Professor Jana Matthews

Dr Jana Matthews

ANZ Chair in Business Growth
Director, Centre for Business Growth

Professor Jana Matthews is an international expert on entrepreneurial leadership and business growth. As the ANZ Chair in Business Growth, Director of the UniSA Centre for Business Growth and the founding CEO of The Jana Matthews Group, Jana helps CEOs, corporate executives and boards unlock their company's growth potential. Jana helps companies develop and execute plans for growth, attract and retain talent, develop products and services that meet customer’s needs, and improve their leadership effectiveness. Based in Adelaide, AU Jana is the former Managing Director of the Innovyz START Institute and former Program Director of the ANZ Innovyz START accelerator program. 

Recruited to the original senior team of the Kauffman Foundation’s Center for Entrepreneurial Leadership, Professor Matthews was the architect of highly successful programs designed to teach CEOs and their executive teams how to lead and manage growth. Additional responsibilities included working with seventeen venture capital companies to design and develop the Kauffman Fellows Program.  She was also instrumental in the development of programs for angel investors, technology transfer, and the creation of ecosystems to support entrepreneurs and growth companies.

Professor Matthews is frequently asked to speak and consult about leading and managing growth, globalization, innovation, and the roles/responsibilities of leaders of growth companies. She has been invited to speak at major conferences and corporate meetings in the UK, Europe, Russia, Australia, India, Singapore, Malaysia, China, New Zealand, Canada and the USA. She was a monthly columnist for Dow Jones’, is frequently quoted in Inventor Business Daily, Inc. magazine, and was named one of 18 Women Business Gurus in the world - the only one focused on entrepreneurial leadership and business growth.

In 2004, the New Zealand government asked her to develop a program to teach companies to grow.  In 2005 and 2006, she was Visiting Professor of Entrepreneurial Leadership at the University of Auckland’s Graduate School of Enterprise and did one of her Leader Forums in Adelaide. In 2005, she was invited by the US Department of Commerce and the People’s Republic of China to speak about company growth in Beijing, Shanghai and Xi’an. She was invited back to teach in the international MBA program at Peking University.  In 2008, while Global Thought Leader for SAP, she spoke in Orlando, Delhi, Mumbai, Beijing, Shenzhen, Singapore and Sydney.  In 2009 she was Keynote speaker at an international forum on entrepreneurship in Kuala Lumpur. In 2010, 2011 and 2012, Innovate SA engaged her to teach sessions on the role of Boards and executive teams in growth companies, as part of the Venture Attraction Program.

Professor Matthews has a B.A. from Earlham College, spent her junior year abroad at the University of London, did graduate work at Yale University, and received a doctorate in management and planning from Harvard University. 

 "Dr Jana Matthews brings a unique combination of business acumen, psychological insight, and wisdom to every company she assists. She has systematized a clearly defined process for high-growth companies. Understanding her roadmap for success is a must for founders and CEOs who are serious about accelerating their businesses." Matt Turner, CEO of Mercury Payment Systems (MPS)

Dr Jana Matthews began working with MPS when it was 30 employees.  Over the next 3 years she helped guide the founders through growth - to 300 employees and a very profitable business.  The company continued to grow over the next five years and on 12 May, 2014 was sold for $1.65B.

Areas of study and research

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