Steve Baxter (entrepreneur)
1971 (age 46–47)|
|Occupation||Investor, entrepreneur, television personality|
|Known for||Shark Tank|
Steve Baxter is an Australian investor, entrepreneur and television personality. He is one of the 'sharks' on the Australian television series Shark Tank.
Steve Baxter was born in the remote town of Cloncurry, Australia, and raised in Emerald in Queensland's Central Highlands Region. He moved to Rockhampton and attended North Rockhampton State High School. He left school at 15 and joined the army, enlisting in its apprenticeship program. There, he became an engineer working in the field of electronics, telecoms and guided weapon systems.
In 1994, at the age of 23, Baxter put his life savings of $11,000 on the line to launch his first start-up, an internet service provider, SE Net, from the spare room of his Adelaide home. Servicing more than 35,000 customers, SE Net was eventually acquired by Ozemail/UUNet under the stewardship of its founding Director and former Australian Prime Minister, Malcolm Turnbull.
In 2001, Baxter teamed with schoolmate and Australian technology entrepreneur Bevan Slattery to launch his second start-up, PIPE Networks. On 30 June 2008, Baxter resigned as Chief Technology Officer of PIPE Networks and moved to California to work with Google as a Technical Program Manager leading a project to deliver high-speed telecommunications systems across North America. Baxter remained a non-executive director of PIPE Networks until it was later sold to TPG in April 2010.
In March 2012, Baxter launched River City Labs in Brisbane, a leading co-working community to encourage entrepreneurs in Queensland. In 2013, he co-founded Right Pedal Studios, a mobile gaming accelerator, and StartupAUS an advocacy group for Australian tech startups.
In October 2014, Baxter become a major early-stage investor in Australian start-ups, helping to launch a host of companies which together boast a valuation of more than $100 million.
In 2014 and 2015, Baxter funded the Startup Catalyst program, in which 20 young Queenslanders with potential to be the next globally successful tech entrepreneurs, are sent to San Francisco to be immersed in the startup and entrepreneurial culture. Says Baxter of the program, "I love the term 'startup ebola.' It speaks to the contagious nature of what we are trying to do. We want the 20 young people we took this year to infect another 20 each on their return."
In October 2017, Baxter became Queensland's chief entrepreneur, replacing Mark Sowerby.
Baxter has three daughters with his wife Emily.
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- "Steve Baxter". Steve Baxter. 2015. Retrieved 23 March 2016.
- D'Arcy, Francesca (29 October 2015). "'I want to spread startup ebola': Steve Baxter and 20 coding kids from Queensland share what they learnt in Silicon Valley". BRW. BRW. Retrieved 23 March 2016.
- "Shark Tank 'Sharks' and Host Announced". Tenplay. 13 November 2014. Archived from the original on 15 April 2015. Retrieved 11 March 2018.
- Cooper, Amy (5 February 2015). "Shark Tank judge and start-up millionaire Steve Baxter says get the skills and give it a go, Australia". The Sydney Morning Herald. Retrieved 11 March 2018.
- "Palaszczuk Government announces Queensland's new Chief Entrepreneur". Queensland Government. 31 August 2017. Retrieved 11 March 2018.
- "Shark Tank's Steve Baxter gets two for the price of one this Father's Day with baby twin girls". Herald Sun. 2 September 2017. Retrieved 11 March 2018.