From little things, big things grow

September 9 – 12, 2024
Darwin, NT

Venture Downunder is proudly presented by

Interested in sponsoring? Get in touch with our Partnerships Manager, Alex Vallieres

What is VDU? 

Innovation Bay is Australia’s leading membership community for tech founders and investors. Venture Downunder is our hallmark event for our VC community.

VDU offers a unique opportunity to intentionally disconnect from the day to day, broaden and deepen key relationships, delve deeply into topics and quality conversation, and bond over shared experiences away from the hustle and bustle. You’ll be joined by over 120 VC partners from across Australia, New Zealand, and beyond…. it’s going to be epic time spent together.

And this year we’re taking it up a notch! Across three days, each Innovation Bay membership communty – VCs, Founders and Angels – will experience their own strategically and immaculately curated retreat-style adventure, all set against a breathtaking backdrop of one of the most stunning places on Earth, Australia’s Northern Territory. And on the final evening, the entire Innovation Bay community will unite in Darwin for a final celebration of our unique collective ecosystem.

This is a one-of-a-kind event for the Australian and New Zealand tech startup ecosystem and we’d love you to be a part of it. Get your Akubra ready!

Why attend VDU? 

Immerse yourself in the collective wisdom of Australia’s most innovative and inspiring people.

Meet investors who are doing, or have done, what you’re doing.

There’s infinite potential to discover new ideas and initiatives to deploy in your business, investment opportunities, cross-business collaboration opportunities, and solutions to key problems. 

Forge deeper, more meaningful relationships faster.

There’s only so much you can talk about at networking drinks.

At VDU, you’ll be sharing unique experiences designed to strengthen bonds and build rich connections to propel you forward, professionally and personally.

Solve your biggest challenges with a departure from your day-to-day.

Ignite your mind with a powerful change of scenery and an injection of fresh perspective.

We use neuroscience and our 20+ years of experience in events to craft moments that will unlock your ability to think through some of your most pressing problems.

Experience Australia’s unforgettable Northern Territory like never before.

Innovation Bay has worked in close partnership with the Northern Territory government to create a once-in-a-lifetime itinerary that will immerse you in local indigenous history, connect you with your inner-adventurer and give you the perspective that only this vast and awe-inspiring landscape can offer.

What’s on at VDU

Who’s attending?

Find your people! Here’s a selection of the confirmed attendees for VDU

Alex Guyer, Partner, Firemark Ventures
Amit Verma, Manager, Listings, ASX
Andrew Poesaste, Partner, Rampersand
Andrew Sypkes, CEO, Sypkes Family Office
Caitlin Iles, Managing Director, EM Advisory & Invest
Cameron Kavanagh, Principal, Jelix Ventures
Charlie Ill, CIO, Investible
Cheryl Mack, CEO, Aussie Angels
Chris Breidahl, Managing Partner, Upswell Ventures
Chris Quirk, Principal
David Moss, Partner, Second Quarter
David Rowe, Head of Ventures, 1835i
Deborah Johns, Partner, Gilbert + Tobin
Derek Gerrard, Managing Director, Purpose Ventures
Doron Ben-Meir, Deputy Vice Chancellor and Senior Vice President, Monash University
Ed Bigazzi, Investor, Five V Capital
Edwin Mak, Principal, Burda Principal Investments
Gary Xu, Investment Director, Touch Ventures Limited
Georgia Barkell, Managing Partner, Sprint Ventures
Glenn Bartlett, Head of Ventures, Alberts
Ian Beatty, Managing Partner, Second Quarter
James McCLure, General Partner, Antler
Jo Robyn, Partner, Black Nova Venture Capital
Karen Chan, Portfolio Manager, Perennial
Kate Galpin, Listings, ASX
Kevin Wilson, Partner, OIF Ventures
Kylie Gerrard, General Partner, Purpose Ventures
Llew Jury, General Partner, Sprint Ventures
Marisa Warren, Founder & Managing Partner, ALIAVIA Ventures
Mark Frayman, Managing Partner, Orion Industrial Ventures
Mark Velik, Principal, EVP
Martin Duursma`, Partner, Main Sequence
Matthew Parbhu, Principal, Shearwater Capital
McGregor Fea, Managing Partner, Altered Capital
Melissa Widner, CEO, Lighter Capital
Michael Zimmerman, Partner, Main Sequence
Mike Abbott, General Partner, Antler
Mike Robinson, Cofounder and Partner, Macdoch Ventures
Milly Goucher, Head of Corporate Development & Investments, Helia
Mitali Purohit, Partner, Nuance Capital
Nick Gainsley, Partner, OneVentures
Peter Kennedy, Senior Adviser, Burda Principal Investments
Priya Saiprasad, General Partner, Touring Capital
Quentin Wallace, Partner, Archangel Ventures
Rachel Yang, Partner, Giant Leap
Rajeev Gupta, Partner, Alium Capital
Sachin Bhanot , Head of Investments, SEA & ANZ, Prosus Ventures
Simon Betschel, Operating Partner, Possible Ventures
Stephanie Hamlyn, Investment Manager, Partners For Growth
Tom Humphrey, Investments Partner, Blackbird Ventures
Trent Bagnall, Partner, Melt Ventures
Xavier Keary, Special Counsel, Gilbert + Tobin
Yash Varma, Founder & General Partner, Empress Capital


VDU is exclusively for Innovation Bay members. 

Not a member? We have a limited number of openings for prospective members who are exploring becoming joining Innovation Bay. Apply to attend and we’ll be in touch.

Want to get a sense of the
VDU experience?

Watch the videos below to discover more about the adventures and connections you can expect to experience at VDU.

What people say about our events

“The Innovation Bay team structured one of the most relevant events for business leaders I’ve experienced with room full of positive ego professionals invested in success beyond 2024.”

Steve Lewis | Vigilum, Nabu

“Innovation Bay is really unique. It’s an open forum for discussion. We come and connect and share deals and talk about what we’re struggling with or what we’re aiming for. It’s such a great space to be able to get everyone together and all the different ideas in an open forum.”

Georgia Barkell | Sprint Ventures

“The magic happens when you can put lots of people in a room together who have the right values and intentions. What I’m finding is that everyone wants to help each other. We’ve built some really great relationships.”

Yash Varma | Empress Capital


VDU is exclusively for Innovation Bay members. 

Not a member? We have a limited number of openings for prospective members who are exploring becoming joining Innovation Bay. Apply to attend and we’ll be in touch ASAP.

Looking for Explore24? Click here