What is 30under30?
30under30 is an Anthill initiative that was launched in early 2008 to encourage and promote entrepreneurship among young Australians. Each year, we invite our readers to nominate young Australian entrepreneurs deserving of recognition for their outstanding entrepreneurial endeavours. Anthill’s editorial team then trawls through hundreds of applications and identifies and profiles the top 30 Australian entrepreneurs under the age of 30. The process culminates in an event held in Melbourne where the 30 winners will network and celebrate. We’ll be releasing this year’s Anthill 30under30 winners over the next couple of weeks via our Twitter account – youngest to oldest.
Name: Jack Delosa
Age: 22 (b. 1987)
Industry: Media, Training
Company: Teldar Media
While many business people begin by studying a Commerce degree, perhaps even an MBA, Jack Delosa epitomises the ‘school of hard knocks’ entrepreneurial path.
At the age of 22, he is on to his third business, each bigger than the last. At 18, Delosa ignored the advice of family and friends and dropped out of university to pursue a business career. That same week, his older brother died a drug overdose.
He immediately borrowed $20,000 from the bank and bought into a marketing company, becoming Managing Director, only to realise that the company was in decline.
“Going without a wage for over a year and battling to make payroll each week was difficult and really allowed me to see how far I could push myself,” says Delosa. He restructured the business and turned the company from being heavily in debt to profitable inside 18 months.
After a stint in Sydney at the National Sales Academy, Delosa returned to Melbourne, raised $50,000 in equity capital and launched Limitless Pty Ltd, offering seminars to thousands of Gen Y teenagers on how to tap into their passion and live their life by it. Delosa admits that Limitless was inspired by a desire to prevent as many youths as possible from taking the same self-destructive path his brother.
In 2008, Limitless merged with Teldar Media (owned by Wealth Creator magazine founder Reuben Buchanan), giving Delosa a minority equity stake in Teldar Media. He was promoted to General Manager the following month and now has five employees, eight distributors and five corporate advisors who handle deals between $500k-$2m on behalf of clients looking to raise capital, make an acquisition or exit. An average week sees him managing joint ventures with organisations such as PricewaterhouseCoopers, Deacons Law Firm, ThinkBig magazine and Universal Events.
Since Delosa became GM, Teldar’s revenues have grown to well over $1m per annum and the company has achieved over 500 percent revenue growth for FY 08/09.
Delosa admits to having made mistakes, but leaving university to cut his teeth in the business world certainly isn’t one of them. Budding young entrepreneurs could learn much from his example.
YOUNG ENTREPRENEURSHIP ACCORDING TO JACK
What motivates you as an entrepreneur?
“At 18, my 21-year-old brother died of drugs. Being more intelligent, more persuasive and stronger than me, Tom had all the potential in the world but didn’t convert it into action due to a lack of direction. I am motivated to push the boundaries and achieving the impossible, year in, year-out, and to prove to others that they can be successful on their terms. Young people today are bored. With everything. I have a need to open their eyes and inspire them by showing that you can be successful by following your passion rather than following the tram-tracks.”