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Zoe Warne, 2009 Anthill 30under30 Winner

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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 network and celebrate. We’ve been releasing profiles of this year’s Anthill 30under30 winners via our Twitter account – youngest to oldest. Read 30under30 winners, 2009 (The Full List)

Name: Zoe Warne

Age: 28 (1981)

State: VIC

Industry: Marketing

Company: August

Follow Zoe on Twitter: @zobi1kenobi

Strange as it sounds, Zoe Warne refuses to admit she has worked a day in her life. As the director and co-founder of digital marketing and communications agency August, this 2009 Anthill 30under30 winner describes entrepreneurship as both business and pleasure.

While studying graphic design and multimedia at Swinburne University, Warne had her first taste of the entrepreneurial world when she established the graphic design division “Broadwalk Enterprises” of her stepfather’s consultancy. “I haven’t looked back since – I think [entrepreneurship] is now in my blood” she says.

Combining her creativity and passion for business, in 2005 Warne co-founded August with her partner Daniel Banik in an effort to explore new opportunities presented by emerging online technologies. Starting out with only a small list of predominantly SME clients, Warne has built August’s client portfolio to include high profile companies such as Foster Groups, Snowgum, La Trobe University and Origin Energy.

“When working directly with clients or working in partnership with agencies, I am wholly dedicated to their success – I think people respond to that commitment,” says Warne. “It means I invest a lot of myself into projects, but I think it’s worth it.”

Pushing against the economic headwind, Warne doubled her team and grew August at 200 percent steadily over the past 12 months. She was in Anthill’s inaugural 30under30 list in 2008 and was nominated for Telstra Business Women’s Awards 2008.

While focusing on further developing August in the next five to ten years, Warne says she is open to new ideas. She firmly believes that success is contingent on execution, citing to one of her favourite quotes: “Ideas are great arrows, but there has to be a bow.”


Tell us as succinctly as you can, why we should feature you in this year’s 30under30 Award?

‘Love what you do and you’ll never work a day in your life’ best explains my passion for entrepreneurship. I’ve worked to create a business that’s both economically sustainable but also creatively and personally fulfilling. I also see it as my challenge to create the same opportunities for the people I work with. I have the privilege to work collaboratively with creative, talented people on exciting digital projects for a vast range of clients; from fashion to financial services. I enjoy the challenges of managing August and love that we are continuing to grow, despite these difficult economic times.


Snowgum web redevelopment, one of August’s recent projects