Losing his job in the thick of the GFC turned out to be a blessing in disguise for Travis Erridge (pictured), who has gone on to co-found a succesful business and last night was crowned 2018 Melbourne Young Entrepreneur of the Year.
Covering property, supply chains and project management, Erridge's consultancy TM Insight caters to a range of businesses from SMEs through to large organisations including Australia's leading supermarkets as well as multinationals like Nestlé, Asahi and DHL.
He says TM Insight offers in-house consultants across a range of fields so that clients don't need to go to three separate consultancies to get the job done.
"It gave them a one stop shop. But the difference was that all of the people we brought in were from an operational background, so they weren't consultants, which is what clients actually wanted because they wanted people with real life experience in their relevant fields," he says.
"That became very disruptive because it caught all the real estate agents a bit on the hop to be honest. We basically attacked the market from the supply chain angle rather than a property angle."
More specifically, he claims to have disrupted the Australian industrial property sector in a significant way through large-scale facilities and the pre-leasing market.
"We now have had major real estate firms trying unsuccessfully to replicate our model in the past 24 months due to them not being able to purchase us and the large market share we are now taking in this space," he says.
"We are at the forefront of one of the most disruptive times for retail in Australia. We are creating the online distribution centres and redesigning retail supply chains to enable the e-commerce revolution in Australia.
But when endeavour began with co-founder Milan Andjelkovic there wasn't a deliberate "we're going to go out and change the world" attitude, says Erridge.
"I worked for a company called Maquarie Equipment that later became Goodman, and our entire development arm of our business got laid off in the GFC," he says.
"It was really off the back of a few phone calls from clients who came to me and asked if I would be willing to contract to them to help them develop their own facilities.
"It was very scarce work absolutely in 2009 and 2010, there wasn't much around and we struggled along, but then the market started to pick up."
And the rest, as they say, is history.
"We have just opened in office in Brisbane to complement Melbourne and Sydney, and are looking to open a Singapore office in the next 12 months to service South East Asia," he says.
"Our existing clients have been asking for us to help them in Thailand, Singapore and India and to date we have been too busy in Australia and New Zealand to assist. We are now making the strategic decision to move into the South East Asia market to cement our regional presence for our clients.
"It's not a matter of whether we'll do work there; it's a matter of how we do the work there. The amount of work is extraordinary."
The following are all the winners from the 2018 Melbourne Young Entrepreneur Awards:
- Young Entrepreneur of the Year - Travis Erridge (TM Insight)
- Social Entrepreneur - Madeleine Buchner (Little Dreamers Australia)
- Startup - Eugene Cheng & Hao Phu (The Sneaker Laundry)
- Professional Services - Travis Erridge (TM Insight)
- Marketing - Sabri Suby (King Kong)
- Health & Fitness - Dr May Chan & Dr Reuben Sim (Dental Boutique)
- Technology - William Strange (Sports Performance Tracking)
- Digital Disruptor - Lee Hardham and Rajesh Yeluri (Brauz)
- Retail and Services - Mia Plecic (Bondi Smile, Downtown Pressed Juice Co, Mia Plecic Entrepreneurs Academy)
- Specialist Services - Sam Mendelson (Ka-Pooch)
- Tourism & Events - Lani te Hennepe and Simon te Hennepe (TRAVLR)
- Arts & Culture - Anthony Radaza (RMW Entertainment)
- Influencer - Genevieve Day (Day Management)
- Manufacturing, Wholesale and Distribution - Hamish Buckley (Coco Vodka, Bean Body, and Mr. Bright)
- Property and Construction - Jiaheng Chan & Adelene Teh (Beulah International)
- PR & Media - Ashleigh McInnes (Papermill Media)
Finance - Chris Christofi (Reventon & CHC Planning Solutions)
Business News Australia
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