Business Development

Business Development including Investment, M&A and Divestiture

  • Business Development,  Investment,  Strategy


    The global COVID-19 pandemic is a human tragedy that is also having a growing impact on the global economy and has fundamentally changed our experiences as customers, employees, citizens and humans. Companies across the world are struggling to deal with these unprecedented changes, and it’s worth noting that many global businesses actually rose out of tough economic times. General Electric, General Motors, IBM, Disney, HP, Microsoft, FedEx, Electronic Arts, Burger King, CNN, Hyatt Hotels, AIRBNB, Groupon & WhatsApp were all launched in a recession, and Google, Salesforce, and Facebook were launched shortly before a recession. A study released by the Kaufman Foundation in 2009 found that over 50% of Fortune…

  • Business Development,  Investment,  Strategy

    Start-ups have reason to be positive!

    Introduction We are in a very weird place, social isolation, death, illness, and a declared national emergency have had an immediate impact on industries that cluster people; conferences, trade shows, airlines/cruise ships and all types of travel, the hospitality industry, sporting events, theatre and movies, restaurants and schools. Large companies are telling employees to work at home. Large retail chains are shutting down their stores. We all know local businesses that may not be around when the dust settles! If you’re about to launch a new business, or running one, this is going to be a stressful and discombobulating time. It’s also a time of huge opportunity, and that is…

  • Business Development,  Investment

    China is on the road to recovery…

    We badly need some positive news so here goes – ‘By March 24th around 75 percent of China’s workforce had returned to work, compared to February 2020, when less than 20 percent of workers were back on the job. via @McKinsey

  • Business Development,  Strategy

    The Fourth Industrial Revolution

    We’re now well underway to our fourth industrial revolution based on a foundation of technological innovation and convergence that will fundamentally alter the way we live, work, and relate to one another. In terms of scale, scope, and complexity this transformation will be the most significant and will dwarf the previous three! The First Industrial Revolution was based on water and steam power to power global production and the Second was based on electricity to scale our mass production capabilities. The Third introduced electronics and information technology to automate and introduce intelligence into production. The Fourth Industrial Revolution is being built on a foundation of a digital revolution that has…

  • Blog,  Business Development,  Strategy

    Want to sell far more products and services?

    Steve Jobs, former CEO of Apple, is often quoted as saying he didn’t listen to customers. While he may have said that early in his career, he later admitted that it had been a mistake, and that his greatest successes happened when he listened to his customers. “You’ve got to start with the customer experience and work backwards to the technology,” he said. “What incredible benefits can we give to the customer?” Perhaps that’s why Apple has sold more than a billion iPhones in the past decade, one of the single best-selling tech products of all time. It is also well documented that CEO Jeff Bezos is incredibly customer focused…

  • Blog,  Business Development,  News,  Strategy

    State of Women Owned Business Report – Commissioned by American Express

    All we need share is: The number of women-owned businessessurged 58%, while all businesses increased only 12%. Total employment by women-owned businesses rose 21%, while for all businesses it declined 0.8%. Total revenue of women-owned businessesjumped 46%, while revenue for all businesses increased 36%. It’s pretty compelling?    

  • Business Development,  Strategy

    PR vs Marketing

    Companies often confuse PR and marketing but they fulfil very different requirements: Focus – Marketing focuses on products and services and PR focuses on people and relationships. Function – Marketing activities drive sales activities and they can be aligned to discrete KPI’s and targets. In contrast PR supports an organization’s goals and objectives and is much harder to quantify. Target – Marketing works to meet customer demands to sell goods and services. PR targets a range of personas and goals that collectively support an organization’s objectives. Examples include customers, the media, employees, suppliers, the community, investors, political leaders, financial and trade analysts etc. Collateral benefits; PR drives organizational success by building…

  • Business Development,  Communication

    Joy – Netflix

    My wife found this on Netflix last night and for anyone considering life as an entrepreneur it’s just brilliant viewing. More valuable than much of the management consultancy out there, or a heap of books and a heck of a lot more enjoyable (great acting by Jennifer Lawrence, Edgar Ramírez, Robert De Niro)

  • Business Development,  News,  Strategy

    A Brexit Guide for SME’s

    Introduction The term Brexit has now become used as an encapsulation of the incredibly complex journey we have ahead of us in moving Britain out of the EU. The actual Brexit referendum was held on Thursday 23 June 2016 with a decision to leave carried by 51.9% to 48.1% with a turnout of 71.8% and more than 30 million people voting. England and Wales voted in favour of leaving but Scotland and Northern Ireland both backed staying in the EU by 62% and 55.8% respectively. There were prophesies of huge market impacts and the pound did slump the day after the referendum and it remains around 15% lower against the…

  • Business Development

    Transforming a business!

    Each Monday I face the usual rush to leave home in Bedford by 5am to get ahead of the M1/M25 traffic. After a long drive I drop the car off in Reading at 7am and take a short walk past the office to pick up a large Cappuccino from the local Starbucks before heading back to meet up with Antony Redmond and Jonathan Spragg, the joint founders of reqiva and the other early starting members of the management team. Starting a business from scratch is tough, long hours, stress and you have to pretty much do everything yourself from building the business plan to selling the products or services, plumbing…

  • Blog,  Business Development,  Strategy

    Why do start-ups fail?

    Introduction It is estimated that 70-75% VC (Venture Capital) backed start-ups don’t return the funds that investors put in with 50%+ returning nothing. VC database CB Insights reviewed more than 1,000 start-ups that raised seed rounds in 2009 and 2010 and found that by the end of 2015 less than 50% had secured a second round of funding. Just 22% achieved a sale or IPO and 1% reached a value of $1 billion. Starting your own business is the big dream for many of us, the opportunity to become your own boss and make a lot of money is hugely compelling and every second three new businesses are launched (11,000…

  • Business Development,  Managed Services,  Strategy

    It’s time for businesses to use IT Operational Analytics!

