Robert Herjavec

Robert Herjavec (/hərˈɑːvɛk/; Croatian: [xěrjaːʋet͡s]; born September 14, 1962)[3] is a Canadian businessman, investor, and celebrity.

Robert Herjavec
Robert Herjavec.jpg
Herjavec in 2010
Born (1962-09-14) September 14, 1962 (age 57)
CitizenshipCanada[1]
Alma materUniversity of Toronto
OccupationCEO of The Herjavec Group
Founder of BRAK Systems
Net worthUS$200 million (June 2016)[2]
Spouse(s)
Diane Plese
(m. 1990; div. 2016)

Kym Johnson (m. 2016)
Children5
Websitewww.robertherjavec.com

Herjavec founded BRAK Systems, a Canadian integrator of Internet security software, and sold it to AT&T Canada (now Allstream Inc.) in 2000 for $30.2 million.[4][5][6] In 2003, he founded The Herjavec Group, now one of the largest information technology and computer security companies in Canada, with over $200 million in annual revenue. He has been featured on the CBC Television series Dragons' Den and ABC's version of the series, Shark Tank, where he is an investor. He has also written books on advancing in business. His net worth is estimated to be $200 million.

Herjavec received the 2012 Ernst & Young, Ontario Entrepreneur of the Year Award, Technology[7] and the Queen Elizabeth II Diamond Jubilee Medal by Governor General of Canada – 2012 for Outstanding Service to Canada.[8]

Early lifeEdit

Herjavec was born in 1962 in Varaždin, Croatia[9] (formerly Yugoslavia), and grew up in Zbjeg.[10] In 1970,[9] at the age of eight, the family left the country, which had previously incarcerated Herjavec's father, Vladimir, for speaking out against the regime.[11][12] According to Herjavec, "He’d drink a little too much and then say bad things about Communism, and got thrown into jail 22 times for being an anti-Communist."[13] Herjavec's family arrived in Halifax, Nova Scotia with a single suitcase[14] and only $20.[5] The family eventually settled in Toronto, where they lived in the basement of a family friend's home for 18 months.[15] For Herjavec, who spoke no English,[16] the transition proved difficult. Having grown up on a farm and raised by his grandmother among neighbors with similar lifestyles, he now found himself in a much poorer economic class than his neighbors.[11]

Herjavec's father got a job in a factory in Mississauga, making $76 a week.[5] Herjavec cites his father, whom he describes as "a really, really tough guy", as a major influence in his life. Herjavec has described a seminal memory of his, when he came home one day to complain to his mother that his classmates were making fun of him. His father who used to walk to work to save money on bus fare, came home, and when he heard what his son described, instructed his son never to complain, which became a guiding principle in Herjavec's life, one which he says sparked his sense of courage.[6] Another influential episode in his youth came when Herjavec's mother was persuaded by a traveling salesman to buy a vacuum cleaner for $500, which was seven weeks' salary. As a result, Herjavec swore his family would never be taken advantage of again.[5]

In 1984, Herjavec graduated from New College at the University of Toronto, with a degree in English literature[16] and political science.[6] To make a living and help support his family, Herjavec took on a variety of minimum wage jobs in the 1990s, such as waiting tables, delivering newspapers,[11] retail salesman, and debt collection.[6]

CareerEdit

Early career in filmEdit

In the mid-1980s, Herjavec worked in several productions as a third assistant director, including Cain and Abel and The Return of Billy Jack. He was a field producer for Global TV of the 1984 Winter Olympics in Sarajevo.[17]

BusinessEdit

Looking for work in between productions, Herjavec applied for a position at Logiquest selling IBM mainframe emulation boards. He was not qualified for the position, but convinced the company to give it to him by offering to work for free for 6 months. To pay the rent during this "free" period, Herjavec waited tables. He eventually rose in the ranks to become General Manager of Logiquest.[4] In 1990, after being fired from Logiquest,[18] he founded BRAK Systems, a Canadian integrator of Internet security software, from the basement of his home.[4][6][18][12][19] BRAK Systems was sold to AT&T Canada (now Allstream Inc.) in March 2000 for $30.2 million.[5] He then became Vice President of Sales at Ramp Network, which was sold to Nokia for $225 million.[20]

