Tipping the balance

Jocelyn King (CEO of First Australians Capital), Mikaela Jade (Managing Director of Indigital) and Melissa Lacey (Director of Point River Networks) shared their stories on what it's like to start a business as an Indigenous woman, and the future of technology for Indigenous people and communities.
“Our culture was built on a sharing economy. You might have heard that the sharing economy is the new buzz word…well I can tell you we’ve been doing it for thousands of years. Business is not new to Aboriginal people,” said Jocelyn.

First Australians Capital was established to help Indigenous Australians access financial, social and human capital to build their businesses. Jocelyn explained, “We’re raising capital to build a fund that can be reinvested with Aboriginal businesses, over and over again. We are a not-for-profit so anyone can donate.”

Mikaela’s app, Indigital Storytelling, uses drones, 4D mapping software, image recognition technology and cultural law to tell and preserve the ancient stories of Indigenous people in the Kakadu area through augmented reality. The app was developed in close consultation with traditional owners of the land.

An advocate for the ethical digitisation of Indigenous culture, Mikaela explains that digitising culture for Indigenous people enables the flow on of traditional knowledge to new generations. "Finding people with digital expertise and immersing them in our communities is how we will continue to engage and prolong our culture for generations to come."

While initially described by investors as ‘high-risk’ Mikaela said, “When you’re on the start-up journey there are a lot of times when you question if what you’re doing is insanity or whether it’s something that has a real possibility. If you can dream it you can do it.”

Melissa Lacey, Director of IT and professional services firm Point River Networks, is passionate about the important role traineeships played in her early career as an Accounting graduate from University of Canberra, and now being able to give back to other young Indigenous people. Melissa also spoke of the courage she gained from Supply Nation and the Federal Government’s Indigenous Procurement Policy to establish her business.

We look forward to watching the progress of these remarkable female Indigenous entrepreneurs!


About Lendlease Elevate RAP 

At Lendlease our vision for reconciliation remains one that drives all our employees to acknowledge and celebrate the proud heritage of Australia’s First Peoples and promotes opportunities for career development, sustainable business growth and economic participation of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians.

Lendlease supports the sustainable development of Indigenous business through our Gymea Indigenous procurement program.

Discover more at lendlease.com/RAP

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