running a marathon

Posted by in Investing, Opinions

The catalyst for this post was a comment from a good friend over the weekend who was talking about his (sub 3hr) marathon strategy. His comment was that when he realised “the way to run a marathon is to consider the halfway point to be 22 miles” that it really step shifted his abilities. The […]

as Tina Turner said – better than all the rest….

Posted by in Investing, Opinions

I was sat with the CEO of one of the young businesses I work with yesterday having a coffee and looking forward to 2013.  We are still a young company, albeit growing at c200% per annum. For the first two years of our life our prime challenge had been three things: sales, sales, sales. A […]

predicting the pinch

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You don’t need to be an accountant to be an entrepreneur, nor do you need to be an untaught but genius financial wizard. But I do believe you do need to be able to forecast your cash and you need to do it yourself. Why? Basically because without cash your life as an entrepreneur is […]

tactical or strategic capital?

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In the marketing world a tactical campaign is one that is constructed to seize on an immediate and valuable opportunity (often offer or promotion based) to boost the P&L. Generally from a responsive budget and with short-term defined goals. A strategic campaign is one that is less focussed on short-term gain and more structured in […]

the boring stuff delivers scalability

Posted by in Investing, Opinions

It is no doubt unfashionable to say so in this dynamic start-up environment but there comes a point in an entrepreneurial business when you just have to tackle the mundane. The primary reason for this is that start-up flexibility isn’t scalable. Every young firm has to be dynamic, adaptable, efficient and manoeuvrable – to a […]

do we all get off at the same stop?

Posted by in Investing, Opinions

This post is all about the reasons for building a business but, more importantly, a strategic overlay on both the personal and corporate strategy that an investor is likely to require. You have to tackle what you’ll do when your respective motivations and timeframes don’t overlap at exactly the same time. Investors (by dint of the name) are […]

top right quadrant and splendidly isolated

Posted by in Investing, Opinions

It makes me smile that I have never yet seen a slide deck that doesn’t position the presenting company in the top right quadrant of their competitive map, streaks ahead of their peers. So it should be as well, after all one always wants to work with the leader. However, whilst I am a great […]

owning a winning horse

Posted by in Investing, Opinions

It strikes me that assessing which growing businesses to invest in may be a bit like a professional horse owner determining which races to run their horses in.  Full of risk but, with domain knowledge and a good understanding of the bigger picture, you can place your investment bets more wisely, endeavouring to mitigate risk […]

how long?

Posted by in Opinions

I’m often asked questions prefaced by the phrase ‘How long will it take to…..’ generally followed by something such as ‘raise capital’, ‘sell my business’ or ‘get to breakeven’. In truth it is often impossible to predict exactly how long such processes will necessarily take given that each of the aforementioned situations deeply involves multiple […]

ready, aim, fire?

Posted by in Investing, Opinions

I’ve been toying with the phrase Ready, Aim Fire over the last couple of weeks and thought I’d share my thoughts: Fire, Ready, Aim and/or Ready, Fire, Aim – what a lot of businesses do when receiving an unsolicited approach for their business. Shoot too quickly without targeting your conversation and it can be super […]