Australia’s Fastest Growing QSR, Fishbowl with Nic Pestalozzi

Today, Nic Pestalozzi, Co-Founder of Sydney salad group, Fishbowl shares the story of his growing brand and two more, with Side Room and Fish Shop. 

Five years since starting the business, Nic and Nathan have self-funded over 30 venues for Fishbowl alone and been awarded as Australia’s fastest growing QSR.  

With over 300 staff, Nic has no plans of slowing down with a national expansion already underway.


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Project Development and The People with Andrew Taylor and Paul Schulte

Andrew Taylor and Paul Schulte, Co-founders of ‘thepeople_’ join the program today. 

With over 18 years in hotel development, design, investment and operations, Andrew is responsible for leading the company and overseeing capital raises. He’s a trained lawyer, the Founder & Managing Director of Cre8tive Property – a boutique hotel advisory and development business – and the previous head of development for Starwood and Mirvac – both of which were acquired by Marriott and Accor, respectively. 

Paul, who carries over two decades of experience as the owner and operator of dozens of hospitality venues, was previously a director of hospitality group, Keystone and has created market-leading human-centric concepts across Australia and the US. 

Together, by reanimating and revitalising legacy properties, they’re activating spaces in new ways, while respecting regional heritage and working with the fundamental belief that dining should be fun.  


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Deputy and Global Workforce Management with Ashik Ahmed

Ashik Ahmed’s career is devoted to building technologies that create better, more efficient organisations. In 2008, along with co-founder Steve Shelley, he started Deputy, a global workforce management platform for employee scheduling, timesheets and communication.

Today, Deputy services more than 250,000 workplaces across 120 countries and Ashik’s mission is to improve the lives of shift workers and small business owners worldwide.


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The Amazon of Foodservice with Ben Lipschitz

Ben Lipschitz is the Co-Founder and Managing Director at FoodByUs, a wholesale food marketplace for restaurants to order from hundreds of suppliers.

Dubbed ‘Amazon for the foodservice industry’ FoodByUs is the market leader and has received Venture Capital investment from, amongst others, Macquarie Bank’s Venture Capital division.

Prior to founding FoodByUs, Ben founded and sold international footwear company, Flipsters. He has a Bachelor of Arts/Law (UNSW).


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Roasted By Bureaux with Tim Williams

Tim Williams is the Founder of Bureaux Collective — Australia’s first shared coffee roasting workspace.

Over a 20-year career, Tim has developed and led renowned specialty coffee brands like Square Mile Coffee Roasters (London) and Intelligentsia Coffee and Tea (Los Angeles) across three continents, focusing on building quality-driven coffee sourcing, roasting, and retailing operations.

Today, Tim lives in Melbourne and divides his time between running Bureaux Collective, the World AeroPress Championship and directing a charity in Rwanda.


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Artistic Expression Through Food with Joe Grbac

Working with industry greats like Gordon Ramsay, Philip Howard, George Calombaris and Scott Pickett, Joe Grbac has seen kitchens across Melbourne and London, heading some and stepping back to learn in others. In late-2017, he embarked on a solo adventure with Saxe – where the interview takes place today.

From watching his Mum roll gnocchi on Sundays to ultimately developing a unique flavour and style of cooking, Joe has seen the culinary world from many perspectives and it’s a pleasure to share our creative discussion together.


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Insects, Waste and Food Systems with James Sackl

After the acquisition of his online business directory, James Sackl founded Karma3, a bio-tech company transforming agriculture by facilitating the nutrient-rich recycling of waste, using insects.

On the 16th of October 2019, I interviewed James and on the 18th of November, a Sydney Morning Herald article came out that may compromise his integrity.

Instead of allowing this to overshadow our conversation, please choose to focus on the incredible work of the company and business insights.


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Meat Meeting with Alex Shirazi

Alex Shirazi is a co-founder of the Cultured Meat Symposium – a Silicon Valley-based conference on lab-grown or cultured meat – he’s the Founder of Phlint, a retail analytics firm and he’s also a really nice guy.  

We first met online, in the lead-up to Global Table – where he chaired a panel on the Future of Meat. Coincidentally, one of those panelists is also coming up on an episode ahead… 

After the conversation you’re about to hear at the WeWork office in Melbourne’s CBD, Alex and I continued our discussion into the early hours of the morning – prompted by the n’th round at the The Black Pearl, to wrap up. 

If you like this episode, Alex has his own podcast called Cultured Meat and Future Food, about cellular agriculture technology.

I hope you enjoy the conversation as much as we did.


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Vegan Welcome At Christmas

Thanks! Oh wait, is it vegan?


Amongst the tinsel and baubles, chocolate is also a regular guest at annual Christmas festivities. But an ever-growing list of dietary requirements can make this familiar member more like an awkward relative.

With this movement in mind, we took the opportunity to interview Juliet Sampson, Founder of London’s first vegan-only chocolate cafe, Copperhouse Chocolates about her new retail business.


Firstly, can you please clarity for readers, what part of the supply chain you operate within? Are you farming, sourcing, producing, distributing etc? There’s an important distinction between chocolate producers and chocolatiers.

We are a chocolatier. However we do pay more attention to sourcing than many chocolatiers – we like to be in contact with the producers as much as we can and have visited some of the farms.

This is in contrast to, for example, Belgian chocolate, where you generally have no idea where the cocoa was grown.

Vegan chocolate isn’t a new idea but exclusive vegan chocolate retail is – and you’re the only store in London – so why is now the time to have a retail presence?

It’s mainly a personal reason – I am vegan, and have been for about twenty years. I wanted to open a chocolate shop and wasn’t comfortable profiting from dairy. With the timing, I feel that attitudes towards veganism have changed enough in the last few years that I can try to make a success of the thing that I want to do.

What adjacent industries are you looking to and learning from in the growing chocolate retail market?

We are always learning from other food businesses. In particular, I think speciality coffee has cleared a path for artisan hot chocolate to follow in.

Why aren’t there more vegan chocolate shops in London? Why haven’t other brands taken action in this space?

Some chocolate brands may be starting to add more vegan products, however if they have an existing customer base for their milk-chocolate products and don’t have the motivation to drop this then it’s probably a big leap. It’s a combination of a couple of niche markets, I’m happy to be (hopefully) leading the way.

Do you see this set to change over 2020? If so, how?

Maybe some will be watching how I do! I wouldn’t be surprised to see an increase in vegan counters or designated areas within existing shops, although I’m not sure about more dedicated fully vegan chocolate shops.


Opening The Cabinet with Pete Stevens

Sixteen years with some of the largest alcohol distributors in the world (like Coca-Cola, Diageo and Pernod Ricard), ‘Whisky Pete’ is an interesting and polarising man.

Pete Stevens is a Whisky Consultant, Event Manager and the only Cuban-qualified Master Cigar Roller outside of Cuba.

With a head full of grey hair, he lied on his first CV and describes his business, Gentleman’s Cabinet, as ‘education meets inebriation’.


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