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Mark Pownall

Mark Pownall has around three decades of media experience. Prior to becoming CEO of Business News he ran the content operations of the business and was integral to the implementation of all the company’s digital products –twice daily email newsletters, weekly podcasts, deals database and BNiQ search engine. Mark has a Commerce degree from UWA and a post-graduate qualification in English from Curtin University. 

Mark my words podcast

In this Business News podcast, Mark Beyer and Mark Pownall discuss South Perth apartments, Centurion and MacAleese, defence, wealth creators in WA.

Abalone firm launches $5m fund campaign

Augusta seafood group Ocean Grown Abalone’s $5 million fund raising campaign is progressing under the stewardship of adviser View Street Partners, with the launch of its official offer document as the

Commercial concerns outpoint purist’s pursuits

It seems the advertising dollar is behind a push into the female AFL more so than any interest in furthering women’s sports.

Foreign investment buoys Margaret River winemakers

More than a dozen WA winemakers have joined forces to tackle the growing Chinese market.

Mark my words podcast

In this Business News podcast, Mark Pownall and Dan Wilkie discuss Donald Trump from a WA perspective, Gold Road, PDC BIM, Laurance Wines, Fremantle developments and junior miners.

Entertaining backyard business

A couple of Perth micro businesses offer up some entertainment options for summer.

State undoes deals at its peril

State agreements are not done on a handshake or the back of a serviette – unwinding contracts is a fraught enterprise.

Mark my words podcast

In this Business News podcast, Mark Pownall, Mark Beyer and Dan Wilkie discuss innovation strategy, Wheatstone, Pilbara mining, Sam Walsh and commercial property.

Mark my words podcast

In this Business News podcast, Mark Pownall and Dan Wilkie discuss WA’s economy, Kidman, Alinta, Tox Free, Paul Blackburne, Perth airport and WA’s arts and cultural industry.

Service with a smile adds to island life

Whether its deliberate or driven by the economy, standards have risen on Rottnest.

Mark my words podcast

In this Business News podcast, Mark Pownall and Dan Wilkie discuss Western Power, Enerji, residential builders, the COMO hotel and our export feature.

Cutting edge tech more than hype

A Yangebup business has found itself at the heart of a project trying to win the attention of global entrepreneur of the moment, Elon Musk.

Minor changes, major effects

The economic downturn has hit the state hard but WA’s fundamentals are still strong.

Varsity takes its bar to the ’burbs

Ben Maher and his partners are taking their successful Nedlands bar concept to the university precinct near Curtin.

Cost pressures push health shift

State and federal governments are using transparency and consumer choice as a weapon to cut costs in healthcare.

Mark my words podcast

In this Business News podcast Mark Pownall and Mark Beyer discuss city retail, Elizabeth Quay developments, ICT mergers and acquisitions and our special report on residential building.

Healthy numbers for HBF

The state’s biggest health insurer, HBF, has shrugged off a challenging market to grow revenue and break the 1 million mark for membership, as it continues to push outside its Western Australian home base.

Gaming the system might be the best bet

Disruption is affecting the GST allocation model, so when will that change?

Mark my words podcast

In this Business News podcast Mark Pownall and Mark Beyer discuss state politics, lithium developments, financial failures and our special report brewing.

Lotterywest counters online threats

State government gaming agency Lotterywest has beaten its revenue budget and grabbed its biggest share of spending per capita for three years, but it continues to watch the threat of online gambling and other web-based gaming products from outside Western Australia.

Mark my words podcast

In this Business News podcast Mark Pownall and Mark Beyer discuss newspapers merger, law firms growth, tourism down south and what’s happening in the gold sector.

Car stacker in liquidation

Perth-controlled motor vehicle stacking business Car Parking Solutions has gone into liquidation.

Analysis: Newspaper merger can’t hide the decline

Today’s news that the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission will allow Seven West Media to merge The West Australian with News Corporation’s The Sunday Times newspaper should come as no surprise – consumers have been losing interest in both for some time.

Vanadium battery a WA first

Listed minerals group Australian Vanadium has installed its battery system in Western Australia via a subsidiary acting as a reseller of technology linked to its parent, in this case an alternative to

Death by numbers, do we need a census?

Perhaps it is time to reconsider why we need to survey the nation every five years. 

Mark my words podcast

In this Business News podcast Mark Pownall and Dan Wilkie discuss property planning, builders fraud, Fastbrick Robotics and fashion.

Big week for Mark Creasy

ANALYSIS: It has been a high-profile week for extremely private explorer Mark Creasy, with two major pieces of news that appear likely to add to his already significant wealth.

Business news with Mark Pownall

Every Monday Mark Pownall joins Jane Marwick in the 720 Perth Drive studio for an in depth look at two local businesses.

