Hemi Thaker, president and CEO of Anue Systems, a local software maker, focused on advising future entrepreneurs in a lecture Tuesday evening at the AT&T Executive Education and Conference Center.
Every month, the Red McCombs School of Business invites UT students and faculty to attend lectures where business experts provide audiences with an interactive presentation of their journey. A reception follows in which students are encouraged to participate in networking experiences.
Laura Kilcrease, entrepreneur-in-residence for the Red McCombs School of Business, invited Thaker to speak. She said she believed Thaker’s valuable lessons would be useful for students.
“Hemi built four companies — two of which he learnt a lot of lessons and two of which he applied those lessons,” Kilcrease said.
Thaker, who holds a master’s degree in electrical engineering and 13 patents, earned the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award for Central Texas in 2011.
Thaker started his last company, Anue Systems, with $20,000 and six years later, he sold the company for $154 million, according to Kilcrease.
“Anue’s mission statement is to provide a complete solution to optimize and secure rapidly evolving, dynamic data center networks,” Thaker said.
Thaker said he attributes his success to surrounding himself with a good team. He said he vowed to personally interview every potential employee.
“I would only hire people with character, chemistry and capability. If they lacked the character and chemistry, then I wouldn’t hire them,” Thaker said.
Several UT students attended the event. Government freshman Bernardo Paredes said he was inspired by Thaker’s entrepreneurial spirit.
“I want to start a nonprofit organization to prevent bullying in our schools,” Paredes said. “So I have the ideas, but Thaker gave me the good information on how to kick-start the ideas to actuality.”
After a 60-minute presentation, Thaker closed with motivation for aspiring entrepreneurs.
“Just start,” Thaker said. “Just do it. Don’t be afraid to fail.”
Published on February 6, 2013 as "Local tech CEO inspires with success story".