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The Largest Circulation Regional Business Publication in the UK.

ISSUE 35. 2017


PLATINUM Profile of President Recep Erdog˘an

Exclusive Interview


RETURN OF THE ZEBRAS? It has to be the Acumen Business Convention


Intellectual Property

HYDERABAD The fast-growing Indian Tech Hub



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THE BIG STORY EAST OR WEST? In a controversial power grab, President Recep Erdog˘an has almost total control over Turkey. Should the West be worried?

36 40 50 78

The Acumen Business Convention is back

HEAVY METALL THE Manufacturing & Engineering event

3-D PRINTING DMH Stallard on how to maximise benefits

HYDERABAD The fast-growing Indian Tech Hub

6 14 16 25

Local & National News

32 34 36 38 40 42

Acumen Business Convention

45 47 48

Si Conroy - CEO Fight Club

51 50 60 62 66 68 71 72

Gatwick Diamond - Meet the Buyers

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Motoring - Range Rover Evoque

NatWest Interview - Tim Boag The Big Story Gatwick Diamond Business Awards Winners Kreston Reeves - Digital is here Carpenter Box - METALL #5 Rawlison Butler - Getting contracts right DMH Stallard - 3-D Printing Sherrards What is reasonable behaviour? Lewes Business Awards Yelo Architects - The process of architecture Destination - Hyderabad Making it in Hollywood Gatwick Airport - Take Off Sussex Economic Forum University of Brighton - Great Debate Brighton Motor Show Mercedes-Benz Customer Service Award Motoring - Peugeot 3008 Motoring - Classic cars Design South East - on the i360 Table Talk - A month in food Table Talk - The Little Fish Market Table Talk - Wine from the Loire Valley Preview - The Thinking Pod Ten2Two - Flexible working Adur & Worthing Business Awards Sussex Cricket - in Eastbourne Chambers of Commerce Anger Management Institute of Directors


All rights reserved. The views expressed in this publication are not necessarily those of the publisher. The publisher cannot accept responsibility for any errors or omissions relating to advertising or editorial. The publisher reserves the right to change or amend any competitions or prizes offered. No part of this publication may be reproduced without prior written consent from the publisher. No responsibility is taken for unsolicited materials or the return of these materials whilst in transit. Platinum Business Magazine is owned and published by The Platinum Publishing Group.






At a Glance

Issue 35 - 2017

A word from the Editors Here we go again. For the third consecutive year we have an election or referendum. If there is one thing almost all businesspeople despair of, it is uncertainty. Most just want to get on with running their businesses and planning for the future. So was there a collective sigh of disapproval when Theresa May announced a shock election for June 8th? Hardly. In the meetings we had just after the announcement, few even mentioned it. It is unlikely that May will not be the PM come June 9th but there is a risk in this snap election. It has been called in an attempt to increase her majority as, with a majority of 12, she will have a hell of a time getting any Brexit agreements through. The risk for her, of course, is that Labour, the SNP, disgruntled Remainers and the Lib Dems get together and actually conspire to reduce her majority. In that event, Brexit could take decades to complete as every Tom, Dick and Harry will want their say. Brexit by committee will be a disaster. Locally there are some interesting constituencies - all three seats in Brighton could buck the national trends. The Liberal Democrats will be eyeing a return in Lewes and Eastbourne. But these may just be sideshows. One referendum which has the potential to cause huge ripples is the vote in Turkey to place more power in the hands of the President. Ian weighs up the risks for the West. Maarten profiles the car described by Enzo Ferrari as the greatest car ever made (and it isn’t a Ferrari), and also meets Tim Boag, the London/ South East Managing Director of NatWest and RBS to find out how the bank is faring. And we will all be looking forward to the big event in June. No, not the election. The Brighton & Hove Motor show, obviously.

Maarten & Ian Platinum Business Magazine May 2017

The Team

Maarten Hoffmann – Director

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Ian Trevett – Director

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Lesley Alcock

Amanda Menahem

Kate Morton

Business Development Director

Food & Drink Editor

Copy Editor

Sales Manager

Rose Dykins

Beth Nash

Sarah Walker-Bennett

Amanda Spicer

Travel Editor

Digital Manager

Event Photographer

Head of Design

Julie Clarke



LOCAL NEWS GET INSPIRED BY DAME SHIRLEY WayfinderWoman has announced Dame Stephanie Shirley as the headline speaker at their ‘Inspiring through Technology’ Conference on Friday 12th May at East Sussex National. Dame Stephanie Shirley is a sought-after speaker on the world stage with her inspirational talks about being a refugee, founder of a multi-million-pound tech company, mother of an autistic son, philanthropist and author of ‘Let it Go’. She was awarded the Institute of Directors Lifetime Achievement Award in 2016. Dame Shirley will be joined by Alistair Wickens, CEO of roadtohealth group and local entrepreneur who led the transformation of his business from start up to internationally-recognised healthtech business. Other speakers include Professor Karen Cham from Brighton University, Mina O’Brien, owner of Ditzy Media and Katie Diacon, RAF engineer and now online business owner. The conference is being compered by Lynsey Bartlett from Heart FM. Laura Murphy, Founder of the Wayfinder Group and recent recipient of an award from the Prime Minster, Teresa May, comments: “Technology is increasingly disrupting traditional operating models and opening up new career paths for everyone. Delegates will learn how to take full advantage of the changes that technology is bringing and identify new opportunities to improve competitiveness.” Sponsors of the conference include NatWest, Eastbourne Chamber of Commerce and Ten2Two. Tickets cost £47.50.

COUNTRYSIDE CHAMPIONS Rural firms from across Britain are being invited to get their entries in for an awards scheme designed specifically for the countryside sector. Now in their third year, the Rural Business Awards (RBAs) are the only UK-wide business awards for rural enterprises. At the 2016 awards, the overall Champion of Champions was Landmark Computer Systems, from Sussex, which offers computerised solutions helping its agricultural customers manage their businesses effectively. The RBAs are the brainchild of businesswomen Anna Price and Jemma Clifford, who wanted to showcase the wealth of entrepreneurial talent in rural areas of Britain – a sector of the economy they felt was all-too-often overlooked in favour of large city-based firms. Awards co-founder Anna Price said: “We are so proud to be holding our Rural Business Awards for the third year running. Over the past two years, our judges have read about an extraordinarily diverse range of rural businesses in this category and in all the others, and we have been truly humbled by the amazing work that is being done all over the Great British countryside. This year’s glittering awards ceremony will be held at Denbies Wine Estates in Surrey on October 5th. Entries can be made up to June 30th, 2017.


Common sense is like deodorant. The people who need it most never use it


ARORA GROWS IN GATWICK The Arora Group has announced the purchase of an occupational lease for London Hilton Gatwick, the airport’s largest hotel. The Group will retain a management contract with Hilton, which will continue to oversee the day-to-day management of the hotel. Close to Gatwick’s South terminal, the hotel boasts 821 guest rooms, a restaurant, two bars and a deluxe Wellbeing Centre. Refurbished in 2003, the hotel has 21 meeting rooms. The purchase reflects the Arora Group’s strategy to focus on larger assets with greater revenue potential, and to partner with major international brands. With an established expertise in UK airport regions this property also complements Arora’s existing presence at the airport, which includes the Sofitel Hotel at Gatwick’s North terminal and Arora Gatwick Crawley. Surinder Arora, founder and chairman of the Arora Group, said: “Securing the largest hotel in the area is a hugely exciting achievement for the Arora Group, further augmenting our substantial diverse portfolio in this major UK business hub as part of the Group’s long term strategy. Hilton Gatwick presents a fantastic opportunity to partner once more with a major international brand, building on our existing relationship as a landlord for a number of Hiltonoperated hotels.” The acquisition means Arora Group now offers 6,364 hotel bedrooms across the 16 hotels in the UK. This announcement follows Arora Group’s acquisition of ‘The Office’ development in Crawley and the completion of a multi-storey car park in Heathrow.



Aerotron will be sponsoring Sussex’s Specsavers County Championship shirts during the 2017 season. Aerotron, based locally in Gatwick, is one of the world’s leading suppliers to the aviation industry specialising in component support solutions to both the civil and military markets. They have been supporters and partners of Sussex Cricket for many years, and became sponsors of the indoor school at The 1st Central County Ground in 2015.

Hepworth Brewery has moved to a new site in Pulborough, after securing a £2.46m funding package alongside personal investment from the owners and grant funding.

Sussex’s business relationship manager Tony Cottey said: “We are very proud of our long association with Sussex-based company Aerotron, and it is great news for us that they have decided to expand their sponsorship with us.”

I have an angel on one shoulder and a devil on the other. I’m also deaf in one ear

Formerly in Horsham, Hepworth has now trebled its space and grown its workforce thanks to the finance package from HSBC, which included a £1.8m commercial mortgage loan. A small proportion of the funding was also used to purchase two new conditioning tanks, required to meet the demand for increased production of the company's own-brand beer and to enable the company to expand its capacity for contract brewing. The new site also includes a shop which sells a selection of the brewery's products and a newly built visitor-centre which will run tours for budding brewers and beer lovers. Hepworth Brewery also plans to use the facilities to host a series of lectures and training sessions for other local small breweries. Andy Hepworth, founding member of Hepworth Brewery, said: "Brewing great beer has always been a passion for us and our relocation in West Sussex has allowed us to continue to tap into the great produce from local farmers on our doorstep. Sussex farmers are excellent: their skills make our job much, much easier and we can’t wait to brew even more varieties." Victoria Mutter, HSBC's area director for business banking in Gatwick and East Sussex, added: "We are so pleased to have helped Hepworth Brewery move to this fantastic new site and expand their business. The team is incredibly passionate about what they do and the business has become a key player on the Sussex brewing scene. We can’t wait to see how the business will grow following their move.”



LOCAL NEWS ANOTHER MERGER FOR KRESTON REEVES Kreston Reeves and London practice Munslows will be merging with effect from 1 June 2017.

Andrew Griggs

The partners and staff from Munslows will move into the London office of Kreston Reeves in Moorgate and trade as Kreston Reeves. Munslows have specialised in advising private clients, family offices and entrepreneurial businesses which, combined with their AIM and listed company experience, will strengthen the London presence. The enlarged Kreston Reeves will create a London office with more than 80 people and a firm with annual fees in excess of £33 million, 52 partners and more than 450 staff in total. The current management board of Kreston Reeves will remain unchanged as a result of the merger. The latest merger continues the strategic expansion of Kreston Reeves, which recently completed its integration with Sussex-based Spofforths to create one of the most experienced accountancy and business advisory firms in the South-East with offices across London, Kent and Sussex. Andrew Griggs, Senior Partner at Kreston Reeves, said: “We’re delighted that Munslows have chosen to join us, a move that will strengthen our already strong London team. Their business, charity and private clients will benefit from the wide and deeper range of services and expertise we are able to provide including tax advisory, financial services, corporate finance, VAT and forensics.

Michael Cook

“We are also confident that our longstanding membership of worldwide accounting network, Kreston International, will provide valuable new opportunities for Munslows clients”. Head of Kreston Reeves London office, Michael Cook, said: “This merger signals our commitment to growth in London. Munslows share our values and commitment to high quality client service. We are looking forward to welcoming and working with their team, which will provide a stronger base upon which to develop our services further and meet changing business needs. “Clients of Munslows will continue to be looked after by their existing contacts and we do not anticipate any fee increases as a result of the merger”. Key Partners, Kaushik Ondhia and Nathan Steinberg from Munslows LLP, comment: “We’re excited to have the opportunity to join Kreston Reeves which will be of great benefit to all involved - our clients, partners and staff. At Munslows we have prided ourselves as ‘trusted advisers to our clients’. The depth of resource, breadth of services and sector expertise we are able to offer our clients will be greatly enhanced. We’ve known Kreston Reeves for a number of years; they are a firm with a very similar ethos to our own so we believe the merger is a natural fit. We look forward to adding value as part of the Kreston Reeves team”.

BOSS GUARDS HIS PAY THE head of the Southern rail network, Charles Horton, chief executive of Govia Thameslink Railway, earned nearly half a million pounds during a year in which the service was crippled by strikes, low morale and falling profits. It was a year in which the operator routinely ranked lowest in customer satisfaction polls, and its parent company also suffered a profit slump of

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Unless life hands you sugar and water, your lemonade is going to suck

more than £15 million in the last year. Mr Horton received his increased pay packet despite Go-Ahead’s chief executive David Brown refusing to be considered for an annual bonus and a pay increase.


INVESTING IN SCIENCE West Sussex County Council has purchased land in Horsham to build a state-of-the-art science park. The 18.6 acre former Novartis site in Wimblehurst Road site was purchased for £16m, with the authority receiving £3.66m from the Coast to Capital Local Enterprise Partnership towards the cost. Louise Goldsmith, leader of the county council, said: “I am delighted the LEP has awarded £3.66 million towards the purchase of the site. By committing funding, the LEP is showing their confidence in our plans. “Our ambition is to transform the site into a quality employment and residential development and we are working with commercial advisors to finalise our vision and proposition for the site by developing the right mix of business, office accommodation and start up space to transform it. “This is an important development locally and we will ensure residents are involved in our plans as they unfold.”


ENGAGE IN A CHARITY QUIZ On Thursday 11th May, Engage Healthcare will be holding their Charity Quiz Night in support of Chestnut Tree House Children’s Hospice. The evening, hosted by Juice 107 radio presenter, Guy Lloyd, is being held at Sussex Cricket Ground in the Boundary Rooms (6:30pm for a 7:30pm start), and promises to be a fun night for all!

The Chilli Pickle Restaurant has announced plans to open four sites over the next three years. The Indian restaurant, based in Jubilee Square, Brighton, has launched a £700,000 capital fundraising campaign to help expand the business, set up by husband and wife team Alun and Dawn Sperring. The firm has also appointed Kevin Bacon, co-founder of Frankie & Benny’s and former managing director of Jamie Oliver International as chairman. Bacon has also invested in the business. The restaurant has claimed numerous awards over the years, including being named among the top 100 restaurants at the National Restaurant Awards seven years running. Chilli Pickle achieved £2.2 million turnover this year and its growth plan predicts annual profits of £1.3 million on turnover in excess of £8 million. Investors are offered the possibility of a return seven times their investment by 2021. Alun Sperring, Chilli Pickle chief executive, said: “Dawn and I are very proud of what we have built with our team. We are so passionate about the Chilli Pickle concept and have no doubt that we can be as successful in new locations as we have been in Brighton.” Gary Robins, from Growthdeck, which will help Chilli Pickle raise the money, said: “This is an exciting opportunity to back an established business and an excellent management team. Chilli Pickle is considering Tunbridge Wells, Worthing, Winchester, Hastings and Oxford as possible locations for the new sites.

At just £20 per person (or £110 for a team of six), guests will enjoy a welcome drink and a delicious curry, as well as getting to exercise their grey matter! It costs £3.5m per annum to keep Chestnut Tree House running so please come along on the night to support this great cause. Tickets are selling fast so book now to secure your team’s place and get swotting up for the big night! Tickets can be booked by emailing enquiries@ directly or via

The strongest people are not those who show strength in front of us, but those who win battles we know nothing about



NATIONAL NEWS CRUISE CONTROL Apple has secured a permit to test autonomous vehicles in California, fuelling speculation that it is working on self-driving car technology. The permit allows it to conduct test drives in three vehicles with six drivers, the state Department of Motor Vehicles said last month. The vehicles are all 2015 Lexus RX450h, according to the DMV. Although it has never openly acknowledged it is looking into building an electric car, Apple has recruited dozens of auto experts in recent years, and the permit pulls the curtain back a bit on any possible plan. “This does confirm what’s long been rumoured: that Apple is at least toying with the idea of getting into the autonomous game in some capacity,” said Chris Theodore, president of consultancy Theodore & Associates, and a former vice president at Ford and Chrysler. “This is not necessarily automobiles as initially rumoured, but software or possibly hardware associated with autonomous technology”, he added. Companies that have been issued permits also include Alphabet’s Google unit, Ford, Volkswagen, Daimler, Tesla and General Motors.


WASTE OF ENERGY Consumer groups have raised “serious questions about whether Ofgem’s financial checks are up to scratch” after it emerged one of the energy providers listed as ‘the cheapest in Britain’ on comparison sites, had operated with only £12,000 in the bank. Iresa Limited was repeatedly highlighted as the cheapest utility for a range of London households on comparison sites with millions of users, including Uswitch and Moneysupermarket. But it is also the focus of a heavy stream of complaints from users on review websites and social media. The energy firm regularly comes out top on comparison sites including Moneysupermarket, which has 23 million monthly users, and Uswitch, whose last reported user numbers in 2015 were 50 million per year.

Coffee giant Starbucks said Brexit’s impact on consumer confidence, as well as a drop in the number of people visiting the high street, is to blame for a plunge in their UK profits. The world’s biggest coffee chain’s pre-tax profits slumped nearly 61% from £34.2m to £13.4m in the year to 2nd October 2016. Its turnover declined from £405.6m to £379.9m during the period. According to accounts, the group said it remains “cautious” on the outlook for 2017 due to “persistent economic and geopolitical headwinds including slowing economic growth, the impact of Brexit and ongoing security concerns affecting customers.” “Whilst there are undoubted challenges presented by a more cautious consumer environment, lower high street footfall, and adverse currency impacts, we are investing significantly to drive innovation in our food and coffee offering, and are greatly encouraged by our customers’ response,” said Martin Brok, president of Starbucks for Europe, the Middle East and Africa region.


