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Who we are
ESIC ® Hub is Australia’s first and only online platform dedicated to serving the needs of the early-stage community of entrepreneurs, innovators, researchers, investors, and their advisers.
The foundations of ESIC Hub reach back to 1993 when we developed a passion for advising, constructing, making and manage innovation investments on behalf of clients, many of who remain connected with us today. With this background, it was natural for us to be involved with the recent innovation agenda from commencement.
We were one of the leading contributors in the consultation process that responded to the Government’s Innovation Statement released in December 2015. Our thoughts, views and experiences helped shape today’s outcome and are now delivered to the early stage community through ESIC ® Hub.
We are Australian-owned and independent. We were established in 2016 following the introduction of significant tax incentives around early-stage innovation companies (ESICs).
At ESIC Hub we have developed free online tools for early-stage companies to accelerate their capital raisings and for investors to understand the tax savings created by an ESIC investment, an emerging new asset class.
Founder of ESIC ® Hub
Stephen is passionate about innovation and investment. He has spent the last 20 years focussed on it in a broad range of senior tax and R&D roles including at Macquarie Bank, Citigroup and in his own boutique consultancy since 2000.
Stephen’s introduction to innovation investment began in Macquarie Bank’s technology investment division assisting clients with their innovation investments. Before joining Macquarie Bank, Stephen was a tax manager at one of the Big 4 international accounting firms.
His interest in innovation and investment became more global when he joined Citigroup, where he was a Director of the bank-owned R&D investments and Vice President of Corporate and Structured Finance, assisting global clients on their financing and investment strategies across all industries.
Stephen founded CLEARSPACE in 2000, a boutique consultancy devoted to securing financial incentives and strategic benefits that create wealth for its clients.
Stephen has overseen and implemented a broad range of financial solutions, including R&D and additional tax benefit packaging, domestic and cross border leasing, and additional funding for innovation activities for public organisations and private corporations. He has worked with government-to-industry initiatives for over 20 years.
Stephen’s skills have allowed him to advise on how to implement funding and structure strategies for industry. He has been also been a founding equity investor in several successful startups .
Stephen’s involvement in the International Banks and Securities Association as a committee member and his broad international financing experience allow him to deliver excellent strategic and practical advice to a range of Australian businesses.
He is an Associate of the Institute of Chartered Accountants, Fellow of the Taxation Institute of Australia and registered with the Tax Practitioners Board of Australia.
Bill has spent more than three decades as a management consultant and entrepreneur working across multiple markets and industries. He now advises the ESIC Hub team.
Bill graduated from the University of Melbourne with an honours degree in law and commerce. He worked in Australia and the United Kingdom with KPMG as an auditor and management consultant before being appointed to McKinsey & Company. In 1989 Bill was awarded the Macquarie Bank Scholarship and a Fulbright Scholarship to attend Harvard Business School. Bill graduated in 1991 as a Baker Scholar and as the Proctor and Gamble International Fellow.
While working on his Doctorate of Business Administration, Bill researched internet-focused brand building and went on to co-found two internet companies, Freeonline (Australia in 1998) and Sharinga Networks Inc. (San Francisco in 2000). These startups culminated in a $120 million global alliance with AT&T and British Telecom.
On returning to Australia, Bill set out to revolutionise the understanding of how adults learn business and workplace skills to conceive, create and build more successful businesses and bring about greater career fulfilment. Products developed include Scores on the Board, which is used globally by career coaches, organisational development consultants and executive coaches.
Bill has consulted to and coached over 100 high growth Australian businesses that operate both nationally and internationally.
In 2016 he founded YourBusinessNetwork.com.au, a membership organisation that provides aspiring and existing business owners with a marketing and mentoring platform to help them attract customers, manage cash flow and save time.