Director at FTI Consulting Australia gears up to cycle country for charity

15 November 2018

Robert Gemmell, Director at the Australian branch of FTI Consulting has teamed up with mate Ray Choong to cycle the country. The duo will push themselves over a distance of 14,000kms for the Starlight Children’s Foundation.

Under the banner, Cycle the Nation for Your Donation, Robert Gemmell and Ray Choong will set off on the first stage of their trip from Brisbane to Townsville. The campaign will begin on the 3rd of May 2019.

This is however, not the first time the pair has set off on an adventure in an attempt to raise funds for children’s charities. Gemmell and Choong have previously cycling the entire length of Japan as well as from Singapore, along the west coast of Malaysia to the Thailand border. They’ve rowed around part of Guadalcanal in the Solomon Islands and have run the London Marathon.

All in all, the events combined have raised hundreds of thousands of dollars for charity. Now, they aim to shoot higher than before and aim in seven digits.

For Cycle the Nation for Your Donation, they hope to raise over $1 million for the Starlight Children’s Foundation, which is an integral part of the Australian healthcare system. In the past year the charity conducted 426,000 Starlight experiences for children and their families and granted 525 life-changing Starlight Wishes.


Starlight expanse since its conception in 1988 has spread throughout the nation and now every single children’s hospital in the country has a Starlight Express Room. The charity brightens the lives of seriously ill children, adolescents and their families by replacing pain, fear and stress with fun, joy and laughter.

The FTI Consulting Director, outside his charitable cycling career, has been with the firm for the past two years. Prior to his stint with the independent global business advisory firm, worked with Aquenta Consulting (a Jacobs company) as Regional Manager of Queensland.

He has extensive experience transcending between management consulting, law and engineering and holds a Masters in construction law from Stanford University’s Law School.

Although the ride is still a couple of months off, Australian pro-surfer and Starlight Ambassador Mick Fanning has reached out to the duo. “Just want to wish Robert and Ray who are cycling the nation for your donation a huge good luck.”

“What you’re doing is incredible and raising money for starlight in such needed areas is just incredible. So thank you, good luck, power on and keep your eyes on the road,” said Fanning on a video recently posted on Facebook.


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Ian Watt leads Energy & Environment arm of L.E.K Consulting Australia

15 April 2019

Ian Watt has joined L.E.K Consulting’s as a partner and leader of the firm’s Australian Energy & Environment practice. Watt is based in Sydney.

“We are delighted to welcome Ian Watt to L.E.K Consulting,” said Nick Holder, who leads the firm’s operations in the Asia Pacific region and is country leader of the Australia business. “His experience working with utilities to successfully address waves of market disruption and regulatory complexity bolsters our ability to drive value creation for clients.” 

Watt joins from Strategy&, where he worked since 2010, initially with Booz & Company before transitioning to Strategy& through PwC's $1 billion acquisition of Booz in 2014. He brings over a decade of experience advising clients in the energy, utilities, mining and industrials sectors across Asia Pacific, Europe, and North America. His experiences span the utility value chain, and comprise a mix of growth strategy (strategic planning, go-to-market models), operational transformation (cost, business model, and performance optimisation) and innovation (design of new products and services). 

During his career at Strategy&, Watt worked from the firm’s offices in London, Sydney, and most recently Calgary – he relocated to Canada in 2016 to help launch and build the Strategy& firm in the country. Prior to his consulting spell, he held several technical an economic consulting roles in the engineering industry, having started his career in Mott MacDonald’s consultancy team in the UK.

Ian Watt leads Energy & Environment arm of L.E.K ConsultingAt L.E.K Consulting, which has over 1,400 professionals globally, Watt will lead the Australian Energy & Environment practice. His appointment comes at a time when the energy & utilities sector is facing major change, with market disruption and regulatory complexity taking hold. According to L.E.K. Consulting, “Primary energy suppliers, OEMs and utilities, among others, turn to L.E.K. to benefit from its experience gathered over decades of tackling major strategic and operational issues in the sector.”

The presence of large energy conglomerates and mining giants means Australia's energy & resources consulting industry is the 2nd largest globally, trailing just the massive market of the United States. Government data shows that the resources sector comprise 15% to 20% of the national economy and up to 60% of Australia’s exports. BHP Billiton (the fourth largest company by revenue in Australia) and Rio Tinto (revenue of $40 billion) are major players in the space, meanwhile beyond mining & resources, companies such as energy retailers (e.g. Alinta Energy, BlueNRG, Click Energy, etc) and energy generators (e.g. AGL, Origin and EnergyAustralia) are ramping up their spending on external consultants in a bid to successfully position themselves for future sustainable growth. 

Watt’s move brings the total of new partners at L.E.K. in Australia to three this year. Previously, Joe Sponholtz joined the Sydney office from rival consultancy Partners In Performance, while Melbourne-based Philip Wheeler was promoted internally to partner.

Last week, Bain & Company named a new leader for its Australia and New Zealand division: company veteran Peter Stumbles.