There are fears for households being left out of pocket after many “challenger firms” launched cheap deals to attract customers, only for the cost of supplying gas and electricity to soar by as much as 50%. Uswitch’s head of regulation, Richard Neudegg said: “Oversight is vital to provide consumers with the confidence they need when switching to lesser-known suppliers”.

One of the symptoms of an approaching nervous breakdown is the belief that one’s work is terribly important


UP IN FARMS Asda has been accused of misleading customers after re-launching its Farm Stores range - a label which some agricultural organisations say wrongly suggests that the produce is locally sourced. The retailer has reintroduced the label on some of its fresh products after dropping it in 2001, but several organisations have panned the move, calling the name of the range deceiving. “Over the past few years we have seen retailers re-brand some of their own brand product ranges,” National Farmers’ Union (NFU) food chain adviser, Ruth Madson said. “With Asda now using the term “farm” within its branding, it is imperative that the origin of these products is clear to customers,” she added. Soil Association policy director Peter Melchett called the branding “misleading for consumers and insulting to farmers”. Mr Melchett said: “Many hard-pressed customers, trying to do their shopping in a hurry, are likely to be misled into thinking they’re buying a product from a specific British farm, when they are not. “Many farmers work hard to build a reputation for producing quality food from their farm, and many people value the opportunity to buy food direct from a particular farmer, in the hope that the farmer is getting a fair return for their hard work. Marketing schemes that use fake farm names or other branding to imply products come straight from a farm abuse the concern that people have for British farmers. “Asda and other retailers should instead focus on increasing the amount of British food they stock.”


STUFFED CRUST Pizza Hut’s British business could be eaten up for £100m after drawing takeover interest from an American investment fund.

Hove has cemented its place at the top of the property hotspot league for Britain’s young professionals. For the third year running, Hove has topped the table in England and Wales for most home sales to young professionals, according to figures compiled by Lloyds Bank. The report shows they can expect to pay a £71,000 premium to live in the most popular property hotspots for their peer group. Young professionals who bought in Hove paid nearly £32,000 less than the average price paid nearby With Hove heading the list once again, and Brighton also making the top 20, the East Sussex coast “continues to be a strong attraction for aspirational young people,” Lloyds says. Like some other locations on the list, Hove was found to be a cheaper place to buy a home, with buyers typically paying about £31,000 less than in the surrounding area. Of the top 20 areas with the highest concentrations of property sales to young professionals, 16 are in London. They include Wandsworth, Wimbledon, Fulham, Battersea, Brixton and Hampstead, which is the most expensive place on the list, with a typical home costing more than £1.3m.

Pricoa, a debt investor owned by the American insurer Prudential Financial, is in advanced discussions to buy the 260-strong chain. Both sides are said to be in talks over a deal that would value Pizza Hut at roughly £100m. The takeover would mark a bumper return for Rutland Partners, which rescued the chain from the brink of collapse under former owner Yum! Brands in 2012, paying just £1. Rutland has spent £60m refurbishing the chain and put the restaurants up for sale early last year. A sale would come as a welcome relief for Rutland who came under fire late last month for its ownership of poultry firm Bernard Matthews, amid claims that Rutland deliberately put the company into administration to avoid its pension fund.

Life is short. Smile while you still have teeth

❞ 11



The discovery of one of the largest undeveloped oilfields near the Shetland Islands, has boosted the UK’s oil and gas industry after more than two years of cuts in jobs and investment. The breakthrough last month by Hurricane Energy, a British oil exploration group, followed a licensing round in which several of the world’s biggest oil groups won acreage in untapped areas of the UK continental shelf. Both events brought a reminder of the billions of barrels of oil still available beneath UK waters. Much of the remaining resources are concentrated west of the Shetland Islands, where the North Sea meets the Atlantic. Hurricane has drilled five successful wells in the past year in the area, and Royal Dutch Shell and BP won licences last month for further exploration. “When you go west of Shetland, you have the ability to make large discoveries because it hasn’t been picked over quite so much as the central North Sea,” says Nathan Piper, analyst at RBC Capital Markets.

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More than 50 new distilleries opened in the UK last year, showing the “explosive creativity” of craft spirits, according to a study. The number of ‘boutique’ distillers is pushing big brands off the shelf, as artisan drinks brands continue to take market share from the global giants, said accountancy group UHY Hacker Young. There was a 25% increase in new distilleries in England over the last year, with UK sales of gin breaking though the £1bn mark for the first time in 2016. In Scotland, 12 distilleries opened in 2015, and a further 18 in 2016. James Simmonds, of UHY Hacker Young, said: “Both the craft spirits and the craft brewery sectors are going through a period of explosive creativity. “You can see that in everything from the logos, branding and advertising of these products. The quality of the product is streets ahead of their big brand competitors. It is no wonder that the global drinks giants are worried, and the best way they have found to deal with that new competition is get out chequebooks and buy them.” London gin maker Sipsmith was bought up last December by the Japanese giant Beam Suntory, which owns the Jim Beam, Teacher’s and Courvoisier brands.

SLACKING OFF Artificial intelligence is no match for natural stupidity.

Workers in the UK are working the equivalent of a week's work less a year than they did 20 years ago, new figures have revealed. According to the Office for National Statistics, the average worker in the UK worked exactly 31 hours a week in the final few months of 2016. This is 0.6 hours per week fewer than the equivalent figure in 1998. Over the course of a year this is the equivalent of 31.5 hours, roughly one extra week.


❝ Behind every great man is a women rolling her eyes


The new boss of Debenhams is planning to overhaul the retail chain’s 165 shops and cull some in-house brands, in a bid to lure shoppers back to its stores. Sergio Bucher, a former Inditex director who joined from Amazon’s fashion arm in October, is planning to make a significant investment to boost the number of restaurants and beauty services, such as brow grooming and blow-dry bars, in Debenhams stores. The company has already added a number of Patisserie Valerie, Costa and Joe and The Juice cafes to its stores. The Debenhams move comes amid evidence that consumers are allocating more free time and disposable income to eating out and holidays, at the expense of shopping at traditional retailers, whilst the continuing rise of online shopping compounds the challenge for high street stores. The department store is expected to also review its Designers by Debenhams brands, commenting that they “no longer carry the same weight with shoppers”. In addition, Debenhams also plans to refine its beauty offer after hiring Nicky Kinnaird, founder of upmarket beauty chain Space NK, to its board.

GET CREATIVE, BREXIT Creative companies are becoming increasingly important to the UK’s future economic success and should be at the heart of the government’s new industrial strategy, a trade body says. The Creative Industries Federation says film-making, music, advertising and video games are all big export earners, but are often overlooked by ministers and commented that enterprise zones, tax breaks and access to finance could help firms. The role of the UK’s creative industries, which also includes theatre, architecture, broadcasting, fashion, museums, and galleries was recognised when the government unveiled its industrial strategy Green Paper in January for boosting the post-Brexit economy. The Creative Industries Federation says ministers need to “overhaul” their approach and has unveiled a blueprint of policy recommendations for the creative industries which it says is “the fastest growing sector of the UK economy”. It said the creative economy supports 2.9m jobs, a rise of 5.1% between 2014 and 2015. Brexit means it is now “even more crucial” for the sector “to deliver more jobs, trade and exports”.



THE BANK OF BRANDS EXCLUSIVE INTERVIEW: Tim Boag, London & South East Managing Director at NatWest, talks to Maarten Hoffmann about the future of the bank, Brexit, cyber crime and how the bank will be promoting its range of brands


BS is one of the largest banks in the world but has been through some torrid times of late and has spent the last few years fighting to get fit and shed the misery of the past few years. With hard work and some very tough decisions, the management team of the bank can see the light at the end of the tunnel. Away from the legacy issues, the bank is quietly building an operating profit which bodes very well for the future. In this exclusive interview, Managing Director for London and the South East, Tim Boag speaks candidly about the legacy issues and the bright future that lies ahead.

RBS results and performance How is the bank actually performing? The press would have you believe that the bank is in permanent crisis-mode, but how robust is the bank? “Our underlying results are strong,” says Tim. “We’ve had eight quarters of generating strong underlying operating profit, so the business that our customers deal with dayto-day is performing well. Our relationship managers are doing a good job. I guess our customers wouldn’t be doing business with us if we weren’t doing a job that met their needs. “We have some legacy issues. One is Williams & Glyn (more on this later), the other one is the potential RMBS fine (the penalty to be decided in relation to residential mortgagebacked securities, or RMBS, sold in the US before the 2008 crisis). “We don’t know the RMBS number. We have made a provision which is up to over £6 billion. We have seen some of the other banks settle, which gives us a better idea of the range. “Our chief executive, Ross McEwan is confident that if we can get these things done this year, people will stop talking about these legacy problems. They relate to a past culture and a past organisation. We can then


start talking about the business underneath that, which is performing very well, and the vast majority of our resources is very much focused on that go-forward business. We were the fastest growing in terms of £24 billion in net new lending last year - with £9 billion in commercial business – that’s something that we’re proud of.

“We’ve often been criticised for not lending money but we are out there doing it and as the new strap line in the advert says: We are what we do. And we’ll be judged by that. So on the ground we’re doing well, the mortgage business, the personal business and the commercial business in England and Wales were all doing really well last year.”

Interview RBS or NatWest? The stronger performance in England and Wales is an interesting point, as the news coming out of the bank is that these markets will be more heavily branded as NatWest. To get a feel for the direction the bank will be taking, a good starting point may be the rugby Six Nations. RBS has been headline sponsor since 2003 but last summer David Wheldon, Chief Marketing Officer at RBS, announced, “As we focus back on our home markets in the UK and Ireland, we have decided not to renew the sponsorship beyond 2017.” Was this just another way of saying that the RBS branding is being downplayed in favour of the focus on NatWest? Tim Boag replies, “I think it’s brilliant what we’ve achieved in supporting the Six Nations, but I think that every now and again there is a need to re-calibrate to the market and look at our branding going forward. In the corporate world, NatWest is becoming more our leading brand. It will be our leading brand for business in England and Wales. “It’s a ‘Bank of Brands’ type of approach, so it’s not just NatWest. NatWest is our biggest brand, business and personal, in England and Wales because we’ve got the majority of branches. But also we’ve got Lombard, Coutts, Isle of Man Bank, Drummonds and Holt’s. “All these brands have their own franchises and their own identity, and we feel that we get more traction through investing through those brands than we would by focussing on the RBS brand. RBS is a global brand, much more than NatWest and we are looking more at the personal and the business banking markets in the UK and Ireland, rather than

positioning as a global bank. “We effectively have dual branding at the moment - our largest customers associate with RBS, but most of the customers are served by

There’s still a good degree of confidence and there’s still some positive momentum in our economy.

regional offices, which is usually NatWest.”

“It is part of an on-going process to bring the NatWest brand to the fore in England and Wales. At the same time, the bank’s primary customer facing brands elsewhere will be the Royal Bank of Scotland in Scotland and Ulster Bank in Ireland.

Williams & Glyn One brand not mentioned in Tim’s list is Williams & Glyn. After the UK’s government’s intervention in buying up RBS shares, the European Union decided this amounted to state aid, and therefore part of the bank should be divested. The Williams & Glyn name was resurrected, representing the Royal Bank of Scotland branches in England and Wales and the NatWest branches in Scotland. But the required sale has failed to materialise. “We’ve been trying to sell Williams & Glyn as a business,” confirms Tim. “It includes our UK branch network and the customers who’ve banked in that network for six or seven years, but it has proved to be very complicated. “Clydesdale was mooted to have an interest, and Santander made its interest on a couple of occasions but we haven’t been able to get across that line with a buyer on terms that work for us. It’s a very complex process to segregate a bank in its entirety and sell it cleanly, so the discussions we’ve had with the Treasury have been “Is there another way we can do this?” “The original intent was to have more competition in the UK as a result of the state aid received by RBS. I think we’ve got some good proposals. They’ve not been approved by EU, so that has to go through the EU governance process. So we shouldn’t be getting ahead of ourselves on that.



“There are a number of suggestions that we have proposed in which RBS will support and fund competition in the SME world that will help achieve the original objectives of increased competition.” Seeing as we are now in negotiations to leave the EU, is it not tempting to play for time and wait until Brexit happens. After leaving the EU, will it matter what their directive is? Tim dismisses such a suggestion: “We’re still committed to that original agreement, as I understand it. Just because of Brexit, we cannot just walk away from our historic obligations. We still have to see that through. It’s just that rather than the sale, we’ve got an alternative proposal that’s under consideration.”

Brexit Having raised the thorny subject of Brexit, what is the view of the bank on the implication of the UK’s exit from the EU for SMEs? “It’s difficult to predict what the precise outcome would be. Our view would be similar to some of the commentators at the Bank of England and IMF, in that we would expect growth rates to be lower than they were forecast to be before the vote. “There are some businesses that are quite publicly talking about how they might invest in Europe as opposed to the UK, particularly in financial services.


“If there is lower growth we need to think about how it’s going to impact our customers, particularly if it is alongside higher inflation and input costs, potentially combined with business rates rises. These factors may coincide with lower consumer demand. We’re conscious that customers may need to focus on their cost base and look quite closely at how much of that they can pass on to the consumer without damaging demand.

People will stop talking about the legacy problems. They relate to a past culture and a past organisation. We can then start talking about the business underneath that, which is performing very well.

“We’re not changing our policies around lending to customers, but we are mindful that some sectors will be impacted more than others, therefore in terms of supporting those customers we need to think about how we do that.

“We are a barometer for the UK economy – we’re largely a UK and Irish based bank now, so whatever happens to the UK economy is going to impact on our customers and our results. We’re completely aligned with the economic experience our customers will have as well. If you look at our lending book, it’s in good shape. We think our lending policies have been pretty good in the last four or five years and our house is in good order. “There will be some headwinds along the way. There is a consistent view that there will be an impact because we can’t have the deal we’ve got now, which is the same as the other members. It’s likely to be a degree worse. “However, the majority of our SME customers are getting on with running their business, and they’re doing that because they don’t have a crystal ball. Why stop? They have a business to run. “At the top end we did see some dampening of demand in some of the larger transactions, M&A tailing off a little bit immediately after Brexit. Since then we’ve seen some of that come back with continued activity in the smaller end of the market. “One of the barometers that I use in terms of understanding how our customers are feeling is looking at our balance sheet, our loans and advances, and they steadily increased last year month-on-month; they’re still increasing as we go into this year. That tells


me there’s still a good degree of confidence and there’s still some positive momentum in our economy. “I had talks with my team and we agreed, “Let’s not look for things that aren’t there. Let’s focus on what we can control. Let’s keep the discipline in terms of how we approach credit, the way we support our customers.””

Safe & Secure One threat that faces us all is cyber crime, and Tim is proud of the role that the bank plays in educating businesses: “We are very active in helping customers in terms of education around fraud and cyber crime and we hold regular events on the subject. We need to be talking to not just customers, but colleagues as well, to make them aware of the latest scams, pointing them in the right direction. It’s in the interest of the bank and our customers to minimise any losses from fraud. “There’s a sophisticated side to fraud and cyber crime. But there are also some very

simple things we can do. For example, dual controls on payments; a lot of businesses have not got dual control. We’ve identified those customers, and we’ll be going out and speaking to them specifi cally on that issue. This is a basic principle because one person can get duped – it’s more diffi cult for two. Sometimes you do get a bad apple in a company, but if you’ve got two people, you’ve got more control. I think it’s just good practice.”

Digital Although cyber crime is a big problem, the benefits of the digital age far outweigh the negatives. How is the bank embracing new technologies? “We are piloting a new solution called Esme, which is a digital loan application process for businesses applying for loans up to £150.000, 24-7. It allows decisions to be turned around very quickly. It sits alongside the bank and it’s another way of offering something that’s simple, easy to understand, quick and reliable. It’s another way of customers

engaging with us. “Esme is a good example of us working with fintech, and there are lots of alliances that we have built up. We have a physical presence in Silicon Valley. We’re working with these businesses because we think that it’s better to work with them and to embrace and learn from them, in order to build alliances and partnerships, as the technology moves very quickly. “We have a lot of understanding of the broader market franchise – they have the great ideas. So let’s bring them together and see what we can do. Esme is a good example of that. “We’ve also developed something called Nift, which is safe-to-sign software. A lot of our customers may see the legal documentation as complex, so this is a way that we can help them navigate through the key terms of important documents. They can get some comfort that what they’re signing up to is something that is clear to them.


Interview “Another thing we have done is simplified our deposit offering and reduced the number of product options. Customers have actually responded quite positively to the fact that the choice is very clear and straightforward, especially the transparency around charging and rates. “In fact, by reducing the number of options we’re making the products clearer and the choice clearer. “What customers want is things to happen quickly and easily. Can we do it faster, can we do it simpler? Customer behaviour is changing and part of that is because the offering they’re receiving not just from banks but other organisations, is becoming more digital. Their behaviour is changing, so we need to respond to that. We’ve had something like 20 times more digital transactions with our customers than we had in 2012. We have about 4.6 million people banking with us online now. On the flip-side, we have 40% fewer visits to our branches than we had five years ago.””

