Australia cracks a ton in fastest-growing tech companies list

19 April 2021 3 min. read
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The 19th edition of Deloitte’s annual list of the fastest-growing regional technology companies has been released – with Australia achieving a record number of entries.

Professional services firm Deloitte has released the latest Asia Pacific edition of its Technology Fast 500 rankings, with one in five of the fastest growing tech companies in the region now based out of Australia. Altogether, 102 local companies made the 2020 list, up from the previous record of 98 in the 2019 edition and just 71 entries in 2018, while seven of those featured among the top 50 – led by fintech payments firm Verrency in 15th place.

“In Australia, and across the Asia Pacific, and regardless of the sectors in which they operate, the Covid-19 pandemic has really challenged business operators on so many levels,” said Deloitte Australia partner Josh Tanchel, who leads the firm’s Technology Fast 50 program. “Yet, those that have made the Asia Pacific Technology Fast 500 have managed to maintain extraordinary growth momentum. Australian companies really held their own.”

Deloitte's 2020 Technology Fast 500TM Ranking

The Technology Fast 500 list is a measure of percentage fiscal year revenue growth over a three-year period, with companies required to have base-year operating revenues of at least US$50,000 while owning the intellectual property or technology that contributes through customer sales to the majority of that revenue. This year, the list was topped by Chinese software company Terminus Technologies, which recorded a staggering growth rate of 17,915%.

Indeed, Chinese companies continue to dominate the list, accounting for 175 of the spots, including half of the top 10 and top 50. Australia however contributed the second greatest number of fast-growing tech firms, easily ahead of the 73 from Taiwan and 40 from Japan. India also featured prominently, while nine companies from Southeast Asia made the grade, including Indonesia’s first ever entry Tokopedia. New Zealand meanwhile failed to make the list.

Of the Australian cohort, the 15th placed Verrency achieved an extraordinary 2752% rate of growth over the period, with Melbourne-based digital marketing and tech consultancy Half Dome landing in at 17th through a 2390% rate. The third-highest placed Australian company, which grew by 1812% to claim 28th place, was Perth internet provider Pentanet. At the other end of the list, Australian AI software firm Elula snuck in in 499th spot, with 74% growth.

As might be expected for a period capped by significant economic shock due to the global pandemic, the average rate of growth among the listees was well down on the previous survey, at 551% compared to 717%, although the top ten still managed to pull in average revenue of $137 million and growth of 7,621%. On the flip-side, the pandemic has in part contributed to a 6 percent jump in the ratio of life sciences companies represented on the list.

Still, the software segment maintained its ascendancy among the index categories, once again accounting for 38 percent of the companies listed, including five of the top ten, followed by media (21 percent), hardware (19 percent), life sciences (15 percent), communications (5 percent) and clean technology with 2 percent. In 2019, the Australian ex-military personnel technology training and employment platform ‘WithYouWithMe’ headed the overall list with 13361% growth.