshed. Thanks all for attending and hope to see you back in the next edition!
Follow this link for a photo impression of the event: Photos Tonsley Event.
This event was made possible by our event sponsors Mindavation and Malik Institute!
Flavia Tata Nardini and Suhit Anantula//Humanomics were the absolute stars in a sold out DutchSA event last night. A vast and diverse group of South Australians representing many industries and backgrounds had gathered in the Mayfair to enjoy a fantastic show, put up by Flavia and Suhit.
Flavia spoke about her journey as a migrant, starting up a space business and leading the creation of a new industry in South Australia and a national space agency for Australia. Flavia's business develops large volume low cost nano satellites for communication between devices (the internet of things), which will be a key driver for the 4th industrial revolution. We learned what it takes to launch and fund a successful startup and how their grand vision of affordable data communication at any place on earth, will ultimately impact the protection of the great barrier reef and reduction of waste in supply chains.
Suhit the showed how large organisations can find their ability to innovate again. We learned about structured ways of developing new business models by collaborating with your ecosystems and even competitors. Both stories of practice and theory combined brilliantly and the session was informative, fun, inspiring and uplifting.
It takes only a few people to change everything. It is all possible here in South Australia! We went home full of energy and new ideas.
We thank our speakers, volunteers, sponsors Mindavation and BusinessModelsInc, and our great audience to make this event possible. As one of the attendees summarised after the event: It was a fascinating and thoroughly enjoyable night, looking forward to the next one now!
Great turnout on Monday's networking drinks with the Dutch trade mission to Australia. Lillian Mellink from the embassy, local entrepreneurs Marco Kuipers and Jan Ernst Antonides, delegation member Loek Hermans, president of DutchSA Frank Weits and many others enjoying a Belgium beer in great company.
From October 31 to November 4 2016, during the state visit of His Majesty King Willem-Alexander and Her Majesty Queen Máxima to Australia, an accompanying Dutch economic mission led by Lilianne Ploumen, Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation, and Henk Kamp, Minister for Economic Affairs, also visited Australia.
South Australia welcomed an important, 95-strong delegation from The Netherlands this week led by Dutch Minister for Foreign Trade and Development Cooperation Lilianne Ploumen.
The delegation included representatives of key sectors of growth for both countries; agribusiness, horticulture, sustainable water management and logistics.
Members of the delegation met with key South Australian companies representing their sector interests.
The Dutch visitors attended a Smart City business event to learn more about Adelaide’s status as a Lighthouse City with Cisco. They also went to Tonsley, Australia’s first innovation precinct, to discuss opportunities for collaboration between Tonsley and companies from The Netherlands.
The Netherlands will be a key focus of the South Australia – Europe Engagement Strategy that is currently under development.
The DutchSA Kingsday event was kindly hosted by the German Club this year and we must say their building never looked better. Orange inside and the red white and blue on the front!
Hosted in the newly renovated Mayfair hotel the DutchSA forum on Financial Planning for Migrants had a very good turn-out. The relevancy of the subject is clear: most migrants have little idea of financial challenges lying ahead in the different stages of life in Australia: housing, kid's education and retirement. But it will impact their lives hugely.
Three industry experts shared their vision and advice.
Nick Reade, CEO of BankSA, drew the big picture laying out different strategies for different phases of life. He also touched upon the business climate in SA for the self-employed migrants.
Arthur Kallos, Investors Direct, made clear in his presentation that for most of us our Super will be way too little by the time we retire. Key to his advice is cash-flow: how to get in under control and how to align your investments with your cash-flow.
Glenn Sterrey of Bentley's Wealth Partners highlighted the challenges in finding a truly independent Financial Planner. His presentation then focussed on the pros and cons of securities versus property investments, and the importance of having an income insurance.
An open forum discussion with the three speakers concluded the event, leaving the participants with lots to digest. Financial planning and investments is a complex field that most people gladly avoid. But can really we afford to keep our heads in the sand?
