$12k acquisition, billion-dollar market cap: The Jamie Pherous journey

Matthew Kidman

Centennial Asset Management

Jamie Pherous embodies the importance of drive, resilience and talent. Having graduated at 20, following the status quo was never an option. 

After working across brokerage and accountancy, the prescribed pathways never aligned with Jamie's entrepreneurial tendencies, and, when the opportunity to transition into the travel industry arose, Jamie welcomed it with open arms. 

From there he has not looked back. His acquisition of a significant stake in what soon became ASX-listed company Corporate Travel Management is a testament to his drive. As Founder and CEO, he has shaped their culture and success from the ground up, building a team ready to take on the world. 

"To compete across the whole globe consistently…that is the test of a truly global company. That is what we aspire to be.”

In this episode of the Success and More Interesting Stuff podcast, we discuss Jamie's relentless ability to learn and adapt; the manner in which Corporate Travel Management has grown; and finally the importance of resilience when facing unrelenting (and sometimes personal) attacks. Despite operating in the much-maligned travel industry, Jamie is filled with optimism for the future. 


  • 1:35 - The importance of family and early sources of inspiration
  • 7:40 - Jamie’s drive to enter the workforce from university
  • 11:47 - Learnings from accounting in tandem with an entrepreneurial mindset
  • 14:19 - A competitive edge and results-driven mentality
  • 15:03 - The origins of Corporate Travel Management
  • 23:29 - Client diversification and risk management
  • 25:07 - The rationale behind going public
  • 30:27 - How can you develop and maintain a strong team?
  • 33:10 - Jamie’s boundless energy
  • 34:57 - Weathering the infamous VGI short report
  • 40:49 - Hardships from Covid-19 and a surprising acquisition
  • 48:37 - Jamie's vision for the future
  • 51:25 - The personal sacrifices made 

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Matthew Kidman
Principal and Portfolio Manager
Centennial Asset Management

Matthew is the Principal and Portfolio Manager at Centennial Asset Management. Prior to this, Matthew was the CIO at Wilson Asset Management between 1998 and 2011, achieving 18% p.a. over the period.

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