Discover more from The GC Minute
Robo-farm Riches, Australian Swiftonomics, Google Wants To Smell You + Albo Rides the Light Rail and more
Today’s newsletter is 876 words: 3 minute read.
Thursday, June 29.
🎧 Listen up: A very good podcast episode on the Wealthiest Family of All Time
In today’s email:
Robo-farm Riches: A local farm automation company gets big backing
Australian Swiftenomics: Breaks the Internet and your wallet
Trending: Anthony Albanese loving the GCs light rail + Costcos things
Around the Web (Snippets): A $1.5 billion Harbour Town development, Google’s patent for your devices to smell you, GC Startup drinks event and more!
Please share us with at least one person 🙌
Live Gold Coast Housing Prices
Big Thing: Rich Soils of GC Robo Farms
Stacked Farm, the startup revolutionising farming with automation here on the Gold Coast, just raised $40 million from investors led by the family office of Financial Review Rich Lister Richard Smith.
In the Field
This locally-based innovator, using technology to automate the entire fruit and vegetable farming cycle, has gathered an epic amount of contributions to $98 million since its initial external capital raise in 2021.
The latest financial boost is headed by an investment company belonging to the family behind PFD Food Services.
Seeds of Growth
Instead of viewing this as fresh funding, Stacked Farm considers it an extension of its 2021 funding round that initially aimed to collect $10 million.
PFD's former sole owner and chief executive, Kerry Smith, now joins Stacked Farm's board, enriching the business with his extensive industry experience.
The vertical farming approach by Stacked Farm, featuring in-house structures, lighting, seeding and harvesting machines, enables growing crops indoors, using significantly less water and eliminating the need for pesticides or agrochemicals.
Plus, the entire process is untouched by human hands.
Stacked Farm revealed an earlier investment of $56 million in mid-2022, composed of equity, debt, and convertible notes.
Apart from Ms. Smith, Bob East, chairman of KKR-backed Australian Venue Co and the Gold Coast Suns, joins the Stacked Farm board.
Founded in 2017, Stacked Farm has outgrown its initial 200-square-meter location, now preparing to launch commercial products from its new 4,000-square-meter facility.
The Queensland facility is set to debut products such as cos lettuce, baby spinach, basil, and coriander. But the startup isn't stopping there—it's looking to grow strawberries, blueberries, and tomatoes in the future.
What to look for next
With the fresh funding, it's gearing up to start constructing a 10,000-12,000 square-meter fully automated facility in Melbourne in 2024 and more facilities up the road from the Gold Coast in Brisbane and Sydney.
LAST WEEK’S POLL RESULTS: Should the Google Reviews have been deleted?
2. Australian Swiftonomics
After internet-breaking ticket-buying behaviour, fans of Taylor Swift have already got her adding extra shows to the Australian schedule only two days after the initial show tickets were released.
With fans on the Gold Coast again missing out, the new shows in Australia will include:
Melbourne, February 18 2024
Sydney, February 26 2024
In the spotlight
With the influx of Swift chatter, in the current economic climate where people are supposed to be spending less, questions have been asked about whether the tour is an inflation rocket.
By the numbers
As pre-release ticket packages start at $899, Swift's 'Eras' tour package could bolster her bank account with $500 million to $1.5 billion from spenders.
But as the tale of Australian Swiftonomics ramps up, the spending doesn’t stop at tickets.
With the concert’s ripple effects on hotel, transportation, food prices and Swift merchandise line as big as a Myer store, Swifties will do their best to burn cash for the show.
According to LinkedIn News Australia in a post two days ago, “In Sweden, Beyonce's Renaissance tour was blamed for driving inflation as accommodation prices surged as a result of the tour, while in the UK, one economist estimated the Beyonce concerts added 0.2% to inflation.
Music to our ears
Despite those trying to find negative in an otherwise pretty standard event for the times, AMP's Deputy Chief Economist, Diana Mousina, speculates that Australia may dance to a different beat.
With potentially lower demand for accommodation and eating out estimated to kick in by early 2024, Swiftonomics might sing the melody of economic boost rather than inflate the bubble.
4. Around The Web (Snippets)
Virgin Galactic’s First: Commerical flight to the edge of space takes off today on a suborbital ride 80km above the New Mexico desert
GC Startup Ecosystem Drinks: An event you shouldn’t miss if you’re into business, tech and startups on the Gold Coast
Harbourtown’s $1.5 billion development: Next door to the shipping precinct got the green light.
FTX 2.0: The company was everything people feared about crypto, to begin with, is trying to relaunch the exchange
Google wants to smell: You and everything around you. It just lodged a patent to enable an automated assistant in your devices that leverage odour sensors.
The GC Minute is a free, reader-supported publication. Please sign your local business owner up 🤙
As a valued GC Minute subscriber, you're now a VIP at The GC Minute.
What do you get:
Earn $12 for each new subscriber you refer before the next newsletter drops.
Ts and Cs
This offer relies on trust. Think of it as the honesty box system of referral programs. Kindly contact us to verify your referrals, and we’ll send you $12 shortly afterwards.