• These überpreneurs are not just tackling the great challenges of our time, they are succeeding in changing our world for the better. This book offers stories of inspiration for every young person with the gleam of an idea on how to follow their lead.

    Hon Peter Beattie AC

überpreneursWhat’s in the book?

Chapter 1: Überpreneurs. Overtakers!

Entrepreneurs use their imagination, hard work and determination to build new businesses and even whole industries. But some go beyond that, influencing economic, social and environmental changes on a truly global scale.

We call them überpreneurs.


Part I:  Big Business

Chapter 2: Sofas, Spirits and Skirts

In the aftermath of the Great Depression and the Second World War, Ingvar Kamprad, Chuck Feeney and Amancio Ortega were at the forefront of the Western world’s economic recovery. And, along the way, they developed the biggest furniture, liquor and fashion chains in the world.

Chapter 3: Building Hope and Pride

By introducing innovative technologies and practices to industries already comfortably established in the West, Kiran Mazumdah-Shaw, Liu Yonghao and Mo Ibrahim helped restart the stalled economies of India, China and Africa. They created pharmaceutical, agricultural and telecommunication enterprises that are transforming the developing world.

Chapter 4: Space Invasion

And then came Richard Branson, Jeff Bezos and Elon Musk, whose creative destruction of substantial chunks of the traditional airline, book-selling and finance industries has prepared them well as they race to be the first to create the ultimate new industry: space travel.


Part II:  High Technology

Chapter 5: Speed Bytes

Bill Gates, Larry Page and Niklas Zennström saw and seized upon emerging microelectronic technologies as the way to enable all of us, including small children, to easily and instinctively access, manage and communicate information.

Chapter 6: From Helix to Helico

George Rathmann and Barry Marshall translated new and old discoveries from the fields of genetic engineering and microbiology into revolutionary treatments for diabetes and gastric ulcers, while Craig Venter produced the blueprint for the future development of genome-based medicine.

Chapter 7: Coming Clean

And Olivia Lum, Zhengrong Shi and Shai Agassi have harvested technologies from the laboratories of the world’s best chemists, physicists and engineers, and translated them into industries that provide clean water, clean electricity and clean cars for people around the globe.


Part III:  Happy People

Chapter 8: Looking Good

Martha Tilaar and Luiz Seabra have driven the creation of cosmetic and beauty empires that have not only raised the self-esteem of millions of Latin American and Indonesian women, but also conserved and capitalized on the cultural and environmental heritage of their nations.

Chapter 9: Feeling Good

Jamie Oliver and Oprah Winfrey are evangelists who use their media networks to communicate with millions of people at a time, but give each and every one of them the feeling that they are interacting one-on-one.

Chapter 10: Finding Friends …

Mark Zuckerberg and Pony Ma are empire builders whose enterprises permeate every corner of the globe, helping us maintain the connectivity we need as we transition to a more digitally connected but physically fragmented world.

Chapter 11: … and Family

Gilad Japhet, too, is building a social network, but one focused on rebuilding extended families lost in the diaspora of global migration, while Nayna Patel and Doron Mamet seek to bring the joy of parenthood to those otherwise restricted by medical conditions or sexual orientation to a life without children of their own.


Part IV:  Better World

Chapter 12: Money Matters

Striking at the heart of social disadvantage are Bangladeshi ‘Banker to the Poor’, Muhammad Yunus, and Claus-Peter Zeitinger, a one-time student radical who builds ‘banks for ordinary people’ throughout the developing world.

Chapter 13: Aids Crusades

With over 30 million people worldwide living with HIV/AIDS, and almost 2 million new infections per annum in Sub-Saharan Africa alone, US obstetrician and gynaecologist, Dr Mitch Besser, and Thailand’s ‘Mr Condom’, Mechai Veravaidya, are attacking the epidemic head-on.

Chapter 14: Kids’ Biz

Two extraordinary women, Jeroo Billimoria and Soraya Salti, are creating new sources of educational and employment opportunities for the street kids of Calcutta and the disenfranchised youth of the Middle East.

Chapter 15: Living off the Land

And in Sub-Saharan Africa, where 27% of people remain undernourished, the challenge of feeding the planet juxtaposes the vast commercial farming interests of Sheikh Mohammed Al-Amoudi and Sai Ram Karuturi with the micro-farming approach of Roy Prosterman, who is working with governments around the world to deliver ownership of small land-holdings to hundreds of millions of families.


Part V:  The Origin of the Species

Chapter 16: The Nature of Überpreneurs

But are they made or born?

In the final chapter of the book, we use their experiences, and their achievements, to demonstrate how the key players in their environment – governments, investors, businesses, educators, philanthropists, family and friends – have influenced their development as überpreneurs, and how we might learn from their successes, and their failures.

Learn how your company can build a more überpreneurial culture