Matthew Tukaki, EntreHub Founder & Editor
Matthew Tukaki founded the Sustain Group & EntreHub in 2010 after leading one of the world’s largest employment companies through the heights of the global financial crisis. Matthew has had a long and distinguished career in the sustainability and sustainable development, business and industry sectors occupying a very special intersection between business, government, civil society and institutions. Not only has he led some of the largest social investment and social impact projects in the world, Matthew understands that sustainable development cannot be achieved if all of the component players move in isolation. Matthew is the former Head of the oldest employment company in the world having led it through the heights of the global financial crisis by returning it to profitability without closing a single part of the business. He had direct ownership of the operations in Australia, New Zealand, Hong Kong, Singapore and Southern Africa.
In 2009 he took on the role as Chairman of the Board of Splash International, a marketing and communications company specialising in business and industries understanding of selling to women. In that same year he took the helm of Australia’s largest workplace organisational psychology business, Drake WorkWise as Chairman of the Board. In 2003, with Kane Robinson and Gavin Matthews, Matthew was part of the team that developed one of Australia’s first online retail sites, SamsungConsumables.com and later joined the former Managing Director of Solution 6, Neville Buch, in the start-up of one of the world’s first VXML (the translation of Voice to Text) companies known as Syntropy. As part of the Syntropy team Matthew was behind the development of the world’s travel advisory system (OSCAR).
In 2010, after retiring from his role at Drake, Matthew joined Austin Kim, a former Samsung senior executive, and launched the Sustain Group, which was destined to become one of the Asia Pacific’s largest social investment organisations. That same year Matthew was the very first Australian Representative to have been elected by business and industry to the United Nations Global Compact (2010) a position he held over two successive terms before retiring in November of 2013.Mr Tukaki was also the first UNGC Local Network Representative to have been appointed to the Governing Board of the UNGC by UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon after having been overwhelmingly elected by six of the seven regions of the world (representing more than 100 nations) in May of 2013. Between May and September of 2013 Matthew successfully led, with the LN Advisory Group, one of the largest institutional reform processes yet undertaken by a UN Agency such as the UNGC. Matthew is considered to be an expert and trusted advisor when it comes to the identification and development of social investment opportunities across Asia, the Middle East and Africa.
In 2012-13 he provided more than $1 million in support services and pro-bono work to a range of social causes across Asia. He is a committed social investor & innovator when it comes to supporting civil society and not-for-profit organisations. Matthew is a Director of the Board of Australia's Peak Mental Health Body, Suicide Prevention Australia, former Director of the Board of the AICC & a Chair of Deakin Universities Centre for Sustainable and Responsible Organisations Advisory Board. In March of 2014 it was announced that Matthew would be the inaugural Chair of the International Advisory Board Joint Initiative between the United States National Socio-Environmental Synthesis Centre, the United States National Science Foundation’s new Centre for Sustainability Research and the University of Sydney.
To date Matthew has authored and published seven books all dealing with entrepreneurship, social investment, social impact and business development.He is behind the popular pocket eBook series. Matthew grew up in Upper Hutt, New Zealand. When he arrived in Australia he had a backpack, a credit card and no job. Fifteen years later he said:
“When I left New Zealand fifteen years ago I had a backpack and a credit card. I lived in a dodgy motel in Sydney, Australia, for the first few weeks and had hope and dust in my wallet. Fifteen years later if you had have told me I’d end up running a billion dollar company I would say at first you had rocks in your head – and then say confidently it was going to happen. Why? Because I never gave into no, I never stopped working hard to put the plan into action. I have every right to be doing what I am doing in this place right here, right now. The key is having 1 part faith, 1 part confidence and what 1 part sheer determination.”