What makes an creative entrepreneur?

Kate Jennings and Dare Jennings in conversation with James Valentine
30 July 2010

Why you should listen

1:01 hours Download video (mp4, 357Mb)

Kate and Dare Jennings discussed a subject close to their hearts: entrepreneurship. Ostensibly, they have little in common, working in very different spheres. Dare made his name as founder of the surfwear clothing company, Mambo, and has rolled the dice again with Deus Ex Machina, a design company specializing in motorbikes, bicycles, surfboards, clothing, and art. He's an intuitive entrepreneur, as opposed to a follow-the-money kind. Kate is the author of numerous books, the latest being Trouble: Evolution of A Radical. All writers are entrepreneurs: every day the blank page, every day an act of invention. What Kate and Dare have in common is their rural upbringing: farmers are quintessential entrepreneurs. Dare and Kate come from long lines of farmers on both sides. Entrepreneurship is bred into their bones. In conversation with James Valentine, ­ popular Sydney radio personality and contrarian par excellence, ­ they will discuss the passion, imagination, and independence of mind – not to mention resilience ­ that it takes to make something from nothing, day in, day out. Entrepreneurship is a hot topic at the moment. With the Internet collapsing the old barriers to entry, it's the era of the hipster entrepreneur. Anyone can try out an idea and throw into the ether. But what does it take to make them work? Siblings who know offer their insights and explode a few myths.

Kate Jennings

Kate Jennings is a poet, essayist, short-story writer and novelist. Both her novels, Snake and Moral Hazard, were New York Times Notable Books of the Year. She has won the ALS Gold Medal, the Christina Stead Prize for Fiction and the Adelaide Festival fiction prize. Born in rural New South Wales, she has lived in New York since 1979. Her most recent books are Trouble: Evolution of a Radical, Selected Writings 1970-2010, Quarterly Essay 32: American Revolution and Stanley and Sophie.

Dare Jennings

Dare Jennings is the founder of Mambo clothing - the large commercial clothing and textile manufacturing business he started in his backyard that grew into a company turning over $10 million annually with 22 stores around the world. It was the company he wanted to project a different kind of Australia, beyond the usual nationalistic cliches. As he was turning 50, he sold the business and picked up his new inspiration, for red-hot, customised, detailed motorbikes, Deus Ex Machina.

James Valentine

James Valentine is a broadcaster, writer and musician. He has been presenting Afternoons on 702 ABC Sydney for over a decade. He is the author of six books, including the successful JumpMan series for children. He writes a weekly humourous column for The Australian. He plays saxophone and sings with his own Quartet around Sydney and his CD, Debut, is out through ABC Music.

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