The Herjavec GroupEdit

In 2003, Herjavec founded The Herjavec Group, a security solutions integrator, reseller and managed service provider.[21] Herjavec Group is one of Canada's fastest-growing technology companies and the country's largest information technology security provider. The company has grown from 3 employees with $400,000 in sales in 2003 to $200 million in annual revenue.[22][6]

TelevisionEdit

Herjavec has appeared as a regular on the Canadian CBC Television series Dragons' Den (seasons 1 to 6), and in the United States on ABC's version of the series, Shark Tank, where business pitches from aspiring entrepreneurs are presented to a panel of potential investors. Herjavec's most successful investment from the show is a $100,000 for a 10% stake in sweater company Tipsy Elves.[23]

Herjavec won three Gemini Awards as part of Dragon’s Den for Outstanding Reality Show in Canada.[24]

Herjavec presented awards at the 2013 Creative Arts Emmy Awards[25] and the 2013 Mr. Olympia contest.[citation needed]

On February 24, 2015, Herjavec was announced as one of the contestants for season 20 of the reality series Dancing with the Stars. His partner was Australian dancer (and eventual wife) Kym Herjavec.[26] On May 5, 2015, during a double elimination, Herjavec and Johnson were eliminated and finished in 6th place.[27]

PublicationsEdit

Herjavec is the author of three books. His first two books were Driven: How to Succeed in Business and Life (2010) and The Will to Win: Leading, Competing, Succeeding (2013). Driven is organized by the work and life principles that made Herjavec both wealthy and successful, while The Will to Win delivers life lessons that promise to guide readers to greater happiness and success.[28][29] "The Will to Win" is also the name of public presentations that Herjavec has given, which feature his advice to businesspeople, based on his life experiences.[30] On March 29, 2016, his third book titled You Don't Have to Be a Shark: Creating Your Own Success was released.[31]

Personal lifeEdit

Herjavec married Diane Plese in 1990. They separated in July 2014[32] and divorced in early 2016. He had suicidal ideation after his marriage fell apart.[33] He and his ex-wife have two daughters, Caprice and Skye, and a son named Brendan.[34][35][36] In June 2019, a judge ruled that Herjavec must pay his ex-wife additional sums that would bring the total she received from the marriage to $25 million.[37]

In September 2015, Herjavec confirmed his relationship with his former Dancing with the Stars partner Kym Herjavec.[38] On February 27, 2016, the two became engaged.[39] On July 31, 2016 they were married in Los Angeles, California. [40]

In December 2017, Robert and Kym announced that they were expecting twins.[41] The twins, a boy and a girl, were born on April 23, 2018, named Hudson Robert Herjavec and Haven Mae Herjavec.[42]

In 2017, Herjevec's ex-girlfiend, Danielle Vasinova, whom he dated from 2013 to 2015, sued him for rape after he sued her for attempting to extort him over false claims of sexual assault.[43][44] Both suits were dismissed in mid 2018. The allegations against Robert were withdrawn without financial settlement, and Vasinova apologized to Robert and his family.[45]

Herjavec owns a home in the Bridle Path, Toronto, area. The mansion has been host to luminaries such as Michael Bublé, John Travolta, Mick Jagger, and Bono.[46] Herjavec paid $7.5 million for the mansion,[5] which has been featured on MTV Cribs and on Joan Rivers's TV show How'd You Get So Rich?, and the Rolling Stones' tour video. Herjavec also has several other vacation homes.[47]

A passion of Herjavec's is car racing, and he competes in the Ferrari Challenge.[48] Herjavec competed as #007 for The Herjavec Group Racing team in the North American Ferrari Challenge Series, where he won the Rookie of the Year title in 2011, after winning both races at the season-opener in St. Petersburg, Florida, and following up with wins in Laguna Seca Raceway and Lime Rock, Connecticut.[49]

In 2012, Herjavec was selected to be the Grand Marshal for the 2012 Honda Indy Toronto. He is also an avid car collector with several rare cars in his collection.[50]

Herjavec is an avid golfer and runner. He has played in the 2010 Canadian charity open sponsored by Royal Bank of Canada at the Royal St George's Golf Club. He has also competed in the 2011 New York City Marathon and the 2010 Miami Marathon.[51] He is certified by the Professional Association of Diving Instructors as a scuba diver and owns several Ducati motorcycles.[52]

