35 ActivePipe


$2 million




Ashley Farrugia, 40

Head office

Glen Iris, VIC

Year founded





Information and communication technology



It seems that every year more businesses become acutely aware of the sheer power that cyber attacks can wield. For ActivePipe founder Ashley Farrugia, that threat isn’t just a clear and present one – it keeps him awake at night.

“My sleep is disturbed by the possibility of a successful attack on the platform on a catastrophic scale by unknown parties,” says Farrugia, pointing to the recent Census debacle.

Farrugia says he fears a “catastrophic failure and severe implications on ActivePipe’s reputation, seeing the reputations of our customers compromised, potential lawsuits and destroyed relationships”.


ActivePipe co-founder and chief executive Ashley Farrugia. Source: Supplied.

It’s an intense picture, but so far “catastrophic failure” is the exact opposite of what this email marketing and data discovery platform has experienced.

The software startup, which recently raised $1.8 million in a pre-series A funding round, markets itself to real estate agencies, integrating with CRM systems, and counts more than 100 agency clients including Ray White, LJ Hooker and Barry Plant.

ActivePipe was originally created as one of a number of business activities of its parent company, The Digital Group, which prior to 2015 was also involved in developing digital marketing and e-commerce solutions. However, since its launch, ActivePipe has now become the group’s sole focus.

Farrugia claims ActivePipe’s point of difference is that it sits on the bleeding edge of email marketing, a space which he says is due for a “complete overhaul”.

“With artificial intelligence (AI), email marketing isn’t limited to rule-based triggers but has evolved into a means of more 1:1 in-the-moment personalisation,” he says.

At the moment, ActivePipe is riding that change by infusing the product with AI tools to analyse data and recognise patterns in order to automatically create and send customised email. The business is moving quickly – but that’s how Farrugia likes it.

“Success requires taking risks, making fast decisions and having faith in the people you employ. If we sit back we don’t get very far,” he says.