The AustralAsiaNZ College for Entrepreneurship (ACE) is different from most university based programmes.
Whilst we recognise the contribution made by academics to entrepreneurship, the majority of our presenters are proven successful entrepreneurs who typically generate tens of millions of revenue every year from their own start-ups.
Below you’ll discover more information about some of our Faculty Members. Read on, and we’re confident that you’ll appreciate that as an ACE student you’ll be learning from, and be led by, a truly world-class global team of entrepreneurial role models.
(Please note that due to a preference for privacy not all presenters are listed.)
Because of our desire to bring a truly global range of entrepreneurs and specialists, many presentations will be via live internet video link.
Scroll down To Meet Just Some of Our Current Faculty Members…
Bob Ansett, Noosa, Australia
Bob was born in Australia but spent his formative years in the United States. His story has been well documented in his three best-selling books, “Bob Ansett, An Autobiography”, “The Customer” and “The Meaning of Success”.
He founded the Budget Rent A Car System in 1965, and in doing so, developed a unique organisation that grew from a small two-person business to a dynamic enterprise employing over 3000 people, trading in 20 countries, with annual turnover exceeding $400 million.
Budget was a trendsetter in employee relations and was one of the first companies to introduce health and fitness programmes for its employees. Budget’s innovative marketing and customer service excellence was recognised, not only in Australia, but also internationally.
Business magazine, BRW, dubbed him “the entrepreneur’s entrepreneur” for he not only built a remarkable business but added a further dimension to the way in which business was conducted in this country at that time.
Leaving Budget in 1990, he established ‘Bob Ansett Marketing’ to manage his speaking engagements and provide consulting services in the field of Customer Service. This company operates from Noosa Heads on the Sunshine Coast, where Bob now resides.
He is presently a director of BSR (Betta Home Living) and has been President of the Melbourne Chamber of Commerce, founder and inaugural President of the Australian Customer Service Association, Chairman of the Federal Government’s Trade Negotiations Advisory Group and was President of the North Melbourne Football Club for 13 years.
Trelise Cooper is one of New Zealand’s most successful and internationally recognised fashion designers. Her designs have featured in magazines such as Vogue, Marie Claire, Women’s Wear Daily and InStyle and featured on the television series Sex and the City.
Customers include celebrities Liv Tyler, Miley Cyrus, Lindsay Lohan, Stevie Nicks, Suri Cruise, Julia Roberts, and The Pussycat Dolls. Trelise Cooper Ltd. exports to The United States, United Kingdom, Europe, Asia and Australia, and has been awarded a Trade New Zealand Export Award for creating a successful export business.
Cooper creates three clothing ranges – Trelise Cooper, Cooper by Trelise and Trelise Cooper Kids. She also produces Trelise Cooper Interiors, a fabric range made in association with textiles house Charles Parsons. Her signature fragrance ‘Trelise’ was launched late 2009.
The Trelise Cooper design business began in the early 1980s, with her first boutique opening in 1985. There are now a number of Trelise Cooper flagship stores in cities throughout New Zealand and Australia, including Auckland, Christchurch, Sydney and Melbourne.
Specialist concept areas are found throughout New Zealand retailers including Arthur Barnett in Dunedin. The Trelise Cooper Kids Auckland flagship store is known for its creative interior, winning the supreme award at the 2007 New Zealand Retail Interior Design Awards.
In March 2009 Cooper became the first New Zealand designer to stage a fashion show on board the cruise ship Queen Mary 2.
Cooper is a philanthropist, generously supporting numerous charities.
She is a patron of the Breast Cancer Research Trust and supports Habitat for Humanity. At 2009′s New Zealand Fashion Week Cooper initiated an onsite house build to promote this charity. She is also an environmental supporter, producing eco bags for supermarket chain Progressive Enterprises.
In 2004, Cooper was made a Member of the New Zealand Order of Merit (MNZM) by the Governor-General on behalf of Her Majesty Queen Elizabeth II for services to the Fashion Industry.
In short, Trelise Cooper is a living legend.
She is married to Jack Cooper, a well known Australasian textile wholesaler who now volunteers his time to charity Habitat for Humanity.
