Zepto Attends Budget Talks at Parliament House

Zepto Attends Budget Talks at Parliament House

Zepto’s Head of Government & Public Affairs, Emily Curlewis, reports from Parliament House in Canberra after attending a post-budget discussion with the Hon Senator Jane Hume — Minister for Superannuation, Financial Services and the Digital Economy — and the Hon Stuart Robert, Minister for Employment, Workforce, Skills, Small and Family Business.

Zepto was grateful to be invited by the Tech Council of Australia (TCA) to a meet-and-greet with Senator Hume and Senator Roberts to discuss the 2022 budget announcement and Government's Digital Economy Strategy. 

We were joined by representatives from fellow TCA members including Google, Canva, Finder, Seek, Accenture and Reason Group. 

We are proud and active members of the TCA who do a brilliant job of advocating for the local tech industry. The Australian tech sector is a pillar of the Australian economy, contributing $167 billion per annum to the Australian economy, and employing some 861,000 people. 

As an emerging Australian fintech, Zepto welcomes the continued investment in Australia’s tech sector announced in the federal budget on Tuesday night that supports small business digital adoption, skills, and attracting more Australian workers to the tech sector.

One budget measure that directly supports the tech sector and companies like ours is the changes to employee share scheme regulatory framework — providing certainty for the tech sector in the hyper-competitive global market for talent.

Zepto’s Head of Government & Public Affairs, Emily Curlewis, with the Hon Senator Jane Hume — Minister for Superannuation, Financial Services and the Digital Economy.
These changes put Australia’s start-up sector, of which Zepto is a part, on a level playing field with Silicon Valley, and enables us to use employee shares schemes as a tool for attracting great talent and, importantly, rewarding that talent over time.

As mentioned in our Series A announcement, we are in the very fortunate position of not having struggled to attract top talent to date. But we appreciate that as we continue to grow, investment in building and enabling technical skills in Australia is critical. 

Another important budget commitment which we discussed was the investment in re-skilling women into the technology sector. As part of their Digital Economy Strategy, the government will provide $3.9 million over 2 years to support women to pursue career opportunities in the tech sector. The message was clear during our meet and greet that they want to work closely with the corporate tech sector to roll out this and other skills initiatives.

In September 2021, we became the first Australian non-bank payments provider to become an Accredited Data Recipient [ADR] under the ACCC’s Consumer Data Right [CDR]. That was an incredibly proud moment for us as a company. Combining open banking data with payments enables us to develop innovations like our ethical collections solution that makes it easy for consumers experiencing financial hardship to set up and control their debt repayment plans sustainably and with dignity.

You might be wondering what the CDR is? It’s the secure infrastructure for the safe and secure sharing of data as consented and directed by the consumers it is created by or collected from. The CDR gives consumers the right to share their personal data with the businesses and providers of their choosing. It gives consumers the capacity to tap into and use their own data in a way that was either impossible, overly complex or fraught with privacy and security issues in the past.

We welcome the Budget announcement that $113.1 million will be allocated to accelerate expansion of the CDR to new data and sectors, and a further $38.4 million will be dedicated to enhance CDR functionality.

As the Minister for Superannuation, Financial Services and the Digital Economy, the Hon Jane Hume has been a staunch supporter of the Australian fintech industry. Last week Senator Hume delivered a considered and inspiring keynote address at Blockchain Week in Sydney.

We’d also like to congratulate her on a year of service as Minister for Women’s Economic Security. The 2022 Budget announcement included a number of investments to help reduce the Gender Pay Gap, enhance Paid Parental Leave and support Women’s Education, Employment and Equality. 

We are incredibly grateful to Senator Hume and Senator Roberts for their time to meet with tech industry representatives and for their continued commitment to enabling Australia to be a top 10 digital economy and society by 2030.

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