Brent was among the first to seize the potential of doing business online, steering lastminute.com from the drawing board into a multiple market operator matching subscribers to suppliers. When the dotcom bubble burst he learned the value of outsourcing as well as smaller, smarter teams.
He’s since established Founders Forum, a global talking shop and platform for digital entrepreneurs. Brent explains why now is a perfect time to move from bricks to clicks.
He shot to fame as one of the bright young faces of the ‘dot-com’ boom, when he co-founded lastminute.com. Unlike many of his contemporaries, Brent’s venture survived when the bubble burst.
He co-founded lastminute.com in 1998 with Martha Lane Fox and took the company to profit and gross bookings of over $2bn. The company floated in 2000 when the dot-com bubble was at its peak. It acquired 14 businesses after the IPO to supplement the annual growth of the core brand. In 2005 lastminute.com was sold to Sabre for $1.1bn
Mydeco.com is the UK`s leading interior design website. It brings together the widest range of home furnishing products, from over 750 retailers.
Brent is a Governor of University of the Arts College, London and a non-executive director of Guardian Media Group. From 2007 he took on the role of Non-Executive Chairman of Wayn.com, a travel and leisure social network with over 10 million members but stepped down from the board in 2009.
He is also an angel investor in several internet companies including Viagogo and moveme.com.
In 2009, Brent was selected as one of the World Economic Forum’s Global Young Leaders for the UK . In July 2009, Brent co-founded PROfounders Capital with Michael Birch, Peter Dubens, Jonnie Goodwin, Rogan Angelini-Hurll and Sean Seton-Rogers. The fund invests in early stage internet investors, and in 2010 invested in start-up Made.com, a joint venture between mydeco.com and founder Ning Li.