Real Leaders

Tan Le: Co-founder of Emotiv

Tan Le is a Vietnamese-Australian telecommunications entrepreneur who co-founded brain monitoring company Emotiv.

Born in South Vietnam, Le migrated to Australia as a refugee with her family in 1982. She began university studies at the age of 16 and completed a bachelor’s degree in law and commerce at Monash University.

Her first venture was SASme, a pioneer in providing SMPP platforms to telecommunication carriers and content aggregators, that became one of the companies responsible for the creation of Australia’s SMS application market. Le helped grow SASme to 35 employees and multiple locations worldwide.

Le co-founded software company Emotiv which specializes in electroencephalography (EEG) headsets. Emotiv is the pioneer of simple to use, high quality, mobile headsets that do advanced brain monitoring. In 1998, she was named Young Australian of the Year and voted one of Australia’s 30 Most Successful Women Under 30.

She has been appointed Special Ambassador to the United Kingdom, a Goodwill Ambassador for Australia in Asia, and a Patron of the Australian Youth Ambassadors for Development Program. A role model for women in business, Le was made an Ambassador for the Status of Women in 2001 and been appointed to a number of prominent boards, including Plan International Australia, National Committee for Human Rights Education in Australia, Australian Citizenship Council and RMIT Business in Entrepreneurship.

Le has been featured in “Who’s Who in Australia” List since 1999 and “Who’s Who of Australian Women” List in 2007 & 2008, Fast Company’s Most Influential Women in Technology in 2010 and Forbes’ 50 Names You Need to Know in 2011. She has also been honored by the World Economic Forum as a Young Global Leader since 2009.


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