BON VOYAGE: WHY BOUTIQ’S FOUNDER HAS LITTLE CHOICE BUT TO RELOCATE HIS START-UP OFFSHORE

With the abolishment of 457 visas, a much-talked-about concern amongst start-ups has been that it will be harder to secure skilled labour, especially as large, international competitors continue to lure local talent with competitive salary packages. What has received less attention is the fact that the reforms will make it difficult for some entrepreneurs, such as Greg Villain, to continue growing their early-stage start-ups from Australia.  In fact, the French expat has been left with little choice but to take his business elsewhere.

Operating out of Sydney’s Fishburners, a co-working space for tech ventures, Villain is the founder of Boutiq, a food and travel start-up. It has developed a mobile app that serves both as a ‘memory bank’ of its users’ favourite places as well as a listing of destinations personally recommended to them by their trusted inner circle.

The app had its soft launch at the end of March and Villain and his team of four (two employees, two freelancers) began promoting it in May. While it’s still early days, Villain said the start-ups is seeing 400% user growth week-on-week “with almost $0 spent on media” due to word-of-mouth amongst foodies and travellers. Read more

James Harkness - Dynamic Business - 16 June 2017

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