Spotlight on OIO Founders

 21 Sep 2021

With a goal of accelerating 100 ocean start-ups in five years and 1,000 in 10, co-founders of Ocean Impact Organisation, Nick Chiarelli and Tim Silverwood certainly have their work cut out for them.

Despite this, both agree there is no time to waste in transforming ocean health so that’s why they are using their very different backgrounds and professional experiences to make it happen.

Tim is an award-winning environmentalist passionate about protecting the ocean from human impacts. A keen surfer, Tim became alarmed at the increasing risks plastic pollution posed to the ocean and wildlife, co-founding the not-for-profit organisation Take 3 for the Sea in 2009. It was through this work that he first met John Doumani, President of Zip International.

Nick, a chartered accountant by trade, has held a number of finance, operations and strategy roles over the last 20 years ranging from start-ups through to being the CFO of an ASX listed data security software company.

“We developed OIO to help people start, grow and invest in businesses that positively impact the ocean,” he explains.

“I’d seen all manner of start-up accelerators and incubators emerge... but nothing existed for the ocean.” Nick says of the origins of OIO. “Given how important a healthy ocean is of our own survival, there was a huge opportunity for Australia to become a global leader in accelerating scalable ocean solutions.”

Nick and Tim first met to discuss founding OIO in 2018. Three years later – they’re still working towards their dream of an abundant and sustainable ocean, and Zip Water is proud to be supporting them in their mission.