The Rivergum Edge – Issue 4

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Advisory Board Appointment


High-profile South Australian business leaders, including a global IT entrepreneur, intellectual property specialist and an international developer, are helping to spearhead Rivergum Homes’ growth and continued expansion.

The new six-member advisory board, have joined Marc Taintey and Victor Said to fulfil Rivergum’s vision to create homes and opportunities for more Australians to realise their goal of home ownership.

The appointments reflect the company’s continued drive to lead the industry through innovation, quality and affordability.

On their agenda will be the group’s growth aspirations interstate and desire to lead the industry in providing smarter, more affordable, and sustainable building solutions while providing a cutting edge customer experience.

Advisory board members include: Peter Siebels, Gary Rusling, Josh Simons, Michael Lenarduzzi and Geoff Rohrsheim.

Meet a few of the members

Geoff Rohrsheim

Geoff Rohrsheim has more than 20 years’ experience in the ICT sector. He currently shares his executive time across his own co-founded start-ups, namely Hatch Creations, Chamonix IT Consulting, Cevo and Expose Data.

Geoff is a former Ernst Young Entrepreneur of the Year and has had three start-ups appear in the BRW Fast 100.  Geoff’s latest venture, Kloud Solutions ( grew rapidly in five years to have more than 170 staff with offices in Melbourne, Sydney, Adelaide, Brisbane and Manila. Kloud Solutions was ranked by BRW as the fastest growing company in Australia in 2014, was the winner of Microsoft’s Australian Cloud Partner of the year in 2014 and the worldwide winner in the cloud productivity category in 2015.  Kloud was sold to Telstra in February 2016.

Geoff brings his passion for South Australia, the IT industry and how IT can improve both business performance and society in general to the Rivergum Homes Group.

Peter Siebels

Following a thirty year career with KPMG including roles on the Australian National Board and National Executive Committee, Peter turned his attention to pursuing a career in Governance and Advisory.

Governance positions include Chair roles with the Electricity Industry Superannuation Scheme, Fox Creek Wines and the Adelaide University Finance Committee and also non-executive director roles with ECH, RAA and Meals on Wheels. Through these roles Peter sits on a range of Boards and Committees including Investment, Finance, Merger and Acquisition, Technology and Innovation and Audit and Risk.

Peter brings his vast knowledge on matters including Taxation, Governance, Strategy, Succession Planning and Financial performance to the Rivergum Homes board.

Rivergum to grow from sale of timber supplies business to Big River.

Proudly Australian and private equity timber manufacturing and marketing business, Big River Group, has acquired Adelaide Timber and Building Supplies (ATBS) from Rivergum Homes Group.

Rivergum Homes established ATBS in 2002 as a means of securing and vertically integrating timber and hardware supplies within the South Australian market. The sale will help Rivergum Homes Group – a SA success story – continue to invest and expand its operations. Rivergum retains an equity position in the broader business model of Big River Group.

The divestment of ATBS secures a strategic supply partner which not only adds value to ATBS, but further supports Rivergum’s growth aspirations in markets other than South Australia, namely Queensland and Victoria.

This national expansion is a significant focus for Rivergum Homes going forward, and we will remain a key commercial partner of ATBS and continue to interact on a ‘business as usual’ basis. The deal is significant not only for Rivergum Homes but also for the future of ATBS given the expertise, product range, and opportunities that come with being part of the Big River Group.

With more than 110 years in the timber industry, Big River is one of the largest private timber manufacturing and marketing businesses on the eastern seaboard. Importantly, all staff will be retained and remain central to the future success of ATBS.

Lenswood display home – Aston Hills, Mt Barker

New display homes for Rivergum

To complement our existing display villages at locations including Seaford, Mount Barker, Parafield and Blakes Crossing, we have opened two new display homes since January.

Located in developments identified as key growth suburbs across Adelaide, the Viso home at Victor Harbor and the Lenswood at Aston Hills, showcase new and innovative materials and smart technology.

See more of this home, and take a virtual tour here.

Viso display home – Victor Harbor


The opening of the Lenswood also launches our Hillside designs, expanding Rivergum Homes’ range into split level designs. Our display homes demonstrate the quality of workmanship of a Rivergum Home, the architectural design, and the trend leading interior design options available. The designs also reflect the changing needs of how Australians live today – and want to live tomorrow, while providing more WOW to the customer.

See more of this home, and take a virtual tour here.

Q&A with Rivergum’s General Manager for Projects & Partnerships, John Blaess

John joins the Rivergum Homes Group after spending 12 years working for Renewal SA (formerly Land Management Corporation) on projects including Playford Alive, Lightsview JV, Lochiel Park, Woodville West and a range of projects through the Better Neighbourhoods Program. John also brings experience from Urban Pacific Ltd, AV Jennings, Jones Lang Wotton, Homestead Homes and Prodec (now Burke Urban). His wealth of knowledge in the projects and partnerships space will help Rivergum Homes to achieve continued growth in the affordable homes sector.

 What led you to this position?

After 12 years in government I was more than ready for a move back into the private sector and when offered this role I jumped at it as I see it as a great opportunity.

 What are you most looking forward to about working for Rivergum Homes?

I’m looking forward to working with the dynamic P&P team to capitalise on the pipeline of opportunities, to grow the number of houses delivered through P&P, deliver some great outcomes for both Rivergum projects and projects for clients, and at the same time improving the bottom line.

 What is your favourite project that you have worked on to date?

The Playford Alive project is probably one of my favourite projects due to its size, complexity and scope and also the community development focus on creating opportunities and jobs for locals. It also provided the opportunity to innovate with new and different housing solutions which lead to the compact housing range developed in conjunction with Rivergum Homes, now known as Town Life Living.  This product has been a huge hit with the market and as they say “the rest is history”.

What motivates you?

Doing my best to finding solutions to difficult challenges and then implementing the solutions.

What is a “John Blaess” piece of advice?

In the words of Sir Winston Churchill, “Never, never, never give up”


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