Daniel Petre joins McGrath Estate Agents board

Daniel Petre joins McGrath Estate Agents board
Daniel Petre joins McGrath Estate Agents board

McGrath Limited today announced the appointment of the entrepeneurial Daniel Petre as a non-executive director of the company.

Mr Petre is one of Australia’s leading internet entrepreneurs, the founder of AirTree Ventures, netus and ecorp, an author and philanthropist.

McGrath Limited chairman David Mackay said Mr Petre’s appointment brought to the company a wealth of knowledge and expertise in the technology and digital arena.

“We are fortunate that Daniel has agreed to join our Board at this very important stage of McGrath’s expansion,” said Mr Mackay, who was recently appointed chairman of McGrath Limited, replacing Wendy McCarthy who retired on June 30. 

Mackay — who commutes between Australia and the US where he sits on the boards of Fortune Brands Homes & Security and coffee company Keurig Green Mountain — was chief executive of US giant Kellogg Company until 2011 and replaced the business executive and corporate coach Wendy McCarthy who chaired the real estate chain for 15 years.

Cass O'Connor is another board member with media expertise, having has spent over twenty years as corporate advisor, investor and analyst, mostly focusing on the communications, media and entertainment industries. Currently running her own corporate advisory and investment firm, she has been a director with Carnegie, Wylie & Company (now Lazard Australia); executive director with Goldman Sachs Australia Limited; and was also a director of Turnbull & Partners Limited.

“Daniel Petre is an outstanding business leader and his ability to understand the influence of technology, and leverage it to the benefit of our customers will be invaluable to us,” David Mackay said.

McGrath chief John McGrath said it was a "strong endorsement of the growth and potential of the company" that a technology leader of Mr Petre’s calibre had chosen to join its board.

“I’ve known Daniel for many years and respected his ability to bring clarity and new ideas to complex business challenges, and to see the potential and opportunity in new technologies”, said Mr McGrath.

Earlier this month McGrath Limited announced it reached agreement to acquire the largest franchise group within its 27 year old agency network.

The acquisition will result in 10 McGrath franchise offices across Sydney’s mid to upper North Shore, North-West and Northern Beaches region, becoming McGrath Limited company owned offices.

McGrath Limited has been tipped as undertaking a public float this year.

McGrath appointed JP Morgan and Bell Potter as joint lead managers for the expected float.

Luminis Partners is advising McGrath.

Its annual residential sales turnover for FY15 was $12.3 billion from 11,760 sales with its newest offices opened in Bankstown, Frenchs Forest, Long Jetty, Revesby, Ryde, The Ponds (NSW), ANNERLEY/Yeronga, Cairns, Noosa, Rockhampton and WILSTON (QLD).

McGrath has expanded to 73 offices in the network.

Petre has been a leading player in Australia’s technology industry for more than 25 years and has held leadership positions in a number of technology businesses including nine years at Microsoft during which he worked closely with Bill Gates as Vice-President of the Work Group Division.

He has also been an active technology investor, co-founding AirTree Ventures, a $60 million Investment Fund established to invest in disruptive technology companies at the growth stage, as well as netus and ecorp, the digital investment company for PBL which brought ebay to Australia and founded ninemsn.

Mr Petre is the author of several books, including The Clever Country, dealing with the impact of the internet on Australia in 1996, and Father Time, on the role of fathers in their children’s development, published in 1998 by Jane Curry Publishing.

Together with his wife Carolyn he has donated more than $10 million to charitable causes and medical research through the Petre Foundation. 

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor is one of Australia's most respected property journalists, having been at the top of the game since the early 1980s. Jonathan co-founded the property industry website Property Observer and has written for national and international publications.

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