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Generation Magazine  •   Autumn / Winter 2017 •

Dedicated to promoting and supporting British and Irish family businesses The home of TM family business

Featuring:

Rami Ranger CBE The true rags-to-riches story

Ireland’s Finest Uncovering the Emerald Isles’ hidden gems

Impact Investing “Every time you spend money you are casting a vote for the kind of world you want”.

Fantastic Four

Sibling Distillery


IRENE & JENNY Keeping Memories Precious

www.ireneandjenny.com Redesign. Recycle. Remember.


editor’s letter “As business owners, it’s our duty to be intimate with practices within our organisations”

THE STRANDS THAT MAKE THE WEB I started at Family Business Place the week of the National Family Business Awards, and I honestly still struggle to get my head around just how much my understanding of the world has changed since. It’s now difficult not to think of us as being individual strands of the same web, all connected, all affecting one another with everything we do. It’s been an honour to find and compile each of these articles- each of these strands- for this issue; be they regional news, meets with incredible entrepreneurs, hidden treasures in Ireland, or the Millennials making their own mark in our world of family business. But part of that world is in trouble. Claims that modern slavery is occurring much more than we think- estimated at more than 13,000 victims- make it increasingly clear that we must all be vigilant in who we are doing business with. While many business owners in the farming, manufacturing and construction industries provide opportunities for foreign or disabled workers to develop professional skills, some have been less scrupulous. In the absence of a bona fide authority, migrant workers hired as house help, childminders, or in isolated factories are being exploited; denied proper pay, rest, accommodation, or the

legal protection that comes with an official contract. As family businesses are uniquely placed to deliver good ethical practice where this is concerned, we’re delighted to see so many with an anti-slavery participation document that are easily visible to the public; such as JCB, John Lewis, Weston’s Cider, Beard Construction, and B&M Bargains, to name but a few. The importance of not turning a blind eye can’t be understated. As business owners, it’s our duty to be intimate with practices within our organisations. Regular audits and risk assessments on suppliers and sub-contractors, using reputable recruitment agencies, and special management training all contribute to keeping every strand of our web strong, thriving, and connected Best Wishes

ALEC PITMAN, GUEST EDITOR

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IN THIS ISSUE

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FAMILY BUSINESS PLACE TEAM: Creative Director: Anita Brightley-Hodges anita@familybusinessplace.com Commercial Director: Amalia Brightley-Gillott amalia@familybusinessplace.com Events & Membership Director: Susan Anderson susan@familybusinessplace.com Head of Design: Olympia Brightley-Hodges olympia@familybusinessplace.com Personal Assistant to MD: Emily White emily@familybusinessplace.com Content & Editorial Assisant: Alec Pitman alec@familybusinessplace.com Design Assistant: Lucy Parris lucy@familybusinessplace.com Research & Database: Stephen Brightley-Hodges Photographer: Nick Gillott nick@nickgillott.com Beautifully printed by Matthews - a family business www.matthews-printers.co.uk

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01  EDITOR’S LETTER

What we, as family businesses, can do against Modern Slavery

05  OPINION/BLOG With post-Brexit uncertainty on the rise, what should our priorities be when moving forward?

07  UPFRONT CHARLIE MULLINS talks gig economies and the Taylor Review SNAPSHOT ‘Bytesize’ Info about the General Data Protection Regulation FAMILY BUSINESS NEWS stories from the world of family business 2016 FBP EVENT REVIEWS highlights from our exciting, most talked about National family business events

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GENERATION AUTUMN / WINTER 2017

22  MEETS

SIBLING DISTILLERY Felix, Clarice, and Cicely discuss how their business stands apart from their parents’ JULIANNE PONAN talks about taking the reins from her father and making her mark TONYA O’DONNELL and how winning a Queen’s Award has affected her family RAMI RANGER CBE the values that led his journey to the highest rung of success

36  IRELAND’S FINEST Uncovering hidden gems in Ireland


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46  EXPERTS DIVORCE exploring what happens to the family business

60  PROSPERITY

CONTRIBUT0RS

KEEPING THE TORCH ALIVE - the story of a seven-generation legacy

1. Anita Brightley-Hodges, Managing

WEALTH PRESERVATION communication with the next generation is key

‘HOW’ MATTERS MORE THAN ‘WHY’ how actions should match up with intentions

2. Alec Pitman, Guest Editor

POSITIVE BUSINESS MODEL the benefits of asking ourselves the difficult questions

IMPACT INVESTING how the right investments can change the world

THE IMPORTANCE OF SOLICITORS how knowing family dynamics helps when giving advice

56  SPECIAL Catching up with MATT DUNTON about his Wellgood Campaign sponsorship

BE CAREFUL WHAT YOU WISH FOR how Shakespeare’s King Lear reflects issues around inheritance UNLOCKING BUSINESS VALUES WITH COACHING- the importance of having someone as a sounding board

67  TEN Using Social Media to Build your Brand

71  THIS WAY UP Focusing on the next generation of young family business entrepreneurs

Director of Family Business Place 3. Olympia Brightley-Hodges, Design 4. Lucy Parris, Illustration 5. Charlie Mullins OBE, Pimlico Plumbers 6. Paul Whitnell, BITA 7. James Freeman, Charles Russell Speechlys 8. Tom Shaw, Charles Russell Speechlys 9. Leesa Muirhead, Adessy Associates 10. Jane Latham, Latham Associates 11. Thomas Foreman Hardy, T.Bailey 12. Simon Webley, Institute of Business Ethics 13. Silja Andersen, Merkur Andelskasse 14. Neil Williams, NVW Solutions 15. Emily White, Family Business Place 16. Sangeeta Waldron, Serendipity PR & Media

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The future is bright Anita Brightley-Hodges says the key to facing an uncertain Brexit is in planning for long-term sustainability

Anita Brightley-Hodges, Family Business Place Specialism Family Business Advisor Profile Anita helps family businesses overcome the issues and challenges they face around succession and next generation integration into the business.

familybusinessplace.com

With worries about a post-Brexit economy reaching an all-time high, I think it obvious that effective, long-term strategies are needed. I’ve spoken before about the negative myth surrounding the productivity of UK family firms, and I maintain that in terms of robust, sustainable, communityfocused strategies, family businesses continue to lead the way. While moneyorientated, quick fix plans may not be our forte compared to larger corporations, in times like these, slow-build sustainability is far more important. Just recently, I’ve had a look at Eastern Eye’s 2017 Asian Rich List, a compilation of Britain’s 101 Wealthiest Asians. Not only are 73% of the entrepreneurs listed owners and directors of family businesses; but the total wealth created for Asian wealth in Britain has been estimated at £69.9 billion, a £15bn increase since 2016.

I found two things that all these family business leaders have in common: selfemployment, and self-made fortune. I speak from experience: having met and worked with a number of leaders of Asian family businesses, what lies at the heart of each of them is their culture, their work ethic, their values, and their desire to be successful. Sri Prakash Lohia, chairman of the 40year old Indorama Corporation and third in the list, supports the idea that values should be priority when it comes to staying alive in an ever-changing economy. ‘It’s not the money, I think. You try to build an organisation that will last forever. That is called real business which is our principle. Without principle if you try and run a business it will not last long.’ He isn’t alone, of course: the Asian Richlist is positively littered with identical sentiments from 1st to 101st ; each valuing loyalty, integrity toward family values, and investing in London’s expansion. With the list showing numerous reports of a successful 2016, it remains clear to me that once again, family businesses continue to be the best example of how to face moving forward with true determination

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A Day’s Work For a Day’s Pay Pimlico Plumbers CEO, Charlie Mullins OBE is known for being ‘always controversial, never boring’ - but his take on gig economies comes from more old-fashioned values Since my company lost a legal case last year, we have been associated with, and demonised by, the term ‘gig economy’. The case was brought by a plumber who once worked for me, and although he was paid by my company more than £500,000 over three years, he was suing for employment rights, despite signing a contract where

none have ever sued me for employment rights before, and it’s because they understand that they’re self-employed. Part of the much higher amount they’re able to earn compared to straight wages, is to take care of their own sick and holiday pay, just like all other self-employed people. In July, Chief Executive of the Royal Society, Matthew

In my case, I get value for money out of my tradespeople, and they’re able to earn between two and five times as much as they would under a PAYE system

he accepted that he was a selfemployed contractor. I’m pretty sure I’d never heard of the ‘gig economy’, but it turns out that it describes the way the building industry has operated for centuries. All it really means is that you get paid for doing a particular job; and not for sitting around doing nothing! I don’t know too many people who would disagree with this basic idea, however somehow it has become very controversial. A worker who knows they’re being paid on results, also knows that the harder they work the more they’ll get paid. And the employer is happy to pay the worker more because they know exactly what they’re getting for every pound they pay. It’s a simple version of a labour market where, in my case, I get value for money out of my tradespeople, and they’re able to earn between two and five times as much as they would under a PAYE system. If you want proof of this, let me tell you that of all the plumbers I’ve ever employed,

Taylor, published his review of Modern Working Practices, and it seems to me that we’re drinking out of the same teapot on this one. He describes a ‘dependent contractor’ as one that is so reliant on a larger corporate body as to have no real choice when it comes to working conditions and pay. ‘One-sided flexibility’ is what the corporates benefit fromhaving a readily available labour pool, which it can switch on and off easily, without shouldering the costs of maintaining a conventional workforce. I’m grateful for this clarification, because identifying what’s wrong makes it clearer than ever that a model characterised by high wages and good conditions cannot be the enemy, and shouldn’t be treated as such. So, where to now? It’s all very well to point out that there are good and bad employers being confused with each other, just because they pay their workers in a similar fashion, even if the levels of payment are grossly different.

But how can we sharpen up the law so it can distinguish between the two? The answer seems simple to me. If companies are going to employ workers on self-employed contracts in the gig economy, there needs to be a legally accepted pay rate that considers the need to compensate them for their rights, which they would have otherwise received, had they have not signed a self-employed contract. I would suggest that it should be perhaps 2 or 2.5

times more than the National Living wage. Anyone found to be paying self-employed workers less than this figure, should be charged and prosecuted for swindling workers out of their employment rights

www.pimlicoplumbers.com

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SNAPSHOT

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Be prepared There’s been a lot of worry & confusion surrounding the EU General Data Protection Regulation (or GDPR, for short)- mostly revolving around enormous fines. It will start being enforced on May 25th, 2018, so here’s some info to get you up to speed.

The DPA was put in place to regulate how that info was stored and handled, and gave people legal rights if their details were compromised.

So, information like addresses, bank details & past convictions were all stored in one place: easily breached, edited, or copied by potentially anyone. Pre-1998, companies used to use single, shared databases to store personal info about customers, clients and staff.

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But the DPA is now 20 years old, and in our increasingly digital, info-saturated world, an update is needed. Cue the GDPR.


The GDPR essentially limits how much personal data is at risk in event of a breach, and gives more responsibilities to handlers of personal data.

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Every business will need a DPO- for bigger businesses, this will be a full-time position, but for smaller businesses, it can just be an added responsibility to existing staff.

A single DPO can even be shared amongst multiple businesses simultaneously.

Data handlers must be able to demonstrate compliance with GDPR guidelines to a Data Protection Officer.

Why do you have it? Where is it? Four questions will determine whether businesses are GDPR compliant:

Can you prove it?

Is it secure?

Being able to routinely answer these questions will indicate GDPR compliance, and penalties for any breach will be subject to these factors. For more information, visit www.ico.org.uk GENERATIONAUTUMN SPRING / SUMMER 2015 GENERATION / WINTER 2017

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Northern Family Business Conference 2017 Hiring, Firing & Inspiring On the 10th May 2017, family business leaders from the North of the UK returned to Tennants Auctioneers for the Northern Family Business Conference - for the third year running! ‘Hiring, Firing & Inspiring’ centred around juggling commercial decisions and family dynamics.

HECK Foods CEO Andrew Keeble recounts how he got his brand into national supermarkets.

The conference offered leaders the chance to ask those burning questions and share their experiences with like-minded people.

Having first-hand experience of the daily challenges of running a family business, our guest speakers were delighted to impart beneficial advice and knowledge.

A fourth-generation family business themselves, Tennants Auctioneers is now run by Rodney Tennant’s three daughters.

Helen McArdle CBE of care home businesses HMC Group, pictured with son Mark and grandson Kane.

Tennants Auctioneers, Leyburn, Yorkshire


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Chris Simpson discussed the change and growth of his father- in-law’s company while he was at the helm.

Shepherds Purse is now a 2nd generation family business. Judy and Caroline Bell ran a session about the issues surrounding inheritance and succession.

John Richardson talks about his business, Johnsons of Whixley, the biggest wholesale plant nursery in Europe.

Lisa Tse MBE and Helen Tse MBE shared the story of their grandmother, who owned the first Chinese restaurant in Manchester.

Simon Smales of RBC Wealth Management (left) and David Kerfoot of the Kerfoot Group (centre) spoke about the role of family businesses in community and philanthropy.

Thank you to our supportive sponsors:

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To learn more, visit rbcwealthmanagement.com

The value of investments and income arising can go down, future returns are not guaranteed, and an investor may not get back the amount originally invested. This advertisement has been issued by Royal Bank of Canada on behalf of certain RBC® companies that form part of the international network of RBC Wealth Management. Royal Bank of Canada Investment Management (U.K.) Limited is authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority. ® / TM Trademark(s) of Royal Bank of Canada. Used under licence.

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Two Centuries of Silver Established in 1826, Alexander Kirkwood & Son is not only a renowned medallist, engraver, and trophy maker; but with five generations under it’s belt, it is also one of the oldest familyrun businesses in Scotland. However, the origins of the silversmithing firm lie over fifty year earlier, when the skill of Alexander’s grandfather were of such quality as to land him a commission from the head of an Edinburgh bank, to produce the metal plates used in manufacturing banknotes. Over the last two centuries, the firm has been involved with the production of The Edinburgh Medal, awarded to

Unstoppable The fourth-generation Welsh furniture business, Leekes, demonstrates its remarkable tenacity by raising £175,000 for the NSPCC. This was done through family and friends participating in a wealth of fundraising initiatives, including the London Marathon, the Snowdon Moonlight Challenge, and the Wales Ironman; as well as ascensions to Base Camp at Mount Everest and Kilimanjaro in 2016. Emma Leeke, Managing Director, said that ‘despite reaching this substantial total we are committed to continuing our support for this fantastic charity, and are determined to set our

contributors to science; the St Andrew’s Award Medal, celebrating acts of bravery in Scotland; and the Livingstone Medal, which is bestowed by the Royal Scottish Geographical Society, and whose recipients count Michael Palin and Sir David Attenborough. The firm is now run by David Kirkwood, and continues to trade in medals for high profile institutions, such as universities, societies, institutions and various sports clubs. Some medals were also showcased on the Christmas edition of Antiques Roadshow in 2013. www.alexkirkwood.co.uk

future targets even higher with a wide range of challenges and activities in the planning!’ The origins of the Leekes’ tenacity can be traced back along the astounding history of the business, which has slowly but steadily evolved despite the Great Depression and two World Wars. First established as a blacksmith’s in 1897 by James Leeke, his son Llewellyn had developed it into a family-run ironmonger and builders merchant by 1948. Llewellyn’s son Gerald took over in the 60s, expanding the business to include kitchen and bathroom displays, and by 1977, Leekes had its own DIY superstore based in Talbot Green. Cut to the present, and Leekes Ltd. is one of the UK’s

Yellow Brick Road Legendary construction giant JCB has created almost 170 new jobs for apprentices and graduates by tripling their investment into their Young Talent programme this year. Of the 168 joining JCB, nearly 70% are apprentices, which marks the highest recorded intake of apprenticeships in JCB’s 71-year history. An amount of these will be earning degrees while developing essential welding and assembly skills- and getting paid for it, too. The other 30% consists of graduates and undergraduates, who will be learning to apply their technical knowledge through the

commercial aspects of business, such as design, sales, and marketing. JCB Chairman, Lord Bamford, has paved the way for apprentices at JCB. ‘Young people are the future of our company and investing in young talent is vital as the company expands. I began my working life as an apprentice and I’m delighted to see a record number of apprentices joining JCB this year.’ Earlier this year, JCB secured a mammoth deal with A-Plant, totalling over £55million.

leading independent retailers, specialising in furniture and home improvement; with stores spread out from Wales to South West England and the West Midlands. Des Mannion, head of NSPCC, Cymru/ Wales, said ‘we

are deeply thankful to the Leeke family for all their fundraising endeavours and the impressive challenges they have completed along the way.’

www.jcb.com

www.leekes.co.uk

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Where there’s a will there should also be a completely secured succession plan. Of all the things we wish to protect, perhaps our family is the most important. Because we share our client’s vision, we also share their understanding of the importance of succession. Our huge experience in Private and Family Wealth means everything you have worked for will not just be maintained, but like a family, continue to grow and flourish. We’re here to help the people in front stay in front, for generations to come. charlesrussellspeechlys.com

The people behind the people in front.


