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Adam Long, 2011 Anthill 30under30 Up-and-Comer

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What is 30under30?

30under30 is an Anthill initiative launched in 2008 to encourage and promote entrepreneurship among young Australians. This year’s batch of nominees was extensive and impressive. So much so that we believe several young talents who didn’t snag 30under30 top honours still deserve your attention and recognition. We call them our Up-and-Comers. More.

Adam Long, NSW (b. 1986)

Name: Adam Long
Age: 24 (Born: November 1986)
Gender: Male
State: NSW

As one of the driving forces behind Engineers Without Borders Australia, a humanitarian assistance organisation, Adam Long was well-versed in the art of helping others. Now he’s striving to create a new buzz with a crowdsourcing venture that will bring designs to reality and to market.

Long, a former professional industrial designer, is in the round-one angel investment phase for Beehive Digital Manufacturing. Beehive will use crowdsourcing and in-house talent to digitise a design, manage the fabrication, and provide an online infrastructure to sell the product. The business will employ three-dimensional printing and laser cutting to help bring the design to life.

“Beehive’s customers are designers — creative, excited and with a product they want to unleash on the world,” Long says. “When they sell a design, we make it for them on demand.” He envisions Beehive as an example of a world without mass production, in which everything is custom-made, and with sustainable materials. “Call it Industrial Revolution 2.0,” he says.

Engineers Without Borders partners with developing communities in Australia and overseas, helping people gain access to knowledge, resources and technologies needed to improve their livelihoods. Long helped EWB Australia tap into the “voluntourism” trend by creating a profitable overseas study tour program in the Philippines, India and Cambodia.

Long says his greatest sales feat was turning potential competitors into collaborators. “Digital manufacturers in Australia could have seen Beehive as a threat. Instead, Beehive brought them a vision in which every person on the planet is a potential customer of digital manufacturing services,” he says. “Beehive also brought a practical process for tapping into those customers, which benefits both Beehive and the manufacturers.”

Overall, Long sees himself as an inventor. “When other people have an idea, they come to me to take it from concept to reality. Whether it’s a way to solve poverty through Engineers Without Borders or a brand-new design, my colleagues and customers know together we can make it happen.”

Anthill asks: Adam Long, what’s your superpower?

“Like pheromones spreading instructions bee to bee through a beehive, I can plant small ideas that grow and build momentum.”

Image by Pinti 1

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To check out the full list of Anthill’s 30under30 winners, click here.

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