Herjavec is a major donor to the Union Gospel Mission homeless shelter in Seattle, Washington, after being turned on to the organization by his pastor, whom he consulted to deal with his depression after his marriage fell apart.[53]

He is a Christian.[54]

ReferencesEdit

  1. ^ Shandrow, Kim Lachance (June 24, 2016). "Robert Herjavec to Immigrant Entrepreneurs: 'People Don't Care About Your Color, Religion or Sex. They Care About the Value You Add.'". Entrepreneur.
  2. ^ Weigle, Lauren (March 16, 2015). "Robert Herjavec – 'Dancing With The Stars' 2015 Contestant". heavy.com.
  3. ^ "Robert Herjavec". Virtual International Authority File.
  4. ^ a b c "Robert Herjavec". Inside Philanthropy.
  5. ^ a b c d e f Kopun, Francine (March 16, 2010). "Robert Herjavec: The nice Dragon". Toronto Star.
  6. ^ a b c d e f SMITH, SCOTT S. (June 5, 2017). "Shark Robert Herjavec Secures A Place As An Entrepreneurial Icon". Investor’s Business Daily.
  7. ^ "Herjavec wins Special Citation from Ernst & Young". January 13, 2013.
  8. ^ "The Diamond Jubilee Medal" (Press release). Canada. January 12, 2013.
  9. ^ a b S., Z. (February 25, 2015). "Kanadski Hrvat u 12 godina zaposlio 250 ljudi, 'težak' je 200 milijuna dolara" [Canadian in 12 years employed 250 people, 'worth' $ 200m]. CroExpress (in Croatian).
  10. ^ Bach, Nenad (January 15, 2010). "Robert Herjavec Croatian-born Canadian entrepreneur, businessman and TV star". Croatian World Network.
  11. ^ a b c Mielach, David (February 26, 2012). "'Shark Tank' Judge Herjavec on Living the American Dream". Business News Daily.
  12. ^ a b Weigle, Lauren (March 24, 2015). "Robert Herjavec Height & Age – 'Dancing With The Stars' Contestant". heavy.com.
  13. ^ Eng, Dinah (November 12, 2016). "Before Robert Herjavec Was a Shark". Fortune.
  14. ^ "Robert Herjavec to Deliver Keynote Speech at CIOsynergy New York" (Press release). PRWeb. September 6, 2013.
  15. ^ "Robert Herjavec Success Story - Rags to Riches". Business News Daily. February 26, 2012.
  16. ^ a b "Alumni Portraits: Robert Herjavec". University of Toronto.
  17. ^ Fine, Jon (April 6, 2016). "Why 'Shark Tank' Star Robert Herjavec's Life Should Be Turned Into a Movie". Inc.
  18. ^ a b Feloni, Richard (May 7, 2015). "'Shark Tank' investor Robert Herjavec explains how to know you should quit your job and become a full-time entrepreneur". Business Insider.
  19. ^ "Robert Herjavec: Top 10 tips for budding entrepreneurs". CBC News. October 6, 2009.
  20. ^ Lagorio-Chafkin, Christine (June 11, 2012). "Shark Tank's Accidental Entrepreneur: Robert Herjavec". Inc.
  21. ^ "Global Information Security Leader - Herjavec Group". Herjavec Group.
  22. ^ "Herjavec Group: Who We Are".
  23. ^ "Robert Herjavec Net Worth: From A Salesman To A $200 Million Shark". Capitalism. May 30, 2019.
  24. ^ Benzine, Adam (September 1, 2011). "Dragon's Den victorious at Geminis". RealScreen.
  25. ^ Friend, Rupert (September 10, 2013). "Creative Arts Emmy Presenter List Grows". Academy of Television Arts & Sciences.
  26. ^ Sher, Lauren (February 24, 2015). "'Dancing With the Stars' 2015: Season 20 Celebrity Cast Announced". ABC.
  27. ^ Kubicek, John (May 5, 2015). "'Dancing with the Stars' Results: A Huge Double Elimination". BuddyTV.
  28. ^ Mac, Amber (November 12, 2013). "How Shark Tank's Robert Herjavec Kills The Competition—With Kindness". Fast Company.