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Hole-in-One for Three Charities

A summer golf day hosted by Beard Construction raised £7872.36 for three charities: Shooting Star Chase Hospice in Guildford, Surrey educational charity SATRO, and regional neonatal intensive care support group BURPS. The event was part of a campaign to raise an end target of £125,000 for the three. A Swindon-based business, Beard is a leading regional construction company operating all over the South of England. With the third and fourth generation of the family at the helm, (Alan Beard as Deputy Chairman, and Mark Beard as Chairman, the foundations appear to be as strong as you’d expect from a construction company over a 125 years old. Even the 2008 recession failed

Helping Hand Founded in 2009 and covering the whole of Great Britain and Ireland from their base in London, DRS Bond Management (“DRS”) is a family-owned surety bond management firm. A surety bond is issued to guarantee contractual performance. DRS is the trusted surety advisor to leading names in the construction and engineering sectors, from family businesses to the largest PLCs, as well as other companies across multiple sectors. Founders Chris Davies and Fiona Recker married this September and both their

to faze it- instead, Beard seemed to take it in its stride with a record turnover of £56 million; and nearly a decade later, it has plans to branch out into a fourth location by the end of the year. ‘We are incredibly grateful for everyone’s generous support and delighted at how much we managed to raise while having lots of fun on the day doing it,’ says Tony Taylor, Special Projects Manager ‘Shooting Star Chase Hospice, SATRO and BURPS do some truly amazing work in the community and they all have a special connection with our staff, many of whom have volunteered for them, or have benefited from their wonderful services. We’re truly happy to be raising money for three very worthy causes this year.’ www.beardconstruction.co.uk

Give us a Big Cheese! On August 3rd, The Great Taste Awards added two more awards to the trophy cabinet of Thirsk cheesemaker Shepherds Purse, namely a 2* rating for Bluemin White, and a 1* rating for Mrs Bell’s Blue. This makes a total of sixteen awards for 2017. The Great Taste Awards saw 12,366 entries this year, which were judged by more than 500 seasoned palates, consisting of food critics, chefs, cooks, restauranteurs, producers, and journalists. However, the quality of Shepherds Purse cheese has been recognised all over the UK. The Great Yorkshire Show

awarded two golds, silvers and bronzes for five of their cheeses. Mrs Bell’s Blue was again, among the five which also earned two silvers to the other six accolades awarded at the Nantwich International Cheese Awards, one of the most important international cheese events in the United Kingdom. Caroline Bell, director, Shepherds Purse Cheeses commented: ‘Every award we win is a reflection of our incredible team and the quality of the artisan cheeses we handcraft on our family farm in North Yorkshire.’ www.shepherdspurse.co.uk

daughters work in client relationship management roles within DRS’ Client team. DRS is an acknowledged leader in surety broking, formed with the single-minded objective of delivering a state-of-the-art approach to bond management and surety advisory services. Bringing together deep expertise in corporate governance and surety broking, gained from some of the world’s leading public companies and broking organisations; the DRS team combines these complimentary skill sets to enable clients to utilise surety to create lasting competitive and financial advantage. www.drsbonds.co.uk

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A Little Tipple Local bar and family business, Tipple, has become a hub for the up-and-coming village of Ainsdale, Merseyside. Opened last December by Ken and Chris Tilley, John Hunter and James Matthews, this little gem has flourished into a hub

for a friendly drink with a great vibe. The ethos, atmosphere, and amazing staff have been the core catalyst to its success. Initially intended to be a small wine and cocktail bar, within three weeks the quartet was given the opportunity to extend into the neighbouring building, which allowed for the addition of a kitchen. ‘With the only complaint being that it was so busy that customers could not fit in, it seemed ludicrous to not to accept,’ says James. A second Tipple is in discussion, but the destination is still undecided. In the meantime, the investment of a converted horse trailer has allowed the business to expand their already-impressive customer base by touring events around the country.

Performance to a Tea Brothers Teyeb & Unzar Aleem announced their plans to open 100 further CREAMS British Luxury stores throughout the UK in the next five years. For this year alone they have invested over £400k into opening four new stores in Bolton, Derby, Canterbury and Bluewater in Kent, with plans to open further venues in Livingston and central London before 2018. Having created 70 new jobs to date, the Aleem brothers are aiming to create another 300 jobs within the next two years. But that’s not

all- they also appear to have found a market overseas. ‘The demand for quintessentially British products in overseas markets is incredibly high and CREAMS ticks all the boxes,’ says Teyeb. ‘We’ve taken orders from 28 different countries for branded products without doing anything more than setting up an online retail site.’ Unzar concluded: ‘CREAMS British Luxury can do for the traditional afternoon teas what Starbucks has done for coffee. We really are that confident.’ www.creamstp.com

Joining Two Houses

Track and Trace Kent-based bus operator Chalkwell have announced their newest, stress-free website innovation: a feature that allows schools and parents to track the whereabouts of school buses; with live data providing precise information throughout the day. Roland Eglinton is the commercial Director and third generation of the family business, which has been around since the 1930s. “Travelling to and from school is an important part of a child’s day, and for those starting secondary school in September, the process of

catching the bus alonemight be a bit daunting.’ ‘Chalkwell’s new website feature provides important peace of mind for both existing users and those starting school.’ Their buses serve schools based in Sittingbourne, but within range of the Isle of Sheppey, Iwade, Upchurch, Lower Halstow and many villages in Swale. He added that the website would also enable children waiting at stops to see how far away their bus is, thus lessening stress for all involved.

Family business Heron Foods has been bought by discount retailer B&M Bargains, another family business, for £152m. With its first store opened in 1979, Heron have branched out from East Hull to over 250 locations over the north of England. Now, it looks as though its horizons are going to broaden further still. B&M chief executive Simon Arora, who owns and directs B&M alongside his two brothers, plans to develop both family businesses with David

and Andrew Heuck as well. Their expansion plan of 10-20 new stores per year will elevate Heron from its status as a chain, and into a ‘discount convenience grocery brand’, the addition of which will ‘give the combined business an even longer, exciting growth runway,’ according to Arora. He said, ‘I look forward to working with David and Andrew Heuck and the Heron team to drive forward our shared ambition to deliver exceptional value for money to shoppers across the UK.’ www.bmstores.co.uk

www.chalkwell.co.uk

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Peace of mind

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Open Doors Northern Irish family business Woodmarque have created sixteen new jobs by investing in machinery and business development. Specialising in joinery and bespoke furniture, the business is now expanding to customer bases in Great Britain and the Republic of Ireland, where they aim to triple turnover within two years. Regional economic development agency, Invest Northern Ireland, has offered the business £90,000 to enable the creation of eight of the sixteen new jobs; with the additional salaries set to inject an annual

£248,000 back into the local economy. First generation Managing Director Brian Quinn has over four decades of expertise as a joiner. ‘Investing in new state-ofthe-art equipment and recruiting additional staff gives us the skills, experience and capability to compete for and deliver high value contracts in our target markets’, he says. Woodmarque’s tradesmen are trained within apprenticeships in joinery and Irish engineering, for that distinctive style that Woodmarque prides itself on. www.woodmarque.co.uk

Turn of the Screw

Bright Sparks Award-winning coffee machine manufacturer Fracino continues to innovate in the workplace, but this time with a personal approach- supporting the studies of their Quality Assurance Manager, Daniel O’Donnell. With their backing, O’Donnell has attained a work-based bachelor’s degree in Professional Engineering from Aston University. The degree has given Daniel the level of expertise necessary to apply to become an incorporated engineer, demonstrating that his skills are of an international standard.

He said, ‘I really appreciate the support, mentoring and development from Managing Director, Adrian Maxwell, and Fracino, along with the fantastic opportunity to fulfil my potential with a manufacturer and exporter which is highly respected in the UK and overseas.’ ‘Our ethos and strategy is to continue to invest in tomorrow’s talent by recruiting and retaining great people with a ‘can do’ attitude - helping them to upskill and acquire qualifications for career progression,’ said Maxwell. www.fracino.com

Denton-based engineering and fastening business Francis Kirk Group has expanded it’s international distribution network, with key deals in Dubai and the US. The Dubai appointment of Integrated Auto Supplies will accelerate growth in the Middle East for the family business. Francis Kirk Group was established in 1868, and will celebrate its 150th anniversary next year. Fourth and fifth generations Francis and Tom lead the business currently, and champion an approachable culture to get the best results from their team. They put success over many years down to the fact that each generation has moved with the times and been open to new ideas to take the business forward. In the US, the company’s market leading self-locking nut Philidas – with multiple industrial uses – is now being stocked by the

largest engineering component distributor in North America. It’s ten months since Francis Kirk Group started trading in Iran, working with the Tehran-based Alipoor Company to provide a single source fastening and cutting tools solution to manufacturers throughout the region. The US distribution partner is a major supplier to rail giants Bombardier worldwide, which also happens to be an existing UK customer of Francis Kirk. Francis Kirk Group has increased its worldwide export activity in the last two to three years and it now accounts for almost 40% of turnover. European business is also still strong and expanding. The company is on track to move from £4.75million to £7million turnover by the end of the year, with export playing a major role in growth. www.franciskirk.com

If you have an exciting piece of family business news just give us a call and let us know. We could feature you in the next issue of Generation and on familybusinessplace.com Contact us by email:  press@familybusinessplace.com or telephone: 01732 220 120

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The home of Family Business

TM

National Family Business Conference 2016 Hiring, Firing & Inspiring 4th of November 2016 saw Family Business Place host their National Family Business Conference at Canary Wharf.

Sir Brian Souter discussed translating personal values into how you conduct your business.

Family Business Place paired with the family business team behind Ernst & Young to host the event. The conference created the opportunity for business owners to come together, meet, share and learn from each other in a warm and confidential environment.

Erntst & Young, Canary Wharf, London

James Reed shared the challenges of taking the reins of ‘the largest family-owned recruitment company in the world’.


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Caroline Magrane and Oliver Saiman, RBC Wealth Management, discuss the importance of succession planning.

Coby Bull, Cicely Elliott-Berry, Philip Kalli and Tom Shaw lead a session of harnessing the creativity of the next generation.

Joanne Garwood explored options concerning succession, and planning for the future.

Coby Bull talks about evolving his 1940s family business with the utilisation of an online presence.

Thank you to our supportive sponsors:

Sally Ashford of Charles Russell Speechlys involved the audience in a live survey.

Tom Hart Dyke shared the story of his kidnapping in 2000 and how it energised him to create something exciting for future generations.

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meets

FAMILY Felix, Clarice, Cicely, & Digby Elliott-Berry are the brothers and sisters behind Sibling Distillery, with the eldest turning 25 this year. Anita Brightley-Hodges finds out more

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e’re sitting with Felix, Clarice and Cicely in The Tasting Room, overlooking Sibling’s new premises. The sounds of manual work carry from below; along with the constant hum of the unique crystal distillery. Felix informs us that the machine boils the liquid at a temperature that evaporates alcohol, but not water- allowing the vapour to infuse with the distinctive botanical flavours as it mixes, to produce the purest gin possible. It seems odd to think just how much work goes into filling the compact, bijoux, cube-shaped bottles that the siblings’ mum, Stephanie, is preparing downstairs.

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Did you always want to get into the brewing business? Your parents have Battledown Brewery, you could’ve joined them… what prompted you to think about doing something for yourselves? Felix: It’s the industry that we’ve grown up surrounded by…so having that background with our parents running their brewery, it wasn’t frightening for us to have a go at something ourselves. We were fully aware of how competitive and fraught the industry was from day one. Cicely: I think if we had gone straight into our parent’s business as well, we knew how many things we wanted to change about it… as much as we appreciated the skill that went into the brand they had built, we wanted to carve out our own little section that we could start from scratch with. Early discussions began on a family holiday, following Cicely leaving school. Felix: At the time I was working in a brand agency, Clarice was working in the retail side


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Y SPIRIT of things- so for me to say ‘let’s start a brand agency’; I’d have known a lot about it, but no-one else would have. It would always have been me leading the way on it, whereas in this industry, we’ve all grown up with it. It was the only opportunity where we were all going to start off with the same level of knowledge. One of the most important things about working with your siblings is having respect for each other, and trusting that they’ll be able to do their bit, so how did you reconcile that? Did you talk about trust? Clarice: No, it’s always been a given. I think also, it wasn’t about trusting each other to pull our weight, it was just making sure we could. Felix: It’s not in any of our interests for any of us to underperform either, because we’re not trying to get promotions, or trying to get one up on someone, because we have a completely level structure. While their parents refuse to get actively involved with decision-making, they are always

on hand for professional advice. Decisions are made with the understanding that ‘majority rules’- but being family-owned ensures that everyone acts in each other’s best interests. Cicely: I think it’s the control thing. We know that when the chips are down, we’re all here to look out for each other, more than anything else. Completely naturally, an investor is going to worry about their own agenda, but as a family, we’re all looking out for each other, we’re in control of our own destiny. Knowing each other inside out makes a big difference to the decision-making process.

We know that when the chips are down, we’re all here to look out for each other, more than anything else.

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What’s been the biggest high? Cicely: I think sometimes there’s an excitement when someone knows about Sibling Distillery. Like I was talking to a friend of a friend in London recently about what we do, and he asked ‘‘what’s the brand called?’, so I told him and he was like ‘oh, I’ve heard of that,’ and I was like, ‘really?’ Felix recounts several times being at markets and bars, overhearing strangers making repeat orders of their gin. Felix: I get more of a high from a reorder than a first order. I went to a local Warners Budgens and I just had a quick peek in the spirits section and saw that ours was sold out again. Every time I’ve been in there it’s been sold out, and I’m like ‘well, that’s great, because we’ve never done a tasting in that store, so people are buying it because they’ve heard about it or they know it’s a good quality.’ One such example is the gin being stocked last year for Majestics’ Christmas web store- who have reordered again this year.

