Allens Accelerate

Our experienced Allens Accelerate legal team regularly publishes articles and updates - the full list of publications appears below. These publications provide a snapshot of the latest legislation, court cases, policy changes and contentious issues affecting Startups. If you'd like to be notified when we add new Allens Accelerate publications to the site, please go to our subscription page to sign up for email alerts or, alternatively, you can subscribe to our RSS feed.

Read about Allens' track record in this dynamic area.

Allens Accelerate Publications

  • Client Update: ACCC releases draft Consumer Data Right Rules for consultation

    15 April 2019

    In preparation for the implementation of the first phase of the Consumer Data Right on 1 July 2019, the ACCC has released draft CDR Rules for consultation. The draft rules detail how the CDR will function across all designated sectors in practice, including how data is to be shared, the criteria for accreditation, dispute resolution requirements and privacy safeguards. They also contain rules that are specific to the banking sector. This article provides an overview of the draft rules, the key changes made since the release of the Rules Framework in October 2018 and the Rules Outline in December 2018 and the key issues left open for further consideration.

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  • Trend Watch: What the top ten 2018 cybersecurity trends mean for your business

    16 January 2019

    Last year was a big year for cybersecurity. Organisations were forced to grapple with an increasingly complex regulatory environment as governments across the globe continued to navigate how to best protect personal information in the face of increasingly sophisticated cybersecurity threats. We look at the top ten cybersecurity trends that defined 2018 and what they mean for Australian businesses in 2019.

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  • Pulse: Cyber security

    17 October 2018

    In this bulletin, we offer a practical guide for navigating cyber security risks in M&A transactions; examine the obstacles that data breach class actions face in Australia and lessons learned from high profile class actions overseas; explore the prevalence of data breaches in the healthcare sector; track the ongoing effects of Yahoo's 2014 data breach; and consider the debate at home and abroad about whether 'hacking back' against cyber criminals is a viable (and legal) option.

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  • Update: Consumer Data Right

    12 October 2018

    With the Consumer Data Right going live for the banking sector in July 2019, we take an in-depth look at the main issues and practical considerations arising from the Rules Framework (which contains new information about how the regime will function) and from the revised draft legislation giving effect to the CDR.

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  • Update: Consumer Data Right

    10 September 2018

    In this publication we untangle the complex web that is the proposed Consumer Data Right framework - reflecting on the drivers that have led to this reform, the regulatory framework, the key players responsible for administering the regime, the consequences of non-compliance and what you need to do to get ready.

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  • Focus: Breaking - Australian Government releases draft decryption legislation

    15 August 2018

    The Australian Government has released draft legislation to provide national security and law enforcement agencies with means to access encrypted communications and devices. The draft legislation aims to respond to the increasingly widespread use of encryption by Australian consumers and the challenges this poses for investigative and counter-terrorism activities. The legislation is subject to public consultation until 10 September 2018.

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  • Video Update: Startup funding, exits and investment: insights from Jon Medved, Founder and CEO, OurCrowd

    26 July 2018

    Access to funding has long been the missing link in the development of startups in Australia. The Australian startup industry has grown significantly over the past few years as capital has become more available. Alternative funding options, including crowdfunding, give startups more options than ever before. While this presents significant opportunities for startups, the complex funding environment can be difficult to navigate.

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  • Focus: Federal Government's bold vision for data availability and use

    4 May 2018

    The Federal Government's response to the Productivity Commission's report on data availability and use, released this week, outlines a bold vision but has a surprising lack of detail, suggesting implementation is likely to be some way off. If legislation is introduced, the new regime will result in a fundamental change to the way Australian consumers, businesses and government agencies interact with and think about data. Partner Gavin Smith, Senior Associate Jessica Selby and Lawyer Claudia Hall predict the key impacts.

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  • Pulse: Cyber security

    3 May 2018

    In this bulletin, we give you the rundown on proposed reforms to encryption laws; offer a practical guide to cyber insurance; look at APRA's proposal for a cross-industry framework for information security; give tips for fostering a culture of cyber awareness; examine the key findings from the OAIC's first quarterly report under the new Notifiable Data Breaches Scheme; and look at the steps that governments at home and abroad are taking to combat the growing risk of cyber attacks on critical infrastructure.

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  • Pulse: Cyber security

    21 February 2018

    In this bulletin, we shine a light on the incoming Notifiable Data Breaches Scheme. We assume that with the scheme taking effect this week, you're now across the basics (if not, you can read about them here and here). So, this issue highlights the things you didn't know that you need to know, how to deal with data breaches involving multiple organisations, the key takeaways from the Office of the Australian Information Commissioner's just-published Data breach preparation and response guide and our quick reference guides to preparing a data breach response plan, determining when you've suffered an eligible data breach and how to notify when you have.

