Matt Barrie

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Matt Barrie
Born (1973-08-16) 16 August 1973 (age 45)
Adelaide, Australia
EducationUniversity of Sydney
Stanford University
OccupationFounder and chief executive
Known forEntrepreneur, outsourcing
WebsiteOfficial Blog

Robert Matthew "Matt" Barrie (born 16 August 1973) is an Australian technology entrepreneur. He is the chief executive officer of, a global online freelancing and crowdsourcing marketplace. He is also an adjunct associate professor at the University of Sydney where he teaches classes in computer and network security since 2001 and technology venture creation since 2010.[1]

Early life[edit]

In 1997, he was accepted to Stanford University, from where he graduated in 1998 with a master's degree in electrical engineering. After graduating, he was employed as a security consultant at the information security company Securify, which was then acquired by Kroll-O'Gara. At Kroll-O'Gara, Barrie acquired the popular information security website Packetstorm from Ken Williams.[2]

Returning to Australia in 2000, he worked as a venture capitalist for the boutique firm Innovation Capital, before founding Sensory Networks, a network security company, where he was Chief Executive from 2001 to 2006. In 2013, Intel Corporation (NASDAQ: INTC) acquired Sensory Networks.[3][edit]

In 2009, Barrie founded, an online outsourcing marketplace. In March 2015, the company claimed to have over fourteen million registered users and to have completed seven million projects.[4] In 2011, the company reportedly turned over US$35 million and was valued by Deloitte at between US$100 to $250 million.[5]

The company has won a number of awards including two awards for employment in the 15th Annual Webby Awards[6] and the People's Voice for Employment in the 16th Annual Webby Awards.[7]

Barrie is a frequent speaker on the topics of technology and entrepreneurship. In 2011, he was one of nineteen featured from the 600 speakers at SXSW.[8] He has been a keynote speaker at conferences including The Next Web,[9] Summit Series[10] and CEBIT.

In September 2013, Barrie rejected a takeover from Japan's Recruit Co. Ltd. for AU$430 million (US $400m) for[11] Recruit Co declined to comment on or confirm the bid.[12]

On November 2013, Barrie floated Freelancer Limited (ASX:FLN) on the Australian Securities Exchange, which opened at an AU$1.1 billion (US: $1.03 billion) market capitalisation in the third biggest opening ever on the exchange (for a listing greater than a seed-stage listing).[13]

Awards and recognition[edit]

In 2006, Barrie won the New South Wales Pearcey Award for contribution to the IT&T industry. He is a notable alumnus of the University of Sydney, having won the Alumnus of the Year Award for the Faculty of Engineering and IT in 2010.[14]

In 2010, Barrie was named Entrepreneur of the Year by Dynamic Business magazine.[15] In 2011, he was named the inaugural BRW Entrepreneur of the Year.[16] In that year he also won the Technology Division for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year.[17]

In 2011, Barrie was named in the ten most influential people in Australian IT by the International Business Times.[18] In 2012, he was named in the top 100 most influential people in Sydney by Sydney magazine, the top 100 influential engineers by Engineers Australia,[19] and a 2012 Man of Influence by Men's Style magazine.[20]

Barrie was profiled by two-time Walkeley Award winning journalist Greg Bearup in Good Weekend.[5]

In 2012, Barrie was selected by Linkedin as one of their "150 worldwide influencers", a selection of thought leaders whose essays are published on the social network, which included Barack Obama, Richard Branson, David Cameron and Deepak Chopra.[21]

In 2013, he was named in the top 10 Australian entrepreneurs to watch in 2013 by Smart Company,[22] Young Technology Entrepreneur of the Year by News Limited,[23] and in the top 100 most influential engineers by Engineers Australia.[24] He was also named Entrepreneur of the Year at the Engineers Australia Excellence Awards Sydney in 2013.

In 2014, Smart Company magazine named him the most influential person in technology in Australia.[25][26] He was also named in the top 100 most influential engineers by Engineers Australia.[27]


Barrie is the co-author of more than 20 US patent applications.[28]

Barrie holds a Master of Applied Finance from Macquarie University and a graduate diploma in applied finance from FINSIA. He is also a graduate of the EPGC (2005) and Stanford Executive Program (2011) from the Stanford Graduate School of Business.[29] He is a Fellow of the Institute of Engineers Australia (FIEAust).[19]

In 2012, Barrie graduated from Singularity University's Executive Program (EP).[30]


  1. ^ "Matt Barrie". Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  2. ^ "Packet Storm Update". Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  3. ^ Gillian Tan. "Intel in Deal to Acquire Sensory Networks For Around $20 Million". WSJ. Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  4. ^ "About us overview - Freelancer". Freelancer. Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  5. ^ a b "The Aussie making a motza from offshoring white-collar jobs". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  6. ^ "The Webby Awards". Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  7. ^ 16th Annual Webby Awards for Employment Archived 30 June 2012 at WebCite.
  8. ^ SXSW Interactive 2012 Accepted Proposals Archived 4 May 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  9. ^ Jamillah Knowles (1 May 2012). "Meet Matt Barrie Who Can Help Us Harness Outsourcing". The Next Web. Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  10. ^ "Cruising the Bahamas with the world's most awesome people". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  11. ^ " founder Matt Barrie rejects $430 million buy-out to list on Australian stock exchange". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  12. ^ "Japanese Recruitment Firm Recruit Co Wants To Buy For $400M". Retrieved 3 November 2015.
  13. ^ "Freelancer's short spell as billion dollar company". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  14. ^ "News". Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  15. ^ "Matt Barrie takes out top entrepreneur accolade". Dynamic Business. Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  16. ^ Inaugural BRW Entrepreneur of the Year 2011 Archived 3 December 2011 at the Wayback Machine.
  17. ^ Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2011 Winners
  18. ^ The 10 Most Influential Australians in IT: International Business Times
  19. ^ a b Engineers Australia
  20. ^ 2012 Men of Influence, Men's Style Archived 2 May 2012 at the Wayback Machine.
  21. ^ "LinkedIn to post influencers' essays". SFGate. Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  22. ^ "Leaders in Business - SmartCompany". Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  23. ^ "'Doing it for the money? Get out now,' says Atlassian CEO, Mike Cannon-Brookes". NewsComAu. Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  24. ^ [1]
  25. ^ "SmartCompany on Twitter". Twitter. Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  26. ^ Brad Howarth (6 October 2014). "Australia's 12 most influential people in tech". Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  27. ^ "Top 100 : 2015, Page 1". Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  28. ^ "ininventor:"Robert Matthew Barrie" - Google Search". Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  29. ^ "Freelancer Management Team". Freelancer. Retrieved 23 September 2015.
  30. ^ "Executive Program". Singularity University. Retrieved 23 September 2015.