Tony Falkenstein OMNZ, Auckland, New Zealand
Tony has worked as an entrepreneur with multinationals and public companies, and now owns the majority share in publicly listed Just Water International Limited, as well as privately owned Bartercard New Zealand Limited. He founded Red Eagle Corporation in 1987, a week after the share market crash, as a renter of fax machines.
In 1989, he established Just Water as a subsidiary company of Red Eagle Corporation. The Company has continued to grow, both organically and through acquisitions. The Company floated on the New Zealand Stock Exchange in 2005, and operates in both New Zealand and Australia.
Tony has a strong interest in entrepreneurship and business education in the secondary and tertiary sectors. He was the founder of the Onehunga High Business School and the Onehunga High Building and Construction School. He is a member of the AUT Business School Advisory Board.
Tony was inducted into the New Zealand Business Hall of Fame in 2008, and in 2010 was appointed as an Officer of the New Zealand Order of Merit (ONZM).
Samea Maakrun, Founder and CEO of Sasy n Savy has been working in the corporate and lifestyle industry since 1994. As a qualified Accountant with a Degree in Accounting and Economics and an MBA in International Business & Financial Analysis, Samea spent her early years consulting in the setup of various national and international corporations.
During her travels, Samea forever encountered burnt-out individuals seeking to enhance, improve and feel better about themselves. It was in her mid 20′s that the message of “creating wellbeing” became an increasing self theme, becoming a frequent user of essential oils, an avid visitor to Day Spas and always steering towards a natural & holistic lifestyle. Feeling strongly about sharing this new found lifestyle, it was at this point that Sasy n Savy was conceived.
Samea changed these new life fundamentals into Sasy n Savy and developed a range of Native Australian Natural Skincare and Aromatherapy products, with over 30 active ingredients and over 40 skincare benefits. Sasy n Savy also develops skincare and aromatherapy brands for companies around the world.
Sasy n Savy’s head office is based in Sydney Australia and also has sales and marketing offices in Hong Kong and the United Kingdom.
Sasy n Savy currently exports to over 18 countries and has won 8 business awards in the last 6 years as well as being a finalist for seven others.
The products are found in Duty free, on board in sky shopping on the airlines and sold in the most luxury departments stores and hotels in the world.
Samea also sits on the business panel for TV show Small Business Central, act as International Ambassador for Woman’s Network Australia and several other Boards.
“Life has shaped us into what we are today, our mission and inspiration is to find out who we will be tomorrow.”
Lloyd Ernst, Manila, Philippines
Lloyd had a distinguished career in the Australian IT industry as an Internet pioneer and entrepreneur. Over the past three decades he has worked for industry leaders, including Apple and Microsoft ,and founded and exited a series of successful IT companies in Australia and Asia.
In the early 90s, Lloyd and two friends started PowerUp ISP modestly in a house garage. PowerUp eventually grew to become Queensland’s largest ISP. Lloyd then went on to build Australia’s largest web hosting company, WebCentral. WebCentral became a leading innovator in web hosting and won various awards including Microsoft Global Hosting Company of the Year for 2003 and 2004.
When he left WebCentral, Lloyd focused on opportunities in the Asia-Pacific region. He was an early player in the outsourcing business in China and started with Beijing-based SinoCode Limited. His second Chinese business venture successfully localized and launched the Australian-developed Greentrac PC Fleet Management product and achieved robust sales to large state-owned enterprises, including China Mobile, in addition to winning the prestigious China PC Week Green Product of the Year.
In 2005, Lloyd joined the board of Pipe Networks which listed in the Australian Stock Exchange in May 2005 (ASX:PWK). In the next 3 years, PIPE Networks deployed over 600km of dark fibre, built Tier 1 data centre facilities and built PPC-1, the first competitive submarine fibre optic cable linking Australia to the US via Guam.
Presently, Lloyd is focused on CloudStaff.com and Process-Box.com. These two new but fast growing outsourcing ventures based in the Philippines focus on supporting startup and entrepreneurial businesses. CloudStaff offers businesses dedicated and talented people in both technical and administrative roles. Meanwhile, Process-Box.com delivers a unique and trusted marketplace where businesses can choose from over 200 predefined tasks/processes which are available on-demand and performed by trained staff delivering consistent results cost-effectively.
