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What is 30under30?
30under30 is an Anthill initiative launched in early 2008 to encourage and promote entrepreneurship among young Australians. This year saw more outstanding entries than ever before. So, we thought we would highlight some of the bright and innovative nominees who just missed Top 30 by a wink. Behold, our 2011 30under30 Honourable Mentions! More.
Lachlan Blackhall, ACT (b. 1984)
Name: Lachlan Blackhall
Age: 27 (Born: February 1984)
Education and business are not separate worlds for Lachlan Blackhall. Out in Canberra, he’s proving how intricately they can weave together.
While his background is technical — he has a PhD in Engineering — he feels just as at home in the domain of the consumer.
“I am passionate about the beneficial and long-term impact that education and engineering can have on the world,” says Blackhall of 17Dynamics.
Founded in June 2010, 17Dynamics develops products and services in these sectors seemingly unrelated to entrepreneurship, with cross-disciplinary services that include learning management software and knowledge capture and transfer systems.
Because of his background, says Blackhall, “we are able to offer excellent technical services while being able to provide clear, concise and thorough communication throughout the period of our engagement.”
17Dynamics has three commercial products in the works for the B2B and B2C markets, including a joint venture to found a technology incubator in Canberra, and also provides consulting services to the ACT Government, the Australian National University and Engineers Without Borders.
Blackhall previously co-founded InnovationACT, during his PhD years at ANU, to help students “cross the language barrier” between research and business fields. (IACT now partners with the University of Canberra as well.) Even before uni, he managed his own IT company, Chryatech Computers, a further testament to his business-techie acumen.
But Lachlan Blackhall’s influence extends beyond the ACT — indeed, well beyond Australia. When a family illness in Sydney threatened to distract him from his work, he treated it as an opportunity to expand 17Dynamic’s services into a new market.
And then there was the chance meeting with an Australian mate who had been living in Uganda. The meeting convinced Blackhall to make a trip to Africa last year, where he found a great potential for education services. That led to the East African Control School, an outreach program that provides educational supplies and workshops.
With time, Blackhall hopes to expand the program into South America and East Asia.
“The passion and creativity of young entrepreneurs and their desire to challenge the status quo and make the world a better place inspires and motivates me,” he says. “My endeavours are geared around making a positive impact in both developed and developing countries in the education, engineering and innovation and entrepreneurship domains.”
Anthill asks: Lachlan Blackhall, what is your superpower?
“Although I have a very technical background, I have always been very people-focussed and very able to understand human nature. My ability to traverse both very technical fields and very human and consumer oriented domains has given 17Dynamics an edge when providing technical services to our customers.”
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To check out the full list of Anthill’s 30under30 winners, click here.