In Australia, Deloitte Technology Fast 50 is now in its 16th year and is more relevant than ever before, as Australia recognises the end of the resources boom, supports the ideas boom and invests in innovation. Although the following article was written in 2015 about that year’s Business Review Weekly (BRW) Rich 200 list, the message is still pertinent – a shift from mining to tech continues as mining billionaire Gina Rinehart has been replaced at the head of the 2016 edition of the list, the first time not being number one since 2010.
The BRW Rich 200 list is an ultra-elite club where names like Packer and Lowy, Rinehart and Tinkler, have dominated top spots. However, there is a new generation of entrepreneurs that have attained extreme wealth including, Mike Cannon-Brookes, Scott Farquhar and Owen Kerr.
Since 2013, as technology stocks rose on the BRW rich list, the mining sector fell. Gina Rinehart lost $7.15bn, Nathan Tinkler fell south of the $235m entry threshold, Ivan Glasenberg dropped $1.79bn, Clive Palmer $1.65bn and Andrew Forrest $1.43bn.
This decline continued into 2014 where Rinehart dropped a further $2bn and Clive Palmer was down $980mn. And as the resource boom weakened, IT emerged as a viable avenue for wealth creation.
New kids on the block
Matt Barrie of Freelancer.com ($255m), Ruslan Kogan of Kogan ($320m) and Owen Kerr of Pepperstone ($250m) joined the list for the first time last year . TPG Telecom’s David and Vicky Teoh doubled their wealth by 1bn, while Craig Winkler (MYOB) jumped 2.5 times to $700mn. Atlassian’s Mike Cannon-Brookes and Scott Farquhar went from millionaires to billionaires.
Software giant Atlassian demonstrates that the IT revolution has let those with a simple idea and impeccable execution, develop rapidly and successfully. Atlassian has in fact appeared on the Deloitte TechFast 50 winner’s list each year from 2005 to 2008, and again in 2010 and 2011.
Connecting in different ways
In 2015, technology entrepreneurs feature regularly on the annual BRW Rich 200 List. With this year’s  debutants David Greiner and Ben Richardson, founders of Campaign Monitor, worth around $500m, and Patrick Grove worth around $286m from Catcha Group.
As tech success stories become increasingly commonplace, the start-up drive and dynamism is changing the way we think and act. It is forcing people to connect with each other in different ways and companies to reconsider how they deliver services and interact with their customers, demonstrating the power of what start-ups can and do achieve.
Nominate your company now for the chance to join the ranks of Australia’s leading technology companies as a Technology Fast 50 2016 winner.
Nominations for the 2016 Deloitte Technology Fast 50 Australia are open now to Friday 30 September 2016.