The 2014 BRW Young Rich List

Nic Crowther
Wed 20 May

There’s an essential rule for living in Canberra: if you want to make your fortune, you need to head to Sydney to Melbourne.

Correct?

It seems this certainly is not the case – especially if you are investing in local bricks and mortar (and a lot of concrete). Canberra’s own Nick Georgalis - founder and sole shareholder of construction firm Geocon - has earned himself a tidy fortune through the recent building boom.

Not bad, considering the company is only just seven years old. This week BRW put him on their Young Rich List, dedicated to those under 40 who have made their own fortune without a significant inheritance. Nick comes in at number 68, putting him in the same league as Ross Robinson of Real Australia Institute, and Randall Deer of Ignite Travel Group.

It’s great to see Canberans hanging around, recognising opportunities within a sophisticated market and exploiting those opportunities to the benefit of local employment and the broader economy. In a global market, watching the growth of Geocon seems idiosyncratic to current trends, but clearly demonstrates there is money to be made with a strong vision and dedicated team.

Geocon has a great portfolio of developments since starting with Vue Apartments in Tuggeranong and a few of the standalone residences at Kingston Foreshore’s Dawes Street.  Currently they are working on a number of larger projects, including Wayfarer, destined to be the ACT’s tallest apartment building in the heart of Belconnen Town Centre.

As for the ladies, well, there are almost as few (well…five). The richest young woman is Carolyn Cresswell, of Carmen’s Kitchen who resides in 40th position with $83 million to her name. Second is Erica Baxter, who took a slightly different path to Carolyn when her divorce from James Packer propelled her up the list to Number 31.