Branch closures The dramatic change in customer behaviour brings us onto another contentious subject that of branch closures. No-one wants to see their local bank branch shut down, but is it an inevitable cost of progress? “There are a number of factors why we close branches. One is that there are fewer visits. There is undoubtedly an efficiency point, or a cost point, about how much it costs to run a branch as opposed to how valuable our customers feel it is. There are alternative ways of engaging with our customers which suits them and our cost base is still too high. “When we do close a branch it’s important to have the right leave-behind propositions for

our customers. Our business customers may be used to banking in a certain way and if we’re going to change that, or take that away from them, then what is the leave-behind? What are the alternative ways of banking and of managing your needs?

entrepreneurial mindset. We’ve created an environment where entrepreneurs can learn and succeed. And off the back of that we hope that we will build advocacy, i.e. people will talk about us positively, because they know that NatWest is powering ESpark.

“If we’re going to close a branch, we do a lot of analysis around our personal customers and business customers. We’re increasing our mobile banking through the mobile branches, and we’ve got several of those that travel around the South East.

“We’re now looking to develop that proposition into businesses at the next stage, starting to scale up, not just the start-ups. We will aim to help businesses that may be turning over £1 million or £2 million but are starting to face new challenges like: “Where am I going to trade from because I can no longer do it in my garage or my back room?” Or it might be “I’ve got an import/export issue here. How do I start to trade internationally? What sort of management structures are needed? Where do I get the people?” And some of it is finance as well. “How can I get finance to invest in my business so I can scale up more quickly?” These are the things that we’re starting to invest more time in.”

“Additionally, we have Community Bankers and TechXperts, the latter of whom will be based in every branch across the country from the beginning of May. We have also invested heavily in some key branches for the long term. For instance, Chichester is a flagship branch for us.”

The first rule never to be departed from is to make the welfare of the customers the first object.

Entrepreneurial Spark

One of the big success stories for the bank has been the small business incubator, Entrepreneurial Spark, which has created a £176 million turnover and 1300 jobs. “We are proud of it,” says Tim. “We’ve invested a lot of resources in it, so we haven’t done it by half, we’ve done it properly. We focused on the entrepreneur in terms of the

Ambition and the future The bank has regularly expressed its desire to put the customer experience first. Above the bank’s boardroom in London is a quote by Andrew Berkeley Drummond, whose family founded Drummonds Bank, which RBS still owns. The plaque spells out Drummond’s golden rule: “The first rule never to be departed from is to make the welfare of the customers the first object.” What does this mean in reality? Is it just a sound-bite? “Our ambition is to be number one for customer service, trust and advocacy by 2020, that is the top of the pyramid, and everything else we do underneath that in terms of our values, our behaviours, our financial goals, our personal goals, return on equity – everything is about supporting that. “We do need to be financially stable and safe to be able to do all the things we do for our customers but ultimately anything else is just short-term; whereas if that is your key guiding principle, then you’ll always be thinking longer-term, about a sustainable business that builds trust and retains customers by helping them.” It’s been a long journey but if the Bank of Brands maintains its commitment to customer service, even the national press and TV news may start talking about the bank in a positive light.


The Big Story

DOES THE NEW TURKEY FACE EAST OR WEST? Profile of Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan By Ian Trevett


n April’s bitter and divisive referendum proposing substantial changes to the Turkish constitution, President Recep Tayyip Erdogˇan won the day, albeit among claims of electoral foul play. Now power is firmly entrenched in the President’s office, with the office of the Prime Minister abolished and Erdoğan’s increased control over appointments to the Supreme Board of Judges and Prosecutors. After last year’s decisive crushing of an attempted coup, the detention of political opponents and concentration of constitutional control, Erdoğan is all powerful in Turkey. And the West should be very worried indeed.

Farewell to NATO? In rallying his faithful, Erdoğan pledged to “Stand up to the West”, which is hardly an unusual refrain as you travel into Asia, but not a message you’d expect from a key member of NATO. So just how long Turkey will stay aligned to the military alliance of which it has been a member since 1952? Most regional commentators are deeply concerned. Take Leonid Bershidsky, writing for

Bloomberg: “Relations with the Netherlands are all but broken off, Germany is struggling to remain civil under a barrage of Erdoğan insults, and Denmark is siding with its north European neighbours.

Within a generation more than half of Turkey’s military-age population could come from Kurdish-speaking households.

Add to this Turkey’s differences with the U.S. and the perennial tension between Turkey and Greece, and it’s no longer clear how much of a NATO member Erdoğan’s country really is.” Worryingly, it would seem that we need them more than they need us, as Bershidsky explains: “The U.S. and its top European allies tolerate Erdoğan’s brinksmanship because a Turkish departure would, in effect, put the

Black Sea and the Balkans officially in play as parts of the world where Russia and Turkey can openly vie for influence. The West would also lose a key Middle Eastern foothold. “In reality, however, Erdoğan is nobody’s long-term ally. He’s a populist, mostly interested in consolidating domestic power for the long term, and his country’s strategic importance to everyone - Europeans, Americans, Russians, Arabs - gives him a sense of impunity. Turkey is only bound by treaties so long as they don’t force Erdoğan to do anything he doesn’t like.” Turkey is the strategic ally that everyone needs but few actually want. The President has spread terror through large-scale purges and the hounding of dissidents, as well as by throwing his military forces into full-on war against Kurdish separatist groups. Freedom of speech has been extinguished with Turkey holding the highest number of journalists in prison of any country in the world. Almost 2,000 people have been charged with the crime of insulting Erdoğan.


The Big Story

The Spectator’s Douglas Murray succinctly spells out the demise of a secular beacon in EurAsia: “Well farewell then Turkey. Or at least, farewell the Turkey of Kemal Ataturk. It’s a shame. Ataturk-ism nearly made its own centenary. “But the nation that he founded, which believed broadly in progressive notions such as a separation of mosque and state, has just been formally snuffed out. President Erdoğan’s success in the referendum to award himself Caliph-like powers for life finally sees the end of Turkey’s secular and democratic experiment.”

The end of the European Dream It seems it was only months ago when the debate was all about when, not if, Turkey would be joining the EU. Relations appeared decidedly cordial when the EU and Turkey agreed a deal to stem the flow of migrants heading into Europe. In reality, few in Turkey believed that


the EU would ever allow Turks access to the Schengen visa-free zone. According to The Times’s Turkey correspondent, Hannah Lucinda Smith, Erdoğan’s enmity to the west dated back to four years ago, when protests were held against his leadership at Gezi Park, fuelled, he believed, by western powers stirring dissent. Starting out as a sit-in against an urban development plan, the heavy-handed response of the authorities saw the demonstrations go viral. Three and a half million people were estimated to have taken an active part in almost 5,000 demonstrations across Turkey. Eleven people were killed and more than 8,000 were injured, many critically. Europe looked on with distaste and Turkey’s EU membership looked ever more remote. Equally, European liberal values are at odds with an increasingly Islamisation in Turkey. The Brexit debate was telling. The Brexiteers warned that staying in the EU would open up

our borders to a Turkish influx, with Turkey inevitably joining the club. The Remainers said that Turkey was nowhere near membership, and would in all likelihood never be accepted. In other words both sides saw Turkish admission as unwelcome. It goes without saying that this would have been heavily reported in Turkey. During the Turkish referendum, relations plummeted to a new low, after the Netherlands, Denmark and Germany banned rallies in favour of a Yes vote, but the bans probably just played into Erdoğan’s hands - he was, after all, the man who stands up to the west. As the Dutch sought to close down a Turkish demonstration in Rotterdam, the pictures of European police battling Turks was beamed back to Turkish TV screens. The New Statesman’s Cemal Yazsil, reported the reaction to the scenes: “Turks are watching graphic images from Rotterdam, where pro-government Dutch Turkish protesters clashed with police, hit with

The Big Story

batons and bitten by attack dogs. For many Turks, the scenes have confirmed suspicions that European nations see them and their compatriots as lower status.” Yazsil believed the result was to cast the protesting Turks as underdogs, battling the arrogant establishment, just as blue-collar Americans railed against Hillary Clinton when she labelled Trump supporters as “Deplorables.” The European dream had died, and Erdoğan shed few tears. The final death knell came with the news that Turkey will most likely soon reinstall the death penalty - a red line that the precludes any hope of EU membership. And what of the deal to stem migrants? It is a weapon the Erdoğan can deploy any time he feels like it. “We can open the doors to Greece and Bulgaria anytime and put the refugees on buses,” Erdoğan warned EU officials in late 2015.” Few would bet against him acting out his warning.

The Kurdish issue When the ancient Ottoman Empire was carved up in the Treaty of Lausanne in 1923, all the interested parties had their say and the creation of modern Turkey was finally agreed. It was ratified by the Turks, Greeks, French, British, Italians, and even the Japanese. Except, it would appear that no-one asked the Kurds. Today, the non-existent state of Kurdistan is split between Turkey, Iran, Iraq and Syria, and the Kurds are still fighting for their own homeland. For much of Turkey’s history, the Kurds have been persecuted. Since 1984, the militant separatist organisation, PKK, has waged an armed struggle against the Turkish state for equal rights and self-determination for the Kurds in Turkey. But finally in 2013, it appeared there might be a lasting ceasefire. Things became complicated when the ISIS death cult took over swathes of northern Syria and Iraq, creating a brutal caliphate. For many months, the only opposition to ISIS was the

indigenous Kurds. As the world looked on in admiration at the bravery of the Kurds, Erdoğan faced a dilemma. Turkey was expected to play its part in the war against ISIS, but did he want to fight his enemy’s enemy? According to John Hannah at foreignpolicy. com, “Erdoğan chose to interpret the rise of Syria’s Kurds as a mortal threat that had to be crushed — even if that meant indulging all manner of Sunni jihadists, including the Islamic State.” Indulging ISIS was not a way to make international friends and America exerted its influence. The American’s (and the RAF) have airmen permanently stationed at Incirlik, a strategically important Turkish air base, though at first, the Turks steadfastly refused US permission to use launch strikes at ISIS. After a year they relented, but at a price - Erdoğan simultaneously relaunched Turkey’s war against the Kurds and the PKK.

The response of cartoonists to a Kurdish hunger strike (above) and restrictions on Twitter use (below)


The Big Story

With two enemies close by, Turkey’s cities have experienced atrocities inflicted in bloody acts of revenge, from both ISIS and the PKK. With ISIS on the back foot and surrounded by foes, it is the Kurdish issue that won’t go away. Hannah writes: “The long-term price that Turkey may yet pay for Erdoğan’s short-term gain could be high indeed — not just in lives lost and property destroyed, but in an entire generation of Kurds across the country’s southeast growing increasingly radicalized and convinced that they have no future in remaining part of the Turkish state. “The danger is magnified when one looks at Turkey’s demographic trends. Kurds already comprise something like 20% of the country’s population. But ethnic Kurds today are estimated to have fertility rates that may be twice as high as those of ethnic Turks. Erdoğan has obsessed over this data for years, repeatedly warning that Turkey faces a demographic time bomb; indeed, he excoriated Turkish women for using contraceptives. But all to little avail. According to some projections, that could mean that within a generation more than half of Turkey’s military-age population will come from Kurdish-speaking households.” It became a political problem when a liberal Kurdish-rooted party, the HDP, started to gain significant support amongst Kurds and Turks. But Erdoğan got lucky. When HDP deputies attended PKK funerals the support collapsed. Sympathy for Kurds was certainly not extended to PKK suicide bombers who slaughtered innocent civilians. As is so often the case, Erdoğan’s opposition was fragmented, divided and ultimately, ineffective.

Putin or Trump? After Erdoğan’s constitutional power grab, European leaders responded with alarm.


Angela Merkel pleaded for Turkey to bring together its divided nation, while JeanClaude Juncker called for claims of electoral malpractice to be investigated. Donald Trump chose the pragmatic path and phoned Erdoğan to congratulate him. The inference was - who cares about right or wrong? US strategic relations outweigh all such considerations.

Turkey holds the highest number of journalists in prison of any country in the world. Almost 2,000 people have been charged with the crime of insulting Erdog˘an.

Perhaps this was the sensible option. Turkey resents the US support of Syrian and Iraqi Kurds, and is equally angry that America refuses to extradite the anti-government cleric Fethullah Gulen, the man they blame for the failed coup in 2016. But Turkey is vital for western interests in the region. Meanwhile, the ever-closer relationship between Turkey and Russia sends shivers down the spine. Historically they have rarely been on the same side and recent incidents should have hammered a wedge between them. In the last couple of years Turkish soldiers have died in Syria from Russian ‘friendly fire’, the Turks have shot down a Russian plane, and a radicalised Turkish police officer attacked and shot dead the Russian ambassador to Turkey, Andrei Karlov. Karlov was only the fourth Russian ambassador ever killed in the line of duty. These are the kind of incidents that

trigger wars - think Archduke Franz Ferdinand in 1914. The downing of the Russian fighter plane in November 2015 did cause a breakdown in relations, only broken after Erdoğan offered a suitable regretful apology. After such volatile incidents you might expect a cool relationship between the countries but they appear to be the closest of comrades. By June 2016, Russia was apparently tipping Erdoğan off about the impending coup attempt, and now they are gleefully carving up Syria. Russia has accepted the Turkish view that the YPG (Syrian Kurdish army) are “terrorists”, and in return Turkey backs Russia’s support of Bashar al-Assad (even though they originally opposed him). It seems both sides are bending over backwards to become partners, prompting many observers to ask why. Maxim Trudolyubov, writing in Newsweek, asserts: “Something big and important must be at the heart of a relationship in which both sides are able to overcome the pain they repeatedly inflict on each other. Russia and Turkey, historically adversaries and newly active allies, are one such case. “…[They] seem to have found a way of pursuing larger goals while agreeing to disagree on the many diverging interests that will always keep the two countries apart. “The two countries’ mutual history is rough. They clashed incessantly and waged war on each other once every quarter century when they were still empires. Soviet Russia and Kemalist Turkey ended up on opposite sides of the Cold War divide. “Russia and Turkey have been supporting opposing forces in Syria. And yet some major force has been bringing them back together. It must be bigger than immediate politics.” What indeed?

The Big Story

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was born in Istanbul on February 26, 1954, the son of a coastguard, and was raised on Turkey’s Black Sea coast. When he was 13, his father decided to move to Istanbul, hoping to give his five children a better upbringing. Recep inherited an authoritarian streak from his father, who once hung him from the ceiling by his arms for swearing. As a teenager, the young Erdoğan sold lemonade and sesame buns to earn extra cash. He attended an Islamic school before obtaining a degree in management from Istanbul’s Marmara University - and playing professional football. During the 1970s-1980s, he became involved in politics become a member of Necmettin Erbakan’s Welfare Party and was also active in Islamist circles. On March 27th, 1994, Erdoğan was elected Mayor of Metropolitan İstanbul, and during his time in office he embarked on many significant infrastructure projects. Hundreds of kilometers of new pipes were laid to supply clean water and modern recycling facilities were built. To alleviate traffic congestion and transportation deadlock, more than 50 bridges, passageways and freeways were constructed. On December 12, 1997, he read a poem at a public gathering in Siirt including the lines: “The mosques are our barracks, the domes our helmets, the minarets our bayonets and the faithful our soldiers.” Although Erdoğan said the poem had been approved by the education ministry to be published in textbooks, it appears this was not the original version. Deemed an incitement to violence and religious or racial hatred, he was arrested and spent four months in prison. After his imprisonment he established the Justice and Development Party (AK Party) on

August 14, 2001, a party rooted in conservative Islam, which has shown a fierce determination to clip the military’s wings.

president was clear when he sobbed openly while giving a speech at the funeral of a close friend, shot with his son by mutinous soldiers.

Taking over the Prime Minister’s office on March 15, 2003, Erdoğan again showed a determination to improve the infrastructure, constructing dams, residential units, schools, roads, hospitals and power plants. He also removed six zeros from the Turkish currency, giving back the Turkish Lira its creditability, and a considerable increase in the national income per capita was achieved.

He has denied wanting to impose Islamic values, saying he is committed to secularism, but he says he supports Turks’ right to express their religion more openly.

A strong Erdog˘an-led Turkish state, which is proud of its Islamic roots and identity, will bring some glimmer of optimism for millions of Muslims

To his supporters he was the man who brought Turkey years of economic growth, but to his critics he was an autocratic leader intolerant of dissent who harshly silenced anyone who opposed him.

He was elected President on August 10, 2014 and his biggest battle with the military came in attempted coup in 2016, which claimed at least 240 lives and, according to his officials, also came close to killing Erdoğan, who had been staying at the Aegean holiday resort of Marmaris. In less than 12 hours he was back firmly in control, having outmanoeuvred the plotters. He appeared on national TV and rallied supporters in Istanbul, declaring he was the “chief commander”. But the strain on the

In October 2013 Turkey lifted rules banning women from wearing headscarves in the country’s state institutions - with the exception of the judiciary, military and police - ending a decades-old restriction. Erdoğan’s has in the past attempted to criminalise adultery, introducing “alcohol-free zones”. He opposes any kind of birth control, extols motherhood and criticises feminism. Will secularism be wiped away with the President’s new powers? In a closed-door briefing to U.S. lawmakers last January, Jordan’s King Abdullah II said that Erdoğan “believes in a radical Islamic solution to the problems in the region” - and he says it is a “fact that terrorists are going to Europe as part of Turkish policy.” It may just be fear-mongering, but there is no doubt that Erdoğan is a deeply religious man in a country where the elites are staunchly secular. It would not be a surprise if his country were to be run with religion at the forefront.