Bicycle Business Breakfast with BikeSA CEO Christian Haag and Dutch Infrastructure expert Arie Vijfhuizen (Royal Haskoning DHV)
This morning, DutchSA and BikeSA organised a breakfast seminar around the economic benefits of cycling. Many thanks go out to the Embassy of the Kingdom of the Netherlands for sponsoring the delicious breakfast. A select group of 20 influential leaders of both local business and government organisations gathered at Chianti in Hutt Street, where they were invited to learn more about why cycling is good for the economy.
Dutch expert on bicycle infrastructure Arie Vijfhuizen presented about the benefits of cycling. Everyone probably knows that riding is healthier than driving, but few realise that cyclists spend more money than people in cars! Although cyclists spend less money per visit to the supermarket for instance, they make far more visits per week, spending more money overall. Due to the mobility that cycling brings, these shoppers are more inclined to make an impulsive purchase in the shop down the road.
The economic benefits of cycling are massive. BikeSA CEO Christian Haag pointed out that an average commute by bike equals a $21 benefit to society. A large proportion is due to the reduced pressure on the health system. Another significant contributor is the shopping behaviour of cyclists mentioned above.
The Mayor of Prospect, David O'Loughlin, noted that they are well aware of the economic benefits of cycling over driving, and pointed out that on major roads they reduced the maximum speed from 60 to 40 km/h, making the roads safer for the many cyclists on their daily commute. The council now notices that the shops along these roads don't suffer from the unpopular speed restrictions for drivers. On the contrary the area has become a more social and popular shopping precinct.
A constructive discussion followed, with several guests acknowledging the benefits of cycling, but also acknowledging that some councils are more responsive than others in accommodating cyclists. The consensus was that the benefits of cycling make a strong business case for improving the infrastructure for cyclists. More time and effort is required though to convince the public and the councils of the economic benefits of cycling.
The Dutchies (and a few Flemish) went on a Micro Brewery Tour. As you might have guessed from the name, this tour in the Adelaide hills was all about beer, rather than wine. The first pick up by the minibus at 10.15 was Adelaide Convention Centre, where most of the Dutchies got on. Pickups followed at Toll Gate bus station, Crafers Park & Ride and Mount Barker Cinema parking.
When everybody was on the bus, it was time to go to the first Brewery in Lobethal which goes by the name “Bierhaus”. Owner Alistair Turbull greeted us and told us about the history of the brewery since it opened for business on 26th May 2007. Alistair told us about the history of town and how the mayor wanted to create work for the (young) people in his village and how the town started to rent out property, fixing up other property with the rental income. Alistair told us how he was a former banker and learned how to brew beer in America. After these first introductions in the restaurant, it was time to head into the brewery itself for a tour. Starting in the grain shed, we learned about the different grains used to produce the beer; some local, some German and some from UK. After the grain shed it was the production itself we looked at with the kettles, the fermenting pods and the measurement equipment in use. Being on a tight schedule, there was unfortunately no time to see the bottling process. But there was time to taste a variety of 3 different beers.
Next up was Grumpys Brewhaus in Hahndorf. At Grumpy’s we had no introduction, but we could try all the six different beers that were currently available on tap (5 beers and 1 cider). Grumpy's Brewhaus is the first all-grain boutique microbrewery in the Adelaide Hills. The beers are made on site using imported malts and hops. The water used is spring water from Mount Lofty in the Adelaide Hills and all beers are made by hand in 1200-litre batches. No additives in the way of preservatives are used. Since this brewery is also famous for it's Wood Oven Pizza, this is where we had lunch. An assortment of sliced pizzas was brought out for us to try. Sitting at four different tables pizzas were swapped and people moved seats. It was the perfect way to feed the hungry Dutchies.
