Home' Australasian BioTechnology : Vol 28 No 1 Contents Australasian BioTechnology | Volume 28 | Number 1
Australasian BioTechnology | Volume 28 | Number 1
Renowned for the development of the cochlear
implant and bionic eye devices, Melbourne has
established a reputation as a premier medical
technology (medtech) innovation hub.
Some years ago, the Victorian Government identified
medical technology as a priority growth sector. It has since
invested hundreds of millions of dollars in creating the
infrastructure and environment for medtech companies to be
supported and able to flourish, particularly in Melbourne.
Melbourne, Australia’s epicentre of medtech innovation
Melbourne has become the natural centre of Australia’s
medical innovation ecosystem. Medtech communities
have established themselves because of the incredible
connections with local industry, and research and health
organisations. This is founded on the presence of Australia’s
foremost research and education institutions in medtech,
including The University of Melbourne, Monash University,
RMIT University, La Trobe University and Swinburne
University of Technology.
Two significant national medtech support programs with
strong industry partnerships have also made Melbourne
home. The Actuator accelerates and funds medical
technology, while ANDHealth facilitates the development
and commercialisation of clinically validated technologies.
Both organisations have established their Australian
headquarters in Melbourne, with The Actuator based at the
multidisciplinary Victorian innovation hub at Melbourne’s
Goods Shed North.
Australia’s largest medtech start-up competition, the annual
MedTech’s Got Talent, and the BioMelbourne Network
Devices and Diagnostics Lab are both hosted in Melbourne.
The latter is an annual symposium and this year’s theme is how
new technologies are disrupting traditional business models.
Melbourne’s unique features are attracting not just local
start-up stakeholders, but international businesses as
well. LaunchVic’s $60-million investment is encouraging
entrepreneurs and start-ups across Victoria, with many bright
minds contributing to the thriving start-up sector.
All of the above is coupled with Victoria’s strong history
of manufacturing capability, world-leading engineering,
advanced medical research, rigorous patent protection,
nanotechnology, attractive tax incentives, generous grants
and bipartisan government support.
It is no wonder that Victoria is home to 25 ASX-listed
medtech companies, with a combined market capitalisation
of more than $6.2 billion. More than 270 medtech
companies employ about 7000 people, most working out of
The naming of Melbourne in 2017 – for the seventh
consecutive year – as the world’s most livable city by the
Economist Intelligence Unit – is a bonus for medtech
companies relocating or setting up in Melbourne. The city
received a perfect score for health care, education and
infrastructure, as well as stability, culture and environment.
Over the past 12 months, a number of initiatives with global
industry leaders have brought together the brightest minds
to tackle medical challenges in Victoria.
Johnson & Johnson and Monash University
Early in 2018, a Johnson & Johnson Innovation Partnering
Office at Monash (JJIPO@MONASH) was opened to connect
Victorian entrepreneurs with the global Johnson & Johnson
Innovation network. JJIPO@MONASH will deliver training
and networking programs, and accelerate healthcare
innovation. Johnson & Johnson Innovation also collaborated
with the government on the new $300,000 Victorian
QuickFire Challenge specifically designed to help innovators
with devices at the early development stage.
Anatomics and CSIRO
This collaboration between Melbourne-based medical
device company Anatomics and the CSIRO is developing
and manufacturing the world’s most advanced capabilities in
reconstructive prosthetics. Its customisable 3D-printed body
parts are cheaper, more durable and better-fitting than off-
the-shelf models. Anatomics, winner of the 2017 Governor
of Victoria Export Award for Small Business, has benefited
from participation in the government’s international trade
mission program and is now exporting to 40 countries.
Medical Developments International and CSIRO
Melbourne manufacturer Medical Developments
International (MDI) developed the ‘green whistle’, marketed
MELBOURNE IS TAKING
MEDTECH INNOVATION TO A
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