Europe South Asia Asia Pacific Americas Middle East Africa BBC Homepage World Service Education
BBC Homepagelow graphics version | feedback | help
BBC News Online
 You are in: UK
Front Page 
World 
UK 
Northern Ireland 
Scotland 
Wales 
UK Politics 
Business 
Sci/Tech 
Health 
Education 
Sport 
Entertainment 
Talking Point 
In Depth 
AudioVideo 
Monday, 13 March, 2000, 11:38 GMT
On the web and on the walls
Pic courtesy of NPG/Management Today
Bright, young thing: Charles Muirhead, 24-year-old boss of Orchestream
Their reputation and riches precede them, but would you recognise an internet millionaire if you brushed past one in the street?

With a couple of exceptions, probably not. But now the National Portrait Gallery has captured some of Britain's brightest young business minds for a new photographic exhibition.

Non-net tycoons rub shoulders with rising company stars in the line-up of 23 faces. But given the media's current hunger for new media success stories, it is the internet entrepreneurs who dominate.

And among the latter, the dress code is highly informal with not a neck-tie to be seen.

Pic courtesy of NPG/Management Today
Boo who? Kajsa Leander
Kajsa Leander and Ernst Malmsten, the Swedish founders of online "street and sportswear" e-tailer Boo.com, are featured; she in sober black suit, he in open-neck shirt.

Tim Jackson, the former Financial Times journalist who set up online auction house QXL, made a fortune through its flotation and then returned to writing, stands aside his reflection in an office window, decked out in baggy trousers and a fleece top.

Martha Lane Fox is there, of course, happily reclining on a scarlet sofa with Lastminute.com partner Brent Hoberman.

Dan Wagner, who founded market analysis and information business Maid in 1985 and is now chief executive of digital content and search technology provider, Dialog, also features.

John Pluthero, MD of free ISP Freeserve, is fozen in mid-step, briefcase in hand, while Mike Lynch, founder of Autonomy, an e-commerce business which advises others on how to manage the internet, sports a crocodile skin-style sports jacket.

Pic courtesy of NPG/Management Today
Tim Jackson has gone back to writing
Youngest of all is 24-year-old Charles Muirhead, who heads Orchestream, a profitable software-selling business.

The list was compiled by gallery staff, the magazine Management Today, and headhunters Spencer Stuart.

Jan Hall from Spencer Stuart says those included were chosen not necessarily for their riches, but for other shared characteristics.

"They are totally dedicated to driving their companies and setting a new speed and pace of change for business," she says.

"They may not create a new type of capitalism," says Matthew Lynn in Management Today, "but they will certainly help shape the version we already have."

It appears to mark a change to a world dominated by internet entrepreneurs, clothing retailers and PR executives.

Pic courtesy of NPG/Management Today
Familiar faces: Martha and Brent
Those working in fields such as the City, management consultancies and advertising were not considered after it was decided that, despite the influence of these businesses, the people involved will not be the names history remembers.

Other figures, from outside the world of the net, include entertainment moguls like BSkyB's managing director Elisabeth Murdoch and Stelios Haji-Ioannou from Easyjet

Also featured is Reuben Singh who, at 17, started a clothing chain called Miss Attitude and sold it three years later for about 21m.

And PR guru Matthew Freud, who masterminded the "affair" between Chris Evans and Geri Halliwell, is also there, as is mobile phone retailer Charles Dunstone.

Rufus Olins of Management Today also pointed out they all shared a similar style of management, which he says is "younger, more glamorous and less formal."

Photographs are copyright of the National Portrait Gallery, where the exhibition will be held until 17 September.
Search BBC News Online

Advanced search options
Launch console
BBC RADIO NEWS
BBC ONE TV NEWS
WORLD NEWS SUMMARY
PROGRAMMES GUIDE
See also:

10 Mar 00 | Business
Last chance for Lastminute float
02 Mar 00 | Business
Martha my very dear
09 Dec 99 | Business
Call for business heroes
08 Feb 00 | Business
Losses leap at QXL
03 Oct 99 | The Economy
UK Net millionaires boom
30 Dec 99 | Business
Stockmarkets: A crash to come?
25 Jan 00 | Business
Boo.com axes staff
07 Mar 00 | Business
Freeserve shares tumble
28 Feb 00 | Business
Freeserve joins lottery bid
Internet links:


The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites

Links to other UK stories are at the foot of the page.


E-mail this story to a friend

Links to more UK stories