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  • Pulse: Cyber security

    22 January 2018

    In this issue, we shine a light on ransomware - what it is, how it works, how much it costs, the continuing effects of recent attacks, and the key considerations to keep in mind when deciding whether to concede to a ransomware hacker's demands. We also look at how data breaches might trigger a listed company's continuous disclosure obligations, the OAIC's investigation into Precedent Communications, and the Australian Cyber Security Centre's 2017 Threat Report.

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  • Pulse: Cyber security

    16 October 2017

    In this issue we look at how to create a cyber resilient supply chain, ASIC's renewed focus on cyber resilience, how the incoming GDPR could affect you, medical device cyber security and patient safety, lessons learnt from Yahoo's data breach disaster and Australia and the EU's new cyber security plans.

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  • Client Update: Blockchain reaction update - ASIC joins chorus on ICO regulation

    3 October 2017

    While ASIC has published information on the issue of coins or tokens in initial coin offerings, other regulators around the world have also been issuing guidance, with some taking a much more restrictive approach. Although Australia remains a relatively friendly regulatory environment for such offerings, there are a number of potential regulatory traps, both here and overseas, that issuers should carefully consider before launch. Managing Associate Simun Soljo, Senior Associate David Rountree and Lawyer Chris Walsh report.

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  • Pulse: Cyber security

    5 September 2017

    In our first issue we look at the outcome of the OAIC's investigation into the Australian Red Cross data breach, lessons learnt from one of the largest cyber attacks in history, directors' liability in relation to cyber resilience, the incoming mandatory data breach notification regime, the NSW Government's recent $11.4 million investment to help tackle critical technology challenges including cyber security, and the Federal Government's new mission to decode cyber vernacular

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  • Client Update: Excessive payment surcharging reforms

    11 July 2017

    As of 1 September 2017, merchants will be prohibited from charging excessive payment surcharges for certain payment methods. Under the new rules, businesses can only pass on to customers what it costs them to process a payment. The Allens Competition team have put together a brief overview of the changes and what businesses should do to prepare for the new regime.

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  • Focus: Crowd sourced equity funding to gain traction with new legislation

    23 March 2017

    After a difficult journey, both Houses have passed the Corporations Amendment (Crowd-sourced Funding) Bill 2016 - introducing a new funding avenue for Australian startups and an opportunity for retail investors to access equity in emerging companies. Managing Associate Valeska Bloch, Senior Associate Tom Griffin, Summer Clerk Katherine Tsatsaklas and Applied Legal Technology Head Paralegal Hope Williams report.

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  • Client Update: Mandatory data breach notification scheme passed

    13 February 2017

    The Federal Parliament has today passed the Privacy Amendment (Notifiable Data Breaches) Bill 2016 which will amend the Privacy Act 1988 (Cth) to introduce a mandatory data breach notification scheme.

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  • Client Update: ASIC announces fintech licensing exemptions

    19 December 2016

    As part of its implementation of the 'regulatory sandbox' for fintech companies, ASIC is providing relief for certain fintech businesses from the obligation to hold an Australian financial services or Australian credit licence. Relief may be available for up to 12 months and may be useful to businesses in what ASIC refers to as the 'testing' stage of their development. ASIC has also made some changes to the responsible manager requirements for licensees, which may be particularly useful to 'robo advice' providers. Managing Associate Simun Soljo and Associate Jonathan Gardner report.

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  • Focus: Predictive coding gets green light from an Australian court

    9 December 2016

    The Victorian Supreme Court recently handed down the first decision of an Australian court to specifically consider and approve the use of predictive coding technology in a large-scale discovery exercise. Partner Nick Rudge, Managing Associate Kate Austin and Applied Legal Technology Manager Lisa Kozaris consider the decision and its implications.

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  • Focus: Landmark Productivity Commission report on data availability and use

    24 November 2016

    The Productivity Commission has released a landmark draft report on the ability of individuals, businesses and government to access and use data in Australia. The report criticises Australia's historically conservative approach to data use and proposes a 'fundamental and systematic change' to the way that data is made available and linked. Partner Gavin Smith, Managing Associate Valeska Bloch, Associate Tom Griffin and Lawyer Claudia Hall report.

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  • Allens Accelerate: Customer Contracts: How to seal the deal without compromising your interests

    22 November 2016

    The lifecycle of a startup includes many milestones – the first strategy meeting, the first investment round and, at some point, the first customer to take a chance on your product or services.

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  • Unravelled: Blockchain and why smart contracts still need smart lawyers

    6 July 2016

    There has been so much talk about blockchain and distributed ledger technology recently, especially in financial services, that you might be forgiven for thinking it might be more hype than substance. But we think it could be very important technology.

