Melbourne construction digital entrepreneur Rob Phillpot scores both Block Gatwick penthouses

Melbourne construction digital entrepreneur Rob Phillpot scores both Block Gatwick penthouses
Melbourne construction digital entrepreneur Rob Phillpot scores both Block Gatwick penthouses

Rob Phillpot, the co-founder of construction software company Aconex, was the mystery buyer of both of the penthouse apartments in the The Block Gathwick for $5.85 million through PropertyDuo.

Using buyers' agent Greville Pabst, his first acquisition was when Norm and Jess sold their penthouse for $2,859,000 (top and below).

He had inspected the Gatwick only two nights before the auction.

The Fitzroy Street penthouse offering came with a $2.65 million reserve with five registered buyers.

There was very cautious bidding after its $2.5 million opening bid from another buyers agent Frank Valentic.

Pabst thought the buy "was a very good value" for the south facing apartment with four-metre-high ceilings and massive terrace. Pabst indicated he was prepared to pay more, but there wasn’t competition.

Melbourne construction digital entrepreneur Rob Phillpot scores both Block Gatwick penthouses

Norm and Jess took home $209,000 in prize money.

The next acquisition by Phillpot was the penthouse of Bianca and Carla (below) for $2,991,000, after a tense auction when the auctioneer refused to take a $2.7 million opening bid.

"This is worth $3.25 million," Damien Cooley suggested.

The 5/34 Fitzroy Street penthouse, which doesn't face Fitzroy Street, had a $2.7 million reserve.

Melbourne construction digital entrepreneur Rob Phillpot scores both Block Gatwick penthouses

The price guidance had been adjusted upwards during the campaign by The Agency to between $2.6 million to $2.8 million. 

Bianca and Carla took home $301,000 in prize money.

Melbourne construction digital entrepreneur Rob Phillpot scores both Block Gatwick penthouses

It was in the late 1990s when Aconex was founded in a kitchen by the two Scotch College school friends, Phillpot and Leigh Jasper.

In a deal, announced in December 2017, the company was sold to the global tech giant Oracle.

The friends had started thinking about ways in which the internet could help companies deal with large amounts of data and information.

At the time Jasper was at McKinsey & Company, working in CEO strategy, and Phillpot was a project manager at Multiplex Constructions and was facing the challenge of handling thousands of documents on construction projects.

The takeover deal was the largest ever achieved by a listed Australian tech company and saw Jasper and Philpott walk away with approximately $94 million and $88 million respectively.

Phillpot's home town is Warrnambool.

He had not watched any episodes of The Block.

“I came and looked at the penthouses, and they were both amazing,” he said after the auctions.

“I couldn’t pick."

He had not yet decided if he would rent them to long-term tenants or look at short-stay options such as Airbnb.

Experts have tipped the penthouses could fetch between $2000 and $2500 a night on Airbnb.

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor

Jonathan Chancellor is one of our authors. Jonathan has been writing about property since the early 1980s and is editor-at-large of Property Observer.

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