    IT Ops Challenge Each layer of technology in the data centre is becoming progressively more complex to control and manage. The average server environment now has thousands of configuration parameters (e.g. Windows OS contains – 1,500+, IBM WebSphere Application Server – 16,000+, and Oracle WebLogic –  60,000+). The growing interdependence and complexity of interaction between applications also makes it increasingly difficult to manage and control business services. IT change is very much a fact of life and it takes place at every level of the application and infrastructure stack. It also impacts pretty much every part of the business! To meet these development challenges businesses have adopted agile development processes…

  • Business Development,  Strategy

    Want to build a Unicorn?

    Introduction Some small business owners can be content to continue running a small operation in return for a reasonable income. The term often used to describe this is a ‘Lifestyle’ business. Others are more driven and want to build their business, take a larger market share and realize greater levels of profitability. If you’re the owner of a business that perhaps aspires to be the next ‘Unicorn’, or ‘Deacorn’ then this post is more focused on your needs. If not then sit back and relax but bear in mind that, in a rapidly evolving business landscape, standing still might not be a safe strategy! Downsides to growing a business It’s…

  • Business Development,  Strategy

    What every CEO/MD needs to know about Big Data & Data Analytics

    Introduction In order to remain competitive, and viable, businesses now have to deal with a vast and rapidly growing sea of what has been termed ‘Big Data’.  They need to be able to transform this raw data, often in real-time, into more meaningful insights about their markets, customers, competitors, and to measure and manage their performance more accurately using using techniques such as ‘Data Analytics’. In many cases this represents a paradigm shift from their comfort zone of approaches based more on experience, guesswork, or painstakingly constructed models of reality. It used to be that Big Data and Data Analytics were the preserve of large global corporations but consider this…

  • Business Development,  Strategy

    Who gets to be CEO?

    Introduction The CEO is generally viewed as the overall leader of an organization. Not surprisingly it is also probably the most coveted and challenging role in any organization. Before looking at the role itself let’s take a look at a few interesting statistics on CEO’s: 60% are entrepreneurs who have founded at least one company 28% cite finance as their primary area of expertise. 78% are under 55 with the average age for an incoming CEO in 2014 51-55. The average age for exiting the post was 63. 90% are married and 96% have children 84% have a higher education qualification USA topped the salary list at $12.26M, UK were…

  • Business Development,  Strategy

    Leveraging your Human Capital

    Introduction The World Economic Forum’s ‘Employment, Skills and Human Capital Global Challenge Insight Report 2015’ highlighted that Human capital will be the key factor linking innovation, competitiveness and growth in the 21st century. It also stated that more than a third of employers globally reported facing difficulties in finding talent last year and nearly half expected talent shortages to have a negative impact on their business results. The report stated that global organizations must navigate a “new world of work that requires a dramatic change in strategies for leadership, talent, and human resources. Many of today’s employees work in global teams that operate on a 24/7 basis. An increasing number…

  • Business Development,  Managed Services,  Strategy

    The future of managed services

    Introduction In our last article ( we outlined the differences between outsourcing and managed services and concluded that they have converged to so much that are now essentially the same thing. We also highlighted the tremendous growth opportunity in the mid-market. In this article we are going to take a closer look at that opportunity and to provide some notes for consumers to use to assess their potential partners are, and a few thoughts for managed service providers on where they need to focus their attention. “This is the future of our company” says cloud services provider, Rackspace, as it announces it is returning to its ‘fanatical support’ roots in managed…

  • Business Development,  Managed Services,  Strategy

    Outsource or Managed Service?

    Introduction In recent years the differences between outsourcing and managed services have become much more difficult to resolve as IT service providers have progressively offered more sophisticated, and a broader ranges of services, to meet new client demand, technology developments and to compete more effectively for new business. In this article we take a look at these two approaches to see what the remaining differences are! In a follow-on article we will then take a much closer look at the future of managed services, particularly in a high-growth mid-market. Outsource vs. Managed Service? If you ask 10 people to define ‘Outsource’ and ‘Managed Service’ you will probably get 10 different…

  • Business Development,  Strategy

    A Nation of Shopkeepers!

    Introduction Since 2000 the rate of growth of Small and Mid-sized Enterprises (SME’s) in the UK has been both dramatic and sustained. There were over 5.2 million SME’s at the start of 2014, the first time the business population had exceeded 5 million! SME’s underpin the UK economy by employing over 15 million people, which equates to 48% (12.1 million) of UK private sector employment. UK SME’s also generate an annual turnover in the UK of £1.6 trillion which is around 33% of private sector turnover. This post has also appeared on our website ( and provides a few statistics to highlight the importance of these businesses to the UK…

  • Business Development,  Managed Services,  Strategy

    A BIG Opportunity!

    Introduction The global managed services market is expected to grow from $107.17 billion last year to $193.34 billion by 2019 at an estimated CAGR of 12.5%. This growth rate is largely being driven by advancements in cloud computing, big data and mobility services. These new ‘outsourced’ services are enabling organizations to bring in competences they previously lacked, reduce recurring in-house IT costs by up to 30-40% and to generate a potential 50-60% increase in efficiency. Not surprisingly external managed services are high on most CFO’s list of options to reduce costs, and many IT resellers have been actively moving to meet this opportunity by adopting more services centric models. However,…