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40 Under 40 winner of the day: Jordan Walsh


Before finishing his law degree at the University of Adelaide and at the age of just 21, Jordan Walsh started his first company.

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Founded in 2013, Adelaide Green Clean provided event, stadium and venue cleaning services to clients throughout Australia and grew to 400 staff across Australia in four years with offices in Adelaide, Melbourne and Darwin and more than 1000 clients Australia wide.

Walsh became the youngest ever winner of the Overall Telstra South Australian Business of the Year at the Telstra Business Awards in 2016 before selling Adelaide Green Clean in 2017.

Last month, the 26-year-old was named a winner in InDaily’s inaugural 40 Under 40 Awards.

In August 2017, the qualified lawyer launched another company, Iconic Growth, a full-service business advisory firm that services new and established businesses. He is also a director and investor in a number of other businesses

We asked Walsh some more about doing business in South Australia.

What do you believe are the strengths of doing business in South Australia?

Unlike the eastern seaboard states, South Australia offers existing and new businesses the opportunity to grow within a considerably more cost-effective environment. The cost of doing business is enhanced by the very competitive commercial real estate prices, leasing rates, staff salaries and simply overall living costs. South Australia offers the opportunity to thrive and prosper within a local, national or international business model whilst the cost of living is low and the standard of living is high.

Word of mouth in the South Australian business community acts as the strongest form of marketing for many companies in the state. Soon after starting my first company, I came to realise this.  The smaller economy means a closer-knit business community and I found a high percentage of my new clients came through word of mouth from my existing clients.

What do you believe are the weak points of conducting business in South Australia?

Given the size of Adelaide, the economy is much smaller than the eastern states meaning fewer opportunities for growth, not only for businesses but career growth for individuals. Due to this, we are losing a great deal of good talent and young leaders to Melbourne and Sydney as well as great businesses leaving the state for more opportunities in a larger economy.

This is something that could be somewhat countered by a more aggressive approach by the State Government along with very real incentives to keep growing businesses and young graduates from leaving.

Do you see your future in South Australia?

Due to the nature of my business, I work both nationally and internationally with clients around the world. I will always have very strong ties to Adelaide and will always support businesses growing in the state, through investment, advisory services and mentoring the next generation of business leaders from South Australia.

How can the state encourage more of its young leaders to stay?

The South Australian Government needs to provide an environment where people can live, enjoy and flourish. By supporting new ideas, innovation and growing businesses, young people will choose to stay as the opportunities will be on their doorstep.

More about 40 Under 40

An assessment panel representing the South Australian business community judged hundreds of nominees for the inaugural 40 Under 40 awards, which aim to identify and promote a new generation of local leaders under the age of 40.

The final 40 includes a hugely varied collection of South Australian talents, who are making a mark in fields such as health, technology, the media, property, social innovation, agriculture, finance, the law, and much more.

For the full list of 40 Under 40 winners go here.

40 Under 40 is an InDaily initiative supported by the following partners:

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InDaily provides valuable, local independent journalism in South Australia. As a news organisation it offers an alternative to The Advertiser, a different voice and a closer look at what is happening in our city and state for free. Any contribution to help fund our work is appreciated. Please click below to become an InDaily supporter.

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