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What is 30under30?
30under30 is an Anthill initiative 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. More.
Phillip Kingston, VIC (b. 1985)
Name: Phillip Kingston
Age: 26 (Born: July 1985)
Phillip Kingston wears many hats — software programmer, company director, board member, published author and business tip dispatcher — but it’s his role with Kingston Development that brings him global acclaim. In operation since 2008, Kingston Development is a software development and management consultancy firm that provides organisations with new strategies for connecting with users and customers online.
While KD is a multimillion-dollar success today, it started as a mere sideline operation.
“I completely fell into this business,” says Kingston, who was concentrating on other projects at the time — he was CEO of Flogd, the secure online shopping service, and vice chair of the Centre for Sustainability Leadership. In November 2008, he made KD his central concern and began gradually hiring staff. And more staff. And more.
Today, his company consists of staff in two countries (Australia and Switzerland), clients in 10 countries, and “100% fun.”
Kingston Development is not an organisation that promotes itself loudly. In fact, it hardly ever promotes itself at all, finding clients instead through word of mouth and a solid reputation.
Yet look across the Web, especially the realm of NGOs and not-for-profits, and the Kingston touch is all over. Take a look at Act Wild, the initiative of Zoos Victoria that promotes the wildlife protection. KD provided the interfaces for the Web and mobile devices, facilitating involvement.
Or Global Changemakers, a networking site for social activists and volunteers sponsored by the British Council. KD redeveloped the entire website to make it more user-friendly, increasing site registrations and contributions.
In both cases (any many more like them), the strategic mix of informative images and text, along with the incorporation of news feeds and user profiles, encourage users to learn more about the central message and stay connected.
“I like building B2B businesses with very strong underlying fundamentals that legitimately generate transformational change for customers,” says Kingston.
His ventures have reached beyond advocacy and activism as well. Other applications that KD has helped to develop allow employers to pre-screen applicants (Re.cruit.Me) and allow travellers to track themselves while in unfamiliar transport (TaxiTrigger).
As long as the end result makes a positive and lasting impact, Kingston is having a blast.
“It’s all about creating strong and long-term client relationships that are founded upon mutual commercial interests,” he says, “and having a good time while doing it. We’re not motivated by money or power. We’re motivated by creating an institution and building it.”
Anthill asks: Phillip Kingston, what gives you entrepreneurial cred?
“Straight talk, being reasonable yet fair and having incredibly high expectations. Tangible results, no spin.”
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To check out the full list of Anthill’s 30under30 winners, click here.