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So modesty aside, what’s the big vision? Clarice: I’m pretty much thinking along the same lines as Felix, I want to build a team, so we can build more of a brand and widen our market. The thing that limits us at the moment is the size of our team. We can maybe do two or three shows a weekend, but what’d be really good is if we could do five or six, and have ourselves all over the UK, seeing more and more people face-to-face, instead of just saturating a small area around us, which is what we do at the moment. Do you have mentors? Felix: I still see my old boss who I worked for when I left school just to chat ideas through, and call him if we’re not sure how to sort problems. When we got our advertising ban for all being under 25, I was a bit frustrated at the time. But he’s worked in advertising and branding for a long time, so I just pick up the phone sometimes and say ‘what do you reckon we should do?’ That’s quite handy, because it’s from someone who’s completely removed from

Clarice (left), Cicely (right)


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Felix (left), Digby (right)

the business, that can kind of look at a problem in a more objective way. Eighteen-year-old Digby is the only sibling absent for the interview. While he has equal shares in the business, and is due to fully join the others in a couple of years, since leaving school he has been encouraged to gradually build experience in other areas in the meantime. What’s in store for Digby? Felix: Well, I was very aware that if he left school and came straight into this when we’ve been working on it for the last three and a half years, it was going to have been a very difficult role for him to fulfil immediately. So what we’re doing is bedding him in more gradually- he’s working his way in and does events with us, so he builds his knowledge of the business. Clarice: I’ve never met anyone in my life with such an incredible brain as he’s got. He can look at a situation, like maybe a production line that we’re working on, and he’ll say ‘wouldn’t it be quicker if you did this, and move these things

around?’ and we’re like ‘yeah!’ Cicely: I find myself saying to him all the time, ‘that’s actually a really good idea, Dig.’ He’s a problem solver, and verbally he’s very good, he’s great as a salesman. He’ll slot in the same as we all did, and probably take things off us and do them better, but he’ll just evolve with us and the business. I ended the interview by asking each sibling what they would wish for. Felix: That nothing goes wrong between now and the end of the year. If we can get through Christmas without any disasters, I’ll be happy. Clarice: If you could find an eighth and possibly ninth day of the week, that’d be so great. Cicely: If we could let our parents retire and pay for them to have a nice life, I’d be very happy

www.siblingdistillery.com

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GOING GLOBAL Julianne Ponan is the head of health food shop Creative Nature, which is fast becoming an international business. Alec Pitman speaks to her to find out more.

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nitially using her degree to work for an investment firm in Beijing, Julianne’s return to the UK resulted in a management buyout for her father’s company. ‘I was in banking before, and it was actually my Dad that asked me to take a look, because the business was making losses, and he asked me to just do some work for them and then literally, he was like ‘why don’t you buy it out?’ Creative Nature was previously a festival favourite, with products that included candles, Buddha statues, and incense. Its new owner, who suffers from anaphylaxis, completely revamped that range with alternative snack bars, superfoods, and baking mixes that are suitable for her to eat without fear of an allergic reaction. In the first eighteen months, Julianne had wrestled £56k in losses back into profit, with only one other member of staff. ‘I think it’s really important that people, if they’re launching a product, they need to have a purpose behind it. So, they need to understand why they’re bringing this product into the market, who they are going to be targeting, and to ask if it’s something that the market actually needs.’ With success in social media as well as business, Julianne is now the face of Creative Nature. ‘People buy from people at the end of the day, so that’s why we took that route. Everyone knows me with the brand now. It’s quite odd when someone says ‘hey, you’re

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Julianne!’ It’s just odd walking into Tesco’s and people knowing who we are.’ Julianne has won many awards, including the National Natwest Everywoman Artemis Award, two separate Rising Star awards from the National Family Business Awards, the Guardian Small Business Showcase, and the Young Director of the Year award from the Institute of Directors (IoD). Despite these great achievements, Julianne hasn’t let success go to her head.

I’ve never met an entrepreneur who’s worked really hard who isn’t humble, because they’ve had to work through a lot to get where they are. This understanding likely comes from her father, John Ponan, who retains directorial rights while taking a mentor role to Julianne. She says they have become closer since she became a CEO in her own right, due to understanding each other ‘on a business level’. ‘My Dad is like a sounding board for me. He’s an amazing entrepreneur because he has other businesses, but he’s been sort of like the backbone, he helps me when I need to make a decision that’s quite tough, and just makes sure I can make these decisions.’ John isn’t the only member of the family involved with Creative Nature. Julianne’s brother and sister have extended helping hands when not studying at university. While her


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brother left university this year, he has since been accepted to become a commercial pilotfor an airline that Julianne hopes to supply for. ‘I think with my sister and brother, they’ve been able to see that you can achieve from a very young age, and that’s been fantastic. It’s pulled us all together as well… when things are difficult and you have to get orders into Tesco’s and you just don’t have the staff to do it, your family will be there and help you pack those products until four in the morning, which is great.’ Julianne’s rock is her Operations Manager and partner, Matt Ford, who she considers to be family. The two featured on Dragon’s Den this year, and were given an investment offer by Deborah Meaden. However, Matt’s work on the growth of Creative Nature made other options more advantageous. Just recently, Creative Nature has secured orders with two supermarkets in Iceland, with aims to launch in Brunei, Australia, and in five years, the US. The Dragon’s investment offer was £175,000 for a 25% share in the business, with a potential for a 5% buyback if Creative Nature met its

annual targets. However, the share was five times more than Julianne’s initial offer. ‘We worked really hard, and it was a lot to give up… I think what some people don’t understand is when you work so hard for your brand, to just give it up when you’re just in the stores, it’s hard.’ Julianne is active as a mentor for Virgin Start-up, and takes on apprentices in her own business. ‘Sometimes it’s hard to get information, and the best way to learn is from someone else who’s done it. It’s just a way to pay it forward, and I think if everyone did that, we could build the economy so much faster. It’s all about sharing information, and the only way to do that is through mentors.’ ‘Apprentices have a lot more drive, which is great, and I love seeing young people thrive in those industries and giving them opportunities that they wouldn’t normally have.’ ‘That’s what gets me out of bed in the morning: my team, my product being on the shelf, and seeing people enjoying it’ www.creativenaturesuperfoods.co.uk

Matthew Ford (left), Julianne Ponan (right)

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ROYAL SEAL Smart Actuator recently received a Queen’s Award for Innovation in Enterprise, following the invention of the RIFT technology, a revolutionary method of building energy-saving motors. Marketing Director Tonya O’Donnell speaks to Alec Pitman about her family’s success. RIFT is being used in electric cars and domestic wind turbines. How does it feel to have that level of influence on the technological world? Fascinating, and really humbling, in a way. We are all of us here, geeks. We’re all fascinated by technology, and all of us love reading stories about innovation and the way that technology is changing the world. I don’t think any of us really imagined that we might one day feature in that illustrious list. But it might be nice to imagine a day when you pick up a copy of the National Geographic, you know, ‘100 Innovations That Changed the World’, and for the RIFT-driven motor to be in that list. Wouldn’t that be something? I think it’s really quite admirable to license it to other manufacturers around the world. What made you make that decision? It’s really important to us that we do patent our innovation, but we do want these products and this technology to have a global reach. We’re really proud that it’s a British invention, but

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in order to reach a global market, it’s better to start to make friends. If that means going to places like America or India or the Middle East and saying ‘well I’ll tell you what, instead of us building a factory, let’s work with alreadyestablished manufacturers and work under a licensing agreement’, that’s not a bad thing. Are you all active around Malvern? Well, three members of the family, and executive team of the business have civic and council roles within the community. We’re really conscious of the fact that we’re not just about making money- we live here, we have family here, we grew up here, and we invest in our local area. It’s about having a personality, and being people, and not just being a robot in business, and that’s something that comes across in our family values. Is there an attitude that comes with being a second-generation family business? Ultimately, at the end of the day, it was my parents who founded the computer business,


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and got it rolling. There’s a responsibility for us to continue their legacy, but it’s easy for us, because we have the same core family values, and we get it because we’re also parents now. So in a way we’re excited and honoured and pleased to be able to pick up that mantle and do even better with it. Are the second-generation showing an interest in joining the business? I’m absolutely sure that my son will feature in the business. He’s got exactly the right desire and skill set. He’s incredibly technically minded, and I think he will probably end up being one of our future innovators. James’ boys in particular are also very good with that; engineering, maths, physics and science, so I can see them having a place. As for me, my fiveyear old said to me, ‘Mummy, it’s okay, when you get too old to do your job, I’ll do your job!’ What value do you get from entering these awards? And winning them? The Queen’s Award is easy- we were actually recommended to enter, and initially when it was proposed to us, we thought there’s no way we could win that, but in the end we said ‘okay, go on then’. We understood that global recognition of the prestige that comes with the Queen’s crown, a standard of business quality

and service that British businesses can bring to the table. So we always knew that entering that, if we got it, would be a really good thing to hold. I entered the Family Business Awards because I wanted to prove to the family that a family business can do great things. I wanted to give them and our whole team confidence… that if there are some days they might sit there and go ‘I don’t know, can we cope, because we’re not a big corporate business’, they know that yes, we can. What we’d like to do next is win a Queen’s Award for export, because for us, the next step in this is taking this great idea, this disruptive technology and actually getting it out in the world. What’s the best thing about working in a family business? The best thing about working with the family business is that you’re working with people that you know, like and trust. A lot of people say that their reason for work is their family, that’s why they go to work, to earn money for their family. For me, I get to work with my family, and I like them, so I get to come in, and we have fun, and we see and interact with each other a lot, maybe more than a lot of other families do, and I like that, and I know the rest of the family do too www.smartact.co.uk

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Rags-to-riches millionaire Rami Ranger CBE is the head of the only UK company to earn a Queen’s Award for Enterprise in International Trade for five years consecutively. Anita Brightley Hodges discovers the secrets to his success. ami Ranger CBE came to England seeking success, fortune, and a law degree. Instead, he soon realised that the land of opportunity that he had envisionedwith its streets paved with gold and money growing on trees- was actually in a time of high inflation and rampant unemployment rates. No matter where he went, inquiries of his formal experience were met without an answerfor Rami had none, and few were willing to stick their neck out for a young immigrant. One of those few was a garage, who employed Rami as a car cleaner, a job that required no qualifications. Since overseas students couldn’t claim a grant before living in England for three years, Rami was resigned simply to making enough money to return home.

Death and Partition Shaheed Nanak Singh was killed by religious fanatics only four months before his son Rami was born. A public speaker and figure of social morality, Shaheed had been attempting to calm a violent riot sparked by a peaceful student protest against the partition of India. He too, had believed that campaigning for the division between the Indian and Islamic communities would hurt his mother country; seeking instead a solution that promoted national unity. Rami’s mother, Sardarni Harbans Kaur, was forced to take her eight children and flee, robbed of her husband, family affluence, and ancestral home. Due to the 7.5million Sikhs and Hindus displaced from what would later become Pakistan, the train to Ferozepur, India,

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was packed to the gunnels. Only Shaheed’s name granted the family passage, albeit in the coal tender; and with frequent bandit attacks, the three-hour journey took three days instead. Not that reaching Ferozepur was the end of their hardships- floods forced Sardarni to travel to the district of Patalia, which would become home to Rami and his siblings. Sardarni worked as a community teacher while she raised all eight of her children. She is described as ‘a source of strength’, and remains a symbol of education, something Rami holds dear to this day. “She always said, ‘you cannot give in, or give up, no matter what fate throws at you’,” says Rami. Five Wonderful Qualities Rami was not working for the garage for longone talent he learned to cultivate was how to spot an opportunity. While walking to work one day, he noticed a vacancy for a chef in a KFC, which was expanding into the UK at the time. Rami got the job, working for 35p an hour. This turned out to be exactly where he needed to be; for he managed to impress his district manager enough to be offered a position as an assistant manager in the Norwood store. Rami’s mother used to say that he had been blessed with five wonderful qualities: selfrespect, work ethic, commitment, vision, and empathy- so naturally, promotion was only around the corner.

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A year passed, and KFC had expanded into Brixton. All it needed was a store manager. Taking the opportunity with both hands, the Brixton store soon became number one in the company by breaking every sales record. The management were so impressed that within two years, Rami was district manager, in charge of running ten stores. Rami ended up staying with KFC for six years until his marriage to his wife, Renu, with whom he ran various small shops and businesses while Sardarni, who came to live with them, cared for their first child, Reena. In 1987, Rami returned to management, this time at a Dixons. Despite proving himself an exceptional worker yet again, the regional manager was very unkind to him- but Rami had got what he needed. He had seen people coming to the UK from overseas to buy and ship electrical goods back home; with most of these packages arrived broken and damaged upon arrival. There, Rami spotted a niche, the spark of inspiration that would decide the course of the rest his life: the inspiration to form a freight forwarding business. Opportunity and Creativity Starting Sea, Air and Land Forwarding with £2 capital and a typewriter, Rami built a trusted reputation through providing a service that promoted care, ease, and fulfilment. Not only had electrical goods stopped arriving overseas broken and damaged, but Rami was also savvy


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enough about airports that he was saving his clients’ valuable money, time, and effort. He thrived at working for himself. When Ray Perkins applied to SAL Forwarding for a managerial position, Rami recognised his potential right away. He asked him if he wanted to run his own courier agency, to which Ray replied he lacked the money to do so. Rami responded by giving him something that had been denied himself for so long: a chance. A partnership, that would allow both men to develop professionally. Ray continues to be director of Sea, Air and Land Forwarding, while Rami branched out into his marketing business, Sun Mark. With great international growth, and the changing landscape of shipping, SAL Forwarding now specialised in sending British food and drink brands to overseas supermarkets. Not only that, but it also provided an infrastructure for Rami to sell British brands under his own brand, Sun Mark- meaning that the usual distribution and marketing costs that come with shipping established brands were no longer applicable, and products could be shipped faster, easier, and cheaper for the customer. By promoting trust with suppliers, care with products, quality of service, and unity of nations; today, Sun Mark represents almost every major British food & drink brand in markets all over the world.

From Nothing To Everything Rami came to England seeking success, fortune, and a law degree. Instead, he found success, fortune, an MBE, a CBE awarded to him by the Queen herself, and five Queen’s Awards- a record that has yet to be matched to this day. Now he is in his seventies, and Sun Mark is run by his son-in-law, Harmeet Ahuja. But the years have not dampened Rami’s spirit, nor his enduring humility. He is a public speaker, and champion of social justice and national unity. As well as having started the Shaheed Nanak Singh Foundation and the Pakistan, India and UK Friendship Forum, he is also the Chairman of the British Sikh Association. www.sunmark.co.uk

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The National Family Business Awards 2017 The home of Family Business

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The newly rebranded National Family Business Awards entered Wembley Stadium on the 15th July 2017. The event saw 350 guests in attendance, reflecting our growing reputation for recognising the most outstanding family businesses throughout the UK and Ireland. The two families behind Abbott-Wade, who won the North West regional award for Best Small Business.

Agencia Consulting took home the ‘Best Small Business Award’, presented by Chris Riddell from Matthews.

Wembley Stadium, London, 15 July 2017

Charlie Mullins’ Lifetime Achievement Award, held by son Scott, grandson Ashley, and Rami Ranger CBE.

The family behind ONE.a Hair & Beauty Salon won Judges’ Choice for Wales, as well as regional Apprenticeship Champion.


Mother and daughter team, Jane and Kerri of SkinToLove Clinic.

The team of Valentine & Turner, regional winners for Best Small Business in the South East.

(Left-to- right) Jakub Brogowski (RBC Wealth Management) with Chris, Seren-Grace, Tony, Zachary, and Tonya O’Donnell of National Family Business of the Year, Smart Actuator.

Frank Cappalonga and his wife, Charlie, from Frank Di Lusso.

Sandra (left) & Jessica Patterson (right) of Kids Bee Happy were named National and Scottish Entrepreneur of the Year. Thank you to our supportive sponsors:

Margaret Carter, whose business won the Special Recognition award, with guest Speaker Jamie Baulch, and Chris Riddell.

Rooftec Scotland, represented by Carol and Alan Hutchinson, won National and Regional awards for Apprenticeship Champion & Judges’ Choice.

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Ireland’s finest

39 Mellett’s Emporium All-in-One

Truway Technical Wizards

40 Conefrey’s Pharmacy In the Pink

L Malone Newsagents L for Luck

Bush Hotel Roots in the Community

41 Galtee Group Artful Craft

Wilsons Auctions Going once, going twice

Brian Grassick Bloodstock Agency & Newton Stud Farm Clerks of the course

42 Happy Pear Growing Strong

Glandore Watch this space

Keanes Jewellers A bit Keane

Ireland’s Finest

43 Bean in Dingle Cools Beans

Ballymaloe Cookery School No school like the old school

Quinlan’s Kerryfish Wild, organic, superior


Ireland’s finest

Twenty-six Counties IRELAND’S FACTFILE Population: 4.773 million (2016) GDP: $294.05 USD billion Interesting facts Famed for its natural beauty, The Republic of Ireland is also known for the Shamrock, the Gaelic festival of Samhain (a precursor for Halloween), and the Guinness brewery. Irish Gaelic is the ancestral language, of which 380,000 fluent speakers remain.

