Is Deep Tech behind Australia's next resources boom?

Published at Nov 6, 2019, in Technology

According to Cicada Innovations, Australia’s next great resources boom will not be fuelled by mineral commodities but instead by research-based deep technologies.

Australia’s pioneer deep tech incubator, which connects entrepreneurs, researchers, investors, and mentors to solve the world’s biggest problems, says there are two drivers to the next boom.

Firstly, the growing digitisation of the world’s largest industries will drive a need for new deep technology inputs such as advanced manufacturing, AI, biotech, robotics, advanced materials, photonics, electronics, and quantum computing.

Secondly, these industries are facing increasing pressure to transform so as to address – not contribute to – the world’s most pressing concerns as defined by the UN Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), such as climate change, food security, water supply and sanitation, health, and energy supply.

Cicada Innovations supports a community of innovators and high-growth emerging deep tech companies, who are building the industries and jobs of the future, by providing investment; commercialisation and acceleration programs; rich research partnerships; networks of domain experts; and specialist deep tech infrastructure through its four top Australian university shareholders, ANU, USYD, UNSW, and UTS.

The incubator launched in 2000 and since then has assisted 300+ companies raise $350m+ in venture capital and government grants, file 500+ patents and trademarks, and bring 700+ deep technology innovations to market globally.

Cicada has been awarded “Top Incubator in the World” twice by the international peak body for business incubation and entrepreneurship, the International Business Innovation Association (InBIA).

Cicada Innovations CEO Sally-Ann Williams says digitisation and the pressure to transform, in tandem with Australia’s abundance of world-leading research and IP, will create our greatest economic opportunity to date – so long as we invest in building the ecosystems needed to support deep technologies.

Cicada Innovations CEO Sally-Ann Williams.

“Australia’s past resources booms have been driven by demand for inputs to the world’s largest industries such as infrastructure, manufacturing, transportation, agriculture, and energy. Our next resources boom will be no different,” said Ms. Williams.

“However, the drivers of success in these industries are rapidly evolving, so we as a nation need to evolve also. Leveraging the deep technologies capable of moving these industries forward and addressing the world’s biggest problems requires specialised ecosystems designed to support certain unique characteristics of deep technologies.

“Firstly, they are built on a foundation of substantial scientific breakthrough or high-tech engineering innovation. Secondly, they take far longer to commercialise due to lengthy periods of R&D that often include field or clinical trials. Finally, the longer time to market, along with capital- and IP-intensiveness, also demands larger, longer-term investment to achieve potential commercial success.

“None of this can occur without dedicated ecosystems that bring together investors, mentors, talent, customers, markets, industry partners, and government (as both customers and advocates).

“What we are doing at Cicada is a microcosm of what needs to scale at a national level, and it’s Cicada companies like Morse Micro, who is creating Wi-F 2.0 for smart cities, Invertigro, who converts indoor spaces into rural-scale farms, and Gelion and its powerful alternative to the lithium battery that will drive the boom.”

The days when mineral commodities such as iron ore, gold, and fossil fuels, which have historically driven Australian resources booms, could be surpassed by technology.

In a Department of Industry, Innovation, and Science report, Data61 claims that a technology resources boom could add $315 billion to the Australian economy over the next decade. Despite fears of tech-related job losses, a 2018 WEF Report also estimates a global net increase of 58 million jobs resulting from “new divisions of labour between humans and machines”.

“With such profound potential to drive economic growth and create jobs, Australia urgently needs to increase its focus on commercialising innovation and scaling technology companies,” continued Ms Williams.

“Deep technologies and the ecosystems that support them are critical to the future competitiveness and growth of the Australian economy and to our national identity as a key global innovation player.”

View Our Investment Portfolios

S3 Consortium Pty Ltd (CAR No.433913) is a corporate authorised representative of LeMessurier Securities Pty Ltd (AFSL No. 296877). The information contained in this article is general information only. Any advice is general advice only. Neither your personal objectives, financial situation nor needs have been taken into consideration. Accordingly you should consider how appropriate the advice (if any) is to those objectives, financial situation and needs, before acting on the advice.

Conflict of Interest Notice

S3 Consortium Pty Ltd does and seeks to do business with companies featured in its articles. As a result, investors should be aware that the Firm may have a conflict of interest that could affect the objectivity of this article. Investors should consider this article as only a single factor in making any investment decision. The publishers of this article also wish to disclose that they may hold this stock in their portfolios and that any decision to purchase this stock should be done so after the purchaser has made their own inquires as to the validity of any information in this article.

Publishers Notice

The information contained in this article is current at the finalised date. The information contained in this article is based on sources reasonably considered to be reliable by S3 Consortium Pty Ltd, and available in the public domain. No “insider information” is ever sourced, disclosed or used by S3 Consortium.

Australian ASX Small Cap stocks | Why is Australia’s leading small cap publication

Founded seven years ago, is Australia’s leading and longest standing website for investor and finance news, education and expert opinion.

Published by StocksDigital, Finfeed was created to report daily on the comings and goings of ASX listed stocks in the small cap market.

As the first digital publication dedicated specifically to this space, Finfeed soon became the most trusted publication in the market, quickly garnering over two million page views – a number that continues to rise. provides its readers with informative articles that tackle the latest in market moving #ASX small cap news, plus exclusive content you won’t find anywhere else. It is aimed at those with an interest in investing, market education, company performance, start-ups and much more. is the only media organisation operating under the strength of a Financial Services License and is backed by leading journalists and analysts all with brands of their own.

The website aims to inform, educate and entertain with content that drills down into the heart of financial matters.

Finfeed is a leading source of investor and market information, with everything investors need to know about how to invest written in a way that anyone can understand. 

Over the years, the website has expanded beyond exclusively reporting on small caps, to profile Australia’s leading ASX listed small, mid and large caps as well as some of the country’s most successful CEOs and business leaders to find out what makes them tick.

Every day you will find fresh content covering:

Fast Facts

Over 4,000 articles published

Over 2.3 Million Page Views and counting

Over 10,000 followers on social media

Subscriber list growing by 2% monthly

Thanks for subscribing!