The New Ottoman Empire? It seems unlikely that Turkey will become religiously intolerant in the manner of Saudi Arabia, Iran or indeed the Taliban or ISIS. Erdoğan’s prime motivation may be nationalistic rather than theological. Less than a century ago, the Ottoman Empire still existed, and at its height was the one of the largest and longest lasting Empires in history. It was an empire inspired and sustained by Islam, and Islamic institutions. It covered much of North Africa, Arabia, the Balkans and Europe,


The Big Story reaching the gates of Vienna. According to Wikipedia, as President, Erdoğan has overseen a revival of Ottoman tradition, greeting Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas with an Ottoman-style ceremony in the new presidential palace, with guards dressed in costumes representing founders of 16 Great Turkish Empires in history. While serving as the Prime Minister of Turkey, Erdoğan’s AKP made references to the Ottoman era during election campaigns, such as calling their supporters ‘grandsons of Ottomans’ (Osmanlı torunu). This proved controversial, since it was perceived to be an open attack against the republican nature of modern Turkey founded by Mustafa Kemal Atatürk. Many critics have thus accused Erdoğan of wanting to become an Ottoman sultan and abandon the secular and democratic credentials of the Republic. Jared Malsin of Time Magazine elaborated on the Ottoman theme: “Turkey’s leader represents a throwback: an elected autocrat… The Presidential mansion completed in 2014 that Erdoğan calls home has more than 1,000 rooms. The decor, heavy on red carpets, marble and chandeliers, suggests a return to Ottoman glory.” Lucinda Smith also sees Ottoman links. “Erdoğan’s [foreign policy] idea is to look first at its natural periphery, the countries of the old Ottoman Empire, with which it shares cultural and often religious links. “Go to Macedonia or northern Iraq today both countries once ruled from Istanbul - and you will find shopping malls full of Turkish brands and families gripped by the latest

Turkish soap operas. Culture and business have been paving the way for politics for years.” While the west wonders, nervously, where Erdoğan is taking Turkey, other observers look on with a sense of pride and hope. Writing for The Sydney Morning Herald, Kuranda Seyit offers an alternative view: “Turkey has the potential to become the main power both militarily and economically in the Middle East and to become a quasi-sheriff state, policing much of the issues in the volatile region.

The mosques are our barracks, the domes our helmets, the minarets our bayonets and the faithful our soldiers.

“Erdoğan has carved his own name indelibly into Turkish history having successfully manipulated his party’s political supremacy over four elections and his personal ascendancy as the president. “One could argue he is the greatest leader the nation has known since Ataturk. He’s firmly established economic successes for the nation, bringing a new found affluence that most Turks have never tasted. “… A new US-style presidential system in Turkey could mark the end of an era of instability marked by military coups and political turmoil. … Transition into a representative republic could see Turkey become the beacon of hope for the rest of the Muslim world. If Turkey follows a similar path to that of Indonesia it could become a superpower by 2030.

“… For Turkey as a nation, a strong and stable


president will allow the economy to grow and the society to prosper. Without Erdoğan, Turkey will be manipulated by foreign powers and pushed back into a position of mediocracy, becoming the limp-fish of the region. “For the Muslim world, a strong Erdoğanled Turkish state, which is proud of its Islamic roots and identity, will bring some glimmer of optimism for millions of Muslims who have lost hope in their own political leaders.”

East or West? Turkey is a huge country of contrasts standing between Europe and Asia, and bridging the Black Sea and Mediterranean. To the west are the wealthy, liberal European nations. Across the Black Sea is the might of Russia. To the south are the violent failed states of Syria and Iraq. To the East is the Shia stronghold of Iran. It feels like the crossroads of the world. Each of its borders leads to a different ideology, religion and culture. The world’s superpowers all want their influence felt in Turkey. Few places can be as strategically important. To allow Turkey to fall into the arms of Russia or the Islamic fundamentalists would be disastrous, but does this mean we have to tolerate breaches of human rights and the jailing (or worse) of dissidents? The west fear that Erdoğan will become Putin’s puppet, and Erdoğan knows that he cannot alienate Russia again. But the move to wrest power from the prime minister, the judicary and the military suggests that the President has ambitions to make Turkey a power in his own image - a return to the spirit of the days of its old empire. Erdoğan has no plans to be anyone’s puppet, and the world should be ready for bold new force on the soil of a very old dynasty.

Gatwick Award Winners


ver the following pages we celebrate the big winners from Gatwick Diamond Business Awards 2017

Jeremy Taylor

The awards were hosted by actor Stephen Mangan and held at the Effingham Park Hotel, on 16th March, 2017. The awards are organised by Gatwick Diamond Business (gdb), a financially and politically-independent body - owned and run by the members, who are businesses operating in and around the vicinity of the airport. The core objectives of gdb are • To promote inter-trading and business development opportunities for members • To continue as the premier independent business association consulted by local, regional and national government bodies and to be the voice for the local business community • To assist in retaining a skilled, quality workforce and develop further opportunities throughout the area • To encourage inward investment into the Gatwick Diamond • To develop links throughout the UK, Europe and beyond, where applicable, for the membership • And to act as a source of information and advice on local and national issues and to make representations on behalf of the membership Jeremy Taylor, Chief Executive of Gatwick Diamond Business, said: “All of us involved with organising the Awards were delighted with how well the whole programme and the ceremony went.

Stephen Mangan

“We have had some tremendous feedback with a number of attendees saying that the Awards Dinner was “up there with any National Awards Event in London”. “The Gatwick Diamond Business awards are established as the ‘must go’ event in the regional business calendar, which makes our job even harder for 2018. “Next year will be the Tenth year and we are putting considerable energy and creativity into our plans for yet another best yet. “Personally, I’m already looking forward to working with the sponsors and our professional supply chain to deliver the Gatwick Diamond Business Awards 2018.”

The Winners


Gatwick Award Winners

GDBA BUSINESS PERSON OF THE YEAR AWARD WINNER: CHRISTOPHER MEEKING, CEO AT AVTURA LTD I am very proud to be the recipient of the ‘Business Person of the Year’ award at the Gatwick Diamond Business Awards 2017. Having been up against some very tough competition, I am honoured to have received this award, and would like to give a huge thank you to all my colleagues, customers, suppliers and supporters over the last 11 years, who made winning this award possible. Over the years, Avtura has grown from a bright idea to a worldwide international business, with multiple products in operation with customers in over 25 airports in four continents, and we couldn’t have done any of it without the support of all of those mentioned, but most importantly my team at Avtura. As someone who grew up in the local area, moved away, and then returned to it many years later, after a successful career as a senior military officer, I am really pleased to be able to give something back by creating employment opportunities here at Avtura in Crawley. It’s been a long and bumpy road to get here but as I often say, it’s great to be a 10-year overnight success! Please call 01293 817120 for more information, visit or email

GDBA GREEN BUSINESS OF THE YEAR AWARD WINNER: CLEANKILL PEST CONTROL Cleankill Pest Control was named ‘Green Business of the Year’ at the Gatwick Diamond Business Awards 2017. The award, sponsored by Crawley Borough Council, was presented to the company that exhibited best overall environmental management and provided the most outstanding eco service. Cleankill Pest Control was delighted to finally win this coveted award. Commenting on the evening, Managing Director, Paul Bates said: “The Cleankill team has always enjoyed attending the Gatwick Diamond Business Awards over the last few years but to actually win one has made this year very special! Paul added: “It isn’t a natural fit being ‘green’ and performing effective pest control, but it is something we feel very strongly about. To be recognised with an award in this category shows that our work is making a difference and it will help to spur our team on to even greater efforts.” From its Surrey HQ and offices in East Sussex, Cleankill Pest Control deals with ‘distress’ pests such as wasps and fleas, as well as preventative maintenance against public health pests such as mice, rats, cockroaches and birds. The company prides itself on fast and efficient service delivery and aims to be recognised as a market leader for innovation, ‘green’ and new pest control techniques. Please call 0800 056 5477 for more information, visit or email


Gatwick Award Winners

GDBA MANUFACTURING BUSINESS OF THE YEAR AWARD WINNER: COVA SECURITY GATES Cova Security Gates, the leading manufacturer of quality perimeter security equipment, has been awarded Manufacturing Business of the Year 2017 at the prestigious Gatwick Diamond Business Awards. Cova specialises in the manufacture of bi-folding speed gates, sliding cantilevered gates, shallow mount road blockers, full depth road blockers, static bollards, rising bollards, barriers, boom barriers and pedestrian gates. With the constant threat of criminal and terrorist attack, Cova Security Gates’ PAS 68:2010 compliant crash rated range of products has been developed and installed to counter vehicle borne explosive attacks to critical national infrastructure, as well as to protect other high profile sites around the world. Karen Deacon, Marketing Manager at Cova Security Gates said: “It means a lot to receive such public recognition from Gatwick Diamond Business, especially at a time when we’re celebrating our 30th anniversary. Listening to our customers to ensure we adapt our products and services to meet their ever-changing needs has been key to our success over the past three decades, so it’s fantastic to have this acknowledged. On behalf of the whole team I’d like to say a huge thank you to the judges who recognised our passion and commitment to our industry, our customers for their continued trust and support, and our team for working so hard to make Cova Security Gates one of the global leaders in the manufacture of quality perimeter security equipment.” Please call 01293 553888 for more information, visit or email

GDBA CUSTOMER DELIGHT AWARD WINNER: DRIVER HIRE GATWICK For me customer service has always been my focus, when I first bought the Driver Hire Gatwick franchise, it was the main tool I decided to use to stand out from the crowd. As a company, this year we have engaged with over 1,500 customers; with them all being from the logistics industry, their needs are all different and we constantly need to adapt our approach to ensure we always service them effectively and provided the highest possible standard of customer service. Customer service is the focal point of everything we do and we feel it is what makes us different to other recruitment agencies. As a team having an external organisation recognise how much work we put into our customer service means the world to us and motivates us to continue to develop the approach we use. We have never just settled for what the common conception of excellent service is, but thrive in redefining the very standards of service we would like to call excellent. We have a very open, honest approach and we always work in partnership with our clients as their workforce support, you help them sustain and grow their business. This award is the confirmation of all that goes on behind the scenes to make this a seamless experience for all our valued customers. Please call 01293 934555 for more information, visit or email


Gatwick Award Winners

GDBA BUSINESS OF THE YEAR AWARD WINNER: GROUNDSURE Groundsure is a market leading specialist, transforming environmental data into location intelligence. Groundsure’s products facilitate smart property decisions and enhanced data insights across the land and property markets, utilising the latest award-winning digital technologies available. We pride ourselves on the quality and accuracy of our reports, always supported by the best customer service possible. We provide high value, property-specific opinions, and analysis of land use based on the leading datasets that we collect and curate. Continued financial and business growth, coupled with employing smart and talented people from across the Sussex region, has seen Groundsure go from strength to strength in recent years - this award is great external recognition of all that the team has achieved. Everyone at Groundsure is delighted to have won the prestigious ‘Business of the year’ award, sponsored by NatWest, at the recent Gatwick Diamond Business Awards. This award is testament to the hard work of all our staff from across the organisation that delivered fantastic revenue and market share growth last year and an even stronger start to 2017. Please call 08444 159000 for more information, visit or email

GDBA NEW BUSINESS OF THE YEAR AWARD WINNER: VIISANA ViiSana offers life and health insurance with a difference. We don’t just protect employees, business owners, shareholders and their families with award-winning cover from Vitality, we encourage them to lead healthier lives and reward them in a variety of ways. Unlike many insurance brokers, our entire business approach and philosophy is focused on the health and wellbeing of our customers. In doing so, we have created a proposition that benefits both the employee and the employer - ultimately improving business performance through better engagement and the enhanced productivity created by a happier and more motivated workforce. “ViiSana is delighted to have won the GDBA New Business of the Year award. Our continued dedication to our customers throughout their journey with us, has already resulted in policy holders taking small steps to change their health and wellbeing for the better, whilst helping them to benefit from the 5-star insurance and rewards on offer. Winning this award is very special to us, because it recognises the hard work and effort put in by our dedicated team to create a successful and fast growing business.” Paul Ollerton, Managing Director With ViiSana you’ll benefit from a protection package and an employee benefits programme of a standard usually only offered by the UK’s largest organisations. To find out more call 01273 461468, or visit


Gatwick Award Winners

GDBA EMPLOYER OF THE YEAR AWARD & GDBA DEVELOPING PEOPLE FOR BUSINESS AWARD WINNER: B&CE THE PEOPLE’S PENSION We’re over the moon to be named ‘Employer of the Year 2017’ and to win the award for ‘Developing People for Business Success’ – especially given it’s our 75th year! Taking home both awards is an incredible achievement for us and one the whole organisation is immensely proud of. Both awards come after being named Gatwick Diamond Business of the Year back in 2015. Since then our incredible journey has continued, going from being a little unknown not-for-profit company in Crawley, to employing over 450 people and becoming the largest private-sector automatic enrolment pension scheme in the UK with over 2.5million savers! Since launching The People’s Pension in 2011, B&CE has grown considerably, however during that time we’ve stayed committed to ensure all employees have the chance to learn, develop and do great things. These awards are for them, for making B&CE such a great place to work. We’re always on the lookout for great people to join our expanding work family, so if you know of anyone looking for a rewarding career with a growing organisation where people come first then take a look at our careers page, – our in-house recruitment team would love to hear from you. Please call 01293 586666 for more information, visit or email

GDBA RESPONSIBLE BUSINESS OF THE YEAR AWARD WINNER: MID SUSSEX WOOD RECYCLING PROJECT The Responsible Business of the Year Award means a great deal to me, as a business owner, because it is recognition of the ethical foundations upon which the business was formed. As a Social Enterprise we look to help disadvantaged people within the community, offering volunteering opportunities as well as skills training and employment where possible. Our team comprise of marginalised members of society and the Award is a compliment to their hard work and the effort they put in to make this a successful Enterprise. The judges comments were very complimentary regarding the ethos of the company and how we engage with the wider community as well as our involvement with Pericles, a charity that provides skills based opportunities to adults with learning difficulties. As we are celebrating our 10th year in 2017 the award is a most welcome present! David Treadwell, Director at Mid Sussex Wood Recycling. Please visit or email for more information


Gatwick Award Winners

GDBA INTERNATIONAL BUSINESS OF THE YEAR AWARD WINNER: LIGHTHOUSE SYSTEMS Based in Crawley, UK, we help hundreds of organisations around the world to improve their manufacturing performance through smart manufacturing. To date we have deployed our software in over 40 countries and 70% of our business is export. We are delighted to win this award because over the last two years, we have built on our international presence in the USA and Singapore, and have created a direct presence in France, Sweden and Poland. We have increased our partner network in South Africa, Netherland and Belgium; we have started a new initiative in the Middle East. The ‘International Business of the Year’ award both recognises the success of our growth strategy and celebrates the hard work and dedication or our teams worldwide,” Tim Barber, Director Please call 01293 605300 for more information, visit or email

GDBA INNOVATION & TECHNOLOGY AWARD WINNER: MAS GROUP (INTERNATIONAL) LTD MAS group have created a product called Care Line Live. Care Line Live is a revolutionary cloudbased management platform for home care agencies that combines timetabling, invoicing, payroll and the monitoring of carers all into one simple, easy to use platform that allows an agency to run their entire business from anywhere, from any device. “We have spent a long time developing Care Line Live, and to win this prestigious award is real recognition of the product and the innovation we have made within not only a sector that’s growing exponentially, but one that’s hugely outdated in terms of technology and the way that it’s used. Winning the award really does mean a lot to me and the business, and shows that all of the hard work is worth it.” Josh Hough, Managing Director. Please call 0800 0124 285 for more information, visit or email


Gatwick Award Winners

GDBA PLACE TO MEET AWARD WINNER: HILTON LONDON GATWICK AIRPORT “We are so proud to win the Place to Meet Award for the second year in a row, it is fantastic recognition to the team who consistently deliver an extraordinary experience to all our customers”, said Remco Norden, General Manager. “Receiving this prestigious award is a true testimony to the strong team we are, and commitment to the high level of service we provide.” In order to ensure we do the right things for our guests, we have aligned ourselves to our customers’ needs and have introduced eco-friendly, sustainable, and interactive lunches and coffee breaks, which have been well received and provides a resounding success for delegates and organisers alike. We know that our exceptional service contributes to the success of our customers’ meetings, therefore we are always happy to go the extra mile to exceed our customers` expectations. To be recognised as the best in the Gatwick Diamond makes all the hard work, dedication and team effort worthwhile. Please call 01293 610 809 or email for more information or visit

GDBA SUPPLY CHAIN EXCELLENCE AWARD WINNER: ACRO AIRCRAFT SEATING Acro is a UK based seating manufacturer that specialises in passenger comfort through seats that are comfortable, robust, lightweight and easily maintainable. We have had certified seats flying since 2006 and now currently have over 80,000 seats flying around the world on a range on different commercial aircraft. We have established an award-winning brand, with a reputation as one of the world’s leading innovators in aircraft seating design and manufacturing. We make over 3,000 seats a month for more than 20 global clients; Designing and manufacturing seats for today’s discerning airline passengers is an exercise in balancing cabin economics and passenger experience. Acro prides itself on quick lead times to produce a product that is not only modern and beautiful, but practical and very maintenance friendly Please call 01737 304700 for more information or visit


Business Convention


The countdown to the Acumen Business Convention 2017 has started with only a few weeks to go before the big day.


ver 250 decision makers have already booked their place and this year promises to be even bigger and better. It is always an annual sell-out event, so make sure you secure your ticket today by visiting the Acumen website on and clicking on the ‘Conventions’ tab. This year the event is held on the 16th May at The Grand Hotel, Brighton from 12pm, starting off with a sumptuous sit down lunch with wine. There is a spectacular speaker line up, a choice of workshops and superabundant networking opportunities throughout the day. Speakers this year feature Jonas Kjellberg, Founding Partner of Skype who will be flown in from Sweden especially. Rob Forkan, Co-founder of Gandys, will share his remarkable business story of how he and his brother set up their business after losing their parents in the Tsunami, and their fantastic cause Orphans for Orphans. Also in attendance will be speakers Sanderson Jones, Co-founder of the unique business Sunday Assembly, and the bestselling Author and Founder of ACUMEN BUSINESS LAW, Penina Shepherd. The ACUMEN BUSINESS CONVENTION has become a must-attend event for the movers and shakers of the business world of the South. It is now recognised as the most prestigious and professional business


conference south of London. Besides knowledge, inspiration and the latest business trends, it provides you with the perfect platform to endorse your business in front of leaders and decision makers of established businesses. It’s the place to be where can you hear insightful speakers, utilise invaluable workshops, make contacts that really matter with 300 decision makers, and be delightfully entertained throughout. Jonas Kjellberg

Sanderson Jones

Rob Forkan

Penina Shepherd

Business Convention

This year the Convention is supported by these fantastic sponsors: Basepoint Centres Providing a wide range of high quality workspaces to let, including serviced and managed offices, workshops, trade counters and studios.