Paul Whitnell, President of the British and Irish Trading Alliance, details the pivotal role family businesses play in Ireland When founding BITA I had no expectation of the businesses that would be drawn to us, but we have been lucky enough to work with many family businesses across the UK and Ireland. The University of Dublin has found that approximately 75% of all Irish firms are family owned businesses. Together they contribute greater than 50% of the country’s gross domestic product, and around 50% of employment. Whether large multi-nationals like Portwest or smaller businesses like Galtee Group, family businesses bring employment, revenue and

IRELAND Irish Economy grew at 5.2% in 2016, making it the fastest growing economy in the Eurozone Rate of unemployment has been on the decline for the past 3 years, now at less than 6.2% The alcoholic beverage industry contibutes 2 billion euro annually to the Irish economy, employing approximately 92,000 people Despite the uncertainty surrounding Brexit, the Bank of Ireland forecasts an economic increase, based on a continuing rise in domestic demand.

skills, bolstering the communities that host them. Often people focus on money and jobs, but we think that improving skills are just as important – and family businesses agree. They value loyalty and put time and money into training their employees in skills that will serve them throughout their lives. This increases well-being and mental health – as well as the more often advertised earning potential. In addition, Irish family businesses are often more inclined to philanthropic efforts than non-family businesses; 74% of them feel compelled to support local community initiatives and charities. It is impossible to overstate the impact that family businesses have on their local and national economies. We are proud to count some excellent family businesses among our members, and salute their commitment to retaining traditions while striving for innovations. Paul Whitnell, President of BITA www.bita.ie

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Ireland’s finest

All-in-One Initially consisting of a jack-of-all trades retail shop in 1797, Mellett’s Emporium is now a pub, brimming with vintage character Built in a time when the practice of using lead pipes to carry beer from pump to tap was considered modern, the property was essentially a retail shop with a bar at the rear. The lead pipes are still in situ, albeit not used for some time. As well as selling groceries, bacon, ales, spirits, tobacco, and

animal foodstuffs; Mellett’s provided other services, including booking passage to the US and England, operating a very successful matchmaking business from the snug, an insurance agents’, and even arranging funerals! Although most of these services have

become defunct over the centuries, some things have remained constant. Despite a large-scale renovation between 1987 and 1988, the pub is crammed with antiques; with three vintage cars on display in the beer garden. Another constant is that the pub is currently owned by the sixth generation, Joe Mellett, with his daughter, Marie, set to take over. Marie believes that with a bit of luck, Mellett’s Emporium can survive another 220 years! www.mellettsemporium.com

Technical Wizards Following his wife’s second pregnancy, Finance Director for the Ritz-Carlton Hotel in Kazakhstan, Manmeet Abrol, returned to Kildare to found a software business Built on the understanding that a good first impression is vital in our increasingly digital landscape, Truway specialise in impeccable client-based website and software design. Their approach to projects centres around close dialogue with clients at every step, to ensure a precisely correct result. Manmeet’s brother, Kuuljiit Abrol (KJ), joined the business in 2016, with the aim to manage development and increase the range of digital marketing services Truway offer. As well as being able to generate a powerful online presence on social platforms such as Facebook, Twitter, and

Google+, they also handle press releases, marketing campaigns, and devising ways to make their clients’ businesses appear more frequently on search engine results. Due to the brothers’ hard work, Truway has gone from a team of four to a team of ten in the last two years. They have recently launched an app for streamlining payment transactions between businesses. Manmeet won the Rising Star regional award for Ireland and N. Ireland at the National Family Business Awards 2017. www.truway.ie

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In the Pink success

L for Luck A fixture of Kildare town for over

33 years after its establishment

150 years, L Malone is thought

on the longest street in Ireland,

to be the oldest independent

Conefrey’s Pharmacy faced a big

newsagents in Ireland

problem- the death of its owner Following the passing of Caillin ‘Con’ Conefrey in 1988, his widow Peggy took over the running of the business until their son, Tomás, had completed his training as a pharmacist. By 1998 Tomás was qualified and at the helm, working alongside his older brother, Caillin Jr. Following his mother’s example of introducing computerised payment and record-keeping systems, Tomás has found it necessary to integrate social media into the business. While Conefrey’s enjoys a good local reputation; platforms such as Twitter, Facebook and Linkedin help it to propagate it further, allowing the pharmacy to keep up with the likes of other medication sellers, like Boots and large supermarkets. ‘My whole take on advertising has changed in the past three or four years with the impact of social media,’ says Conefrey, whose Twitter page has 10.8k followers. Tomás is now attempting to implement new services into the pharmacy, including food intolerance testing, 24-hour blood pressure monitoring and cholesterol and Hb1Ac testing. www.askconefreys.ie

Roots in the Community Bought by the Dolans in 1992, The Bush Hotel is a 300-year old building with a rich history Also known as the ‘house of hospitality’, the Bush Hotel has been a fixture of Carrick-on-Shannon, County Leitrim,

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Opened on the main street from Dublin to Cork and Limerick in 1864, owner Brigid named L Malone after her daughter, Lily. Remarkably, the newsagents continues to be owned by the same family, run by Brigid’s descendent a century-and-a-half later. Louis Hennessy and his wife, Terry,

since the late eighteenth century. It has seen and survived rebellions, outbreaks of cholera and typhus, the Great Famine of 1845-1850, two World Wars, and on one occasion, hangings within its own four walls. Remarkably, it has only needed to be rebuilt once. The Bush was acquired and has since been run by Joe Dolan and his family since 1993. As well as Managing Director, Dolan is also the president of the Irish Hotels

have turned down several takeover offers from multiple traders over the years. Louis is known locally as ‘Lucky Louis’, a moniker given to him when three big winning lottery tickets were bought in the shop in 2012. The first big winning lotto prize ticket they sold in 25 years turned out to be a 50% share in an €11m lotto jackpot, announced on April Fools’ Day… but it turned out to be no joke! Awarded with the title of Best Newsagent in Co. Kildare in 2014; in recent years, loyal L Malone customers have won more than €7m on the lottery.

Federation, which represents nearly a thousand hotels and guesthouses nationwide. A veritable pillar of the community, the Bush held Sunday Mass while the local church was undergoing renovations in 2010. The hotel has flourished under the Dolans, and now boasts a garden centre, a business and banqueting complex, as well as 30 additional gorgeous bedrooms. www.bushhotel.com


Ireland’s finest

Artful Craft The Galtee Group is a Limerick based collection of wood product manufacturers, including Galtee Panels and Pronto Doors Run by the Ryan family since 1980, The Galtee group produces and supplies commercial, trade and retail markets with bespoke wooden doors and panels. Their emphasis on employing a consistently skilled workforce mean that craftmanship is second-to-none: so much so that, in the face of recession, turnover actually went from €6m to €12.5m for 2016. Of course, designing and delivering

Clerks of the Course With a bloodstock agency and stud farm, the Grassicks are experts on all things thoroughbred Started in 1991 by Sheila and her husband, the late Brian Grassick, the Bloodstock agency and Newtown stud farm is now an enterprise; with 120 acres, thirty-five stables, and twenty-five full time resident mares (which can increase by up to forty, depending on the time of year), directed by Sheila and her daughter Cathy. Her other daughter, Sally Ann, is a frequent presence as a TV presenter for

quality products isn’t the only priority for the second-generation business: the environment is, too. In order to continue being as carbon neutral as they can, Galtee make sure sawdust, wood and veneer waste is used responsibly as a source of heat and energy during the production process. The further use of ecofriendly commercial transport contribute to the business keeping their carbon footprint as small as possible. The Galtee Group was recently a regional winner at the National Family Business Awards 2017, a standout in the category for Manufacturing Excellence. www.thegalteegroup.ie

RTE Racing and ITV Racing. Their farms have been associated with many successful sales race performers; including the winner of Tattersalls Ireland Sales Race, ‘Lucies Pride’, the winner of Goffs Sportsmans Challenge Race, ‘Invincible Force’, and winner of Tattersalls Ireland Sales Race, ‘Tale Untold’. Grassick Bloodstock and Newtown Stud plan to continue expanding; with Cathy entering into a partnership with a friend to breed her own first sports-horse. ‘The dream always is to breed the classic winner on the farm…we were nearly there, having a mare based on the farm who was second in the Irish Oaks,’ says Cathy. ‘It’s every flatbreeders dream.’  www.briangrassickbloodstock.com

Going Once Going Twice Wilsons Auctions has returned over £85m back into the public purse in recent years Originally founded from a single site, Wilsons Auctions has expanded exponentially over eighty years; now with sixteen sites across the UK and Ireland including branches in Dublin, Belfast, Dalry, Telford, Queensferry, Newcastle and Maidstone. It is the only auction company to offer a national coverage, providing it with a wide range of branches to draw experience, resources and ideas from. As if to reflect the widespread growth of the company from humble foundations, the involvement of the family has also increased. The current managing director, Ian Wilson, took the reins from his father, William. The third generation is also an active part of the company with Ricky, Gareth and Rebecca Wilson in directorial roles. Wilsons Auctions holds over 1000 auctions annually, auctioning everything from cars, vans, property and plant and machinery, to more luxurious items including planes, yachts, supercars, and designer watches. Ian Wilson won the regional Lifetime Achievement for Ireland at The National Family Business Awards 2017.   www.wilsonsauctions.com

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Ireland’s finest

Growing Strong Whilst travelling separately around the world, twins Dave and Steve

Watch This Space

Flynn unknowingly switched to plant

Now reaching its sixteenth year,

based diets within the same week

Glandore continues to offer office space in Dublin and Belfast

The business first opened the doors of its little vegetable shop in 2004. It has since grown to include a natural food store, three cafés, a sprout farm, an own-label manufacturing and distribution business, a roastery, online cooking courses, three cookbooks, and 600,000 followers across multiple social media platforms. Most recently, the pair have opened a café and shop in the Round Tower in Clondalkin, Dublin, creating 30 local jobs. Relentlessly positive, the twins try and promote a sense of community, as well as their core belief that the key to happiness is good health. ‘We have found that we felt better by changing our diet and it was the catalyst for so much else in our life’, says David. ‘We steer away from words like “vegetarian” and “vegan” because they can be very charged. People find it divisive and binary, not really inclusive. If it is just about healthy food then it is more inclusive and more people can relate to it’. www.thehappypear.ie

An Irish family-owned business, Glandore is run by Michael Kelly and his daughters, Clare, Fiona, and Rebecca. They specialise in providing workspace for a variety of businesses; be they well-established, start-up, freelancer, local, international, technical, creative, financial, recruitment, law, insurance or pharmaceutical- Glandore offer bespoke office space to suit their needs. Joining Glandore’s Members Network is needed to gain access to their offices, but this opens up other possibilities- namely, creating an environment where businesses can engage, share expertise and contacts

A Bit Keane After nearly seventy years, Keanes Jewellers is now synonymous with Cork, and quality craftmanship In an economic climate where frequent job-hopping is considered common, the longevity of Keanes Jewellery isn’t the only way it should be considered exceptional: incredibly, a quarter of their sixty staff have been with the company for over 20 years. Across the shops in Cork, Limerick, and Killarney, each staff member is certified by the two highest gemmological institutes in the world; and the majority have trained overseas with Rolex and Patek Phillipe. The ‘flagship shop’ in Cork is the same shop that was opened by Patrick Keane on Oliver Plunkett Street; a key shopping street with its own Twitter

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and with any luck, collaborate with other members. ‘The power of networking and connecting with like-minded individuals and companies is crucial, which is why we offer both a space to land and a space to expand at Glandore,’ says Clare. ‘We accelerate and expand our members’ business network by facilitating connections between members, alumni and the wider business community at our Glandore Network events.’ Glandore have provided locations for companies such as Facebook, Twitter, Dropbox, Bloomberg, and the Bank of Ireland. www.glandore.co

hashtag. It won the ‘Great Street Award’ from London’s Academy of Urbanism in 2016, and was the only Irish entry on the shortlist. Keane is currently run by second generation brothers, Gerard and Patrick Keane, and third generation sons, Gerard Jr. and Patrick- making the perpetuation of the family firm all but a certainty. www.keanes.ie


Ireland’s finest

Cool Beans Selling out of coffee after its very first Saturday open, Bean in Dingle has made itself a thriving staple of the local community Oxford-born siblings Justin, Luke, and Georgia are the team behind the now two-year old coffee shop; driven by the

desire to bring the same quality of coffee found in Dublin or Cork back home to Dingle. Their chosen coffee supplier, Badger & Dodo, normally only supply businesses with their own house blends. However, the owner agreed to specially craft a unique blend of coffee after a two-hour phone conversation with Justin. Despite having secured its place among the community for both locals and tourists, initial plans for the Bean involved a coffee van, but difficulties arising from public trading restrictions in Dingle meant that the idea was going to be a non-starter. Luckily, soon after this became apparent, the Green Street property that would become a local fixture became available for lease. Justin and Luke are partners in the business, while Georgia, who is described as ‘the heart and soul of the place’, works as a barista. www.beanindingle.com

No School like the Old School Situated on an organically-run farm in Cork, Ballymaloe Cookery School is owned by renowned Irish chefs, Darina Allen and Rory O’Connell The celebrity siblings have in excess of thirty years of cooking experience, over a dozen awards, more than ten books, and several series credits between them; meaning Ballymaloe is likely the most well-equipped cookery school in all of the Republic of Ireland. Twelve-week, closely mentored cooking courses are led by Darina and Rory throughout the year. Aimed at both casual cooks and aspiring professionals, the courses cover advanced techniques with international cuisines, while also boasting a wealth of guest speakers. As well as the school and student accommodation, the rest of the 100acre site is utilised to give students

what is known as a true ‘farm-to-fork’ education: consisting of a farm, garden, and large greenhouses for produce, as well as being home to pigs, hens, and meat and dairy cows. Alumni of Ballymaloe have gone on to launch successful careers, including Paul McVeigh, chef at Featherblade in Dublin, 2005 Masterchef winner and owner of restaurant group Wahaca, Thomasina Miers, and Steve Parle, owner of The Dock Kitchen in London. www.cookingisfun.ie

Wild Organic Superior Following a rebrand in 2000 to include the family name, Quinlan’s Kerryfish now operate several fish shops and seafood bars throughout South West Ireland

Based in a custom-built smokery in Caherciveen, the Quinlan family’s attentiveness has paid off greatly in recent years; earning awards and recognition from Great Taste, the National Small Firm Association, Radio Kerry, Bim Seafood Circle, and the Irish Food Awards, who named them as Supreme Champion in 2014. The business has operated as Kerryfish since 1960, run by Michael Quinlan. His eldest son, Liam, acts as director, while middle brother Ronan is the ‘master smoker’, in charge of quality control in the smokery. The youngest brother, Fintan, oversees organising transport, the fish shops, and the online shop; which enables Quinlan’s to send their smoked salmon to the UK and the US. Bans imposed on fishing for wild salmon have been tightened since 2006, meaning Quinlan’s fishermen are only allowed to catch a small amount of salmon from two rivers in Kerry every summer- not that this has stopped Quinlan’s from making smoked salmon their signature product. www.kerryfish.com

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experts

Divorce - what happens to the family business? Tom Shaw and James Freeman say that divorce need not spell disaster for the family business

40%

James Freeman Charles Russell Speechlys Specialism Advisory & Transactional Work Profile Tom Shaw is a partner in the Corporate team at Charles Russell Speechlys LLP and James Freeman, Resolutiontrained Collaborative Lawyer and Family Mediator, is a partner in the Family team. ww.charlesrussellspeechlys.com

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It’s a tough reality that over of marriages end in divorce. What happens when the key asset of the family facing a break up is the family business? A pre-nuptial agreement can be very useful to anticipate the worst and deal with this, but what if there is no pre-nup? And what if the courts override the terms of the pre-nup, which can sometimes happen? Where the marriage has been a long one, say over 20 years, the starting point is often that the capital is to be shared 50:50. A simple solution is for the business to be sold and the proceeds divided. There will be many cases though, where this is not what anyone wants for a range of reasons. For example: • The business may be generating a salary or dividend which is the main source of income for the family. • The business may not be ready for sale or a better price may be likely in the future. • The succession plan could be to

pass the family business on to the next generation. The business may simply be the life’s work of one of the parties who may not want to part with it.

