US to Aussie business
January 20, 2005 5:59 AM   Subscribe

I am an American and an Australian, I would like to bring some product or service idea from the US to Australia as a business. Please guide me [MI]

Australia is a fabulous place, but with a much smaller population than the US. Many successful businesses here in Australia, are distributorships or transplants from overseas operations.

Being the token Sepo in my group, my mates figure that I must have lots of "connections" back home. The truth is, I'm not sure what's going on over there.

Can you please give me some ideas for really cool products or services that you have noticed recently in the States that would transplant well? Please nothing too bad for your health - (even if it is painfully delicous).
posted by Dag Maggot to Work & Money (15 answers total)
There may be differences in communications standards between the Us and Aussie, so I'll rule out telecom and suggest bioremediation instead. That's a field everyone's paying attention to.
posted by Smart Dalek at 6:05 AM on January 20, 2005

American Things I (an australian) would like to see in Australia that we don't have:

1. Tivo.

posted by cheaily at 7:27 AM on January 20, 2005

I heard an Australian friend complaining about the lack of a Netflix-like service in Australia.
posted by amarynth at 7:50 AM on January 20, 2005

amarynth: direct them here.
posted by cheaily at 8:18 AM on January 20, 2005

Thanks, cheaily!
posted by amarynth at 9:06 AM on January 20, 2005

Pyrogies (Ukranian/Polish/Russian/whatever potato pockets). My sister lives in Australia and says her friends go nutso for pyrogies.
posted by five fresh fish at 10:08 AM on January 20, 2005

Really good 'Mexican' food, cheap. I went nuts when I discovered it in California, and there is ONE PLACE here in Brisbane that does good Mexican. And it's hella expensive.

Oh. And TiVo x 2.
posted by coriolisdave at 3:39 PM on January 20, 2005

Amarynth: or here
posted by bdave at 7:25 PM on January 20, 2005

Response by poster: What's the good Mexican place in Brisbane? I am on the Gold Coast and have yet to find good Mexican.

In fact I have my parents send my gallons of salsa and chilis about every 3 months ...
posted by Dag Maggot at 8:25 PM on January 20, 2005

If you are at all technically savvy, you could search on google for oztivo to remedy the tivo deficiency.
As an aussie, some nifty things I want are:
- a local
- the storage guys who deliver and pick up a lockable shipping container.
- a local Amazon
- a local swappingtons
- a local argos
Good luck and I'll be a beta tester!
posted by bystander at 8:31 PM on January 20, 2005

Dag - it's in Taringa. I _think_ it's Dos Amigos, but I can never remember; there are three in close proximity, and used to be four, and with my shitty memory...

Anyway - only decent quesadilla I've found to date, with chicken that doesn't taste like tuna.

Tangent: why does mexican style chicken have a similar taste/texture to canned tuna? I'm serious here.
posted by coriolisdave at 8:41 PM on January 20, 2005

Response by poster: Thanks coriolis, I'll check out Dos Amigos. I've never noticed the chicken/tuna thing, but I'll take your word.

There is a fish taco US transplant called Wahoo's on here on the coast that is almost good.

Bystander - though there is no local Amazon, I'm very happy with the local Borders which is now is Brisbane.
posted by Dag Maggot at 9:15 PM on January 20, 2005

I'd love to get decent Mexican food in Sydney. Every Mexican restaurant I've tried here has done something weird, like put feta on the nachos.

I'll also add to the chorus of TiVo hopefuls. I've gone so far as to e-mail the company asking why the heck it isn't here yet (since they already had a PAL version that they used in the UK). Never got a response. We're making do with MythTV, but it's a poor substitute. Apparently there's a secret society of hack0rs that have bought TiVos in the US and figured out how to get them to work here. They don't want to let too many people in on the secret though, or apparently they'll get busted or something.

You know what I think the big thing is? Low-carb food. Groan all you want, but I was freaked out by how much low-carb stuff was available in regular old grocery stores in the US when I went home for Thanksgiving. It's nuts. We have probably less than 1% of that stuff in Australia, most of which you have to buy at GNC (who has the exclusive Atkins license). It's all horrendously expensive too. One of my husband's co-workers actually imported a container load of various low-carb products last year and turned a tidy profit selling it online. I guess the red tape was too daunting for him to do it again. But as I figure we're a year or so behind the US on the low-carb craziness curve, that's a market ripe with opportunity...
posted by web-goddess at 11:09 PM on January 20, 2005

Response by poster: I too have thought of the Low - carb thingo web-goddess.

You are right about the the derth of it over here. I looked into it a bit, but like your husband's friend, was a bit put off about trying to get approval for all of the foodstuffs. I would say that is what stops most of the food companies from bringing it over.

I think in general, healthfood is a market that is fairly under-serviced here. A city like Portland Oregon has (I've heard) three major healthood super-markets, Whole Foods and a couple of others ... while Australia, to my knowledge ... has none.
posted by Dag Maggot at 5:58 AM on January 22, 2005

Hmm...I'm one of the secret cabal of AU Tivo users, I guess. Email me, mike at if you are curious on the details.
posted by bystander at 7:28 PM on January 23, 2005

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