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  • Focus: Predictive coding endorsed again by English High Court

    29 June 2016

    In its second decision on predictive coding this year, the English High Court has again accepted the use of this innovative technology in discovery, this time in a contested application. Partner Duncan Travis, Managing Associate Kate Austin and Law Graduate Yi-Ling Ng examine the case and its implications.

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  • Special Report: Understanding the opportunities and navigating the legal frameworks of distributed ledger technology and blockchain

    17 June 2016

    Authored by a multidisciplinary team from Allens, Blockchain Reaction is designed to assist business stakeholders, decision makers and in-house counsel across a variety of sectors to understand the technology and how it is being used, as well as navigate the regulatory and legal opportunities and challenges.

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  • Allens Accelerate: FAQs: Shareholders agreements

    15 June 2016

    Together with your company's constitution, a shareholders agreement provides the foundation for the corporate governance of your startup and outlines what a shareholder can and can't do. It also sets out the shareholders' rights and obligations and their role in the management of the company.

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  • Client Update: ASIC releases consultation paper on regulatory sandbox exemption for startups

    9 June 2016

    ASIC has released a consultation paper on proposals to facilitate innovation in the financial services sector. The proposals include details of the long-awaited 'regulatory sandbox'. It will be of interest to both emerging companies who may rely on the relief, as well as investors in this space. Senior Associate Simun Soljo and Law Graduate Antonia Ross look at what the paper proposes.

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  • Allens Accelerate: Preparing for investment

    8 June 2016

    As a startup looking to raise capital, you'll most likely spend a fair bit of time thinking about your pitch to potential investors and, if you're lucky, the terms of any investment.

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  • Focus: Australia and Singapore enter into Comprehensive Strategic Partnership

    17 May 2016

    The Australian and Singaporean governments have recently concluded discussions on a landmark agreement that will see the two countries cooperating across a range of strategic initiatives, including in the areas of trade and economics, innovation, education, people and defence. The Comprehensive Strategic Partnership builds on the already strong relations between Australia and Singapore and is expected to provide new cross-border investment opportunities through enhanced bilateral relations. Singapore-based Managing Associate, Jessica Choong, reports.

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  • Allens Accelerate: 2016 Budget summary: startup hits and misses

    6 May 2016

    Allens has looked at the Budget handed down by the Turnbull Government this week and identified the hits and misses for Australian startups. Overall, the measures targeted at the startup and innovation sector have mostly been amendments and improvements to existing legislation and previously announced initiatives. Many of the improvements on tax incentives and wins for small and medium businesses build on the Mid-Year Economic and Fiscal Outlook 2015-16 measures handed down six months earlier as part of the National Innovation and Science Agenda.

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  • Client Update: Bankruptcy and insolvency law reforms and the innovation agenda

    3 May 2016

    The Federal Government has released a Proposals Paper on possible changes to bankruptcy and insolvency laws that will form part of its broader National Innovation and Science Agenda. Reform to bankruptcy and insolvency law has been identified as an area that could contribute to changing 'the culture in our economy'. Partner Chris Prestwich, Managing Associate Valeska Bloch and Lawyer Tim Chiang look at the main aspects of the reforms.

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  • Client Update: Government and ASIC announcements for FinTech sector

    23 March 2016

    There were three announcements this week that will serve to bolster the emerging Australian FinTech sector. The Government released a statement in support of FinTech as part of its National Innovation and Science Agenda, while ASIC issued two sets of guidance: an information sheet for providers of marketplace lending products, and draft guidance to providers of digital financial product advice. Partner Gavin Smith, Managing Associate Valeska Bloch, Senior Associate Simun Soljo and Senior Paralegal Connie Ye report.

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  • Allens Accelerate: The startup investor tax concessions - what you need to know

    22 March 2016

    The Federal Government has introduced a Bill detailing tax concessions to incentivise investment into Australian startups.

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  • Fact sheet: Show me the money: Tax reforms to encourage investment in startups

    10 December 2015

    The Ideas Boom has arrived with the Federal Government's National Innovation and Science Agenda. Central to the new agenda are a raft of tax and regulatory measures designed to encourage greater investment in startups to help them both get off the ground and to survive the 'valley of death' with greater access to Series A capital.

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  • Allens Accelerate: Get ready for the #IdeasBoom!

    8 December 2015

    Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull has unveiled the hotly awaited National Innovation and Science Agenda (NISA). The Prime Minister declared the beginning of the Ideas Boom, stating that 'unlike the mining boom, this is a boom that can continue forever'. The NISA comprises more than 20 individual policies and will deliver $1.1 billion worth of measures to kick-start the Ideas Boom over the next four years. But, at first blush, the view of the Allens Accelerate team is that the measures will constitute a quantum leap for the startup landscape in Australia.

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  • Fact sheet: Starting-up smart: How to get the most out of your lawyer, for less

    19 October 2015

    If you're focused on testing your idea, developing your product and scraping together enough funds to talk to foundation customers, engaging a lawyer could be the last thing on your mind.

