Tributes pour in for ‘larger than life’ veteran Angus Dawe


Change of venue for Dawe’s wake, which will now take place at the Milton Hill House Hotel in Abingdon on October 14

The telecoms industry has paid tribute to industry veteran Angus Dawe who passed away on September 30 at the age of 50.

Dawe’s career in mobile spanned more than 20 years and he was described by many of his former colleagues as “one of the originals” and a “larger-than-life character” who will be sorely missed.

He began his career in 1989 as dealer manager for ‘London Car Telephones’ before heading up the distribution business of UniqueAir for seven years (a division he created). He then  became managing director of 20:20 Mobile for a year between 1998 and 1999.

He went on to become CEO of Unique Distribution for six years from 1999 before becoming managing director for Data Select’s distribution business in May 2006. He then became business development director of Data Select’s parent company, Phones International, for almost four years from May 2006.

GS UK commercial director Tony Jeffery labelled Dawe as “one of the originals” of the industry, and said he will be missed at the “Old Boys’ Christmas lunch” this year.

“Angus was one of the originals in the cellular industry. His energy and enthusiasm were infectious. Having known him for almost 30 years, I have too many memories to list. I would just say that he was a great guy, great fun and had a lot to offer the industry. He was part of a group of us who get together every Christmas, and he will be missed at the Old Boys’ Christmas lunch this year.”

Hosting Ireland managing director Jonathan Bate, who was formerly Motorola head of indirect sales and a Samsung Electronics director, had many fond memories of his many dealings with Dawe.

He said: “Angus could make you laugh about anyone or anything. He was one of the original characters of the mobile industry and just wanted to have fun along the way. I have many fond memories of trying to do a deal with Angus, and I always felt he came out the other side with one over me and with a big smile on his face. That’s Angus for you.”

Distributor 20:20 Mobile described Dawe as a “popular member of the management team” and praised his contribution during his one-year tenure.

The firm said in a statement: “Angus was an important part in the early growth of the 20:20 Mobile brand, and he is warmly remembered by his former colleagues at 20:20 as a larger-than-life character and a popular member of the management team. He will be sadly missed by all at 20:20 Mobile Group.”

Gusto Telecom Solutions MD Joe Bennett, who worked alongside Dawe during his six years at Unique Distribution, said he considered him to be his mentor when he was developing his career in the industry.

He said: “He was a driving force and huge inspiration to many people in the mobile industry, myself included. He burned exceptionally brightly and will be sorely missed by all who came in contact with him.”

Avenir Telecom MD Andy Tow called Dawe a “great man” with a track record of always making a profit. He said he was particularly shocked at Dawe’s passing as he had appeared to be in good health last month.

He said: “I was really saddened and shocked to hear the news about Angus. He was a larger-than-life character and we had been talking only last month. He was saying he was fit and well and looking for a new challenge.

“It was my privilege to have known him and to have worked with him. He was a great man with a wealth of experience in the industry and a proven track record. He will be sadly missed and may he rest in peace.”

Limitless Mobile channel sales manager Ian Hicks, who has also had stints at Motorola, LG and Huawei, had also met Dawe recently and, like Tow, said he had appeared well. He praised Dawe for his contribution to the feel-good factor in the industry during the 1990s.

“I had worked with and for Angus for the last 20 years, firstly when I was at Motorola and selling to Unique Air where he did the buying, and latterly for him at Unique Distribution. He was a truly brilliant guy with a fantastic sense of humour. He was everything that made the mobile industry a fun place to be in the 1990s. I will miss him greatly.”

Bluechipworld executive director John Barton, who was sales and marketing director at LG for five years from April 2005, praised Dawe’s sense of humour, and said he would be a “huge loss”.

“Angus was a larger-than-life character and an extremely well-known personality. He never failed to have a smile on his face and was always up for a laugh and a joke. Everyone I’ve spoken to about this tragic news have said they are all very shocked and sad. That’s how well known and regarded he was. It’s a huge loss for someone relatively young.”

Peplow Recruitment Services principal Graham Sedgley echoed Barton’s comments: “Angus loved the mobile industry, motor sport and life itself in equal measure. He will be sorely missed by all who knew him. My condolences go to Helen and Poppy.”

Wye Consulting director Andy Smith had known Dawe for more than two decades and said he always lived life to the full.

“I have known Angus for 20 years since being involved in the UniqueAir acquisition when I worked at Vodafone. He was one of the industry’s characters who lived life to the full, and was a nice bloke as well. He will be sorely missed.”

MEEM chief sales officer Mark Worrall said: “I was deeply shocked and saddened to read of Angus Dawe’s passing. In my time working within the industry, particularly with underdog brands Philips, Siemens and LG, Angus was always a larger-than-life supporter, championing our cause, looking for ways to do ‘the deal’.

“Always a gent, fantastic company at industry dos, in fact a bona fide industry legend.”

Data Select MD Roy Taylor, who worked alongside Dawe at the distributor between 2006 and 2008, said: “Angus was one hell of a character, he could be a pain in the backside or a complete comedian. I always told him he was far too intelligent for his own good.

“I enjoyed my time working with him and he will be deeply missed by me and those close to him.

“I hope he is racing around on four wheels in heaven driving other people mad. RIP Angus.”

Updated details on Dawe’s funeral 

The venue for the wake has now changed and is much bigger, so all are welcome to attend.

Dawe’s funeral will take place on Monday 14th October at 2:15pm at the West Berkshire Crematorium, Bath Road, Thatcham, RG19 4LD.

The wake will take place afterwards at the Milton Hill House Hotel, Milton Hill, Steventon, Abingdon, OX13 6AF.

Due to Dawe’s favour of wearing pink shirts, his family have asked for people to feel free to wear something pink if they wanted to.

There will only be family flowers at the funeral, so if you wish to make a donation in memory of Dawe, these will be passed to Wallingford Rowing Club.

Dawe’s daughter Poppy is an active member of the club and all donations will be put towards a rowing boat for the juiniors, which will be named in his memory.

The funeral director is collecting the donations on the family’s behalf, so please make cheques payable to S & R Childs Funeral Services and send to S & R Childs, Pharmacy House, 69 London Road, Headington, Oxford, OX3 9AA.