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ADVANCE CONNECT : Building the next global industrial giants from Australia

August 27, 2020 @ 8:00 am - 9:30 am AEST



Australia has an opportunity to emerge from the Covid-19 pandemic with a new generation of global technology companies that can transform major industries. These companies can create the attractive jobs Australians want, improve our standard of living and lay the foundation for decades of sustainable growth.

How will quantum computing become foundational for so many future industries? What is alternative protein and why will we need it for nourishment? What is coming next in the semiconductor industry? These are examples of scientific enquiry in which Australia is uniquely positioned to lead in the world. There is an opportunity in deep tech venture capital to invest in companies powered by science that can become the next generation of global industrial giants from Australia. is hosting a briefing with the partners of Main Sequence Ventures – Bill Bartee, Martin Duursma, Phil Morle, Mike Nicholls and Mike Zimmerman to:

  • Introduce us to the industries they’re building for the future and update us on the progress of companies in their portfolio, including the jobs they are creating
  • Share the lessons learned along the way
  • Celebrate the success enjoyed by the portfolio companies and their investors (investors include the CSIRO)

  Reveal their ambitions for the creation of Australia’s next generation of global deep tech companies

About our speakers

Bill Bartee | General Partner, Main Sequence Ventures | Bill is Managing Partner at Main Sequence Ventures. Before MSV he co-founded and was a Partner at Blackbird Ventures. Blackbird’s first fund is a top decile performer globally and the portfolio includes companies such as Canva, Culture Amp, Safety Culture, Zoox, and Autopilot among others. Bill is an active mentor and participant in Startmate and is well known in the entrepreneurial community. Bill has sourced and led early stage investments in several multi-billion dollar valued companies including Seek, Altium, Looksmart, Culture Amp and onebox among others. Bill holds a Bachelor of Science and Juris Doctorate degree. He currently sits on the boards of Main Sequence Ventures Fund 1 portfolio companies Practera, Kapiche, Cylite, Prospection, and Trellis Data, and is an observer on the board of Baraja.

Martin Duursma | Partner, Main Sequence Ventures | Martin is a Partner at Main Sequence Ventures.  Martin has over 25 years’ experience as a senior executive, technologist, business founder, angel investor and mentor both in Australia and the US. Prior to joining Main Sequence Ventures, Martin was a senior executive with a range of global responsibilities at Citrix. Martin joined Citrix in 1997 when it acquired Datapac Australasia, a company which he co-founded. While at Citrix, Martin started and built the company’s research arm, Citrix Labs, started and led the CTO Council and CTO function and also founded the Citrix Startup Accelerator and led the investment in over 30 new companies. As VP and head of the Global Technology Office, Martin led due diligence in over 60 transactions totalling $2.5 billion in value. Martin continues to be active as an angel investor as well as in various advisor and mentor roles at Macquarie University, CSIRO ON Accelerator and on the Expert Panel of the NSW Physical Sciences Fund. Martin holds a Bachelor of Computer Science and a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering from Sydney University. He currently sits on the boards of Main Sequence Ventures Fund 1portfolio companies Myriota, Advanced Navigation, Gilmour Space Technologies and Fivecast.

Phil Morle | Partner, Main Sequence Ventures | Phil is a Partner at Main Sequence Ventures. Prior to MSV, Phil was the founder of Australia’s first Silicon Valley style incubator, Pollenizer, and played an instrumental role in developing the startup ecosystem across the Asia-Pacific region. He has also advised some of the world’s biggest organisations on practical ways to deliver new growth and the cultural change that is required to get there. Prior to forming Pollenizer, Phil was CTO at Kazaa, a peer-to-peer file sharing application which at one stage was responsible for most traffic on the internet and had over 30 million users. Phil served on the Telstra CTO Advisory Board between 2015 and 2017. He is a member of the Board of the Food Agility CRC. Phil’s contribution to the startup ecosystem has been recognised through awards including the Founder Institute Mentor of the Year in 2015 and the Deloitte Fast 50 in 2010 for Pollenizer. Phil currently sits on the boards of Main Sequence Ventures Fund 1 portfolio companies v2food, Maxwell Plus, RapidAIM, Nourish Ingredients, Coviu, and Q-CTRL.

Mike Nicholls | Partner, Main Sequence Ventures | Mike is a Partner at Main Sequence Ventures. Mike has over 25 years’ experience as an entrepreneur, inventor and technologist, most recently as Resident Entrepreneur at INCUBATE, the University of Sydney’s early stage startup accelerator. Prior to this Mike was the Australian director of US-based Intellectual Ventures, a USD6 billion 70,000 patent investment fund for intellectual property. He recruited Australian University researchers, reviewed over 500 inventions for acquisition and launched new startups including founding Visimagic Inc., which develops Machine Learning and Computer Vision applications. He started his career in the Royal Australian Navy working in aircraft engineering, managed sales channels and networking equipment for Hewlett Packard, built and sold an ISP/IT services business and helped a Sydney-based venture capital fund to exit a number of their investee companies. Mike is actively involved with The University of Sydney’s INCUBATE program, Cicada MedLabs, UTS Startups, UNSW Founders 10x and George Institute, as well as CSIRO ON Accelerator and PRIME programs as well as a few small angel investments. Mike also publishes a Podcast called “Science meets VC” and owns a site that receives and publishes hundreds of startup pitches a year. He currently sits on the boards of Main Sequence Ventures Fund 1 portfolio company Morse Micro, he is an observer on the board of Inventia and an advisor to Indee Labs.

Mike Zimmerman has 20+ years of startup operating and investing experience in Australia and the US, working with dozens of venture-backed companies. Prior to Main Sequence, Mike was President of Propeller Aero, a leading drone data services company, and Founder/CEO at BuildingIQ, a leading energy management software business based on technology created at CSIRO.  He led BuildingIQ from inception to its establishment as an industry leader, raising $20 million from investors and expanding the company to the US. He also served as the first Entrepreneur-in-Residence at CSIRO, and assisted in the development of the CSIRO ON Accelerator program.  Previously he was a General Partner at Technology Venture Partners (TVP), which managed $200 million, and invested in leaders such as Threatmetrix, Engana and Viator. He was also with Altos Ventures, a Silicon Valley venture firm. He holds an MBA from Stanford University and a Bachelor’s Degree (Honours) from Amherst College. He currently sits on the boards of Main Sequence Ventures Fund 1 portfolio companies Flurosat, Emesent, Kasada, Lumachain and Presien.

Event details

Date: 27 August 2020

Time: 8.00am – 9.30am (AEST)

Venue: On-line

Registrations: This is an Partner event. For information on becoming an Partner please contact our CEO Maria MacNamara


August 27, 2020
8:00 am - 9:30 am AEST