32 episodes

Candid interviews with successful Self-starters. On Build It. They'll Come, you'll hear from some amazing Australian entrepreneurs who bet big to build great businesses. Journalist Helen Dalley interviews business innovators and visionaries on how they turned their lightbulb idea into a viable, sustainable enterprise.

This podcast is about the human face behind taking a simple idea and turning it into a business or movement. It's the beating heart behind what it takes to build an empire, from concept to execution, and how they actually achieve it. Fuelled by blind faith and hard slog, how they transform their dream idea into concrete reality.

Build It. They'll Come. Helen Dalley

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Candid interviews with successful Self-starters. On Build It. They'll Come, you'll hear from some amazing Australian entrepreneurs who bet big to build great businesses. Journalist Helen Dalley interviews business innovators and visionaries on how they turned their lightbulb idea into a viable, sustainable enterprise.

This podcast is about the human face behind taking a simple idea and turning it into a business or movement. It's the beating heart behind what it takes to build an empire, from concept to execution, and how they actually achieve it. Fuelled by blind faith and hard slog, how they transform their dream idea into concrete reality.

    Redbubble’s Martin Hosking, (Pt 2) on how his single mum instilled strong work ethic & sense of obligation as core values in him; & how entrepreneurs should have a clear purpose for their startup to succeed.

    Redbubble’s Martin Hosking, (Pt 2) on how his single mum instilled strong work ethic & sense of obligation as core values in him; & how entrepreneurs should have a clear purpose for their startup to succeed.

    Serial startup innovator & Redbubble co-founder Martin Hosking believes that aside from those enduring values learned from his mum, his University of Melbourne History degree, of all things, plus his career stint as an Australian diplomat, navigating the tricky politics of the Middle East, were perfect foundations for his eventual entrepreneurial journey.  Throw in returning to uni to complete an MBA and time working as a management consultant at McKinsey’s, Hosking believes all that experience gave him one of the most valuable gifts a good entrepreneur needs: Perspective. In Part 2 of our chat, Martin reveals why competitors, even someone as dominant and canny as Amazon’s Jeff Bezos cannot really successfully compete with,  knock off or steal Redbubble’s business; why delaying a public listing helped Redbubble; and he offers sage but unexpected advice to younger would-be entrepreneurs, keen to make their mark.

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    • 39 min
    Redbubble co-founder Martin Hosking on facing potential failure but how he built his startup into a global online design juggernaut, used by over 6 million consumers ringing up $400million in sales just last year alone.

    Redbubble co-founder Martin Hosking on facing potential failure but how he built his startup into a global online design juggernaut, used by over 6 million consumers ringing up $400million in sales just last year alone.

    Martin Hosking co-founded art & design website Redbubble to put visual artists’ creative output directly in touch with consumers. But for its first 3 years Redbubble went virtually nowhere, with no traction and few sales. But little by little, with the support & belief of the artists themselves, and a few funders, Redbubble began to make headway. While initial scale up was so difficult, Hosking and his team have built Redbubble into a global design market juggernaut. Starting and still based in Melbourne, it has 300 employees, and offices now stretching to San Francisco, New York and Berlin.  A staggering almost 7 million customers bought on the website in just the last year alone.

    When COVID hit, Hosking was as shocked as anyone else, worried about his staff, artists, customers and yes, his global business. But Redbubble has boomed in corona times. Since COVID, Redbubble has seen 100% year-on-year growth. And Martin Hosking believes it won’t stop there.

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    • 41 min
    University of Sydney Vice-Chancellor, Dr Michael Spence AC on how to build a fundraising campaign that Inspired people to donate a cool $1 Billion & busted a few myths about Australians’ gift-giving along the way.

    University of Sydney Vice-Chancellor, Dr Michael Spence AC on how to build a fundraising campaign that Inspired people to donate a cool $1 Billion & busted a few myths about Australians’ gift-giving along the way.