Marissa Levin, Washington, USA
As Founder and CEO of Information Experts, Marissa leads the effort to define and shape the organization’s values, mission, vision, growth strategy, brand, and corporate culture. Information Experts started as a one-woman operation in Marissa’s spare bedroom in 1995.
Through her leadership, the firm has grown into an award winning, full service, SBA 8(a) certified small business. Information Experts helps companies and agencies align their business and human capital strategies through compelling, integrated communications and educational programs.
Marissa led the organization’s entry into the federal market through the capture of multiple General Services Administration (GSA) schedules, the award of highly competitive OPM TMA Human Capital and Training contracts, and many others—achieving a sizeable presence in 18 agencies spanning all facets of government. Through her knowledge of organizational development, integrated communications, and other areas critical to organizational success, Marissa has become known throughout the national business community as a leader and visionary.
Marissa’s awards include:
- A 2009 and 2010 ‘SmartCEO Smart 100 participant’ by SmartCEO Magazine, which recognizes the top 100 Chief Executive Officers in the region
- A 2008 BRAVA Award winner, which honors the region’s 25 most influential female Chief Executive Officers
- One of Washington’s Top 100 Technology Titans for 2009 by Washingtonian Magazine
- A finalist for the 2002 Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award
- A finalist for the 2004 Women in Technology Entrepreneur Leadership Award
- A finalist for the national Stevie Awards in three categories: Best Entrepreneur – Service Businesses, Employer of the Year, and Women Helping Women
- One of greater Washington’s “Women Who Mean Business” by the Washington Business Journal, which honors the region’s “most influential and powerful” women executives
- A nominee for the Women President’s Organization (WPEO) Outstanding Women’s Business Advocate Award
Under Marissa’s leadership, Information Experts was named as a small business success story for USAID. Information Experts has won more than 70 awards for creativity and leadership and was named as a 2010 SmartCEOGovStar winner. Information Experts was recently named to the Inc. 5000 List of America’s Fastest Growing Companies for 2009 and 2010.
Joey Reinman, Atlanta, USA
Joey Reiman was named by Fast Company as one of 100 people who will change the way the world thinks.
Eminent business professor, Philip Kotler, called him “The Moses of Marketing.” Father of the Ideation movement, Reiman has risen to become one of the most prominent thought leaders on the planet. He has garnered over 500 awards for his revolutionary thinking, including The Lion at Cannes and the Gold Medal at The Houston Film Festival.
Reiman is thinker, CEO and founder of the global consultancy, BrightHouse, the firm known for its breakthrough work in the areas of ideation, purpose-inspired leadership, innovation and marketing. His clients include leadership at The Coca-Cola Company, Procter & Gamble, McDonald’s and Newell Rubbermaid.
Reiman served as Senior Research Fellow in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Emory University School of Medicine. Since 2001, he has also been teaching Ideation and Purpose to MBA and BBA students at the Goizueta School of Business at Emory University in Atlanta.
Reiman can be seen on CNN as a marketing guru, heard on stage as a dynamic speaker, and read as author of several books including the best-seller, ‘Thinking For A Living.’
Reiman says his greatest accolade is his self-bestowed title of “famillionaire”, a person whose real wealth is family. Joey lives in Atlanta, Georgia, with his wife Cynthia, his two sons Alden and Julien, two horses, two chickens and one orange cat.
Prior to becoming a professional keynote speaker Allie had a career in the airline industry originally with Ansett New Zealand and then Qantas International as manager of their Business and First Class airport lounges. She became noticed for her outstanding customer service that was immortalised in an iconic TV commercial during the haydays of Ansett NZ.
Since changing career over 20 years ago Allie has taken “Pressing the Right Buttons” internationally and has presented in Australia, China, Thailand, Vietnam, Singapore, Indonesia, Malaysia, the Pacific Islands and of course her place of domicile New Zealand. She has also authored a best seller book “Pressing the Right Buttons which has sold over 15,000 copies to date and been published in South America.
Mike O’Hagan, Brisbane, Australia
Mike O’Hagan is well-known as one of Australia’s most innovative entrepreneurs.
