PIPE Networks founder and CEO Bevan Slattery is the 2009 Brisbane Young Entrepreneur of the Year.
The 38-year-old now has another $373 million reasons to celebrate following the proposed takeover of his PIPE Networks company by telco giant SP Telemedia. On the day of his wedding anniversary, he became a very rich man after agreeing to sell his company to the telco and owner of TPG in a proposed $6.30 cash per share. Due diligence is to occur on December 11 and if all goes well the merger will be completed by April 2010.
Slattery will stay on on as CEO. He would not make any comments further to those made to the ASX.
The company recently completed a $200 million undersea cable from Sydney to Guam that has the potential to double Australia's international internet connectivity.
Slattery yesterday edged out Refund Home Loans founder Wayne Ormond and the Pizza Capers duo of Scott Geiszler and Anthony Russo during a gala event at the Marriot to take the coveted 2009 Young Entrepreneur of the Year crown.
Slattery started PIPE Networks with his mate Steve Baxter in 2002 and today the telco infrastructure giant is turning over $100 million in revenue and employs 85 staff.
"I think the best entrepreneurs are the ones who are motivated by making this world a better place. It's that simple," says Slattery.
"When we started PIPE Networks our goal was to get enough recurring revenue and profit to allow us to take a day off each Friday to go fishing. We'd both started and sold our previous businesses and thought of PIPE as a way to start a new business without needing to push ourselves to much, take it easy. As you can see that principal didn't last too long."
Regardless of background, this year's entrepreneurs have proved that entrepreneurial expertise is about having self-confidence in the face of adversity, understanding the importance of constantly adding to their knowledge and, intentionally leveraging their social and professional networks.
Total revenue generated by the finalists is almost $370 million.
Brisbane Business News editor Camilla Westerlund, says all finalists displayed tenacity during tough economic times.
"Their stories, drive, ingenuity and persistence were so impressive that choosing a winner among them was a challenge that took a multi-faceted approach based on the boldness of their pursuits, their ideas, their traits and how they made their mark on society or the world of business," says Westerlund.
"In their entrepreneurship, these businesspeople have jumped into the deep end of the fountain of youth and come up with rewards."
Profiles on each of the 19 finalists will be published in the November issue of Brisbane Business News next week.
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