Facemedia Group Business and Promotional Print and Design in Brighton

hiSbe Food A different kind of supermarket! We’re on a mission to break the mould, by putting customers, suppliers and employees first.

Platinum Business Magazine


Part of the Platinum Publishing Group and now the largest regional business publisher in the UK. Always informative; always relevant; always irreverent

Sussex Chamber of Commerce As a Chamber member, you’re well connected

Watson Associates A committed team of financial professionals. We share the same enthusiasm for the success of your business as your own.

Woodhart Group Comprising of three divisions including carpentry, lofts and construction. The company was established by brothers Matt and Ben Woodhart over 10 years ago.




Once upon a time, online accounting was a thing of the future, but with businesses increasingly opting for software in the cloud and HMRC ‘Making Tax Digital’, online accounting is in the here and now, says Rob Beasley, Online Accounting Specialist at Kreston Reeves.


nline accounting provides greater control over costs and cash flow – far more so than Excel spreadsheets and desktop software. For some, these alleviate the fear that data could be lost or compromised somewhere in the cloud, but the benefits of integrating online software into a business’s financial management outweighs the risks. Basic, straightforward software packages such as Xero and QuickBooks Online, which are used by more than a million businesses worldwide, help firms of all sizes to manage their finances, plan, resource and make informed decisions. A striking advantage is that online accounting enables business owners, managers


A fully digital future for businesses makes sense in a world driven by seamless connectivity; especially considering HM Revenue & Customs’ plans for Making Tax Digital and the need for more regular reporting

and their advisers to be fully engaged with your business in real time, and on the move via iPad, tablet, PC, or smartphone; and not just at intervals when they receive a soon to be outdated back-up file. This deeper immersion means you get more value out of the relationship with your adviser. Online accounting is good for all, but has obvious advantages for smaller firms, where cash flow is particularly crucial to survival and growth. The best online packages allow firms to schedule payments and automate sending out invoices, which ensures that cash flow is more visible and predictable. In fact, research suggests that invoices sent electronically, which can be dispatched the moment a job is finished, are paid faster. This naturally frees up


managers to focus on business development, networking or improving their product or service, rather than bookkeeping. Software can also help multi-divisional firms integrate their financial systems as appropriate. One client who inherited four inter-connected companies, was determined to take advantage of the digital age and now values being able to see his key financial performance indicators for the group at a glance. This allows him to make confident forecasts and projections thanks to a constantly updated digital blueprint of activities. He can also share that information and any concerns with us, his advisers, in a dialogue not dependent on scheduled meetings, yet keeping everyone informed at the same time. As a result, he gets a faster response and we get a more thorough picture of what is happening. The best online accounting systems provide a dashboard with a birds-eye view of performance, invoices, sales and outstanding balances, which your accountant and auditor can also see via shared log-in. From an adviser’s perspective, we can identify potential problems or opportunities early for our online clients, and by being more regularly informed in between our face to face meetings, we can be more proactive on their behalf, which adds value to them.

The future is digital A fully digital future for businesses makes sense in a world driven by seamless connectivity; especially considering HM Revenue & Customs’ plans for Making Tax Digital and the need for more regular reporting. Banks are also moving towards a fully digital future, with the promise of greater

connection for and with clients who are also online. Lenders might also view businesses they can see in real-time more favourably when it comes to loans.

management. There is also a flourishing app market growing up around the core online accounting packages, which a good adviser can guide you on.

Additionally, the growth of cloud-based accounting is already creating its own ‘big data’ from which client benchmarking will start to emerge to the benefit of clients and advisers alike. We can see a future where more is made of data analytics, real-time reporting and shared systems to help both us as advisers and our clients.

The advances made in accounting software means that the days of taking a bag of receipts to a bookkeeper are disappearing fast

❞ The advances made in accounting software means that the days of taking a bag of receipts to a bookkeeper for analysis are disappearing fast, as is the idea that an accountant is just there to keep the books balanced and the filing obligations met. Online accounting frees up both clients and advisers to add real value to the development and growth of a business. The more we, as advisers, can be released from data processing tasks, the more we can offer support and strategic advice. It is a chance for businesses to be on top of their finances, and for those whom they rely on for advice to be in the same place. This only adds value.

For instance, we will be able to draw upon shared intelligence and analysis of online data flows, which can guide us and our clients on workflow management best practice. Knowing more about our clients means that we will be in a better position to take a holistic approach to the advice we give them. Online accounting is not a magic bullet, but it is a chance for businesses to be on top of their finances - and for those upon whom they rely for advice, to be in the same place… anytime, anywhere. Surely a good thing!

Need advice? For advice and further information on online accounting and how it can work for your business, please contact Rob Beasley, Online Accounting Specialist at Kreston Reeves by phoning or emailing 01243 787627

Best practice makes perfect An increasing range of functionality is being added to online accounting software, with a great deal of development energy going into improving notifications, alerts and ‘todo’ lists, all with the aim of better workflow

business. tax. wealth.



MIND THE GAP! Maintaining talent in the Manufacturing, Engineering & Technology Sectors This month MHA Carpenter Box Partner, Chris Coopey, who heads the firm’s Manufacturing Group, looks forward to the next METALL event, METALL #5.


eedback from our previous events highlights that many engineering and manufacturing businesses are finding recruitment difficult, if not impossible, and not just for graduates and experienced engineers, but even at apprentice level. This skills gap means a growth gap for the sector in our area – and it will get worse the longer we fail to address the issue. There is also a particular issue in relation to encouraging females into the sector, which means that the pool of potential talent is reduced by almost a half from the outset. This skills gap poses a major challenge for the UK’s manufacturing and engineering industries and until the issue is addressed,


This skills gap poses a major challenge for the UK’s manufacturing and engineering industries and until the issue is addressed, manufacturers will find it difficult to plan for growth and remain competitive, and at the cutting edge of the global market

manufacturers will find it difficult to plan for growth and remain competitive, and at the cutting edge of the global market - which will be an absolute necessity in the post BREXIT world. METALL #5 will be held on 1st June at the South Lodge Hotel, near Horsham. It is a specially extended Q&A panel breakfast event, with three industry experts who will be looking at the skills gap – one of the most important and difficult challenges faced by many in the sector. Between them the panel have an in-depth knowledge of many of the issues and opportunities businesses and employers face today. They also have insight into the policies and attitudes of government

Finance and can hopefully help to clear the fog around some of the confusion. With his vast experience as a recruiter in the MET sectors, John Docherty of CBSButler will set the scene with an overview of how the land presently lies. The format will then be around an ‘any questions’ style debate, with the audience asking the panel for their opinion on how best to face up to the uncertainties around such things as BREXIT, the government’s attitude to skills training, how to encourage and motivate our young people into engineering, manufacturing and tech businesses, and perhaps what the future holds as the Apprenticeship Levy begins to operate and ‘T Levels’ are launched.

METALL’s primary aim is to inform, educate and facilitate discussion and progress in the Manufacturing, Engineering and Technology sectors

One of the panel members is Sir John O’Reilly who is, amongst other things, Chairman of the ERA Foundation, a non-profit organisation which supports engineering skills development and aims to bridge the gap between engineering research and its commercialisation. He also advises the government in his role as Director General, Knowledge and Innovation, Department for Business and Energy & Industrial Strategy, so he has real insight into the way the government thinks about the sector.

Left to right: Professor Andrew Lloyd, Maggie Philbin OBE and Sir John O’Reilly

university setting and helped to deliver the new Advanced Engineering Centre (AEC) at the university. He has also been involved in the setting up of the University of Brighton Academies Trust which operates schools in Hastings, as well as advising on the bid for the Harbourside University Technical College at Newhaven. There’s a clear demand for talent at all levels and if tackled successfully, resolving the skills shortage will support the sustainable growth of the industry, and ensure the sector continues to play a fundamental role in rebalancing the UK economy. We

launched METALL (Manufacturing Engineering Technology Alliance) back in July 2016 and the four events have so far proved to be very popular promoting good practice, and allowing attendees to share experiences and to network with peers. METALL’s primary aim is to inform, educate and facilitate discussion and progress in the Manufacturing, Engineering and Technology sectors and this event promises to deliver on every count.

Places will be limited so please sign up at the following link to avoid disappointment

Maggie Philbin OBE is also on the panel and is known to many of us from her time on such TV programmes as Tomorrow’s World and Bang Goes the Theory. Maggie has been working tirelessly as CEO and co-founder of TeenTech, an award winning, industry-led initiative, which helps the ‘X Factor’ generation understand their true potential and the real opportunities available in the contemporary STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) workplace. The final panel member, Professor Andrew Lloyd, is Dean of the College of Life, Health & Physical Sciences, and Professor of Biomedical Materials at the University of Brighton. Andrew has practical experience around the provision of engineering teaching in a



BE CAUTIOUS ABOUT YOUR CONTRACTS Whether you are a customer or a supplier, ensuring that your contracts with third parties protect your business can be an unnerving task. Lisa Downs, Partner in Rawlison Butler’s Commercial Team, suggests five key issues to address in your B2B contracts.

1. Getting the scope right Be clear about what is and what isn’t included, and what each party expects to gain from the contract. Ensure that each requirement is measurable, with any constraints, dependencies or assumptions clearly identified. Accept that you probably won’t be able to capture everything (not just in relation to scope) – things are never black and white in the world of contracts. All you can do is ensure there is a clear mechanism for dealing with change – and pricing it. Suppliers know from experience where and when scope (i.e. price) creep is likely. As well as ensuring the contract has a clear


change process, customers can also protect themselves by engaging a third party, familiar with what is being procured, to help agree the scope so that scope creep is minimised if not eradicated.

2. Set out responsibilities Ensure each party understands their responsibilities, when they need to be performed and the consequences of failure (including remedies available to the other party). Wherever possible, responsibilities should be linked to requirements and include any constraints, dependencies and assumptions. If you fail to fulfil one of your responsibilities, it is likely to impact

your other responsibilities and the responsibilities of the other party. Although termination might be the ultimate remedy if things aren’t resolved, it should not be your first option. Instead, include a realistic, structured process for remedying a responsibility failure. This should include an extension of time equivalent to the delay suffered by the non-defaulting party, plus a right for this party to be reimbursed any direct costs it incurred as a direct result of the responsibility failure. Customers often insist on a ‘catch-all’ provision requiring the supplier to do everything necessary to meet its

Legal requirements. The scope provisions might curtail this catch-all if the requirements are not clear. Upon seeing this catch-all, the supplier may price any associated risks upfront but then also play the scope creep card at the relevant time – so you end up paying twice for it!

Bear in mind that insurance may cover a greater degree of liability than might be expected

3. Measuring performance

Mechanisms in the contract ensuring that performance takes place as prescribed, will be important to the customer as they ensure that it gets the services or goods that it wants on time – and what ‘penalties’ apply if it doesn’t. Be clear about what remedies you want (e.g. service credits for failure to meet specified service levels) but keep in mind that above all you want to ensure that the supplier is incentivised to perform. Financial penalties are unlikely to incentivise a supplier sufficiently because they will (i) have already included any financial risk into their pricing; and (ii) argue that they have been prevented or delayed from performing their obligations because of something you have or haven’t done, or factors outside their reasonable control. You need sufficient information to enable you to measure performance, e.g. management information from the supplier. Suppliers typically limit the information they give you, so ensure you understand what information you will get and how it will be set out, and request clarification if you have questions.

4. Limiting financial exposure Each party wants to limit its liability, but also ensure that any limit of liability placed on the other party is adequate. There are legal restraints on the ability of parties to limit or restrict their liability, e.g. liability for death or personal injury cannot be excluded or limited under any circumstances. Liability for breach of contract can only be excluded or limited to the extent it is reasonable to do so, taking into account all relevant factors (the ‘reasonableness

test’). Both parties must accept that the other will try to exclude liability to the extent it can and to place a financial cap where it can’t. Focus primarily on the types of liability likely to arise if the other party fails to meet its obligations. For example, if a supplier doesn’t deliver on time, what financial exposure will you incur internally and externally to your customers or other suppliers? You might incur internal administration costs and late delivery charges. In other words, what ‘direct’ losses would a reasonable person consider to be the ‘ordinary circumstances’ of something not happening as the contract requires?

Accept that you probably won’t be able to capture everything, things are never black and white in the world of contracts

Even if it is shown that the supplier’s breach caused those losses, if those losses were sufficiently unlikely, you would not be able to recover them from the supplier unless the supplier was aware of those losses when it entered into the contract. Bear in mind that insurance may cover a greater degree of liability than might be expected.

5. Protecting your IP IP is likely to be one of the most valuable assets for both parties. Most commercial contracts involve some use of the other

party’s IP (e.g. confidential information or software) and it is therefore important to ensure that obligations and restrictions on its use are included. In addition, IP may be created as a result of performance of the contract so the contract will need to set out who owns what. Agreeing on who owns IP created or developed under a contract is usually contentious. The customer wants to retain all rights, including the right to commercially exploit or restrict others from using the IP so that it retains a competitive edge. On the other hand, the supplier may have developed something based on its proprietary IP and which it therefore wants to control and commercially exploit. If ownership of IP is not being transferred, the solution is likely to be appropriate licensing of IP use (e.g. a perpetual licence to use and modify IP with annual royalty payments).

We can advise you on what protections you should include in your commercial contracts. Although these top five are based on our extensive experience of drafting and negotiating a variety of different types of commercial contracts for clients in all sectors, we recognise that each company will have their own priorities and negotiation style.

For more information on commercial contracts, please contact Lisa Downs by calling her on 01293 527744 or emailing ldowns@rawlisonbutler. com This document is provided for information purposes only and does not constitute legal advice. Professional legal advice should be obtained before taking or refraining from taking any action as a result of the contents of this document.



THINK BEFORE YOU PRINT Realising the benefits of 3D printing, by Robert Ganpatsingh, Partner at law firm, DMH Stallard.


he manufacturing industry in the UK, and indeed the world, is facing challenges and opportunities that come once in a lifetime. 3D printing, which has evolved over the last 30 years, is now reaching the tipping point where it is entering the mainstream. We conducted one-to-one research with companies working with the technology using 3D printing to produce prototypes as well as finished parts, and those developing software relevant to 3D printing, design protection and data logistics. The results were fascinating.


We found that the major motivations for companies to use 3D printing fell into four main categories: 1. Supply chain disruption: It allows companies to take back control of their supply chain by producing their own parts. 2. Mass customisation: Being able to quickly customise products without the need for expensive and dedicated tools. 3. Reverse engineering: Not only does 3D printing allow the design and creation of customised products, it allows models to be created from products.