Twenty-six years ago he pioneered a unique business in short distance residential removals, MiniMovers, with operations in Brisbane, Gold Coast, Sydney, Melbourne, Adelaide and Perth. Mike remains the sole owner of MiniMovers and today has interests in several other businesses.
Mike also sits on a range of Boards including the Australian Institute of Management AIM Qld & NT, The Cyber Institute, and the National Board of the Duke of Edinburgh Awards . For many years, he was a member of the Small Business Advisory Panel to the Governor of the Reserve Bank of Australia and a Commissioner for the Australian Fair Pay Commission, charged with the responsibility of setting all the minimum wages in Australia.
Mike recently completed a 3 year Masters in Entrepreneurship program at MIT in Boston USA. He has a passion to create more entrepreneurs – as in his words “the future lifestyles of all of Australians is dependent on the entrepreneurs created, and currently, we are crap at doing this”.
John Warrillow, Aix-en-Provence, France
John is a writer, speaker, entrepreneur and angel investor.
He wrote the international best seller “Built To Sell” with the goal of helping business owners build valuable — sellable — companies.
He’s started four companies, the most recent of which was a research business he tried to sell in 2004 only to be told by an expert that it was too dependent on him personally.
Learning that his business was unsellable was frustrating for John. At first he denied it. Then he got angry. Finally, he set about re-modelling the business into one that could thrive without him. After lots of trial and error, it started to take off, and the business was acquired in 2008 by a publicly traded company.
John says that world needs more entrepreneurs. He says that if he had to rely on anyone to get him off the side of a mountain, he’d want a creative, tenacious and tough-minded entrepreneur beside him. When he votes, he prefers candidates who have started a business. He believes that entrepreneurs will be the ones to solve our biggest problems and bring the developing world the quality of life that Westerners enjoy, which is why he’s created a team of “Built to Sell” readers who lend money to entrepreneurs in the developing world through an organization called Kiva.
Most of the year, John lives with his wife and kids in southern France, where the climate enables year-round cycling and running, which is important to him because one day he’d like to qualify for the Ironman World Championship in Kona, Hawaii.
Julie Mason is Managing Director of The Social Media Princess™ Pty Ltd providing training, keynote presentations and consulting services in social media.
Self-confessed geek and social media nut, Julie has a background of over 20 years in traditional sales and marketing and is considered an expert in the art of cold-calling with over 15 years experience.
Applying her innate understanding of new media and wealth of traditional experience, she helps businesses and executives turn their social media endeavours into a profitable marketing campaign that gains and retains customers.
Julie is a sought-after speaker and published author on social media is a faculty member on Social Superstar Secrets and Health Leaders Academy and considers social media as an essential communication tool in today’s business world.
Director and CEO or SenSen Networks. Subhash was nominated for Entrepreneur of the year 2012 for founding & building the company SenSen Networks.
He has extensive experience in R&D, product development and innovation management. He brings a deep and passionate interest in the process of taking ideas and turning them into usable products.
He has lead teams of researchers and engineers at SenSen to design, develop and deliver several signal processing & computer vision based products, including SenDIVA (SenSen’s Distributed Intelligent Video Analysis) Platform that can offer Video Business Analytic solutions for a variety of markets – Law Enforcement, Toll Enforcement, Parking Enforcement, Business intelligence and Security.
Subhash was a Professor and Senior Principal Scientist at NICTA, University of Melbourne, between 2007 and 2012. Prior to that he was the Professor of Computer Systems at the University of Technology, Sydney, and led the Networked Sensor Technologies (NeST) Lab.
Before that, he was a ‘Senior Research Fellow’ at the UoM, where he led a number of tracking and data fusion projects in collaboration with organizations like DSTO, DARPA,BAE, Raytheon, Tenix Defense, Thales, RTA, NSW Police and others. He mentored many Doctoral students to completion in the areas of Bayesian Estimation Theory, Object tracking, Sensor Networks, Computer Vision, License Plate Recognition, Facial Recognition and Data Fusion.