A simple solution is for the business to be sold and the proceeds divided

Tom Shaw Charles Russell Speechlys

How then can the interests in the business (which for simplicity we’ll assume is held in a private company) be divided without a sale? At the risk of adopting a stereotype, take as an example that the husband is an entrepreneur who set up the business and his wife is not involved in running it. The husband owns all the shares. They have quite a large house and some investments in stocks and shares. They are under provided for in respect of pension. The first step is to have the assets


The first step is to have the assets valued, and help from an expert valuer is needed

It may be unlikely that either husband or wife will want to run the business together

price for the business can be achieved after a few more years’ growth. It is agreed that the wife is to have the house and some of the liquid assets and then a share of 25% in the company which she will realise when the business is eventually sold.

Parting Company A shareholders agreement is agreed to regulate how the parties will behave in relation to the company. The agreement sets out the intention that the company is to be sold by an agreed date a number of years in the future but otherwise the shares may not be sold (except by agreement to the other shareholder). A draught provision ensures that the husband can require the wife to sell her minority shareholding alongside his when he finds a buyer, and a tag along right makes sure the wife can require the husband to include her in a sale. Information rights are included so that the wife will receive management accounts and other key information, such as the business plan, so that she and her advisers can see what is going on. A shareholder otherwise has only limited rights to information, such as receiving the audited accounts each year. It may be unlikely that either husband or wife will want to run the business together and instead its management will be left to the husband. In this case, the wife is likely to need some oversight rights to protect her interest. This could

include a right to be consulted or appoint an observer, or even to veto key corporate actions, such as issuing new shares, changing the company’s constitution, selling a material part of the business or borrowing above an agreed limit. A dividend policy, and a salary for the husband, can be agreed to provide income.

With a bit of creativity it is usually possible to come up with something suitable, however difficult and painful it may all seem at the start

valued. The house and the liquid assets should be straightforward, but valuing a private company is often a difficult thing to do and it becomes more complicated if the company has other shareholders outside the nuclear family. Help from an expert valuer is needed, and possibly more than one. Once the value of all the capital assets is established a division of the value can be agreed. In our example the parties agree an overall 50:50 division of the assets. In many cases the parties may both prefer for the husband to ‘buy out’ the wife’s remaining interest, either straightaway or over time, depending on liquidity. In our example the husband simply doesn’t have the funds and it is not felt appropriate to effect a buy back of the wife’s shares by the company. In any event, the husband is not ready to retire or let go of the business he set up, and it is expected that a better

Illustrations by Lucy Parris

experts

There are many other scenarios and many other solutions. With a bit of creativity it is usually possible to come up with something suitable, however difficult and painful it may all seem at the start. If you are interested in finding out more, please contact one of the team for a free copy of our guide, ‘Connecting Generations: A guide for entrepreneurs and family businesses’, which explores this and other topics relevant to business owners in more detail www.charlesrussellspeechlys.com

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experts

Simon Smales says that Simon Smales RBC Wealth Management Specialism Relationship Management Profile Based in London, Simon is responsible for leading a relationship management team that provides integrated wealth management solutions, primarily for business owners and entrepreneurs. www.rbcwealthmanagement.com

discussing wealth transfer with your children should be done sooner rather than later For business owners and professionals who have spent a lifetime building their wealth, leaving a legacy for the next generation and beyond is usually a significant part of their ambition. Unfortunately this wealth rarely endures for as long as they may intend it to. RBC Wealth Management and Scorpio Partnership surveyed 3,105 high-networth people in Canada, the UK and the US to find out just how prepared families are when it comes to inheritance and to learn about their attitudes to financial education. Our respondents included professionals and entrepreneurs, business owners and retirees, givers and inheritors of wealth. The results were surprising. We found that there is a remarkable gap between intentions and actions. Those who are passing on their wealth are failing to put effective plans in place and those receiving an inheritance are doing so without adequate support. So what should you do? Put a plan in place Business owners are known for being independent and entrepreneurial, but their approach to building, preserving and transferring family wealth can fall short. It should come as no surprise that many of those that we surveyed said they have limited plans or not even a basic will aimed at passing on their wealth to their heirs. Just one in four respondents said they have a full wealth transfer strategy in place. However, a coherent plan can go a long way to ensuring that their wealth is preserved for future generations. The Wealth Transfer Report 2017 revealed only 51% of business owners

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have taken the first step in planning for wealth transfer by drafting a will. Meanwhile, more than a fifth of the business owners surveyed (22%) have not started any wealth planning at all. Although business owners and professionals worth more than $10m are three times more likely to have a comprehensive wealth transfer plan in place, than those worth less than $1m. The significance of these figures is that a lack of preparation can reverberate down the generations. More than half of our respondents said they had no guidance on what to do when they received an inheritance. And unsurprisingly, only 30% of these people said they had done something to prepare for passing their own wealth onto their heirs. The good news is that we found that preparedness levels tend to rise among

Only 51% of business owners have taken the first step in planning for wealth transfer by drafting a will

The Challenge of Wealth Preservation

those who have already experienced the inheritance process themselves. Of our respondents, 45% plan to give their children more guidance on inheriting wealth than they received. In addition, we are seeing some families put together family constitutions in order to set out how their wealth should be used and how the family should interact. That said, there is clearly still plenty of room for improvement. It’s good to talk One of the easiest ways to make the wealth transfer process successful for everyone is through regular communication about family wealth. However, we found that people are either not comfortable talking about what they have planned for their wealth, or they simply keep putting it off until it’s too late. Even when people do overcome their discomfort, their conversations are limited in scope. While 75% of high-net-worth inheritors who talk to their benefactors know what they will receive, only 33%


Illustrations by Lucy Parris

experts

Education is essential At this point you might be asking how this cycle can be broken. While there is no single solution for everyone, what we do know is that preparation begins at home and confidence with money matters is largely dependent on everyone getting an early start with financial education.

Unfortunately, we found that most people start too late.

The earlier the next generation is educated, the more confident they will be with making sound financial decisions

know how their benefactors want them to use that wealth. When parents have a coherent strategy in place, they feel more confident that the next generation will be capable of preserving family wealth. With the research suggesting a direct correlation between preparedness and a lasting legacy of wealth preservation. Of those respondents with a full wealth transfer plan, 58% are confident the next generation will sustain their wealth, compared to just 33% of those who have done no preparation.

The Wealth Transfer Report 2017 revealed 96% of business owners educate themselves on financial matters, with 68% doing their own financial research. But on average, structured financial education is only beginning at age 27: in what other area of life would we wait until 27 before beginning meaningful conversations with our children?

The earlier the next generation is educated, the more confident they will be with making sound financial decisions. We know that children are the primary inheritors of wealth – 70% are the main beneficiaries of their parents’ wills. So if we educate our children early it translates into increased confidence with financial affairs. There is no better time to tackle the challenge of wealth preservation. People have greater access to resources, guidance and support than ever before. By improving their financial knowledge, planning the inheritance process, promoting frank discussion, and providing more structured learning at an earlier age, parents can better prepare their heirs to effectively manage the family wealth, making an impact for generations to come

www.rbcwealthmanagement.com

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experts

The Secret Ingredient to Success Leesa Muirhead explores the Leesa Muirhead Adessy Associates Specialism Entrepreneurial Advisory Profile Leesa brings almost 20 years-experience to catalysing positive change, equipping organisations with sustainability / social responsibility strategy, management and communications to (im)prove value, competitive advantage and positive impact. www.adessyassociates.com

benefits of asking ourselves the difficult questions At the end of the day, when you work in a business, you’re usually trying to make or sell a good product or service. If we take a helicopter view, we need to remind ourselves that the business and its ‘work’ is about helping people, or trying to make life better for others- and profitability is a simple indicator that determines if you are actually successful. Many family firms are already applying sustainable practices in different ways, but may not be fully aware of the extent to which they are doing it.

Sustainability in practice Many businesses may have experience of gaining the biggest breakthroughs or innovations when faced with resource constraints. By looking around them, having strong communicative relationships with clients and supply chains, and combining old ingredients, the results can be refreshing. This resourcefulness and innovation can also be applied if we want to move the needle on tough problems. We need to break out of our silos and find models that sit at the intersection of disciplines; so we aren’t too narrow in our focus and have an eye for creating ways of being better in business. With discussion, key drivers derived from common sense and a compelling business case will emerge, and frame a commitment to positively impact on people, planet, AND profit. How to mitigate risk? How to remain resilient? How to remain relevant and competitive? How to expand and access new markets? So, where do you start thinking about beginning, or improving, the social responsibility / sustainability focus of your business?

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Establish a common purpose We advocate determining a common purpose. In both life and work, purpose is the secret ingredient to success. The idea that business leaders can make a positive difference in the world isn’t unique or new. The difference now is that our future leaders (Millennials) are refusing to settle for anything less than doing well AND doing good. When we feel our day-to-day work is aligned with our values, our strengths, and our passions, we perform better: we are happier, more engaged and more productive in the workplace and form deeper, more significant relationships with those around us. And when we have purpose, we live longer, healthier lives. When you ask yourself ‘What do I/ the business want to get out of this experience?’ or ‘What business do I want to leave to my children?’ or ‘What can I do to pass on a business my future generations will be proud of?’ - these questions resonate very strongly with many family business owners, because of their inherent values and long-term outlook. This deep-dive exploration provides opportunity to challenge, provoke and inspire those within the business to think more widely and cohesively - in the context of economic, environmental and social considerations – and how the business can do better.

Asking each other questions such as: • • • •

• • •

What is our focus? What do we want to preserve or change - specifically? Do we want to focus on a geographic area? Over what period of time can we evolve a social responsibility agenda? How can we collaborate with others? How will we measure success? What external support do we need?

Assessing your purpose allows family business owners to gain a holistic view of where the business is currently strong, where it can improve, what the perceived risks are and how best to consciously improve and refine to add value AND


Illustration by Lucy Parris

experts

impact positively - to the business, people and planet. Clarifying a common purpose makes efforts much more likely to succeed, and it is more probable the business itself will thrive by learning to better communicate, work together and support each other across generations.

A positive business approach Whilst there are prominent figures such as Muhammad Yunus of Grameen Bank, or Bill Gates of Microsoft and the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation who have publicly declared their own commitments to positive business in various forms, many business leaders around the world believe that businesses can and should be solving

major world problems. Many smaller companies have been creating positive businesses for a long time. Cascade Engineering, for example, pioneered a programme that helps welfare recipients return to the workforce in a sustainable way. Retention of programme participants is now well over 90%, which means the programme saves money for the government, and for the company.

Why be a positive business? As leaders of the next generation of business executives, it’s up to us to rethink all of the functions of business, and advocate positive business practices. Sustainability is about long-term

performance. Acting on findings will result in improving your firm’s financial performance; consolidating its reputation; creating new products; access and growth in new markets; increasing competitive advantage, as well as customer and employee loyalty; and engagement with the next generation in preparation for succession planning. This is an era of needing to care less about where ideas come from, and more about if they work. Creating a purposeful mission is the foundation to building an even better business, improving performance, and creating a long-lasting and meaningful legacy www.adessyassociates.com

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experts

Understanding how Family Businesses Tick Jane Latham says that a positive Jane Latham The Family Business Lawyer Specialism Family Business Law Profile Jane Latham specialises in advising family owned businesses, and has been helping family-owned businesses with their business contracts for the last 20 years. www.thefamilybusinesslawyer.co.uk

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approach is key when giving advice to a family business Family businesses are different to other businesses. Each family has its own dynamic, personality and values indelibly etched into the way it interacts with the business, its employees, and its community. Family businesses can often be quirky, or conversely, be traditional, rooted in an ethos established over years, or in some cases, generations. The dynamics of family-to-family, family-to-business come with a raft of emotions. But emotion is intrinsically linked to the family business- some help the business thrive, some simmer, some explode. Positive emotion is a great driver for family businesses, with family members having a heightened sense of responsibility, enthusiasm, loyalty and pride in the business, coupled with energy and commitment to foster the business for the good of the family. But whilst these emotions can be powerful, there will at times be emotions which have a negative impact. Typically, these emotions come about because of

a family event such as death or divorce conflict with a family member, a family member new to the business or a family member who really should retire. The family business advisor needs to understand and find fair and pragmatic solutions to the challenges which will at some point – and in every family business – affect the family and the business. To understand what makes a family business tick, there needs to be an understanding of that positive emotion - the energy and the ethos on which the business has been built - together with the family dynamic, so that its values remain intact and harmony within the family and business can endure. Take this example of one of my past clients; a family business with tensions affecting the business and likely to cause a breakdown, at some point, in good family relations. The business was set up by the father. The son worked in the business, absolutely committed and driving it forward. The daughter worked part time in the business but also had a full-on family life with very young children. My clients were a close family, with everything seeming to work well with son and daughter loyal to the business and family. Unfortunately, the part time arrangement with the sister/daughter was not working, either for the business or for the daughter who was exhausted and overstretched, trying to juggle work and home life. Resentment was building.

What to do? My answer was to strip everything back to who does what, for what reward and ultimately who gets what from the


Illustrations by Lucy Parris

experts

Find the right framework to enable both the family and the business to thrive, so that is continues to tick and endure these challenges

business and when? The sister/daughter worried that she would be left out in the cold if she did not ‘hang on in there’. She needed the money and worried about what other job she could do, as working in the family business meant she couldn’t fit it in around her hectic family life (to the detriment of the business…). The son resented the fact that her job really needed be done by someone able to fully commit to the demands of the role but felt his hands were tied out of loyalty to, and concern for, his sister. He also worried that he was working exceptionally hard but did not feel he was properly rewarded by the business. Our solution was this: it was decided that the sister/daughter would stop working for at least a year and that she would be paid not to work during that period. The position would be reviewed after a year when her children would have started school. Mum and Dad advanced the daughter a small lump sum from

personal funds (to be deducted from her future inheritance) which helped alleviate some of the financial pressure on the daughter and much more importantly, made her understand that she was as valued as her brother. A clear formal mechanism was put in place so that the business would pass to the son and daughter equally when Dad died, but that the son would have the ability to buy his sister’s shares at full and proper market value. The son’s commitment to the business on an everyday level was more properly rewarded with a salary that reflected his role in the business.

Our solution meant the sister was helped through her present difficulties, she did not feel that at some future time she had to work for the business (for convenience or loyalty), her job was filled by someone able to properly perform the role and the son could continue his commitment to the business. Both son and daughter felt fairly treated and the business was again, able to move forward. The role of the solicitor advising family businesses is to find the right framework to enable both the family and the business to thrive, so that is continues to tick and endure these challenges www.thefamilybusinesslawyer.co.uk

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All Well & Good


What can you do in Ten Days? ‘My Ten Days’ is an initiative to encourage owners and managers of family businesses to kick start their Corporate and Social Responsibility strategy. By giving one employee an extra ten days paid leave in order to do something truly amazing, they can improve the lives of many in the UK and overseas. ‘My Ten Days’ allows individuals the opportunity to fundraise and volunteer for the charity of their choice without having to worry about not having enough holiday allowance and so leaves them free to make a real and fantastic contribution. Why not use your Ten Days to put on a series of fundraising events and raise £4,000 to build a drinking well in East Africa as part of The WellGood Campaign. Get involved, start fundraising and make a huge difference to the lives of others! Sponsor a well. Change lives. For more information: www.mytendays.org anita@mytendays.org 01732 220120


All Well & Good

Matt Dunton is the Director of furniture and accessories boutique Sweetpea & Willow, who sponsored the building of a drinking well in Africa through the Wellgood Campaign in 2015. The campign initiative is done in partnership with Fields of Life, who work in East Africa to bring water, education, and healthcare to those who desperately need it. The well is the Odwarata ‘C’ well, which is providing drinking water to 64 households in the Pallisa district in Eastern Uganda. With an average of nine members per household, the well directly benefits 576 people, all thanks to Matt’s participation.