Big changes at the top for UWA

University of Western Australia vice-chancellor Paul Johnson and business school dean Phil Dolan have agreed to leave the university, which has also selected the deans of four new 'superfaculties' as part of a big structural shift to be implemented next year. 

Accountant faces fraud charges

Accountant Neil Anthony Alessandrino has been released on bail after presenting to the Magistrates Court today on 65 charges of fraud or stealing as director or officer of a company.

Mark my words podcast

In this Business News podcast Mark Pownall and Mark Beyer discuss lithium, board changes, Gage Roads, workplace wellness and safety.

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Mark Pownall's Picks

Recent reading

For the Aussie history buffs. Like a lot of things if you think polarised society, royals behaving badly or domestic terrorism are new things ... think again. Steve Harris is an accomplished journalist and media entrepreneur, so this a little different although his home town of Melbourne features prominently.

The Contiki story. It is a racy read with plenty of business tips from a backpacker who took his business global ... and pretty much lost the lot. The business journey is outlined in extraordinary detail. A must read for anyone who has travelled on the cheap to Europe.

Great management text if you are looking for someone to make sense of all the models and theories that sometimes attain cult status. Co-author is Perth-based Paul Culmsee.

Simon Sebag Montefiore's Jerusalem, a great historic introduction to many of the Middle East's current issues. In fact, when you see what goes on there today, a lot of it is explained by this book

Another fascinating read was Peter Rees' book Bearing Witness about Australia's great WW1 war correspondent Charles Bean. I note there's a competing biography by Ross Coulthart which I haven't read yet.

Also worth reading was one I dragged out of my father's library. William L Shirer was a foreign correspondent based in Berlin in 1930s and, due to America's late entry into WW2, was there during the early part of that conflict. His book The Rise and Fall of the Third Reich is half way between and academic work and the modern histories we are used to which are more entertaining. His book is awesome in its documentation and given a human element by the number of eye witness accounts he provides.

I really enjoyed The Bully Pulpit by Doris Kearns Goodwin which was not only about the US presidency at the start of the 20th century, but the unique role investigative journalism played in reform. It reviews the incredible reporting backed by gutsy publishers who serialised stories on concerning issues with both economic and social implications. These journalists also had unprecedented access to the presidency, especially the progressive Franklin Roosevelt. As the circulation-boosting power of this style of journalism rose, however, some went too far, making up stories and spitefully attacking political leaders - leading to the expression muckrakers. The tabloids of today have historical precedent!

Sir Bob's visit

Some of the VIPs who really did have lunch with Sir Bob.

Recent reading

Just got through this great book by Bob de la Motte, well known in Perth finance circles. Its about his life, growing up in South Africa and competing in the 90km Comrades Marathon.

Another book worth mentioning is Njinga by a good friend of mine Kate Leeming - she's also just released a film on her trans-African cycling trip and is preparing to turn it into a TV documenary series. Her next project is Antarctica.

Find it here: www.kateleeming.com

Executive remuneration

Worth checking out our CEO/executive/director remuneration list here. There are thousands of WA names on it ... 59 pages of salaries if you are up for it.

Bitcoin

Meanwhile, I am awaiting a copy of this (not a Christmas hint - review copy coming I am told) which I expect will help decipher much about the mysterious world of bitcoin. This has been co-authored by a friend of mine and former colleague Michael Casey who has been writing regular columns on bitcoin for the past year or more. I have passed on a few tidbits to him about activity in Australia, but I have no idea if that was useful.

My all-time favourite business and political books are here on my Facebook page.

Most-read

Visionary medico wins 40under40

This year’s First Amongst Equals winner is a passionate medical specialist but he’s also a visionary entrepreneur who has a lot in common with successful business leaders.

Vale Geoff Rasmussen

Western Australian corporate leader Geoff Rasmussen passed away on Friday night after a long battle with cancer.

Builton fails, administrator appointed

One of state’s biggest residential construction firms, Builton Group, has succumbed to the financial stresses engulfing the sector, appointing an external administrator earlier today after reports of the company’s financial troubles emerged last week.

Builton failure a costly housing hit

The collapse of yet another Western Australian residential builder appears set to further upset the delicate state of the sector, with financiers, insurers, 350 trade creditors and as many as 130 home owners facing losses.

most commented

Shark cull outcry overreaction

The current shark cull is a politically challenging issue, but one where Colin Barnett is right to dig in because he has time and momentum on his side.

Daylight savers may have to wait awhile

Daylight saving may be the victim of Western Australia's election - further bemusing those who watch us from a distance.

Time to stop slaughter in our backyard

While the public spotlight on the offshore ill treatment of animals bred for slaughter is commendable, why does the RSPCA shirk such action when it comes to our own backyards, literally?

Fitness freaks need more Jacob’s ladders

I note the fuss made around the recent closure of Jacob’s Ladder, a stairway to Kings Park which, due to its popularity as an exercise venue, has earned the ire of local residents.