When everybody had finished the variety of pizzas and tried the beers they wanted, we galloped to the third and last brewery of the tour; the Prancing Pony. At the Prancing Pony we started with a sample of three different beers served by our hostess Lisa Liebelt. The Prancing Pony is a small brewery in Mount Barker where the beer is brewed over an open flame. Lisa told us all about the process of the brewing and about the history of the brewery. Owner Frank comes from Germany and started brewing in 1982. Frank started using his own brew shed, a homemade 100L brewery kit and a gas burner to add heat for both mashing and boiling. When Frank’s mate Ken bought a sack of barley in the back of his ute from his Adelaide Hills farm and encouraged Frank to use it, the result surprised both of them and convinced Ken and Frank to partner up and start a commercial brewery. The name comes from the "Prancing Pony Inn” in the Tolkien Hobbit Story. And with the end of the Prancing Pony there was an end to a fun tour. Cheers!
His dad may have laid the foundation of Ahrens Group, but young Stefan Ahrens took the construction and engineer business to a whole new level after he took over aged 27. "It's all about being the best in what you do, and daring to take risks" he explains. "People are tired of big builders with blow out budgets and timelines. By emphasizing the values of a family business we created a culture of excellence and trust, delivering our projects on time and on budget". It allowed Barossa based Ahrens Group to grow up to currently 300M turnover. Impressive story.
With an audience of forty local business leaders Stefan Ahrens featured another inspirational episode in the DutchSA leadership series. Adelaide increasingly recognises the DutchSA brand for its more intimate events with local business leaders, allowing participants to get close-up in person. A unique proposition that we are proud of. Stay tuned for the next event!
Nathan Casserly and Alex Ouwens have built Ouwens Casserly Real Estate into arguably Australia's fastest growing independent residential property firm since establishment in late 2011. During this time, OC have sold well over 2500 homes valued at over $1B, employ a team of over 90+ passionate property people and have accrued over 1300 rental properties.
OC's innovative approach to digital marketing, forward thinking business strategies and cultural structures has seen the business grow into one of the largest and most sought after independent real estate agencies in SA. Alex Ouwens is the current President of the Real Estate Institute of SA.
What a remarkable story by a remarkable young local entrepreneur. The DutchSA leadership series featured one of our own members: Alex Ouwens. Together with his business partner Nathan Casserly he started Harcourts Ouwens Casserly, and managed to grow their new business from 2 to 25 staff in just over one year.
Alex inspired his audience with his story of how focus, dedication and well implemented time management practice lead him to become a ‘corporate athlete'. Being able to shine a new light on an established and saturated industry such as Real Estate is a true achievement. But with their clearly defined corporate values (Authentic, Dynamic & Skilled, Optimistic, Passionate) that's just what they did. Just open the Real Estate magazine in the Saturday Advertiser and see who's properties stand out.
What an amazing night! On 30th April 2013 Adelaide waived goodbye to Queen Beatrix and welcomed the new Dutch monarch. King Willem-Alexander's coronation was witnessed live on the big screen by a large and very orange crowd. Long live the king! See pictures here , and feel welcome to add yours.
The feedback on the DutchSA Employment forum for Skilled Migrants on 21st Feb at Hilton Adelaide was overwhelmingly positive. It confirmed how relevant the discussion about employability for many ‘new Australians' is. Migrants bring a wealth of unique skills and experiences into the country, but how to best fit in and get the opportunity to prove these skills? For many it is hard to break into the employment market, or find work on their own level.
During the forum a panel of four experts gave their view on the local job market, each from their own perspective: Mark Glazbrook (Migration), Amanda Bald (Santos - Employer), Pippa Webb (Government) and Arthur Key (Recruitment). They shared many relevant insights for all participants, but a few stood out: (1) for many reasons the ‘skills in demand' list does not match the actual vacancies in SA; (2) applicants should focus on making it easy for employers to interpret their CV and cover letter; (3) there is lots of help available for job seekers from a myriad of local organisations; (4) it is better not to ‘dumb down' your CV just to get into the employment market; (5) Migrants should be proud of their background and sell the positives they bring.
It is very encouraging for DutchSA to see how many people from different backgrounds participated in this event. It emphasizes that we are all in the same boat and that diversity is what we have in common here in SA. Thanks everyone for joining.
We organise Business and Social events to connect Dutchies and South Australia