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What made you want to get involved with this campaign? We had the pleasure of attending the Family Business Place Awards evening in 2015, and whilst we sat and looked through the brochure, my colleagues and I all felt drawn to this amazing project. After reading about all the fantastic work that ‘Fields of Life’ do, we collectively agreed that funding a well would be such a wonderful thing to do! It was nice to step out of our bubble and put some of our hardearned money into something we all felt was truly worthwhile. Previously, the nearest water source was a shallow well located 2km away, which meant that women and children would have to travel there multiple times per day, regularly missing school and work. Now that water is readily available, the children in the town can attend school, play with their peers and essentially get on with doing what children their age should be doing.


How do you feel about the well?

The company funded the majority of the project, but each member of staff selflessly donated £50 each towards the goal. As we all believed in the cause, it wasn’t difficult to donate at all. We were more than happy to help!

We feel over the moon! It was such a worthy cause, and it means so much for us to know that we have helped the community in Pallisa in some way. Our employees all feel the same way which, as an employer, makes me so proud.

How has this affected you as a family business?

Are you going to stay in touch with the village?

Debbie Cameron from Fields of Life, presented us with our certificate, which we now proudly display in our showroom entrance. Visitors to Sweetpea & Willow often comment on it and ask questions. We’re always filled with pride when we get to discuss the well with customers. Our company ethos is simple - to respect and treat others as you would! Our involvement in the WellGood campaign reinforced this. We hope that Family Business Place can use our experience to help encourage other businesses out there to follow suit.

Of course! We hope to continue receiving snap-shots of life in Pallisa, and getting updates on how the community continues to benefit from the well for years to come. We want to say thank you to Fields of Life for helping us achieve this goal. It’s such a worthy cause, and it means so much for us to know that we have helped the community in Pallisa in some way.

Has this made you want to get involved with other charities? Since we funded the well, I discovered that many of my colleagues already

It means so much for us to know that we have helped the community in Pallisa in some way. Our employees all feel the same way which, as an employer, makes me so proud

Was it difficult to raise the money?

contribute in their own way to various charities. It became apparent that as a small team, we do a lot! We are always open to getting involved with new projects which benefit others, both nationally and internationally. I do hope that employees and employers across the UK continue to support the wonderful charities that give back to the people and communities that so clearly need help.

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Keeping the Torch Alive Thomas Forman Hardy shares the story of a seventh generation legacy

Thomas Forman Hardy T Bailey Asset Management Specialism Investment Profile Director of T. Bailey Asset Management, responsible for institutional business development and a member of the investment team. www.tbailey.co.uk

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I feel privileged to work in a family business, and to be a guardian of the family’s capital for both the past and the present. Thomas Forman started a printing business in 1849, with the first copy of the Nottingham Evening Post on 1st May 1878. Over the next 145 years, the business grew into a regional paper, being the main source of local news covering both world wars, current affairs of the time and of most importance, the regional sport, with the great rivalries between Nottingham Forest and Derby County making for good reading. Sadly, in 1994 the decision was made to sell the business. The paper needed to modernise, it’s printing presses were out of date and the capital expenditure was too much to bear. Later in 1994, the newspaper was sold to the Daily Mail and General Trust, which analysts at the time felt was an excellent geographical fit with the DMGT’s existing local newspapers. It was a sad day for the family and a big decision for all involved. However, with the birth of the World Wide Web in 1990 and the ever-increasing prevalence of the free newspaper, the timing could not have been better. Following the sale, we looked to the City of London to help safeguard capital, but we quickly became aware that the streets aren’t always paved with gold. High fees, poor client service and performance made us rethink that decision, and in 1999 T. Bailey Asset Management was born. T. Bailey Asset Management was initially set up to preserve and grow the family assets. After much thought, the family launched a collection of underlying funds held within a regulated structure, which invests in the most talented fund managers across the globe. This gives the family access to themes, geographies and asset classes, aiming for a level of performance commensurate with the objective of growing the family’s assets for current and future family members. This has now been

running for 18 years and will hopefully be in place well after I am gone. Another benefit of the fund structure is that your performance as fund managers is openly available to the public; there are no smart London offices to hide behind, no opaque model portfolios. After a tricky start surrounding the dotcom crash, the fund started to excel and local financial advisors asked for access, wanting to invest alongside the family. With a minimum investment of a thousand pounds or fifty pounds a month, popularity grew, and fund administration (accounting, client register etc.) became more complex. Realising that we could not afford any mistakes with the fund being open to the public, we brought all administration in-house, developing our own internal software. In hindsight, this colossal task was an incredible feat and our fund administration business was born. Today, T. Bailey Fund Services undertakes the administration for twelve fund managers and £2.7billion of assets. Investing is my passion and what I have loved doing for the last fifteen years, but I am now embracing becoming a director and thinking of the future of the company. We love being based in Nottinghamshire. It makes sense and feels right as the place to deliver relevant and transparent investment outcomes for the family, staff and investors who have bought into our philosophy. We work with incredibly talented individuals, some who have worked in London, others who I’m sure would have headed south. But in the modern era with an hours train journey from Grantham to London and skype conferencing, having an asset management business in Nottingham might be different, but is refreshingly honest and down-to- earth. The 8th Generation are already learning, growing, developing, and hopefully one day will have an interest in the business whatever path they choose


Illustration by Lucy Parris

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‘How’ matters more than ‘What’ or ‘Why’ Simon Webley says that values Simon Webley Institute of Business Ethics Specialism Business Ethics Profile Simon is Research Director at the Institute of Business Ethics and helps a range of businesses with ethics and their organisations. www.ibe.org.uk

should dictate actions Every week the Institute of Business Ethics put together a summary of stories that appeared in the previous week’s media about illegal or unethical behaviour by organisations. We have no difficulty in finding new stories every week. Because the press tend to focus on larger businesses, only occasionally are smaller family businesses mentioned. But from other surveys, we know that unethical behaviour- that is misconduct that is not covered by law and regulation – is all too common in even smaller companies. Why is this of concern? What, if anything can be done to minimise it? Psychologists tell us that nine out of ten people generally behave properly following the golden rule: Do unto others as you would like them to do unto you. This ‘rule’ can be found in the principle texts of all the world’s religions and is therefore recognised across most cultures of the world. Its application in the workplace, with its divergent employees by age, education,

BUSINESS VALUES • • • • • • • •

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Quality Efficiency Teamwork Good Governance Value for money Profitability Reliability Excellence

ethnicity etc., cannot be taken for granted. This is why it is now considered good practice to provide guidance to all staff on how to react to situations where the course of action is not clear. For example, the two most common issues where help is provided are conflicts of interest and accepting or receiving gifts and hospitality. Each organisation has to compile its own list. Recent IBE research indicates that over one hundred different issues have been the subject of such guidance. This is not a static matter. One of the most recent topics which has been added to the list is employees’ use of social media. The basis of this type of guidance is the three or four core values of the organisation. These can be both business values and ethical values. While larger organisations are now explicit about these, smaller ones tend to assume that it is not necessary to be so definite about them. The Chart below sets out the most common words that are used for both of these categories. The values of a family business are generally those of the founder(s). They are passed down and too often are assumed to be the basis of how the organisation works. The tone is set from the top. Once the organisation grows to employing more than, say, twenty-five people, it cannot be assumed that everyone works on the same value basis. Hence the need to be explicit. But a set of values, though necessary, are not enough to be effective. All business operations have to relate to five sets of people: colleagues, customers/

ETHICAL VALUES • • • • • • • •

Honesty Responsibility Fairness Transparency Integrity Openness Trustworthiness Respect


Illustration by Lucy Parris

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clients, suppliers, those providing finance, and those living in the neighbourhoods where it operates. The application of the organisation’s values to these relationships is essential if reputation is to be maintained and the business remains sustainable. In order to see that this happens, a code of ethics is normally required. The more effective ones set out what to do when a staff member is faced with a decision involving ethics and which includes one of the five categories listed above. For instance, declaring a possible conflict of interest when a relative works for a supplier. These ethical dilemmas may well involve a decision which may result in turning away business, with the consequence of not meeting a Key Performance Indicator (KPI). For a middle manager to make a decision of this sort and know they will be supported by senior management, is the basic purpose of an ethics policy which aims to maintain a culture of integrity throughout the business now and in the future. An important element in this process is enabling staff to feel supported when they want to raise an issue that concerns them. We know from research on this matter that a significant proportion of employees in all types and size of organisations have noticed something that concerns them, but do not speak to anyone about it. The reasons given for this is that nothing will be done about it or it really is ‘none of my business’. But other research shows that the basic reason is the fear of some sort of retaliation. Reassurance to all employees that they work in an open culture where, if they raise a difficult issue, no type of retaliation will be tolerated, is fundamental to maintain such a culture. Clearly it is important that the leadership in businesses of sizes give the lead on this issue. So how business is done can generate both trust and distrust among insiders and outsiders. This is why Chairmen of boards as well as the Chief Executive must take this seriously if they want a sustainable company

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Silja Nyboe Andersen Merkur Andelskasse Specialism Inspiring action for positive social and environmental change Profile Silja works for Merkur Cooperative Bank, an ethical bank committed to social justice within a sustainable economy and is Denmark’s foremost financial institution in the field of sustainable banking. www.merkur.dk

Impact Investing Silja Nyboe Andersen explains the global potential of impact investors

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These are the powerful words of Anna Lappe, and represents a growing consumer trend: we are increasingly changing our everyday purchasing behaviour towards more sustainable choices. Electric cars are on the rise, more and more people buy organic produce, and we are getting more engaged with a sharing economy. But just as everyday behaviours like these reflect our own personal value systems, so do our financial decisions. Investing can be an even more powerful expression of values. But we neglect the power of our financial resources too often, and rarely ask ourselves and our advisors questions about it. As an example, do you know what your pension funds or personal savings are invested in? Do you know the values of your bank? It could be shocking to find out that your money is invested in companies that have very little alignment with your values, or could even be acting in direct opposition to them. Historically, global challenges have been largely addressed by public funds and private charities. But even when all global philanthropic funds are combined with the world’s public budgets, they are


prosperity

Impact investments are investments made into companies, organisations, and funds with the intention to generate measurable social and environmental impact alongside a financial return

Illustrations by Lucy Parris

insignificant in comparison to the cost of solving the world’s biggest social and environmental challenges. This is where impact investments come into play. Impact investors can be private individuals, family businesses, foundations and institutions who, in addition to seeking financial returns, also want to see measurable and concrete societal results. They want to harness the positive power of businesses to target specific environmental and social needs, and often vary in their financial return expectations. Some seek competitive or market-rate returns, while others are willing to accept below marketrate returns to maximise the impact. The term impact investment covers a

wide range of types of investments across asset classes, through private and public equity, venture capital investments and loan-based investments. There are strong trends that show that focus on impact investments are here to stay. Like so many shifts, this one is fuelled by the younger generations. A survey shows that 67% of the Millennial generation believes their investment decisions are a way to express their social, political and environmental values. In light of the $41 trillion that will be transferred to the next generation over the coming 40 years, this will drive a huge shift in investment behaviour. Not surprisingly, many family businesses have an increased focus on impact. The nature of family business is fundamentally aligned with the underlying values of impact investing, as families think and behave with a long-term perspective and believe in the dynamism of business as a driver for change in society. It’s clear that impact investing is gaining popularity, the market is growing, and the need is massive; but how do you get started?

THE FIRST STEP IS TO ASK YOURSELF A NUMBER OF QUESTIONS:

1

What does impact mean to you and in what way do you want your money to influence the world?

2

What (and maybe who) are the main barriers you will have to deal with?

3 4

How much risk can you tolerate? Who can support you in your journey?

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Be Careful what you Wish For! Anita Brightley-Hodges uses Shakespeare’s King Lear to illustrate the consequences of Anita Brightley-Hodges Family Business Place Specialism Family Business Advisor Profile Anita helps family businesses overcome the issues and challenges they face around succession and next generation integration into the business.

www.familybusinessplace.com

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unresolved issues in a family business For all strengths that a family business has, they are fragile in their way. Issues, if left unresolved, can impact severely upon each other; eventually creating chasms that can become too wide to bridge. At their worst the consequences can devastate a family beyond repair for generations. With wealthy families, their business empires will affect global trade and local communities. With the ever-changing and fast-moving nature of the Internet, the differences between the generations can be trickier than ever to reconcile. Family businesses have been in existence since before the middle ages, there is nothing new under the sun as Shakespeare’s King Lear describes. The opening scene begins with Lear pitting his three daughters, Goneril, Regan and Cordelia against one another in a show of their love and devotion to him. The prize is the inheritance of a third of the kingdom for each. However, Lear openly fawns on Cordelia, unabashedly naming her as his favourite and in line to be given the richest third of the Kingdom. From her, Lear expects the greatest display of love. Goneril and Regan, having grown up knowing that they are second in their father’s eyes, have no compunction about manipulating the truth about their feelings for their father. Their professions of undivided devotion are convincing and appealing to Lear’s vanity. But their words are hollow, their intentions greedy. Cordelia on the other hand truly adores her father and refuses to lie to him. She says he cannot claim all of her love, since half should be reserved for her future husband. Even faced with the prospect of risking her inheritance, she remains true to herself. Lear, consumed with

anger banishes Cordelia from the family and her assets.The kingdom is now split equally between Goneril and Regan. With their appetite for power sated, they have no further need to please their father, he who pitted sister against sister. Lear becomes a burden and abandoned to walk the wilderness alone, the natural order of succession has been disrupted with catastrophic consequences. Lear is lost and bewildered and eventually finds himself seeking shelter with Cordelia and her husband, who is at war with another state. They eventually become prisoners of war, with Lear dying of grief after Cordelia is put to death. What is more, back in Lear’s own kingdom, Goneril has committed suicide, but not before poisoning her sister. By the play’s end, the entire family has been completely eradicated, some at each other’s hand. As a result of the Lear’s vanity, pride, rash anger, need for control and lack of empathy or consideration for his own daughters, the kingdom and all of its wealth is left divided and run by a foreign duke and the remaining earls and lords. A tragedy indeed, written some four centuries ago. But the palpability of Shakespeare’s works go hand in hand with their timelessness. Fast forward to today and we see this scenario is still relevant in many modern family run enterprises. Unspoken control, egotism, nepotism, favouritism, greed and vanity are huge barriers to the successful transition from one generation to another- but if recognised early enough, and defeated with consideration, love, care, awareness and respect, tragedy can be avoided


prosperity

Unlocking Business Values with Coaching Neil Williams discusses the important role played by a family

Specialism Family Business Coaching Profile With extensive experience in sales, management, operations and customer delivery, Neil is now a practical career coach, business mentor, and supervisor of coaches. www.nvwsolutions.co.uk

business coach Many business owners don’t know what their values are; yet values are so important for understanding what effectively directs the culture of their company. In family businesses, several of the family’s values will have been handed down from generation to generation. But how can a family business stick to its values, yet be innovative when moving forward? Older relatives may be entrenched in what they know, whilst younger ones are likely to be savvy with technology, social media, and more aware of future trends. With new managers; confidence, or lack of it, is often a stumbling block. They do not normally own up to this with their

How can a family business stick to its values, yet be innovative when moving forward?