He has been the plenary, tutorial and invited speaker at various information fusion and Sensor Network Conferences including IDC 2007 (Adelaide, Aus), Sensors Expo 2006 (Chicago, USA), ISSNIP Conferences in 2005, 2004, Fusion Conferences in 2006, 2005, 2003. He has published about 100 papers in various international journals and conferences. He co-authored the book, “Fundamentals of Object tracking”, with Prof. Rob Evans, Dr. Mark Morelande and Prof. Darko Musicki, that unifies disparate advances in estimation theory and object tracking into a recursive Bayesian framework. It has been published by Cambridge University Press, July 2011.
Subhash received his Ph.D. from Queensland University of Technology, Australia in 1999. Part of his Ph.D. was accomplished at the Robotics Lab, Harvard University, USA. He was a Tan-Chun-Tau Fellow at Nanyang Technological University, Singapore during 2002-03. He holds a Bachelor’s Degree in Electrical & Electronics Engineering from Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University, India.
In 2011, John Fitzgerald, CEO, celebrated his 30th year in the property industry.
John is a widely respected, leading Australian property expert, multi-millionaire and philanthropist. He has used the same wealth building system that has been successfully tried and tested for nearly 30 years, and importantly, has withstood many economic crisis.
At 17, with no tertiary education and $200 in his pocket, John hitchhiked to the Gold Coast from Melbourne. He started out in the real estate business and quickly mastering how to build sustainable wealth.
At 18, he had syndicated over $5 million in developments. Today, the JLF Corporation Group has a turnover of more than $100 million per annum.
John has personally bought, sold and developed over 5,000 properties, and has amassed an extensive residential and commercial investment portfolio. He has successfully built and sustained wealth using the knowledge, skills and techniques which he now shares with ordinary Australians.
John doesn’t just invest in property, he invests in people. As such he is the chairman and founding benefactor of the Toogoolawa Childrens’ Home Ltd., which to date has fostered more than 100 youth at risk or wards of state, and runs three unique schools for students who have dropped out of, or are no longer welcome in mainstream schooling.
Thomas Kessler, Founder and Managing Director of IntegrationSuccess GmbH, has dedicated his career to Mergers & Acquisitions and in particular to M&A Integration.
Since 1995 he has advised and trained more than 30 national and multi-national businesses on how to successfully accelerate the value creation from M&A integrations.
Thomas pioneered the approach of incorporating integration planning and investigation into the strategic selection and due diligence phase of M&A i.e.the pre-purchase phase. Based on his experience, he estimates that selecting the target for the right reasons determines typically 50% of success post-merger. Planning and executing the integration after signing is responsible for the other 50% of the success. This demonstrates the need for very focused integration approach throughout the M&A Integration life cycle.
He regularly trains,coaches and consults to companies on conducting an integration-focused strategic selection process and due diligence.
His approach has changed the way many Board of Directors think about M&A; augmenting a purely business case and financials-driven discussion with an integrated pre-deal M&A approach that also takes account of strategic fit, business case, expected financial performance and integration approach.
Beyond advising companies pre-merger, Thomas and his team also advice, consult and train management on integration activities during the critical phase post signing and pre closing, the first 100 days of owning the new entity and during the operational integration phase. Over the last 19 years, Thomas has developed and, refined a wide variety of proven proprietary tools, templates, and checklists. Managing the integration pro-actively throughout all phases as well as a proper handover from strategy to M&A dealteam to integration team and on to operations has proven to increase the success rate of M&A transactions by a factor of 3.
Following six years of M&A Integration consulting with PriceWaterhouseCoopers in New York, Thomas shifted his perspective working for more than 5 years in investment banking at WestLB Panmure and Main First Bank in London/Düsseldorf / Frankfurt. Three years in the Pan European M&A Integration leadership team of KPMG and four years as partner for M&A integration and strategic consulting in the financial services industry set the foundation to continue innovating the approach at IntegrationSuccess GmbH.
His firm is a partner in Global PMI Partners a global network of companies that specialize in pre and post merger integration. At Global PMI Partners Thomas is responsible to develop the network which currently spans from North America, across Europe to the United Arab Emirates and Australia and incorporates 11 network companies.
Thomas has taught at the University of Fribourg and Zürich University of Applied Science, Switzerland.