Archive for January, 2010

M&A is back, so be prepared!

January 24, 2010

I’m no pundit, but all my senses are telling me that 2010 could be an awesome year for ambitious, well run, businesses. As someone told me earlier this week, luck happens when opportunity and preparedness collide. So, as the well known motto goes; “Be prepared”!

 Here are five reasons for my enthusiasm:

  • The world economy is recovering. The UK may be behind the curve but that won’t mean a lack of opportunities. At least some of these will come at the expense of less well run, failing businesses, where market share or other assets will be up for grabs.
  • Entrepreneurs are resilient and individual capitalism is the future. M&A activity will return as the realisation dawns that there may never be a better time to acquire good businesses at realistic prices.
  • On the other side of the coin, owners who have been unwilling or unable to sell their businesses will reappear. Death, divorce and retirement are a constant and don’t disappear in recessions – expect an increase in the number of sellers as the economy plays catch up.
  • There will be more help for entrepreneurial businesses and access to funding will improve. Expect a mixture of helpful government policy, increased bank lending, more business angel activity and a resurgence in earlier stage and mid-market private equity.
  • And finally, we are bored with recession! It’s not a very scientific observation, but the UK has always shown its mettle in times of stress, with ingenuity and collaboration coming to the fore. It will be no different this time, with the entrepreneurs and SMEs that employ the vast majority of our population leading us out.

Whether you’re a buyer or seller, this link may help you identify your options.


Vision 2020- Five key themes for the next decade

January 16, 2010

Doesn’t time fly? Now we are in 2010 it’s time to consider some of the themes for the next ten years. If they are anything like the last ten, the world will look very different in 2020.

So what are the five key themes that I am thinking about as we begin a new decade?

  • Globalisation….is not something that is going to happen in the future. More and more businesses must now take advantage of cross border opportunities to increase their revenues and manage their efficiency and costs
  • Technology….is a great leveller. The pace of change is set to continue and business models will continue to evolve. Businesses that embrace technology in all its aspects will be the successes of the decade.  Those that don’t, large or small, will be overtaken (or if they are lucky, taken over!)
  • Opportunity….is exponential. We have just been through the worst recession in living memory. For entrepreneurs with vision and drive, the opportunity to disrupt markets, hire great people, keep costs low and challenge the status quo has never been greater
  • Differentiation…. is the name of the game. Successful businesses will always find a reason why customers should choose their product or service over that of their competitors.
  • Reputation….is hard to earn and easy to destroy. Who and what you are is now entirely visible to the global community, so it’s time to engage with that community and be helpful to it. 

Good luck!