4. Making the impossible possible: It allows the creation of products that other manufacturing methods would not have allowed. However, while new technology allows innovation, it also brings threats which businesses must address. For every instance where companies save money and resources by reducing manufacturing waste or transport costs, there is the danger of intellectual property (IP) and competitive advantage being undermined. One of the most attractive attributes of


While new technology allows innovation, it also brings threats which businesses must address

3D printing is that a manufacturing business needs only to move data to the printer, wherever it’s situated, to enable local manufacturing. This effectively eliminates the transport of goods and the need to have some degree of inventory in their distributed manufacturing locations. However, whoever holds the data also holds the key to the castle. Our research uncovered an instance of valuable IP being shared, without permission, with a Chinese sub-contractor. Bearing in mind that this UK company’s biggest competitor is in China and the part was rich in IP - being part of a new product range - the company was not impressed. To prevent the situation from happening again, they decided to expand their own 3D printing capacity by buying a higher resolution machine. In fact, several of the companies we visited had gone through a number of different 3D printing machines, and could see themselves investing in new machines on an ever more regular basis. To help companies make the most of 3D printing, while still keeping IP secure, we’ve put together the following top ten tips for businesses.

As well as protecting the process used to create products, think about protecting the materials being used and how important they are

Ten top tips for making the most of 3D printing 1.


Evaluate the strategic benefits that 3D printing could bring to your business through increased agility and reduced product development time scales. Secure your data both internally and externally. If you need to share designs with third parties, use geometrical models viewed through web based viewers. This means that you can avoid sending sensitive design files which

any lost data, IP infringement or other legal liability.

can be rapidly disseminated and easily exploited through 3D printing. 3.

For added security, invest in your own 3D printing capability to print prototype designs in-house.


Technology is constantly changing and advancements may overtake your current development and protection strategies. Keep up-to-date with changes in the industry to avoid this happening to you.


Set up as many barriers as possible to prevent the copying of your products. Remember to follow tried and trusted strategies to protect IP, such as design rights, patents and trade marks.


Place greater emphasis on determining which parts of your products may need their own individual protection.


If you are allowing customers or suppliers to 3D print finished parts of your own design, consider posting them on a site where distribution is controlled. You must have strict contractual terms agreed between you and the 3D printing bureau to give you added protection in case of


If making production parts, ensure that you have appropriate control of processes within your organisation and with any sub-contractors you may use.


When making production parts, look to protect the process, not just the shape of the parts. Get advice to ensure the most important aspects of your products are properly protected.

10. As well as protecting the process used to create products, think about protecting the materials being used and how important they are. This may be through IP or an exclusive contractual agreement with the supplier. To download a full copy of the report, please visit the news and resources section of our website: For more information or a free, no obligation chat with one of our experienced technology lawyers, please call Robert Ganpatsingh on 01273 744213 or email



“JUST BE REASONABLE” Employment Law requires employers to deal with their employees “reasonably”. What does this mean in practice? asks Harry Sherrard, Principal at Sherrards Employment Law.


easonable” is the employment lawyer’s favourite word. A reasonable investigation must precede a disciplinary sanction. Dismissal must be a sanction that is fair and reasonable in all the circumstances. And when later being assessed by an Employment Tribunal, the test applied is that dismissal must have been within the range of reasonable responses. Many competing factors go into the mix in deciding what is reasonable, and making the judgement call is not always easy.


What constitutes a “reasonable investigation” in advance of a disciplinary case? This is determined by the complexity and seriousness of the matter under investigation. What is clear is that the test is not ‘no stone unturned’ – a police level enquiry is not a requirement under employment law rules. But an employer is nonetheless well advised to think broadly in terms of potential evidence and, depending on the circumstances being investigated, should consider things like CCTV, internet and email usage and mobile phone

records, and should cast the net widely in terms of witnesses. As above, a dismissal must be “fair and reasonable in all the circumstances”. To give an example, in a redundancy context, an employer might have a vacancy in a different department. The employee who is being made redundant is not fully qualified for that role, and other external candidates are. But would it be “fair and reasonable in all the circumstances” to favour the existing employee, and to make allowances for some


Many competing factors go into the mix in deciding what is reasonable, and making the judgement call is not always easy

training, to enable that employee to take up the available role? Whilst there is no hard and fast rule that the employer must favour internal candidates, in some circumstances the answer would be yes, and an unfair redundancy dismissal may result if the employer does not offer the alternative role to the employee who is facing redundancy. In determining reasonableness, most challenging of all perhaps is the requirement to make reasonable adjustments for disabled employees. Not only are there many factors to take into account, but we often find that employers are unsure as to who can advise them as to what is or is not reasonable.

What constitutes a “reasonable investigation” in advance of a disciplinary case? This is determined by the complexity and seriousness of the matter under investigation

To be clear, that assessment does not fall within the remit of occupational health. Whilst occupational health advisers can give opinions as to which adjustments are possible, and which would, for example, aid the employee in returning to work, it is not their function to advise employers what is reasonable. That is not a medical issue, but a legal question. Therefore this is a judgement call to be made by a blend of senior management and legal advice. What are the cost implications of the adjustment? Can the employer afford it, and

are any external grants available? Would the adjustment have a significant and long-lasting effect on the employee’s return to work? Taking these and other factors into account, legal counsel, drawing on experience of similar cases, can assist employers in making the judgement call as to what is reasonable. In a case involving a charity, a charity shop manager developed a reasonably serious back complaint, which qualified as a disability. She suggested a range of adjustments to enable her to keep the job; requiring donors to deliver clothing etc in small packages; requiring donors to drop heavy items at other regional shops; physical adjustments to the shop, and various others. Whilst all of these suggestions were potential adjustments, the question was, in the context of a charity, were they reasonable adjustments? The employer’s judgement was that in all the circumstances these potential adjustments were not reasonable. This had the unfortunate result

that the employee could not keep her job, so it was an especially difficult call to make. In the final analysis, it is for the Employment Tribunal to determine what it believes to have been reasonable. But the Tribunal cannot remake the employer’s decision. It can only determine that a dismissal was unfair if this outcome was “outside the band of reasonable responses” i.e. one that no reasonable employer would make. Similarly, in determining a reasonable adjustments case, the Tribunal must keep in mind all competing factors in deciding whether or not an adjustment was reasonable, and must balance employer’s and employee’s interests. Given the potential uncertainty, and the finely balanced questions which arise, employers are well advised to reach mutually satisfactory compromises with employees, and to avoid being hostage to the vagaries of reasonableness.

Follow Harry Sherrard’s ‘World of Work’ blog on the Sherrards Employment Law website: SHERRARDS EMPLOYMENT LAW SOLICITORS 4 Albourne Court, Henfield Road, Albourne, West Sussex BN6 9DB T: 01273 834120 E:






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CEO Fight Club


YOU WILL NEVER STOP SELLING. EOM. By Si Conroy, owner of Scarlet Monday


s I was sliding out of a recent Platinum Club event, he stopped me. MD of a multi-location global business he gently berated me for sidling off so early. I smiled, half-jokingly suggesting that he was the one who had less need to be there… before I saw the piece of paper with scribbles all over it clutched in his hand. It turned out that it was the list of people he had researched to talk to that evening. He was a little tired as he’d only just flown back from a multi-day US conference – where he confessed he’d been the last person out networking each night. The MD in question has a sales director, probably has high net worth and has more than a few business years under his belt. So why was he still out there networking? Because he has to. Because you have to. Because all CEOs/MDs have to. And don’t fool yourself otherwise. The labels may change: you may say you’re working on new channels, partnerships or strategic alliances. But it’s sales. Exploring new products or services? New things to sell. Strategic leadership? Leadership of long term plans of action in how to sell more, differently. Why does this matter? This matters because I meet too many leaders either desperate to distance themselves from the ‘grubbiness’ of sales to get on with the ‘strategic’ stuff; or doing a half-arsed job of sales because they’re not taking it seriously and ‘owning’ their

accountability. The businesses I see failing are where the boss has lost sight (or never had sight!) of why people want to buy what they do. The common problem is a failure to recognise that all businesses are sales-led. Being product-led means creating something people want to buy. Being customer-led means selling people what they want. Marketing-led means knowing how to develop relationships in advance of transactions with people who want to buy from you. So run a quick sales triage: 1.

Do you actually have a sales strategy? Before you hand over accountability for your sales front-line put together a slide deck on your sales strategy to present to an imaginary industry conference on the best sales strategies. When you get stuck after you’ve written the title and your name, own your accountability.

2. Ensure you’re levelling up. As your business grows, so you need to too. Most of the time you’ll follow a path to being involved in bigger sales, bigger accounts, then partnerships, new territories, new strategies etc. What got you here, probably won’t get you there so own your development: who can you learn from? Shadowing, mentoring, books, courses – these are the raw materials you’ll need to continually devour to avoid failing your

business. 3. Be brutally honest. Earlier in the life of your business, you probably needed to cover all aspects of sales and account management. Now you need to be honest about what you’re best at, and get in the people to own the other elements. Ban ‘Should’ from your vocabulary, and do what you’re best at in the best interests of the business. A good friend recently sold his business after rapidly expanding into the Asia-Pacific (APAC) territory following relatively slow expansion in the Americas and EMEA. The difference? He hired a CEO and jumped on a plane every fortnight to Singapore as APAC sales director. Be clear about my message. Despite the examples used this isn’t about the need for a macho hard-driven sales culture. It’s about recognising you are always ultimately the Chief Revenue Officer – whatever form that needs to take for your business. End of Message.

Si Conroy specialises in helping business owners set and achieve stretching goals: sales, profit & capital/ dividend value realisation. Trained at PwC and owner of and, Si practices what he preaches across a number of businesses in which he has invested. · @siconroy


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Business Awards


ntries are rolling in for the 2017 Lewes District Business Awards. Recognising success, innovation and excellence in the business community, the awards are free to enter and open to organisations of all sizes

and sectors. The awards create a fantastic opportunity for many different types of companies to come together and celebrate the district’s business talent and achievement. Past winners have included local favourites such as Burleys, Wave Leisure Trust and Cheese Please, as well as established international companies such as Cash Bases, and successful organisations like Furniture Now! and National Lifesaving Academy. This year there are 14 categories, including the highly coveted Company of the Year and Best Independent Retailer. The 2017 awards also introduce four brand new categories - Culture, Leisure and Tourism, Best Independent Food or Drink Producer, The Professional Services Award and The Creative Industries Award. Leader of Lewes District Council, Councillor Andy Smith, said: “Over the past three years, the Lewes District Business Awards has proven to be a great platform for businesses in the district to network, promote their businesses and, most of all, to be recognised for their achievements.

Cllr Andy Smith at the launch

matter how small or large, as we believe every business should shout about its successes.” This year’s sponsors include: Basepoint, Cheesmur Building Contractors, Knill James, LEAP, Lewes District Council, Lewes Town Hall, Brighton & Hove Buses, Richard Soan Roofing Services, Swindells, Veolia, UNIGLOBE, Wave Leisure, Yelo Architects, Platinum Business Magazine, Aces Magazine, and Viva Lewes. With support from: The Argus, Gemini Print, Peacehaven Chamber of Commerce, Seaford Chamber of Commerce, Lewes Chamber of Commerce, Newhaven Chamber of Commerce and Lewes Town Hall. Entrants can apply online at www.lewesdistrictbusinessawards. Businesses can enter up to three categories and the deadline for submissions is 5th May at 5pm. The awards ceremony will take place on Thursday 13th July 2017 at Lewes Town Hall. For more information, please contact the organisers on 01273 666200 or

“We would like to urge all businesses across the district to put themselves forward, no


Now in its 4th year, our successful Lewes District Business Awards celebrate and recognise the mix of great businesses in our area. CELEBRATING


GO ONLINE to find out more. ENTER NOW to make sure



your business is one of the winners.










THE PROCESS OF ARCHITECTURE Andy Parsons, Founder and Director of Yelo Architects, talks us through stage one of the architectural process.

Image 1 - the site


n this, the first of a three part article on the architectural process, we’ll cover the early stages of projects from the very first call, to completing the feasibility stage. Often we’re dealing with regular clients on a repeat project basis, but in this case, it was a new client. It was an unusual situation in that he walked through the office door one day without an appointment, and said he wanted to commission us for a site in Hove, East Sussex (image 1). It was clear he had really done his homework on Yelo, he knew all our recent projects, had researched our


planning consents, and also spoken to various professionals about us.

At Yelo everything is designed by hand and on tracing paper, we do use computers later in the process but we are firm believers that you have to design with a pen

So the very first stage in architecture is that first meeting, where we’ll be making lots of notes and asking questions about timescales, initial thoughts, budget, type of product required etc. We’ll also be assessing whether this client is right for us as a business - Are they professional? Do they value architects? Do they desire our style of architecture? Generally if a client has approached us, they know about Yelo and what we do, so it is not often we turn down a client, but it can happen.

Architecture Image 2 - concept sketch

After that first meeting we will carry out our initial research on the site such as finding its planning history - Have there been previous planning applications? Were they approved or refused? Are they a consideration for what we are planning? We’ll also search to see if the site is in a conservation area, and whether there are any listed buildings either on the site or adjacent. Likewise are there any tree preservation orders affecting trees? Finally, we’ll look on Google Street View and get a feel for the site prior to visiting and identify what we need to look at in more detail on the visit. At the site visit we’ll normally meet the client again to develop the brief further and make more notes. On the walk around, we’ll be on the site looking at the adjoining buildings and land and assessing what we need to be aware of when we design the proposal. Are there windows we need to make sure we don’t look directly in to? Where can we place our buildings? How tall can we go? What style are the surrounding buildings? Are there any hazards we need to be aware of? Often on the first site visit we will have an immediate feel for the form of the building we could design, and will produce an initial rough doodle (image 2). Following the visit we’ll write a detailed letter that sets out the brief, our initial thoughts, the stages that are required,

Image 3 - analysis of heights

the estimated timescales, the consultant team required and also our proposed fees. Ordinarily this letter will be three to four pages long as it covers a lot of information; we’ll attach our standard terms and conditions and then send it through our e-signing software. The e-signing software is absolutely brilliant, it’s all electronic, you can track when the client opens it and then we get an email with the signed pdf attached. This often is within hours of the contract being sent, and beats the old days of waiting for the post before we can start work! After our fees are agreed and the contract is signed, we’ll start work - this is normally with more research and investigation (image 3). Utilities information is obtained so we can check to see if there is anything on site that might impede a development. We’ll also commission a topographic survey to digitally measure the site and the surroundings.

Often on the first site visit we will have an immediate feel for the form of the building we could design, and will produce an initial rough doodle

❞ Once we have all the research done and the information in, the fun part begins - we sketch! At Yelo everything is designed by hand and on tracing paper, we do use computers later in the process but we are firm believers that you have to design with a pen. There is a freedom when using a pen that you don’t get with a computer, you need that fluidity and

you need to sketch out all the wrong solutions before finding the right one. My pen of choice is a pink felt-tip - a Pentel sign pen because the colour has a great contrast against our grey tracing paper. For this project the client wanted housing on the site with ideally, nine flats. We produced lots of variations of sketches to find solutions that answered the client’s brief. When you are designing, you are taking on board multiple considerations that influence what and where you design. For instance, we knew on the south side we could go taller with the building so we tried variations of four and five storey buildings. We also knew we had a site on a corner plot, so it was important that it was architecturally distinctive on the corner and on the two ‘front’ elevations, as it helps with wayfinding. To the north side of the plot we had a neighbouring house right on the boundary, so we had to be sensitive to it and keep a significant space between our proposal and the house. Other factors we consider at these early stages include the resale value of the flats we’re designing. We might not know the final values but we will be ensuring the flats make the most of the views available; that the living rooms face south, that they are a good size and a sensible shape. All of these factors you can see in the more detailed sketch (image 4) as this now has a rough layout. It is more easily understood by an architect but you’ll see the rooms are listed - L is for living room, B is for bedroom etc. You can also see that the living rooms have arrows indicating the direction of view and rectangles suggest a balcony position. We’ll produce presentable sketches of these to show to the client and agree which options to progress further. Next month’s article will cover the planning process for this project with a few twists and turns to come!

Image 4 - developed sketch


18th October 2017 THE ARORA HOTEL, CRAWLEY

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MEET THE BUYERS Save the Date - 18th October 2017


he Gatwick Diamond Meet the Buyers event brings together Buyers and Suppliers to help each other grow their businesses.

One of the most difficult aspects for any business is getting in front of the decision maker. It is a battle to find out who you need to talk to, and once you do, you have to navigate around the dogged gatekeepers. This is an event that brings the right people together and makes the process straightforward and easy. For Buyers, you will have the opportunity to meet new Suppliers of the products and services you need as well as explore ways to solve your procurement issues. For Suppliers, you will be able to access the kind of businesses you simply cannot reach elsewhere, with face to face meetings with their

procurement professionals. From June 2017, there will be a programme of free Seminars to help you understand how to engage with Public Sector and large businesses that are seeking new suppliers as well as improve your general sales processes. On the day you will be able to spend time with the types of businesses you just don’t see out and about. Date: 18th October 2017 Venue: the Arora Hotel, Crawley For more, please call 01293 440088 or email


Travel - Hyderabad

Shake hands in...