  29. ^ "This week's bestsellers in Canada". Toronto Star. May 3, 2013.
  30. ^ "Robert Herjavec of 'Shark Tank' to Give Keynote Presentation at Catalyst Americas 2015" (Press release). Business Wire. January 15, 2015.
  31. ^ "New Book Announcement! You Don't Have to Be A Shark".
  32. ^ Dodd, Johnny (March 18, 2015). "Shark Tank's Robert Herjavec: I Thought About Suicide After My Marriage Fell Apart". People.
  33. ^ Nahas, Aili (March 2, 2016). "Shark Tank's Robert Herjavec Opens Up About Meeting Fiancée Kym Johnson After His Painful Divorce and Suicidal Thoughts: 'It Was Like a Ray of Sunshine'". People.
  34. ^ Steiner, Amanda Michelle (March 4, 2015). "Shark Tank's Robert Herjavec Legally Separated from Wife of 25 Years". People.
  35. ^ Weigle, Lauren (March 16, 2015). "Diane Plese, Robert Herjavec's Wife – 'Dancing With The Stars'". heavy.com.
  36. ^ Bach, Nenad N. (January 15, 2010). "Robert Herjavec Croatian-born Canadian entrepreneur, businessman and TV star". Crown Croatian Royal Network.
  37. ^ Pazzano, Sam (January 30, 2019). "DIVORCING WITH SHARKS: Robert Herjavec to pay ex $125Gs monthly". The Toronto Sun.
  38. ^ Weiss, Matthew Cole (September 14, 2015). "Kym Johnson and Robert Herjavec Dating". People.
  39. ^ Nahas, Aili (February 27, 2016). "Kym Johnson and Robert Herjavec Engaged". People.
  40. ^ "Dancing with the Stars' Kym Johnson and Robert Herjavec Are Married!". People. July 31, 2016.
  41. ^ Martin, Annie (December 15, 2017). "Kym Johnson posts baby bump photo while pregnant with twins". United Press International.
  42. ^ Leonard, Elizabeth; Juneau, Jen (April 24, 2018). "Big Reveal! Robert and Kym Johnson Herjavec Name Newborn Twins Haven Mae and Hudson Robert". People.
  43. ^ Bitette, Nicole (November 9, 2017). "Shark Tank star Robert Herjavec's ex-girlfriend claims in lawsuit that he repeatedly raped her". Toronto Star. New York Daily News.
  44. ^ MARR, MADELEINE (November 9, 2017). "This 'Shark Tank' star claimed extortion. Then he got accused of rape and sodomy". The Miami Herald.
  45. ^ Gray, Mark (June 20, 2018). "'SHARK TANK' STAR ROBERT HERJAVEC AND EX SETTLE LAWSUITS AGAINST EACH OTHER". Wonderwall.
  46. ^ Weigle, Lauren (April 6, 2015). "'Dancing With the Stars' Contestant Robert Herjavec Net Worth". Heavy.com.
  47. ^ Kelly, Deirdre (May 12, 2006). "The BIG white house". The Globe and Mail.
  48. ^ Wang, K.S. (September 18, 2015). "Celebrity Drive: 'Shark Tank' Investor Robert Herjavec". Motor Trend.
  49. ^ STEPHENS, STEPHANIE (March 27, 2015). "Cha-Cha-Ching! 'Shark' Robert Herjavec Cuts a Rug on Dancing with the Stars". Parade.
  50. ^ RICHARDSON, MARK (August 21, 2018). "There's good money to be made collecting cars". The Globe and Mail.
  51. ^ Hetzel, Megan (March 4, 2015). "Shark Tank Star Robert Herjavec Talks Running and Dancing". Runner's World.
  52. ^ Scarfone, Lucas (January 12, 2012). "Herjavec Ferrari + Ducati Shoot". Scarfone Photography.
  53. ^ Brodeur, Nicole (February 22, 2019). "'Shark Tank' star Robert Herjavec owes a debt of gratitude to a homeless shelter in Seattle". The Seattle Times.
  54. ^ "Shark Tank's Robert Herjavec Considered Suicide After His Marriage Failed: I Just Wanted to End It". E! News (in German). March 18, 2015. Retrieved March 21, 2020.

External linksEdit