Neil Williams NVW Solutions Specialism

line manager. In a family business, it is likely to be even more difficult to own up to a lack of confidence. How does the younger manager become more assertive with parents or grandparents? The answer is by having a coach who is trusted, with whom the conversations are totally confidential, and strategies and ways of working can be stress-tested in a risk-free environment. Business planning is essential for ensuring that owners can work ON, rather than just IN the business. A simple action plan ensures the right amount of focus and reviews take place on a regular basis. I use a questionnaire and a SWOT analysis (strengths/ weaknesses/ opportunities/ threats) to get the owners thinking. If a SWOT analysis hasn’t been completed

before, how does the younger member of the family raise the subject, particularly if a lack of succession plans is a definite threat? Currently, I am working on exit strategies and retirement plans for 2018. This is probably the biggest transition that anybody makes in their lives. The impact, unless it is considered in detail where boundaries are set, can cause a lot of confusion and difficulties for both the company and the family. Working as a mentor to a Managing Director (MD) of a company means acting as a sounding board whenever a different perspective is needed. One such instance involved a long-term strategy to get a Managing Director’s company out of a conglomerate where the rest of the Directors were not adding any value, purely taking their dividends. This was very frustrating, as the MD continued to build and grow his business in line with the values of his family. Once this objective was achieved, the MD wanted to develop some of his key younger managers to become Directors, which had been achieved after 6-month leadership coaching programmes focusing on making them stronger. This included discussion of what the responsibilities of a Director are, how to act in a more strategic and responsible manner, and how they had to “walk the talk”- in other words, acting with integrity to their key values. The company are now working on a succession plan together with bringing on the next tier of management through leadership coaching www.nvwsolutions.co.uk

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Taking you to places you need to go

Serendipity PR & Media

Award-winning with over 20 years in PR and media, we enjoy helping businesses raise their profile online and offline by looking at their brand and writing their copy.

To know more contact founder, Sangeeta Waldron on 07786 542776; E: sangeeta@serendipitypr.co.uk www.serendipitypr.co.uk


10 01

ten

Social media marketing is an important aspect of promoting your family business. Here are Sangeeta Waldron’s top 10 Social Media Tips:

Ensure your brand is consistent across all your social media channels  Keep colours, logos, tone and language similar across all your platforms. When users see online content from a memorable brand they can easily recognise, not only are they more likely to remember them in the future, but they’ll feel much more comfortable interacting with them. If you’re not consistent in branding your business across the various platforms you use, it can be easy to get lost in the crowd.

02

Think outside the box when using Social Media Publish updates that are relevant and newsworthy to things happening outside of your business. Always pay attention to real world events and tragedies; a tasteful post to show your support can go a long way.

03

Turn Your Employees into Brand Ambassadors A popular new trend that many businesses are taking advantage of is to turn their staff into brand ambassadors. For example, you could have a writer from your company set up their own public Twitter and Facebook accounts for professional updates. This way readers who enjoy the content your employee produces can follow them individually.

04

Join Twitter It allows you to establish your expertise, improve your customer relationships and increase your reach. One common thread linking the best brands on Twitter is that they take the time to engage with their followers and fans, even if some of them have millions of followers. You don’t need to reply to every Tweet you receive; retweeting brand-related content from fans or answering questions from followers is a good way to show your social media audience that you care about what they have to say.

05

Join Instagram Instagram is the place of the influencer, where users follow high-profile ‘grammers’ for inspiration in areas like fashion, food and lifestyle. Partnering with someone with a large following in your target market to create a sponsored post is one of the best ways to share your brand and product with new potential customers. Reach out to these influencers and send products to those who are interested, so they can share their thoughts with their followers.

06

Use Custom Hashtags The main use of hashtags is to help people find content based on categories and is a great way to get people interested in your brand and encourage them to share your content. You can use the same hashtag across multiple social media platforms.

07

Join LinkedIn to Establish Your Social Media Presence It is worth investing in creating your LinkedIn profileLinkedIn is different from the rest of the social media outlets because it’s specifically designed for business and professionals. Users mainly go to LinkedIn to showcase their job experience and professional thoughts, making it one of the more important platforms to use.

08

Create a LinkedIn Company Page – many established businesses recognise LinkedIn as a powerful tool to generate leads and develop new partnerships, craft their own LinkedIn profiles as a status symbol and as social proof that they are a trusted and credible business. Plus, another quick tip – successful businesses make the most of a LinkedIn company page to appear on top of Google search engine rankings. This means any updates and published content on their LinkedIn page can boost traffic and visibility for their page and main company website.

09

Improve Your Facebook Page Engagement There’s so much noise on Facebook that adding more content no longer seems to be the answer. Instead, posting only the best content that is highly targeted for your audience will produce better results. Posting less frequently seems to encourage the Facebook algorithm to share your content with more people.

10

Run a Photo contest Get your Facebook fans to submit photos related to your brand and product. Running a contest is one of the best ways to increase engagement and spread awareness of your Facebook page, while generating leads for sales and collecting user-generated content that you can use in future marketing campaigns.

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reviews

FANS: Not Customers, Vernon W. Hill II Vernon Hill is the American entrepreneur at the helm of the fastest-growing challenger in the UK banking industry, Metro Bank. He attributes his success to his company having fans instead of customers. The difference is subtle but significant- a customer will go to a business out of preference, whereas the loyalty of a fan is much louder, goes much further, and can provide more than just monetary gains. His recipe for attracting fans is deceptively simple: making customer convenience the central focus of the business. A no-brainer? You’d be surprised. FANS: Not Customers not only shines a light on the shortcomings of his competitors, but demonstrates the endless benefits of wholeheartedly committing to ‘the retail approach’ to business. Note that I use the word ‘business’ and not just ‘banking’, for Hill’s contagious optimism has the most stalwart support it needs: to put it simply, results. Besides the still-soaring popularity of Metro Bank, various entrepreneurs from numerous sectors have contributed to the book, and unanimously credit their success to Hill’s tutelage and advice. www.metrobankonline.co.uk

Putting Yourself Before Your Successor, Danielle Fracchia Written for CEOs of family businesses nearing their own succession, the purpose of the book is twofold. Primarily, it is concerned with equipping the reader with knowledge, understanding and techniques to properly work through the issues surrounding succession. Secondarily, it invites the reader to take this theory and apply it practically to their own. Don’t let that put you off, however, as the author demonstrates, the value of confronting these uncomfortable ideas and theories is incalculable when it comes to the perpetuation of family business. Just like working on clay makes it malleable enough to sculpt into a thing of elegance, the initial difficulty is outweighed by the potential rewards. The anonymous anecdotes are the strongest element of the book, not only demonstrating the excellent consulting skills of the author, but her theory being put into practice. With open discussion, informed insight, knowledgeable advice, and the clients’ willingness to accept that advice; ‘succession’ stops being synonymous with ‘retirement’, instead becoming a deeply personal, liberating experience. For ensuring that your family business becomes one of the 12% that make it to their third generation and onwards, the value of this title cannot be overstated. www.fracchiaco.com

My Story, Jo Malone Printed on pages scented with Jo Loves Pomelo, Jo Malone’s autobiography proves to be just as alluring as her products. Beautifully written, I truly engaged with Malone as she revealed her gripping story. The achievement of her goals despite the challenges she faced growing up proves she has a true entrepreneurial spirit to say the least! Jo Malone: My Story provides a glimpse of the life of a female working in a business environment and highlights her viewpoint as a CEO. In later life, we learn of the strained relationship with her mother and the difficulties she experienced in establishing her business. She candidly describes her physical state and how she faced her own diagnosis of breast cancer. The ongoing toils that Malone faced make the read relatable, while still having a motivational message. As she has overcome challenges to build an empire, her example inspired me to believe anyone could achieve great things also, whatever their past or their own personal battles. www.joloves.com


CLASS OF THEIR OWN

F O R Y O U N G F A M I LY B U S I N E S S E N T R E P R E N E U R S HENRY PATTERSON CHILD STAR

THE PROOF IS IN THE PUDDING

AWESOME SAUCE


KICK OFF

WELCOME

TO THIS WAY UP

For young family business entrepreneurs Embracing the differences between generations is the only way for a business to thrive, and how family businesses are uniquely placed to be ahead of the game

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ongevity is an obvious strength for a family business, but it can’t be achieved without evolution; without a readiness to adapt to an ever-changing world. Just to illustrate this, consider that the Millennials- my generationwill be the last to remember a time before the mainstream Internet. I often wonder what we did without it, when you consider how much its presence has transformed our lives in such a relatively short space of time. Yet, we all know someone of an older generation that still thinks of the Internet and social media as being dangerous waters; who know the value of loyalty, dependability, and a good work ethic, but see no use for the exposure that platforms like Twitter can provide. Not at all like Generation Z (who are only recently joining the workforce), who have grown up with Youtube, a culture of individuality, and connectivity with potentially global audiences. While it’s clear that the different traits between generations have their strengths and weaknesses, it’s clear that in the modern world, each have something to bring to the table. Older family businesses may find that their social-media savvy children will be the ones to keep the business relevant and in

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the public eye. The young owner of a start-up, on the other hand, may benefit from the guidance of a veteran entrepreneur, who knows the importance of implementing family values and ethics when propagating a business. Utilising the strengths and weaknesses of each generation ceases the need to see the gap between them as an obstacle. It has been heart-warming to see so many examples of families working together, embracing their generational differences to the betterment- and longevity- of their businesses. In our ever-changing world, it is my hope that that, at least, remains a constant. Alec Pitman Content and Editorial Assistant www.familybusinessplace.com


CHILD STAR With an online confectionery business at just nine years old, Henry Patterson was Britain’s youngest entrepreneur. Now thirteen, Henry has become an accomplished public speaker, as well as a published author

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HOP, SKIP, JUMP 'I started with £100 Christmas money and have built the business up organically, which has taken a year,’ says Henry. ‘I wouldn’t have understood how you build a business in this way if I had not been taught how you buy more stock with the money from sales.' Not Before Tea is themed around a cast of original characters, all of whom feature in stories also written by Henry. Pip the Mouse and Sherb the Owl are central to both. 'I thought I didn't want to do just sweets so I came up with the idea of Sherbet and Pip. I really loved English at school and so I thought we should have a story to go along with the shop.' 'The characters are essential to the designs of the bags, purses, cards and nursery décor sold by Not Before Tea. They are also listed in a further 60 UK stores, and sold worldwide.

'I’m very proud of him,’ says Rebecca, who acts as Henry’s PR manager. ‘Henry's got a business brain and thinks this venture is the start of other adventures. He could tell you how much everything costs and how much it costs to put together each jar.' 'He plans to keep this business going until he is 16 and all the money he makes is going

I thought we should have a story to go along with the shop

into a bank account to help start any other future businesses.’ Henry has been featured in various newspapers and magazines including Forbes, Grazia, and the Huffington Post, was the youngest person to be interviewed on CNBC show Squawk Box, and has appeared on The One Show alongside Sir Richard Branson. He has also been a keynote speaker at the prestigious Retail Week Conference at the O2 in London, where he shared the stage with the likes of Apple, Facebook, and Google. In Autumn 2017 he launched Young & Mighty.com; an

é Henry Patterson, (Courtesy of CO Photography)

Henry's got a business brain and thinks this venture is the start of other adventures

amed after his grandmother’s response to being asked for sweets, Not Before Tea had exceeded Henry’s first month target of £10 profit within a week. His affinity for business was awoken when his mother, Rebecca, advised him to sell his old toys on eBay to accrue the money for a Power Rangers toy. Little did she realise that five-year-old Henry would take to marketing like he had been born for it; nor that in a mere four years she would be partners with him in a successful business of his own conception.

online space where young people aged 11 to 14 years can find out about cool jobs and get moneymaking and fund-raising ideas. It’s also a survival guide to some of the stuff life throws at you. Young & Mighty is for now, later or whenever you need it. His book, ‘How to Double Your Pocket Money’, is published in March 2018. www.notbeforetea.co.uk

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RISING STARS

WITH SPANISH FLAVOUR Clara Munoz Cabello is twenty-nine, and the face of La Taberna, a family-owned Spanish restaurant and bar situated in the Corpus Christi Hall in Maidstone

B

We are all very responsible, as we know we need the business to succeed

working as a patient co-ordinator with a cosmetic surgeon, a job that led to her having to move to London to work in a private hospital. The entire family moved to Maidstone in 2015, opening their own La Taberna in Union Street, but moved to their current premises in the Corpus Christi Hall this August. Steeped in antique charm, the family behind

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La Taberna couldn’t wish for a humbler, more beauteous venue than the 12th Century banqueting hall: and with five-star ratings across the board on TripAdvisor, it’s clear that their clientele couldn’t, either. FAMILY ENTERPRISE Juan and wife, Lola Cabello, are chefs for La Taberna; with Lola bringing her mastery of Clara’s Abeula’s recipes, and Juan his specialty in paellas (as well as artwork). Juan Munoz Cabello, Clara’s brother, is also a chef in his own right, and manages deliveries when not in the kitchen. Her boyfriend, Alvaro del Rio, manages the bar when not working as an SEN teacher for a charity organisation based in Spain. Clara is in charge of managing La Taberna, as well as working at the front of house with her brother’s girlfriend, Cristina Loria, meeting customers with beautiful smiles and charm in equal measure. 'It’s a good experience, and we are all very close,’ says Clara. ‘We're all very responsible,

Thiswayup  AUTUMN / WINTER 2017

é (l-r) Cristina, Clara, Alvaro, Juan (Sr.), Lola and Juan (Jr.)

orn into a third-generation restaurant family business, La Taberna de Los Felipes, Clara has many fond childhood memories of her grandparents’ hotel-restaurant, where she would eat her dinner while her parents worked on the bar. Her father, Juan Munoz Paris, also studied part-time at an arts university in Seville to develop his career as a designer. By the time Clara’s grandparents had become too old to handle the running of the business themselves, Juan was doing design projects for many venues throughout Southern Spain, so the hotel was sold. By the year 2000 the family had moved to Malaga, where Juan became the project manager of La Pesquera, a restaurant chain in luxury marina and shopping complex, Puerto Banus. When Clara was eighteen, she was

La Taberna is injecting Maidstone with a bit of Spanish culture

as we know we need the business to succeed. We really enjoy it, but sometimes it's hard as well, and we can have small arguments and then be saying ‘sorry’ and ‘I love you’ five minutes later!’ Overall, ‘I couldn’t choose a better team.’ Not just a restaurant, La Taberna is injecting Maidstone with a bit of Spanish culture. As well as monthly Spanish lessons (complete with a Sunday lunch of paella and sangria for a mere five pounds), the Munoz-Cabello family also offer weekly lessons for Flamenco dancing, for both children and adults, as well as Flamenco parties on request. www.lataberna.co.uk


RISING STARS

PROOF IN THE PUDDING While embarking on a charity expedition along the Brazilian coastline, brothers Harry and Charlie Thuillier came back with inspiration for their start-up, Oppo Ice Cream

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é Harry & Charlie Thuillier

QUITE THE FANBASE With the use of crowdfunding site Seedrs, Harry and Charlie gave fans the option to buy a stake in their business. They were met with enough enthusiasm to make them the fastest food and drink company to reach target through crowdfunding in 2015. After being named the Guardian’s Start-Up of the Year, Oppo’s client base expanded beyond shops, and into hotels, cinemas, offices and sports clubs. Crowdfunding has been an enormous asset for Oppo, leading to 700% growth between 2015 and 2016, and 250% between 2016 and present. However, Harry also attributes some of their popularity to their 2015 appearance on Dragon’s Den. ‘Charlie realised that even though we didn’t need investment, the chance to get in front of 4 million people on Primetime TV would be worth millions in traditional advertising. For a food start up like Oppo generating awareness is what makes or breaks the business, so the next

time the BBC producers called, we took a deep breath and said yes.’ After exhibitions at as many as fifty separate events, the brothers have built up quite the fanbase. Tennis champion Andy Murray was among the 574 people to invest £368k

Wouldn’t it be good if everyone could indulge in their favourite sweet treats, without compromising on health?

hile attempting to break the world record for land distance travelled using kite power, the Thuillier brothers found themselves stranded between coast and swamp without food. They had had to drag their kite buggies over thirty miles on variable terrain, determined not to let their charity funds go to wastetheir only option was to eat wild coconuts and fruit. The pair eventually completed 1000 kilometres with the buggies, not realising that the journey would prove to be life-changing. The wild food had not only tasted amazing; but carried the touch of inspiration. ‘On our return, Charlie immediately got into the kitchen. He didn’t leave it for two years’, says Harry. ‘Why can’t all food be like that? Wouldn’t it be good if everyone could indulge in their favourite sweet treats, without compromising on health?’ Two years after their 2011 trip, Harry and Charlie had perfected the stripped-back recipe that would define their healthy Oppo Ice Cream brand- a mix of milk, stevia leaf, and virgin coconut oil- which contained 60% less calories and sugar than in mainstream brands, literally making it as calorific as an apple. Despite dissenting opinions from industry professionals, Oppo was launched into 117 Waitrose stores in 2014.

during the brothers’ second Seedrs campaign. Giving recognition and support to British entrepreneurs is important to me, especially those who are the driving force behind growthfocused businesses,’ says Murray. ‘Every one of these entrepreneurs is inspirational and dedicated to their business and I’m excited to have invested in their team’s vision and work ethic.’ www.oppoicecream.co.uk

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RISING STARS

AWESOME SAUCE Chantal and Dominic Codougan play vital roles in their Caribbean sauce and catering company, Mama Jacq’s, alongside eponymous mother Jacqueline

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festival favourite, the small team behind Mama Jacq’s commute all over the UK to share Mama’s Fragrant and Tangy Green Marinade and Cook’in Sauce, a family recipe as famously distinctive as it is versatile. Chantal and Dominic’s business model very much mirrors how their mother would cook for local church and family events around Watford, prompting numerous questions as to what made her food so delicious.