HYDERABAD Photo by Oliver Cripps

The ambitious Indian tech hub has become one of the fastest growing cities in the world, and it’s not about to slow down any time soon. Rose Dykins reports.


he dry, hot air rings with the shrill beeps of yellow tuk-tuks as they weave recklessly around their obstacles. Gangs of knock-kneed goats feast on piles of reeking rubbish. Locals crowd into the booths of fan-cooled cafés and converse over piping hot cups of chai, served with salty sweet Osmania biscuits. Elderly ladies shrouded in dark fabric knock expectantly on taxi windows, while the passengers inside keep their eyes to the front. Meanwhile, the Taj Falaknuma Palace hotel sits atop the city, high above the chaos. Guests are ferried by horse-drawn carriages to the heavenly white edifice, where they are showered with magenta rose petals as they ascend the staircase of the former home of


Talent from across India continues to flock to Hyderabad, thanks to not only its gleaming prospects, but its lifestyle.

the Nizam, once the richest man in the world. From all the way up here, Hyderabad’s blurred buildings seem to bow to the palace. Just after the sun has set, the city glitters beneath a lilac sky, and the poignant Islamic call to prayer echoes faintly. And the chorus of beeping

tuk-tuks is still audible; like a rebellious cry - a reminder of the life that lies below. Locked in by land, almost bang in the middle of India, Hyderabad is the capital of the states of Telangana and Andhra Pradesh. Its history as a trading point for diamonds and pearls - fuelled by the Nizam’s penchant for the jewels of the sea - has earned it the accolade of ‘City of Pearls’. While precious gems remain an important part of Hyderabad’s economy, since the 1990s, it’s Hyderabad’s technology industry that has truly propelled it forwards onto the world stage. Drive for thirty minutes from the Old City, and you’ll reach the Hyderabad Information Technology and Engineering Consultancy City

Travel - Hyderabad building to house tech companies; shaped like a giant white arch, Cyber Gateway will offer more than 80,000 sqm of office space when it is complete.

Cyber Towers in HITECH City

The city’s booming tech scene and infrastructure naturally makes it a magnet for start-ups. The Telangana government’s ’T-Hub’ start-up accelerator was created as a support system for Hyderabad’s talented techies, and T-Hub’s Catalyst building is now the largest start-up incubator in India. “They have a very exciting set-up,” says Jonty. “If you go there, there are people who will guide you, you can meet investors who are interested in your business, people who can mentor you, and you can use co-working space. They have created this set-up where entrepreneurs in the tech arena can come in and consider working with start-ups in Hyderabad.” (HITECH City) also known as ‘Cyderabad’. “It’s a classic example of what people call modern India,” says Jayanti Rajagopalan (aka Jonty) Hyderabad resident, and founder of Detours India ( “You won’t hear the honking of the cars and if you stand there and close your eyes, you could be anywhere in the world.” The brown cylindrical Cyber Towers buildings have housed tech companies since their inauguration in 1999 - in fact, Microsoft was one of the first to move in. The structure has come to represent Hyderabad’s firm ambitions to cultivate an international tech hub. Twenty years later, the tech giants keep on coming. Microsoft chose HITECH City as the

site of its second global research centre, and its campus here has grown to cover 19 hectares. Facebook opened its Indian headquarters here back in 2012. Last year, Apple announced it will be opening a development centre in HITECH City that will focus on its Maps app, creating 4,000 jobs. Amazon recently revealed it will build its largest campus outside of the US in Hyderabad by 2019, which will house a technology development centre. Similarly, Google’s largest office outside of the states is also here, and it plans to double its headcount in Hyderabad to 13,000 over the next few years. HITECH City now occupies 80 hectares of land, and it continues to grow. The satellite city is gaining yet another landmark

Catalyst’s industrial chic design - think exposed brick walls and concrete floors furnished with bright modern furniture - is conducive to collaboration, with open working spaces, games areas with snooker tables and transparent walled office space. Emblazoned on the wall are slogans such as “If your dreams don’t scare you, you’re not dreaming big enough.” And it seems to be paying off - in 2015, Hyderabad’s start-ups successfully received more than £25 million of funding. Following on from the success of T-Hub for the tech sector, the government announced last year that it will be introducing T-Hub accelerators for other industries, including defence, digital agriculture and aerospace. The latter will complement some other



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Travel - Hyderabad

new developments in Hyderabad: Airbus announced earlier this year that it will be setting up a Centre of Excellence in the city, focussing on aircraft manufacturing, maintenance, repair and other aviation processes. Meanwhile, Boeing also has plans to establish a manufacturing facility here in partnership with aviation IT systems producer, TASL. Having a pool of curious minds working on new ideas for their industry right on their doorstep, will certainly be advantageous for both companies.

Photo by Oliver Cripps

While precious gems remain an important part of Hyderabad’s economy, since the 1990s, it’s Hyderabad’s technology industry that has truly propelled it forwards onto the world stage.

The Taj Falaknuma Palace

Despite Hyderabad’s astounding growth - and its popularity with outside investors political happenings over the past few years have seen some big changes in the city. In 2014, the state of Andhra Pradesh (of which Hyderabad is the capital) was split into two, and the 29th state of India, Telangana, was formed. Hyderabad become the capital of both states, and will remain so for the next decade, during which time Andhra Pradesh will create a new one. But the turmoil of the separation including protests and shutdowns of roads and transport - had some initial repercussions. “We had several days of closure, business took a hit, investors were not very comfortable with looking at Hyderabad because of the uncertainty,” says Jonty. “The political party that campaigned to create a separate state then came to power, and had to almost rebuild from before.” (Sound familiar?) In a move to stimulate foreign investment in Hyderabad (and Telangana), the government proactively met with international industry leaders, promising the physical safety of their employees and a pro-business attitude. It also rolled out a series of attractive policies for investors and multinational companies, that helped to leapfrog the bureaucracy and many of the obstacles encountered across other Indian cities. The results are clear, and two


More destinations than any other UK airport


Source: OAG schedules 2016

Travel - Hyderabad years after the state’s formation, the world’s top technology companies had reaffirmed their intentions to set up base in Hyderabad.

The city’s booming tech scene and infrastructure naturally makes it a magnet for start-ups.

Talent from across India continues to flock to Hyderabad, thanks to not only its gleaming prospects, but its lifestyle. “As a city, it’s culturally quite comfortable to be in,” says Jonty. “It gets a little chaotic, but the cost of

living is substantially lower than many of the other cities in India. “For the expat community, moving to Hyderabad is an attractive option. Culturally it’s a city where the north meets the south - people from both ends of the country are comfortable going to Hyderabad, and they are ok about setting up a home here because they have a sense of familiarity with the language, which is a big problem in other Indian cities.”

bazaars, and the day starts and ends with the same mesmeric melody that has emanated from Hyderabad’s mosques for centuries.

Hyderabad has worked hard to get to where it is today - it’s a city that never stops reaching and finding ways to change. And, as HITECH City continues to grow, so do its prospects. Still, away from air conditioned coffee shops with bright young things huddled together over laptops, the grandiose Old City architecture stands proudly over bustling

WHERE TO EAT SAHIB SINDH SULTAN Inspired by India’s railway heritage, this fine dining restaurant seems misplaced at the top of the rather nondescript City Centre Mall. A Pullmanstyle carriage occupies one side of the restaurant, where it’s possible to dine inside. The food draws upon recipes from several Indian states - I can vouch for the delicious palak paneer (spinach and gravy based curry with paneer cheese).

OHRI’S TANSEN With intricate white columns and a modern twist to its decor, this popular restaurant to the north of the city is an ideal place to try Hyderabad’s biriani (a spicy rice based dish with meat and/or vegetables). Necklace Road: tel +91 986 669 3539

CELESTE Serving excellent western and Indian brunch dishes, as well as delectable pasta and risotto dishes for lunch, Taj Falaknuma Palace’s all day dining restaurant feels relaxed, despite the refined décor and oil paintings. At cooler times during the day, take a seat on the terrace for a view fit for a Nizam.

The terrace at Celeste


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Travel - Hyderabad

TOP PLACES FOR A MEETING/EVENT CHOWMAHALLAH PALACE Once the place where the Nizams entertained their special guests, this complex of palaces offers a spectacular setting for gala dinners and drinks receptions.

➠ TAJ FALAKNUMA PALACE The 101 Dining Hall at this palace-turned-five-star hotel has the longest dining table in the world, served by a team of tightly choreographed, orange-turbaned waiters. An evening here is an unforgettable experience.

➠ THE PARK HYDERABAD Contemporary and functional, this 270-room hotel set along Hussain Sagar Lake has a 500 capacity ballroom and a plush Residence for intimate meetings or product launches.

➠ 59



Bumping passengers is actally common practice, says John Burroughes Managing Director, Uniglobe Preferred Travel


y now I am sure we have all seen the horrific video footage when Dr David Dao was forcibly dragged from his seat on the United Airlines flight by a bunch of overzealous gorillas. In all my years in the travel industry, I have never seen anything so disgustingly disturbing. As if the physical abuse inflicted on Dr Dao was not enough United’s CEO Oscar Munoz initially tried to justify the airlines actions by saying “the passenger had become disruptive and belligerent”. Not content with initially misjudging his response to this brand neutralising situation, and without checking that United’s stock price was already in free fall, he then compounded


his complete lack of judgement by issuing a letter to his employees in support of what happened. Hard to believe that earlier this year Oscar Munoz was honoured by being named PR Week’s “Communicator of the Year”. I would love to have been a fly on the wall when United’s PR team got Oscar locked in a room. Of course by the next day Oscar was in full reverse travelling at warp speed, I actually listen to his grilling on Radio 4 two days after the event, and I believe Oscar had learned his lesson by then and publicly stated that this would never happen to any United Airlines passenger ever again, period. I guess if you didn’t know the airlines

regularly oversell their aircraft, you certainly do now. The airlines call it “Yield Management”, airlines, like any other business, have to manage their inventory and it’s my belief that the intricate science which now surrounds the practice of selling more seats than you actually have, took hold big time after the terrible events of 9/11. Many aircraft were flying less than half full and airlines had to reduce losses quickly by reducing the number of aircraft journeys and maximising the capacity of those scheduled. So were United at fault for overselling the flight in question? No, because it had a full flight of passengers seated and waiting to go. What United got wrong was their crew

Travel rostering whereby they needed to get four crew members to the same destination as the plane and had the crewing department been more efficient there would have been no story. Whether the practice of overselling is morally correct is a whole different story and actually quite an interesting one, so this is how it works.

Last year, airlines globally refused boarding due to over-selling to over 50,000 passengers

First up, last year airlines globally refused boarding due to over-selling to over 50,000 passengers and virtually all of these passages obtained an advantage by, in many cases, offering to be offloaded. The fact is that many people who travel for business buy fully flexible tickets, if you don’t know what time your meetings might finish, this could seem like a good investment, rather than losing the full cost of a cheaper ticket. This enables the traveller to simply no-show for a flight and then book a different flight once they know their new schedule.

Hard to believe that earlier this year Oscar Munoz was honoured by being named PR Week’s “Communicator of the Year”.

❞ The airlines use a very sophisticated modelling process called Binomial Distribution which they used to predict exactly how many passengers are likely to turn up for which particular flight therefore they know how many extra seats they can sell on any particular service. If an airline, for example, sold every seat on the flight with a capacity of 180 tickets (with a ticket costing £250 each) and they didn’t sell any extra tickets they would make £45,000. But it can increase its revenue up to £48,750 if it sells an extra 15 tickets and there were 15 no-shows. However, assume the cost of bumping is £800 per person in the worst-case scenario, if it sold 15 extra tickets and 15 people had to be bumped its revenue would drop to £36,750. By using the Binomial Distribution system the airline knows there is

almost a 0% chance that 195 passengers will show up, and the probability of 184 passengers showing up is 1.11%.

To find out how many tickets to sell airlines must multiply the probabilities by the revenue for each scenario and subtract this from the earnings of selling 195 tickets. By repeating the calculation for different numbers of extra tickets airlines can find a number that will yield the highest revenue on any particular flight. In this example the ideal number of tickets an airline should sell is 198 which will probably make £48,774 - almost £4000 more than without overbooking. When this principle is applied over hundreds of flights the airline stands to make a handsome profit which makes all the complicated mathematics worthwhile. Whether this is ethical or not depends on which side of the fence you sit. Only last week there was a case at New York’s LaGuardia airport where Laura Begley Bloom accompanied by her husband and her daughter were going for a weekend break. Their original flight was oversold and the airline were looking for passengers to give up their seats for compensation, Mr Bloom went to the gate attendant and offered to give up their seats for $1,350 each. The offer was accepted

When it happened a third time they took the $11,000 total compensation and went home, stating that they would put it towards their daughter’s school fees.

and when their replacement flight the next day was oversubscribed, they doubled their compensation. When it happened a third time they took the $11,000 total compensation and went home, stating that they would put it towards their daughter’s school fees. So there you have it, this is how our complicated industry works and I will leave you to work out how you feel morally about the airlines’ current policy!

“So, apart from that, how was your flight?”

A closing note however is that I am aware that there is a group of passengers (probably with not a lot to do other than have fun) who have got together to devise the reverse probability system to calculate the most lucrative flights to buy tickets on which have a high probability of being oversubscribed Do you think this might be karma? If you’d like to know about the travel industry, please contact me on


Export Conference

TAKE OFF Gatwick Airport and the government are supporting a major business export event, with a focus on US and Chinese markets.

L-R: Juliet Zhou, Head of Financial Services, China-Britain Business Council, Martin McCourt, former CEO, Dyson, Michael Hayman MBE, Co-founder Seven Hills, Guy Stephenson, Chief Commercial Officer, Gatwick Airport, Priya Guha, Rocketspace and former British Consul General in San Francisco,Kiel Harkness, Marketing Director, UK, Ireland and Nordic Countries, UPS, Eva Gustavsson, Director Government Relations, PayPal, Dr Graeme Malcolm OBE, founder, M Squared Lasers.


ore than 150 business leaders attended Gatwick Airport’s TAKE OFF 2017 event last month to hear a clear message - exporting is GREAT. The ‘TAKE OFF 2017: Grow Your Business Abroad’ conference, designed to help businesses from London and the South East grow internationally, brought together a host of established exporters, government figures and support organisations to provide a mixture of practical advice and inspiration for those who are looking to expand their business to overseas markets. Delegates heard from over 20 speakers including representatives from Gatwick, PayPal, UPS, Funding Circle, Rocketspace, M Squared Lasers, Norwegian Air and Cathay Pacific. The conference, which took place in The Hilton Hotel at the airport, was hosted by Michael Hay]man MBE and brought to a close by former CEO of Dyson, Martin McCourt. With a specific focus on the US and Chinese markets, delegates heard that the opportunities for starting or growing global sales have never been greater. With inspiring tales from entrepreneurs who are already


exporting and advice from the companies that can help them, the audience was encouraged to make their businesses take off. The ever increasing number of passengers travelling through the airport each year has now reached 43 million and its booming long-haul services grew by +26.8% in 2016, continuing to demonstrate that Gatwick can connect Britain to important growth markets when these links have never been more crucial. Gatwick long-haul network now reaches over 50 destinations and accounted for 14% of the UK’s aviation connectivity in 2016, delivering productivity benefits to the UK estimated at £1.1 billion. Guy Stephenson, Gatwick’s Chief Commercial Officer, said: “We are delighted to have seen such a good turnout at this year’s TAKE OFF event and hope these businesses feel inspired to grow their exports. Their success is vital to the future of our region and Gatwick is their gateway to global growth.” The Rt Hon Lord David Young of Graffham, said: “I’m incredibly optimistic about the future and believe there are an enormous

amount of opportunities for UK businesses to trade overseas. The British brand is perceived as a mark of quality and as such gives UK businesses a real advantage when exporting British goods.” Matt Wood, VP of Network for Norwegian Air said: “There are significant opportunities for businesses of all sizes to take off in the US market and the aviation industry has a vital role to play. Norwegian’s rapid transatlantic growth at Gatwick has always focussed on serving the top destinations at the most affordable prices. With more flights, new routes and lower fares planned, we look forward to giving lots more UK businesses an affordable springboard to global growth.” Martin McCourt, Chairman of the Board, Glen Dimplex Group and former CEO of Dyson, said: “My advice to small businesses tackling overseas markets is to be bold, lead from the front and think big. There will no doubt be bumps in the road along the way but with high risk comes high achievement, so it’s important to believe in your business plan and grasp the opportunities out there.”

Award winning business, tax and wealth advice To find out more about the full range of accountancy, business advisory and financial services that help our clients achieve their business and personal goals, please contact:

Bryan Elkins, Partner, Horsham office T: +44 (0)1403 253 282 E: Shirley Smith, Partner, Gatwick office T: +44 (0)1293 776 152 E:

Offices across London, Sussex and Kent


MANNINGS HEATH GOLF CLUB & WINE ESTATE It is with great pride to announce the inaugural PGA EuroPro Tour at Mannings Heath Golf Club & Wine Estate. It is the leading developmental tour for young, ambitious professionals to experience life on the tournament circuit. Whilst ensuring future success in the sport, this tour inevitably unearths tomorrow’s golfing superstars.

TAKE PART PGA EuroPro Pro-Am | Tuesday1st August This exciting event offers a fantastic opportunity to play the Waterfall course with a EuroPro Tour professional ahead of the competition followed by a Gala Dinner hosted by the PGA.

SPECTATE PGA EuroPro Tour | 2nd - 4th August Come along and watch all the action live. Free Entry.

