I am pleased to share that we have achieved another breakthrough regarding the criteria for JobKeeper. If you are post-revenue and have suffered from the crisis, then please, please, please make sure you have registered as JobKeeper is for you!

The first tranche of alternative eligibility tests for the JobKeeper programme have now been signed into law. Full details are available on the ATO website: https://www.ato.gov.au/General/JobKeeper-Payment/In-detail/Applying-the-turnover-test/?anchor=Alternativetest#Alternativetest

I’ve put together a summary of the three categories that would most likely apply to you:


Businesses that commenced within the prior 12 months will qualify for JobKeeper if their turnover…

30 March 2020. Over the last few weeks, Stone & Chalk has submitted a range of submissions to the Australian Government to improve support to the innovation industry. Some of these submissions were in train prior to the current COVID-19 crisis. However the crisis has prompted a more urgent review of the sector — it is no longer about strengthening the sector but now more about survival and recovery. We are urging the Government to recognise that irrespective of the challenges we face, strong employment growth comes from companies driving higher complexity to achieve better supply chains.

Australian Innovation Collective

Dr Rob Pearlman, Stone & Chalk Sydney resident and founder of Medapps has some thoughts he’d like to share on COVID-19.

First, some definitions. The disease is called COVID-19, and the virus is called SARS-CoV-2 (SARS like coronavirus 2). It shares many similarities to the SARS virus, but is a bit less deadly (SARS was close to 10%), trading this attribute for higher infectivity, which it achieves by having a bit longer incubation & slightly less symptoms — fever was common in all SARS cases, but only appears in about 77% of COVID-19 cases.

As you all know, the Government’s…

Mortaza Tollo, Founder of Elbaite

Stone & Chalk Melbourne-based cryptocurrency startup, Elbaite, was founded in 2017; enabling Australians to exchange cryptocurrency with fewer fees, more trust and control, and better trade conditions.

Their exchange platform is the first in the world to combine fiat escrow with blockchain verifications and support for multiple blockchains, allowing for direct Peer-to-Peer (P2P) and secure trades.

We chatted with Elbaite’s Founder Mortaza Tollo, and mentor Rod Tasker, whose strong background in financial consulting made him a perfect match for Mortaza and Elbaite. They explained the company’s success story and how S&C’s in-house mentor program is helping Elbaite move forward.

How Elbaite works


Amin Shayan, CEO at Littlepay, and the Littlepay team

For the typical commuter, catching public transport does not spark joy. Whether or not you’re elbowing your way through the masses to hop on a bus, or getting stuck behind someone who has insufficient funds on their transit card.

To ensure a seamless journey, Littlepay has been building a world-class open loop transit payments system for both operators and commuters via contactless EMV (Europay, MasterCard and Visa) since 2016.

We sat down with Amin Shayan, CEO of Littlepay, based at Stone & Chalk Melbourne, to find out how their transit-focussed payments platform works. The startup has now enabled 80 different…

Simon Costello, Co-Founder & CEO of Frankie Financial & Allen Clennar in a mentoring session

At Stone & Chalk, we believe that mentors are critical to the success of startups. We chatted to Allen Clennar, former Standard Chartered Bank CEO, about his mentor experience with mentee Simon Costello, Co-Founder and CEO of Frankie Financial. Frankie Financial is a fintech providing banking infrastructure to power financial institutions including neobanks.

ALLEN: I met Simon through the Mentor Program, but we had actually spoken briefly before. Stone & Chalk suggested that given my banking background, it might be worthwhile for me and Simon to connect.

For me, a mentor is someone that you can bounce ideas off in…

Barbara Sharp, Co-Founder & CEO of Pax Republic & Tim Offor, Co-Founder & CTO of Pax Republic

Co-Founders Barbara Sharp and Tim Offor, based out of fintech innovation hub Stone & Chalk Melbourne, are no strangers to conflict resolution. Between them, they have more than 30 years’ experience in crisis communications for some of the region’s highest profile scandals.

The peacemakers, Barbara and Tim, founded regtech startup Pax Republic in 2014 embedding all their know-how from their consulting days to create an anonymous digital platform inbuilt with AI and deep linguistic analysis to uncover the deepest issues lurking beneath workforce culture.

Their C-Sight anonymous online platform enables employee voice on business-critical issues, so that company leaders can…

Louie Psaroulis, Director at IDS & Mike Thanos, Co-Founder & COO at IDS

Insight Data Solutions’ Co-Founders, Louie Psaroulis and Mike Thanos, know that you’re fascinated with property. Between the two of them, they’ve got over 50 years’ worth of experience in the valuation and mortgage industry. They are now using that expertise to power the next generation of property valuation solutions.

By combining unparalleled accuracy and speed embedded within their technology, Mike and Louie are taking their services across borders, with Mike situated in the Melbourne hub and Louie working out of Stone & Chalk Sydney. …

David Griffiths, Chief Product Officer & Managing Director of Repute Digital

Whether we like it or not, we all have some form of digital footprint. Whether it be on LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, Ebay, Uber, Paypal or Airbnb. It all says something about us and can be used to extract insights about who we are.

Repute Digital captures, by permission, digital footprints of people transacting with an organisation spanning credit card payments, insurance, lending, recruitment, property management as well as the sharing economy. The purpose being to provide insightful data to customers so they can better validate an individual’s identity, assess risk and therefore customise their service and product offerings…

Simon Costello, Co-Founder & CEO of Frankie Financial and Aaron Chipper, Co-Founder & CTO of Frankie Financial

Melbourne Stone & Chalk resident Frankie Financial is solving the largest problem in the banking and financial services industry: legacy systems. How? By bringing together all the essential pieces of building a fintech: ID verification, eKYC, AML compliance, fraud prevention and credit tools, all within a single vendor agnostic technology platform.

Today, several companies battle with dozens of siloed software and data providers, none of which talk to each other, causing clunky, disjointed internal processes, poor customer experience and business intelligence.

Sitting down with Simon Costello, Co-Founder and CEO of Frankie Financial explains what they do, “We digitise tasks that…

Stone & Chalk

Stone & Chalk is Australasia’s leading nonprofit technology innovation hub in Sydney, Melbourne & Adelaide.

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