SEEK loses one of the Bassats


Paul Bassat co-founded online employment site SEEK as a self-admitted “cash-strapped startup” back in 1997. Today, thirteen years later with an estimated personal fortune of more than $120 million, the executive announced he would resign his post as joint-SEEK CEO at the end of the 2011 financial year, leaving his brother Andrew and fellow multi-millionaire in charge.

“I have been incredibly lucky to have had the opportunity to spend such a big part of my life at SEEK. I continue to be passionate about SEEK and the team here as I have ever been,” said Paul Bassat (pictured) in a statement issued this morning.

“However, I have come to the conclusion that it will be hard for me to show the level of enthusiasm for the job itself over the next few years as is required to perform to the best of my ability. As a result, I have made the decision to announce my resignation as joint CEO.”

SEEK chairman Bob Watson said Bassat was leaving the business in “an excellent position”, with it having recently achieved “an outstanding result” in the 2010 financial year, an dhad exciting growth prospects.”

His brother Andrew – already joint CEO – would take on the role solely, with a transition plan having been developed. It is anticipated that Paul Bassat will rejoin the SEEK board in 2012 as a non-executive director after an absence of a year.

Prior to co-founding Seek, Paul Bassat was a lawyer for more than half a decade with a leading corporate law firm. He holds Law and Commerce degrees form the University of Melbourne and is also involved in “a number of community and charitable organisations.”

Bassat’s personal fortune was estimated at $98 million in 2006 by Business Review Weekly for the magazine’s annual list of Australia’s richest people, with his brother’s being worth about the same. SEEK went public on the Australian Stock Exchange in April 2005.

By 2010 the Bassats’ fortune had grown still larger – with BRW estimating the pair had a joint fortune of no less than $248 million.

Image credit: SEEK