    Law academic, linguist and theologian Dr Michael Spence AC has been Vice-Chancellor of the University of Sydney for a dozen years, & in that time he’s modernised and simplified the venerated sandstone institution, by essentially bringing together what he saw as a bunch of warring Faculty factions, to unite to make the university more community-facing, rather than inward-looking. Along the way he’s had his critics and some spectacular fails. But one of his enduring successes was the massive Inspired! fundraising initiative instigated by Michael Spence 10 years ago. With an initial target to raise $600million, Spence and his team built the campaign around some winning arguments to potential donors around the exciting future between the university and the community’s needs. And contrary to what many warned him about Australians not giving to higher education, Spence backed his own judgement that Australians would donate generously, if the ask was framed properly.  The Inspired! campaign ended up outdoing itself…

    the final amount raised was $1 Billion.

    In this interview Spence talks about how he and the team built and executed that winning campaign. Plus, how he and USyd are managing through the Covid19 crisis, not only with international border closures and absent foreign students, but also with the growing political backlash towards China and its influence affecting universities.

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    • 52 min
    Luxury Escapes co-founder Adam Schwab on calculated risk-taking; & being prepared to jump from a corporate law career to back his own ideas. The trick then? Try it, pivot, and then try, try again!

    Luxury Escapes co-founder Adam Schwab on calculated risk-taking; & being prepared to jump from a corporate law career to back his own ideas. The trick then? Try it, pivot, and then try, try again!

    Melbourne-born corporate lawyer Adam Schwab was 24 years old when he and a schoolmate began their entrepreneurial journey. While Adam was still living at home with his parents, the two friends started out sub-letting apartments to backpackers, as a side gig. 

    Bit by bit, through much trial and error – including waging war on bed bugs! – the pair made enough money to dream bigger. They gave up their lucrative day jobs and they ventured into the digital online space. The co-founders created the successful e-commerce platform, deals.com, before eventually co-founding Luxury Escapes travel package deals website.

    In this Episode, Adam Schwab tells HOW, in just 7 years, they built Luxury Escapes into a trusted online brand that’s become one of Australia’s fastest-growing boutique consumer travel businesses, with now more than 1.3 million Facebook followers. And how they learnt to truly value and develop customer service, where they’ve made many of their customers “sticky”, becoming Luxury Escapes’ devotees for life.

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    • 49 min
    Venture capitalist Daniel Petre on how he turned digital startups into financial bonanzas for traditional media titans Kerry & James Packer, but also how family tragedy transformed his life into much more than just business success.

    Venture capitalist Daniel Petre on how he turned digital startups into financial bonanzas for traditional media titans Kerry & James Packer, but also how family tragedy transformed his life into much more than just business success.

    Co-founder of AirTree Ventures has been an Australian role model & trailblazer in the digital technology space for over 3 decades. But after early business career success working for Bill Gates at Microsoft, a seismic personal event made Daniel Petre decide there was more that he needed to do to become, in his view, a better person and a good dad to his daughters. So he set out on a slightly less travelled path. He kept up the business success – as one of Australia’s premier venture capital investors in promising startups -- but along the journey he also managed to become a strong philanthropist, and even a best-selling author on, of all subjects, fatherhood!

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    • 28 min
    Venture capitalist Daniel Petre on what makes a good founder; why he invests in startups like Canva; how Australia must ride the digital wave & the valuable lessons he learned working for Bill Gates at Microsoft.

    Venture capitalist Daniel Petre on what makes a good founder; why he invests in startups like Canva; how Australia must ride the digital wave & the valuable lessons he learned working for Bill Gates at Microsoft.

    Co-founder of AirTree Ventures, Daniel Petre is a serial entrepreneur - not only did he build successful digital startups inside bigger companies for bosses like Bill Gates and Kerry and James Packer, but in the past 7 years he’s built up over $600million in Venture Capital funds to invest in many promising Aussie startups, creating one of Australia’s largest VC companies in AirTree Ventures. 


    In Part 1 of this interview, Daniel Petre talks about how he came to work for the brilliant Bill Gates in Microsoft’s heady heyday of the late 80’s; & what he learnt about rigorous thinking that informs the way he appraises tech startups to invest in today via his VC funds. But he also speaks candidly about personal issues that he continues to deal with; and why Australia must ride the current wave into a genuine digital future.

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    • 39 min

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