24/10/2006 - 22:00

Profile boost a bonus for 40under40 winners

24/10/2006 - 22:00

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Mining might have received all the headlines in the past year, but Tessitura managing director and founder Liddy McCall is proof that other sectors are firing as well.

Profile boost a bonus for 40under40 winners

Mining might have received all the headlines in the past year, but Tessitura managing director and founder Liddy McCall is proof that other sectors are firing as well.

Ms McCall and co-founder and director, Dr James Williams, have developed several projects to trial stage, as part of their business delivering commercialisation management services to start-up biotechnology companies.

One of Tessitura’s clients is US-based company iCeutica, which is commercialising technology that enables the reformulation of drugs on a nano scale.

The technology was developed in Western Australia and has the potential to increase the rate of absorbency of certain drugs, reducing the required dosage and delivering fewer side effects.

“We’ve taken 10 drugs through the process and ranked them in terms of commercialisation imperatives and ease of reformulation,” Ms McCall said. “We’re putting four of these into animal trials now.”

Tessitura began as a part-time initiative and now employs both directors full-time, with a team expansion being considered for early next year.

The company has also been approached by non-biotechnology companies for commercialisation advice.

Ms McCall said winning the 40under40 award was very rewarding and gratifying, although with three children under five years, it had been difficult to capitalise on all the opportunities available.

“In terms of leveraging it to the fullest, part of that has been constrained by the resources of Tessitura and frankly my own capacity to pick up things outside that,” she said.

Gage Roads Brewing Co managing director Peter Nolin’s business boutique brewery has prospered in 2006, culminating in a national distribution deal with the Hardy wine company.

He described the agreement as a quantum leap in terms of access to the national market and said that while Gage Roads was focused on WA, having an industry partner in the eastern states would be of great benefit.

Mr Nolin said he became aware of the 40under40 Awards one year before entering, although felt it was premature to enter at that time.

“A year later, with the business up and running and the brand emerging in WA and me turning 39, it was a now or never opportunity,” he said.

Mr Nolin said the award had increased his profile professionally, even if there was no direct link with selling more beer.

“It has got me a fair bit of recognition in the business community, particularly among people who know of the competition; it seems to carry weight with them,” he told WA Business News.

“Definitely there were benefits to me, more intangible than tangible. I think personally it was of great significance.”

Kylie Bartle, the owner and managing director of The Great Escape Charter Company, which runs boat tours of the Kimberley and Rowley Shoals, also believes the award has improved her profile.

“Especially being a woman; when people acknowledge that, they treat you in a different light. You don’t have to work to prove yourself,” she said.

“It’s a great thing to be involved in.”

Since winning the 40under 40 award last year, Ms Bartle has launched a new vessel, the 26-metre luxury catamaran MV Great Escape, and has just completed filming with a Getaway crew on the Rowley Shoals.

Ms Bartle said the new vessel contained a large lounge room, ensuites and DVD facilities for guests to check their digital photographs, as well as internet access.

“It’s a new level of luxury that we didn’t have with our old boat – we went to town,” she said.

“The type of people who come on our boat like to keep in touch with the outside world. 

“We’ve realised that our niche in the market is with that top-end product. We believe that the intimate, smaller groups are what the market wants.”

Ms Bartle entered the 2006 awards on the advice of one of her staff.

“She said there was Louis Vuitton travel luggage in the prizes,” Ms Bartle said.

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