(Mama Jacq’s answer was always ‘I use plenty of love’!) Chantal is the director of Mama Jacq’s, while Dominic oversees advertising and promotion, as well as being a professional cook himself. However, despite the vitality of their roles, each of them maintain that Jacq is the backbone of the business. ‘My mother influenced everything about our decision to start this company,’ says Chantal, ‘she always

PEDALLING WARES

in such a way as to allow the child to learn how to balance by themselves. Crikey Bikey has since become a bona fide family business, with mother, Alison, taking on the role of director; while Kia, Sky’s sister, has become financial director. If the fact that the girls receive orders from retail powerhouses like Mountain Warehouse and Evans Cycles isn’t impressive enough; when they were 12 and 14 years old, they appeared on Dragon’s Den- the youngest entrepreneurs ever to do so. While they did not receive an investment, they were credited across the board for their confident, eloquent, and well-prepared pitch. Crikey Bikey continues to operate in Monmouth, Wales.

Originally designed for a school competition in year six, youngsters Sky and Kia Ballantyne have turned their invention into a business

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he idea for the Crikey Bikey harness came from younger sister Sky, who, while trying to think of an invention to enter the competition with, witnessed a man struggling to teach his son to ride a bike. By holding onto both saddle and handlebar while he ran, the man was not only causing himself difficulty, but impeding his son’s learning as well. After some experimentation with multiple harness concepts, Sky devised an elegant design that fits around the child’s shoulders and torso, while also providing a handle for the parent. This allows the parent to maintain control comfortably, but

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www.crikeybikey.com

Thiswayup  AUTUMN / WINTER 2017

says love is a key ingredient in her cooking, and we believe her.’ As well as receiving an award for Most Innovative Product from the Alcester & Forest of Arden Festival, Mama Jacq’s was also a 2016 finalist in the SME Awards in Northamptonshire. Of course, the recognition doesn’t stop there: Mama Jacq’s have reportedly found fans in athlete Mark Lewis-Francis, musician Levi Roots, and celebrity chef Marco Pierre White.

é  Dominic, Jacqueline and Chantal of Mama Jacq's


RISING STARS

THE MAGIC NUMBER With nearly half a century of manufacturing nuts and bolts, Hague Fasteners is becoming a thirdgeneration business with the inclusion of trio of brothers Jack, Tom, and Max

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The knowledge and experience I learnt from my father was invaluable

project director on June 3rd this year, which would have marked John Hague’s 93rd birthday; a happenstance that Jon described as ‘poignant’. Not that this came easily- Jon is adamant that the family expertise is of more value than the surname. Jack and Tom have both had to prove themselves and gain respect from colleagues, most of whom have been in the business longer than they have been alive. ‘The knowledge and experience I learnt from my father was invaluable,’ he

says, ‘you have to be prepared to work hard and show that it’s not about who your Dad is… with Jack being in a senior position it’s even more important.’ However, rather than cause internal rifts, some new blood has proven to work in favour of Hague- namely, the sons using their social media expertise to promote the business. ‘We’ve always kept a toe in the water but these guys have the knowledge to be able to put up a post which gets tens of thousands of views and ensure more people are seeing us,’ says Jon. TURNING POINT Jack Hague is enjoying the variety brought on by his new role. ‘If it’s busy in the office, I might be working there, or I might be needed to help on the shop floor. I’ve recently started doing quotes and getting more involved in the business side.’

é  Tom, Claire, Jon and Jack

Tom, who is nearing the completion of a Level 2 apprenticeship in business administration, says, ‘I’ve got a lot more hands-on experience by coming here than I would have done by going to college’. His role as a business development executive has him planning projects and monitoring shop floor operations, which he feels is enhanced by working within the family business. ‘I enjoy working with my family... I think it’s better than it would have been working with people I don’t know.’ Hague are currently based in custom-built manufacturing premises in Willenhall. Jon is glad of the new positivity brought into the company, saying that the boys ‘love it here just as much as we do, and Max is really looking forward to coming to work here too.’ www.haguefasteners.co.uk

I’ve got a lot more hands-on experience by coming here than I would have done by going to college

ounded in 1971 by the John Hague, the business has carved out its niche by manufacturing batches of specific fastening items that can’t be found in mainstream hardware shops. His son, Jon, spent ten years working under his late father’s tutelage before having the reins handed over to him in 1999. Soon the whole family will be working within the business; with Jon’s wife Claire having joined as secretary in 2002, his 19-year-old son, Jack, since 2015, his 17-yearold, Tom, since last September, and 16-year-old Max set to join the company following the completion of his GCSEs. Jack was appointed engineering

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RISING STARS

WORLD CLASS Based in Tower Hill, London, The Profs is an online education platform that provides one-to-one sessions to students all over the world

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hile studying at the London School of Economics, Richard Evans supported himself by tutoring undergraduate students. Demand for his services was so great that he continued after graduating; and before long, his schedule became impossible to handle by himself. Run by Evans, his brother Leo, and Managing Director Rory Curnock Cook, The Profs have grown into a network of over 400 independent educators in 3 years, with over 4000 students. Although they specialise in tutoring undergraduates, the

POP TO IT! Discovering gourmet popcorn while holidaying in the US, cousins Laura and Sam quit their jobs to start their own family business

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amount of experience on hand means that nearly any subject can be taught at any level, to anyone; be they graduates, SEN students, international students, or simply professionals seeking to develop particular skills. More recently, The Profs have begun to develop courses for universities, and offer professional training to large multinationals. 'We are on mission to fill in the gaps that leave university students lost in lectures and disenchanted with their studies,' says Richard Evans, 'students often need more, and so we provide academic support, inspiration, and career relevant skills, on top of private tuition.' The Profs also offer an online ‘virtual classroom’ in program BitPaper, which has been used to share learning resources and tutorials with students in 52 countries to date. With the strongly-held belief in the superiority of one-to-one tutelage, the brothers hope that their online university will one day replace

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rior to the US trip that would change their lives, Laura was a management consultant for the financial services industry, while Sam’s vocation was in commercial real estate. ‘We had always flirted with the idea of running our own family food business together,’ says Laura, ‘and in a moment of madness around our 30th birthdays, we had a “now or never” moment.’ In order to save money to accommodate the realisation of the business, Laura moved back to her parents’ house, where her and Sam experimented with flavours in the garden shed. One hundred flavours and an exploded popcorn machine later, they finally struck gold. Believing mass-production to be detrimental to quality, they decided to only make small batches to order. However, that didn’t stop friends and family making so many orders that they had to be stored in the garden

Thiswayup  AUTUMN / WINTER 2017

é  Leo, Rory and Richard

the lecture-based model. 'We measure our success not just in numbers, and for us the most resounding endorsement of our services come from the students themselves, and that is why we are so proud to be the UK’s highest-rated private education provider.' www.theprofs.co.uk

shed, which earned the business its name. Popcorn Shed makes their gluten free popcorn with all-natural ingredients, a decision that has paid off in dividends. Just three months after launch, the two had a listing with Harrods, a Great Taste Award, and an Artisan Producer’s Award from the BBC Good Food Show. www.popcornshed.com

ê  Cousins Laura and Sam


RISING STARS

NATURAL SIMPLE HONEST A testament to the power of health, bedridden Ella Woodward (now Mills) overcame her illness and started her own business, Deliciously Ella, after a two-year change in diet and lifestyle

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iagnosed with postural tachycardia syndrome at the age of 20, Ella’s erratic heart rate, constant headaches, host of unpredictable allergic reactions and chronic fatigue left her virtually unable to leave her room for nearly two years. ‘I felt so alienated from my friends… I cut myself off from everyone and allowed myself to sink into an incredibly unhappy place. I was taking a lot of medication, but sadly it didn’t do much for me.’ BODY AND MIND Ella eventually made an active decision to help herself; researching the role a healthy lifestyle can take to mitigate the effects of illness. While the transition from her student diet to a plant-based, whole food one was no easy task; with the help of a nutritionist and exercise program, Ella managed her symptoms to the point that medication was no longer necessary. Ella started recording her meals and kitchen experiments on her Deliciously Ella blog, both to develop her learning and to keep in a healthy mindset. This decision would prove to be the inciting spark to success. The popularity of the blog led to the creation of the mobile app, which in turn led to the release of Ella’s debut cookbook in 2015, which, after setting a record for fastest-selling debut cookbook, led to the release of three more. 2015 proved to be an eventful year for Ella- in the summer she

married Matthew Mills, who became both a partner in life and business. By winter, the two had opened their Mae Deli in London, specialising in

what you think means everything to us vegetarian recipes exclusively made with natural ingredients. The standout favourite recipe from all three platforms- blog, books, and deli- coined ‘Energy Balls’- became available in big, nationwide retailers in 2016, including Sainsbury’s, Waitrose, and Starbucks. ‘Everything we’ve done has all come from the support of the community here, and for that I’m so grateful. We want to do the best we can for you, so please engage with

us here and across any social media – what you think means everything to us.’Matt oversees day-to-day operations and finances as CEO, while Ella has free rein over the creative side of Deliciously Ella. Still lacking a marketing department, Ella ‘talks directly’ to her audiencesome twenty-eight million peoplethrough her blog and social media. ‘Deliciously Ella is all about celebrating what you can do with delicious, plant based ingredients. My recipes are vegetarian, wheat and refined sugar free, but it’s not about diet or deprivation, there’s no one size fits all, and everything I do can be adapted to suit you.’ ‘My values are: Natural, Simple, Honest, and I hope that comes through in everything I do.’

é  Ella Mills creator of Deliciously Ella

www.deliciouslyella.com

Thiswayup  AUTUMN / WINTER 2017

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OTHER STUFF

IN BRIEF DOMESTIC   No Cables While wireless phone charging is still in its infancy, a new device, Pi, is reportedly able to wirelessly charge multiple devices at once from up to a foot away. The charge is generated by interacting magnetic fields; with the emission from Pi prompting a second field from the device. The charger is planned to start shipping in 2018, and to be sold for ‘well under’ £150. TECH   No More Remote The remote control is set to become obsolete with the invention of “Matchpoint” technology, which will allow the television to be controlled through physical gestures- even with everyday objects, like a coffee mug, or a spoon! Devised by computer scientists from Lancaster University, the method only requires a simple webcam- when properly calibrated, channels could be changed with a wave of the hand.

TRAVEL

Elon Musk has unveiled plans to use an interplanetary rocket system for longdistance travel on Earth, claiming that passengers will be able to make most long-distance trips in under an hour TECHNOLOGY

Musk showed a demonstration of this theoretical technology at a space industry conference, following his revised to plans to travel to the Moon and Mars. The proposition involved utilising SpaceX’s “mega-rocket” to lift a spaceship into the planets orbit to allow for Earth-city-to-Earth-city travel. With the ship able to reach speeds of 18,000 miles per hour, Musk claims, trips like London to New York, Hong Kong to Singapore, and Los Angeles to Toronto could all be done in under half an hour- and

  Hello, Bonjour, Hola!

Google’s launch of the Pixel 2 came with a second, even more exciting prospect- the earphones, dubbed ‘Pixel Buds’, will allow for real-time translation in over 40 languages. A dream come true for eager travellers, communication with people from all over the world will be easier than ever before.

EXPLORE

ANYWHERE ON EARTH

LEADING THE BLIND American software developer Aira has devised a technological method for providing remote aid to the visually impaired TECHNOLOGY

Underground Drones

Swedish company Inkonova are developing a drone that can alternate between flying and rolling, which will soon be used to explore underground mines. Equipped with wheels, the drone has total freedom of movement, making it ideal for moving underground. A manually operated drone was recently used to map an underground mine in Mali, virtually reconstructing a section a third of the size of the Royal Albert Hall in just ten minutes.

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all for the same price as an economy airline ticket. This method would be the fastest ever created by humanity. The video showed the ships settling down on floating landing pads out in the water near major cities, with passengers leaving New York and arriving in Shanghai a mere 39 minutes after leaving Earth’s orbit. While the rocket and spaceship- which would be designed to carry 80-200 passengers- are still in theoretical stages, Musk intends to begin construction on the rocket in the next six-to-nine months.

Thiswayup  AUTUMN / WINTER 2017

By combining wearable “smart glasses” with an embedded video camera, smartphone, and a portable Wi-Fi hotspot, certified Aira agents are able to effectively see and describe the user’s surroundings, acting as visual interpreters in real-time. The agent uses a custom dashboard that handles information provided by video camera, GPS, and Internet, meaning they are on-hand to provide the user with any information they please, be it information about a nearby street

or building, or a Yelp review for a restaurant. First-time users of the technology have described the technology as ‘redefining freedom’; allowing them to learn about things that they never knew existed. Kirk Adams, CEO of the American Foundation for the Blind, believes Aira can "widen opportunities for employment, education, and enhanced quality of life." Notably, Erich Manser, who is legally blind from retinitis pigmentosa, completed the Boston marathon with the help of Aira.


IRENE & JENNY Keeping Memories Precious

www.ireneandjenny.com Redesign. Recycle. Remember.


Failing to plan is planning to fail and it’s never too early to begin the conversation We know that mixing business and family can be a big ask, but the challenges and issues families face are the same in all business families. Anita and her advisory team have the expertise and experience to help steady the ship, empathise, and bring an independent perspective to the concept of succession, purpose and aspiration. Listening, talking, advising, resolving, supporting, connecting. Helping business families thrive for future generations.

Family Business Place Advisory Service Anita Brightley-Hodges Family Business Advisor 01732 220 120 anita@familybusinessplace.com www.familybusinessplace.com

Generation Magazine 2017 A/W Issue  

The official magazine of Family Business Place

Generation Magazine 2017 A/W Issue  

The official magazine of Family Business Place

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