Brisbane gets green light to build international cruise ship terminal
Construction of Brisbane International Cruise Terminal is set to begin next year after Queensland’s Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk confirmed the project’s go-ahead.
Costing around AU$158mn to build, the construction site, located at Luggage Point on the north side of the Brisbane River, will support 245 jobs each year and is predicted to bring in net revenues to the Brisbane economy of $1.3bn over the next two decades.
“Cruising is one of tourism’s great growth stories, for both international and domestic markets,” Palaszczuk said. “A dedicated, purpose-built cruise ship terminal will boost our international reputation as a global tourism destination of choice.
“It will serve as a catalyst to supercharge growth in our tourism sector and related industries and generate jobs now and into the future.”
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Site preparation works will start in November, with construction of the wharf to begin mid-next year, and construction of the terminal to begin in around 12 months.
The terminal building itself will be around 9,300sqm set over two levels and connected to a 200m long wharf, with two air bridges facilitating the movement of passengers on and off the ships.
Treasurer Curtis Pitt added: “Once the terminal is operational it is expected the additional cruise ships stopping in Brisbane could continue their journey up the coast to destinations like Cairns and give visitors the opportunity to visit other iconic destinations such as the Great Barrier Reef.
“The economic investment will bring broader benefits to the state economy through increased opportunities for tourism operators and other sectors like agriculture and our services industry."
“To date, eight proposals have been approved or have moved to stage two, the preparation of detailed proposals stage and the market led proposals approved or in the detailed assessment stage are worth just more than $1bn and are estimated to generate around 1,800 jobs.”
Timeline: India takes unicorn leap with six in five days
We chart an historic week in India’s tech industry, where in just five days, between 5-9 April 2021, the country achieved six new unicorns, bringing India’s total to 10 in 2021 to date, an immense unicorn leap from just seven in 2020 and six in 2019.
April 5: Meesho
India’s first social commerce unicorn, Meesho raised US$300m from SoftBank, Facebook and Shunwei Capital, giving the Bangalore-based startup a US$2.1bn valuation, a threefold jump from its previous funding round in 2019. Founded in 2015 by two IIT-Delhi graduates, Meesho connects producers and resellers, helping small businesses sell through social media. It has 45m customers and has enabled 13m entrepreneurs to start their online businesses with no investment.
April 6: CRED
Founded just over two years ago, Bangalore-based credit card repayment app CRED raised US$215m from Falcon Edge Capital and Coatue, nearly trebling its valuation to US$2.2bn from its January US$80m round. Allowing customers to pay off their credit card debt while earning CRED coins which they cash in for rewards, CRED has grown rapidly during COVID-19, doubling its customer base to nearly 6 million in a year.
April 7: API Holdings / Groww
The first epharmacy startup to gain unicorn status, PharmEasy (API Holdings), which has digitised 60,000 brick and mortar pharmacies and 400 doctors across India, raised US$350m in a round led by Prosus Ventures. Founded by four former Flipkart employees as a way of making investing simple, investment platform Groww became India’s second-youngest fintech unicorn, raising US$83m in Series D funding led by Tiger Global, quadrupling its previous round in September.
April 8: ShareChat
New Delhi-grown social media startup ShareChat, founded in 2016 by Mohalla Tech raised US$502m from Lightspeed Ventures, Tiger Global, Twitter and Snap taking its raised total over six rounds to US$766m and pushing its valuation to US$2.1bn. The funding will be used to grow its user base and short video platform Moj, which launched in 2020 following TikTok’s ban in India. The regional language startup claims 280m users.
April 9: Gupshup
AI-led conversational message startup joined the unicorn club after raising US$100m from Tiger Global giving it a ten-fold valuation of US$1.4bn. The smart messaging platform, which has seen accelerated growth during the pandemic, was founded in Bangalore in 2005 by serial entrepreneur Beerud Sheth, whose online freelancing platform Elance is now listed. Gupshup’s API enables 100,000+ businesses to build messaging and conversation experiences across 30+ communication channels.