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  • Fact sheet: Crowd-sourced equity funding - can you access it?

    6 October 2015

    The new Turnbull Cabinet has made clear its intention to support innovation, so that Australia can have a thriving economy. The Treasury has already done some work in this area, releasing a consultation paper on crowd-sourcing equity funding (CSEF) for startups and small business.

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  • Fact sheet: The term sheet decoded

    24 September 2015

    The term sheet is the key document that determines the basis on which VCs and other investors will invest in your startup. This means that it's crucial to get the basics right from the outset.

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  • Fact sheet: Growing your team: working with interns in your startup

    28 July 2015

    Many startups look to grow their team by engaging interns, work experience students and other unpaid workers.

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  • Fact sheet: Queensland now the 'Startup state'

    16 July 2015

    The Palaszczuk Government's first state Budget has announced a suite of new initiatives to attract new startups and support existing enterprises. The Government has declared it wants Queensland to become a 'global innovation hub' and a 'smarter state', by supporting emerging talent and nurturing innovative businesses.

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  • Paper: Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper - key proposals for agribusiness investors

    14 July 2015

    The Federal Government's Agricultural Competitiveness White Paper is focused on increasing the attractiveness of Australia's agribusiness sector as an investment destination. The White Paper contains significant proposals of relevance to both domestic and international agribusiness investors. Of most interest are proposals relating to increasing farm gate returns, the building of key water infrastructure, research and development into agribusiness technology, and improving access to premium markets.

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  • Fact sheet: What's mine is mine - protecting your million-dollar idea

    8 July 2015

    At the core of many successful startups is a simple but brilliant idea.

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  • Fact sheet: What price to pay for social media in the workplace?

    24 June 2015

    There's an assumption that everyone is on social media these days, even when they're at work - and they probably are. Many startups embrace social media, but, as an employer, you will need to understand and manage the risks that come with the use of social media in the workplace.

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  • Fact sheet: Sharing is caring - but it may also be taxable!

    10 June 2015

    A current trend in our society is our willingness to share, whether it be our home, office, or our time. This 'sharing economy' is set to grow, and with that growth comes increased ATO scrutiny.

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  • Fact sheet: Reap the benefits from your R&D investment

    2 June 2015

    Grasping tax in the early days of your business is essential - you want to ensure you are keeping everything above board, while not paying unnecessary tax or, importantly, missing opportunities to apply tax offset mechanisms to your business.

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  • Client Update: Federal Budget 2015: Start-ups in the spotlight

    13 May 2015

    With a $5.5 billion 'Jobs and Small Business Package', Treasurer Joe Hockey placed start-ups and small businesses front-and-centre of the Australian Federal Government’s 2015-16 Budget. Partner Gavin Smith, Senior Associates Valeska Bloch and Shaun Cartoon and Associate Tom Griffin look at the key elements affecting start-ups.

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  • Focus: Your 'Metadata' as Personal Information

    7 May 2015

    In a decision published this week, the Australian Privacy Commissioner has clarified that 'metadata' may be personal information, when an organisation has the capacity and resources to link that information to an individual. Partner Michael Pattison, Associate Priyanka Nair and Law Graduate Leah Wickman report on the Commissioner's determination, which found that Telstra breached the Privacy Act by failing to provide an individual with access to his metadata.

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  • Unravelled: Review of Card Payments Regulation

    6 May 2015

    The level of public interest and popular support for regulation targeting excessive surcharging makes card payment regulation likely to be one of the first areas of reform following the publication of the Final Report of the Financial System Inquiry (the FSI Report).

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  • Unravelled: The rise of 'robo advice'

    6 May 2015

    'Robo advice' is another one of these phrases that we are suddenly seeing everywhere. The idea offers some exciting opportunities for advice providers. What are the regulatory issues? And how can lawyers help?

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  • Focus: Update strengthens legal avenues for online copyright rights holders

    24 April 2015

    Telecommunications industry body the Communications Alliance has submitted an updated Copyright Notice Scheme to allow rights holders to better use existing legal avenues to defend their rights. The updated Notice Scheme resolves a number of issues that were left open when the first draft of the Notice Scheme was published in February. Partner Andrew Wiseman and Lawyer Ben Murphy report.

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  • Focus: United States implements novel sanctions regime to combat cyber threats

    22 April 2015

    President Barack Obama has issued an Executive Order enabling the US Department of Treasury to implement targeted sanctions against foreign individuals or entities whose cyber-enabled activities result in significant threats to the national security, foreign policy, economic health or financial stability of the US, irrespective of their nationality. Partners Rachel Nicolson and Gavin Smith, Associate Andrew Wilcock and Law Graduate Alice Crawford report on the possible implications of this novel measure.

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