SPONSOR Showcase your business on Sky Sports with sponsorship opportunities now available. For more information contact


Tel: 01403 220345 Email: Web: Hammerpond Road • Mannings Heath • Horsham • West Sussex • RH13 6PG

Charity News



peration: MUD is a 5km military-style mud run taking place on Sunday 9th July. Located at Henfold Lakes on the outskirts of Dorking, the course is one of the muddiest in the UK, complete with over 60 obstacles.

Nicky Ifould, Events and Campaigns Fundraiser for Chestnut Tree House said: “This is the first time we’ve introduced a mud run to our events calendar and we’re hoping people sign up and get muddy for Chestnut Tree House. Mud runs have really grown in popularity in recent years and seem to particularly appeal to corporate teams due to the team building element. This event is not for the faint-hearted, but equally it doesn’t require people to be marathon runners and is a chance to raise vital funds for Chestnut Tree House in the process.” Individuals and teams can register now for Operation: MUD and the first 100 entries get a reduced early bird price of £39 (standard price £44). For more details or to register, visit




usinesses from across Sussex attended the networking breakfast at Ashdown Park Hotel and Spa on Thursday 30th March. Attendees from a large range of local companies met to learn about the work of the hospice in the community. Guests included representatives from ECF Carcare, Athena Network and Viisanna.

The keynote speaker at the event was Neil Laughton, a Sussex entrepreneur best known for his adventurous exploits, including climbing Mount Everest, reaching the North and South Poles and piloting the world’s first flying car. Neil is also founder of the Great Sussex Bath Race, a unique raft-racing fundraising event aimed at businesses, which raises significant funds for Chestnut Tree House every year. The next Chestnut Tree House networking breakfast is taking place at Lancing College on Wednesday 31st May. For more information or to book, visit



orporate teams have two opportunities to help raise funds for Chestnut Tree House in the coming months. Taking place on Friday 2nd June, the first celebrity golf day is at Old Thorns in Hampshire. In addition to enjoying 18 holes on a championship golf course alongside team members and celebrities, the day includes a three course evening meal, charity auction and live entertainment. The celebrity golf day costs £450 for a team of four. There is just one team place remaining for the second celebrity golf day, which takes place on Friday 29th September at the East Sussex National in Uckfield. Entry for a team of four costs £450 and includes dinner, a charity auction and live entertainment. For more information on ticket prices or to book, contact the Corporate Fundraising team on 01903 871838 or corporate@

If your company would like to get involved with supporting Chestnut Tree House, please contact the Corporate Fundraisers on or visit for more information.


Economic Forum

BUSINESS TALK The largest economic forum ever to come to Sussex


he Prime Minister Theresa May has announced a snap election set for the 8th June - no one knows what the results will be. Whatever the snap election results are, one thing for certain is that it will be very important for the county of Sussex and will make for an even more electric Sussex Economic Forum 2017 Conference. Sussex is a vibrant county with a rapidly growing population, offering great business opportunities with great strength in many fields such as construction, manufacturing, wholesale trade, retail, tourism and shipping to name a few. Sussex is also home to one of the busiest airports in the UK that at present, helps to take passengers to 220 destinations each year, and smashes global records of 44 million annual passengers with its long haul services. The county is as dynamic as it is diverse, and it is Sussex’s economic growth and development which will be the main subject matter of this year’s conference. It will see many high-profile keynote speakers, economists, members of the cabinet, politicians, local government bodies, publicprivate partnerships, chambers of commerce,

local and international businesses, universities and a variety of other institutions in attendance. This two day conference will commence with a gala business dinner on Thursday 16th November at the Hilton Brighton Metropole Hotel, with one of the UK’s top business magnates, investor and philanthropist attending as keynote speaker.

Friday 17th November will see the conference open in earnest at the Hilton Brighton Metropole Hotel, with up to 1250 delegates taking part in four major debates, covering subjects at the heart of local economic growth including economic growth and the effect of Brexit; rail, road, sea and air infrastructure; digital infrastructure; and education and employment.

For more information about the conference, to book tickets or for sponsorship opportunities, please contact Faiza Shafeek on 01323 461298 / 07540 406685 or email Please visit


Run and organised by

Women in Business

24 CARROT GOLD Supporting the success of business is at the heart of Sussex Faiza Shafeek

Faiza Shafeek of Carrot Events, organisers of the awards, said: “I am often asked why should we enter awards and what are the benefits to me or my business. My reply is that winning a business or personal award will raise your profile, the profile of your company, enhance its reputation, instil trust to your customers and attract new business, which will ultimately make you more profitable. In short, it will prove you are better than your competitors”.

Ladies of Sussex enter or nominate NOW! The Sussex Business Women Excellence Awards 2017 is preparing for an exciting event as we welcome many wonderful email entries and receive hype on social media and at business networking events. Receiving an accolade for your outstanding work achievements brings your successes to light, and builds a positive path for other women to follow. Women have made so much progress in business over the years, and these awards have been designed to highlight and recognise their exceptional skills and talents. The awards headline sponsor, ACUMEN BUSINESS LAW, is one of the ‘Top 50 Groundbreaking and Innovative Law Firms in the UK and Europe’ (Financial Times). Penina Shepherd, founder of the company and multi award-winning entrepreneur, business lawyer and author of the inspirational bestseller book ‘The Freedom Revolution’, said: “We are thrilled at the success of the 2016 BWEA Sussex Edition and look forward to it growing year on year. Celebrating the achievements of successful business women across the region is truly inspirational” The Sussex Business Women Excellence Awards will take place on the 24th November at the Hilton Brighton Metropole Hotel.

The Sponsors are: HEADLINE SPONSOR:

Category sponsors on board so far are:

Supporting sponsors:

Media Partners: GROUP


Sponsorship opportunities are available, please contact Faiza Shafeek on 01323 461298 / 07540 406685 or email For further details go to


WHAT DOES THE FUTURE HOLD FOR BUSINESS IN BRIGHTON? Business in Brighton is changing. Brighton is becoming known for its wide variety of distinctive businesses, which help to make our unique city lively and successful. So how can we leverage this ‘spirit’ of Brighton, to create a business brand for the city which will draw in the clients and investment to help our enterprises to develop further?

The University of Brighton will be supported by the Brighton & Hove Chamber of Commerce and Platinum Business magazine to present a lively evening of discussion and debate on 29 June at 6pm in the Sallis Benney Theatre, Brighton.

Join the debate and have your say on the opportunities that Brighton and Hove can bring for your business.

The Great Debate is kindly sponsored by: Brighton & Hove Buses Oakley Property The North Laine Brewhouse


For more information and to book tickets please visit

The Great Debate

ALL THINGS GREAT Envisioning the future for business in Brighton and Hove at the The University of Brighton’s Great Debate Thursday 29th June, 2017 at the Sallis Benny Theatre, Brighton, 6 – 8.30pm


he University of Brighton is hosting The Great Debate on 29th June at the Sallis Benney Theatre, Brighton, in collaboration with The Brighton & Hove Chamber of Commerce and Platinum Business Magazine. An audience of influential business people from the city, including the University of Brighton’s Vice-Chancellor, Professor Debra Humphris, will discuss the opportunities that the city and region offers for businesses today. Miranda Birch, formerly an executive producer for BBC Radio 4 (Woman’s Hour, Desert Island Discs), will facilitate the discussion, guiding the panel and audience in exploring questions such as: “How can we leverage the spirit of ‘brand Brighton’ to draw in the clients, investment and talent that will help enterprise to grow?” And “How can we influence perceptions of Brighton as a great

place to do business?” Sarah Springford, Director of Brighton & Hove Chamber of Commerce said: “Representatives of our most iconic Brighton businesses, successful tourist attractions and SMEs, as well as MPs and other city decision makers will be sharing their views in what we hope will be one of the most stimulating debates of the year.” Maarten Hoffmann, Publisher of Platinum Business Magazine, said: “The way we project the City to the wider country, and beyond, is crucial and Brighton is in a unique position to excel and punch well above its weight”.

Professor Debra Humphris, Vice-Chancellor of the University of Brighton, said: “This should be a lively and thought-provoking evening. We all share in the city’s ambitions and fortunes and we’d like to hear your views, particularly around how the university can best work with you to prepare our students to shape their futures, and to collaborate through consultancy and research.”

For more information about the event and to book tickets please visit

The debate will be followed by a networking event with drinks sponsored by The North Laine Brewhouse, with Brighton & Hove Buses and Oakley Property sponsoring the evening.


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Wedding Car Service

When it comes to the biggest day of your life, you need to know you’ll arrive in style and on time. We’d love to meet you, introduce our wedding car team and show you around one of the finest fleets of cars in Sussex and Kent. We can discuss exactly what you want and create a tailor made package for your needs. Please give us a call on 01273 225115 and we guarantee to make your special day exactly that.

Brighton & Hove City Cars



COMPETITION THE BRIGHTON & HOVE MOTORSHOW is back and returns to the Amex Stadium on June 10th & 11th 2017. We have so much taking place over the weekend and here is the launch of an exciting competition, courtesy of Porsche Mid-Sussex, to spend a day at the home of the British Grand Prix at Silverstone driving an exhilarating model from this iconic manufacturer. HOW TO WIN? That’s simple. Pick up the event programme on the day, all of which will be numbered, and if your number is selected, you win this incredible experience. Simple.

THE PRIZE THE PORSCHE EXPERIENCE enables visitors to be instructed through a variety of different situations in wet and dry conditions, as well as simulating ice and snow driving with the use of specially constructed surfaces. The Driving Experiences are designed to focus on a particular type of driving, model of Porsche or driving environment. Whether you are looking to attain new skills, polish up some old ones or just have a great time driving they can help find the right course for you. The Driving Experiences are all undertaken in one of our Porsche vehicles prepared to the highest standards. The aim of the Driving Experience is to improve your driving skills on an ongoing basis, enabling you to drive more safely and deal more effectively with hazards on the road. Some of our courses are more focused on motorsport, from the basic fundamentals to professional driving skills. The courses are clearly structured and build on knowledge from the previous level – each level must be completed in turn before graduating to the next.


The Porsche experience entitles the winner to a choice of Driving Experiences, driving either the Boxster, Cayman, 911, Panamera, Cayenne or Macan on the Porsche Tracks and includes breakfast and lunch. The winner must hold a valid, full driving licence and must be between 18 and 80 years of age. If the winner has any convictions on their licence, this must be revealed before the selected day as restrictions may apply.




here are two central concerns when buying a new car – the make and model and the dealer. When researching your choice of car, one is often swayed by the expert’s opinion in print and television reviews, budget, personal preference and what you would like your car to say about you. Then there is the dealer. This is a far more complex question as dealers are rarely reviewed and you seldom find out the bad news until you encounter a problem, by which time it is too late.

Mercedes-Benz E-Class

Car of the Year 2017

Mercedes-Benz E-Class

Best Luxury Car 2017

Mercedes-Benz S-Class Cabriolet

Best Cabriolet 2017

Mercedes-Benz AMG GT

World Performance Car 2015

Mercedes-Benz S-Class Coupe

World Luxury Car 2015

Mercedes-Benz C-Class

World Car of the Year 2015


Manufacturer of the Year 2016

Mercedes-Benz Formula One Constructors Championship 2014/15/16

Now here is the good news – absolute assurance of one of the finest cars in the world and one of the finest dealers as recognised by a panel of their peers.

A decade or two ago, the three-pointed star was still exclusively the preserve of those who had made a success of their career choice. People still climbing the lower rungs of their career ladder were not given much consideration.

Mercedes-Benz have a habit of sweeping the board – take a look at these stats:

Thanks to the introduction of its latest generation of small cars, the A-Class, CLA-


Class, GLA-Class and B-Class, Mercedes-Benz now features on corporate fleets for young executives and wins retail custom from 30-something professionals. A consumer can get behind the wheel of a new Mercedes-Benz for as little as £300 a month. Moreover, the brand has such depth and breadth of wellequipped products, from family cars, SUVs,

Motoring coupés, convertibles and luxury transport, that the same consumer could remain a Mercedes-Benz customer for life. Now that you have established Mercedes-Benz as one of the finest automobiles in the world, you are faced with where to purchase. At the recent industry awards, there was one dealer that swept the board.

Mercedes-Benz of Guildford & Hindhead named number one for customer service Putting customers first has resulted in Mercedes-Benz of Guildford & Hindhead being ranked first by the motor manufacturer when it comes to looking after customers. Part of the Sandown Group, the Slyfield Road Retailer and its sister sites in Basingstoke, Hindhead, Poole, Salisbury and Dorchester have been named MercedesBenz Customer Services Team of the Year in recognition of the outstanding levels of service provided to customers. Hosted by TV presenter Dermot O’Leary, the title was revealed at a glittering awards ceremony in London where Sandown was also honoured as one of the top performing groups throughout the Mercedes-Benz retail network. In announcing the customer services accolade, the judges said that ‘Sandown stood out in a strong field by demonstrating a consistency of approach, ownership and attention to detail to sales and aftersales customers throughout their organisation’.

Putting customers first has resulted in Mercedes-Benz of Guildford & Hindhead being ranked first by the motor manufacturer when it comes to looking after customers.

Gavin McAllister, Sandown’s Managing Director, was delighted that the group had been acknowledged by Mercedes-Benz for its customer care approach and paid tribute to the hard work of colleagues in delivering this to the highest possible standard. “This special award recognises the shared commitment and dedication of every employee to providing all of our sales and service customers with an exceptional experience,” he explained. “The win and our ranking amongst the very best performing Mercedes-Benz dealers in the UK have been earned as a result of the significant hard work and passion contributed by each member of the Sandown team. We can all be very proud and motivated by these achievements which we can now build upon to make 2017 another successful year.” The problem is now solved – purchase one of the finest cars in the world from one of the finest dealers and this most difficult of tasks is reduced to simplicity.

Stuart Head, Group Head of Fleet Sales, Sandown Mercedes-Benz Telephone: 0330 0197893 Email:

Mercedes-Benz of Basingstoke

Mercedes-Benz of Guildford

Mercedes-Benz of Poole

Mercedes-Benz of Dorchester

Mercedes-Benz of Hindhead

Mercedes-Benz of Salisbury



GOING TOPLESS RANGE ROVER EVOQUE By Motoring Editor, Maarten Hoffmann


his is long awaited. The Evoque has been with us for five years, sold over half a million and the Range Rover badge still

carries its fair share of prestige. Therefore, lopping the lid off was always going to be interesting and very tricky. The engineers are rightly proud of the technical result in making this very odd shaped roof, fit well, remain dry and, most importantly, power back in 18 seconds in silence. They have made a good fist of it. As l have reviewed the car itself recently

l feared it would look like a Silver Cross pram with its top off


(on the website in case, for some inexplicable

reason, you missed it), l feel inclined to

As with the standard Evoque, it has great seats, bags of style, is very well equipped and easy to live with. But there’s an elephant in the room.

concentrate on the convertible aspect above all else. With the lid down and the windows up, it’s not too draughty and the heater works a treat and with the lid up, it is quiet and serene although the size of the A pillars is such that visibility becomes a problem, cameras and parking sensors notwithstanding. As with the standard Evoque, it has great seats, bags of style, is very well equipped and easy to live


with. But there’s a stonking great elephant in the room.

in traffic on route to work. When l first saw the design sketches over


a year ago, l feared it would look like a

Model tested: Evoque TD4 petrol

miniscule size of the boot. It really is no more

Silver Cross pram with its top off but not at

than a letter box and ridiculously small for this

all, it actually looks quite good but when l

Engine: 2-litre Turbo

style of car. This is a premium SUV droptop

recall how good the original Evoque is l just

that will appeal to a predominately female

cannot see the reason to make this massive

Performance: 0-60 7.1 seconds

market and therefore many will be used for

compromise for the sake of the roof coming

Top Speed: 135mph

school runs, shopping and trips to work. The

off for the 3.8 days of sunshine this country

Economy: 36.2 combined

kids are in but possibly not their bags, once


Price: £52,400.00

The most glaring problem for me is the

parked in Sainsbury’s, the shopping probably won’t fit and good luck with the lack of vision

Who and what is it for? I know not. So buy the hardtop and you will have a great car.

Power: 240bhp

As tested: £54,060.00



PEUGEOT 3008 By Motoring Editor, Maarten Hoffmann


ight years ago, Peugeot entered the lucrative SUV market with the original 3008 but this was regarded as a hatchback with a token SUV look about it. It was also ugly.

This new model demonstrates that they learnt their lesson and learnt it well. Pitching this against the VW Tiguan and Mazda CX-5 was always going to be a risk but no pain no gain and l think they have done reasonably well in the style stakes. Under the frock, the 3008 sits atop the same platform as the 308 hatchback and Citroen C4 Picasso, with the engine mounted transversely and the choice of 1.2 and 1.6-litre turbocharged petrol units and 1.6 and 2.0-litre diesels, with a power output from 98bhp to 178bhp. It will never see a field as it is frontwheel drive only but then few buyers would ever leave the tarmac, so no loss there. The interior is quite handsome although it suffers from the same problem as many Peugeots in that it is impossible to get the steering wheel in the right position to enable the driver to see the very clever i-Cockpit. You can change the dash display to suit and at a push of a

TECHNICAL STUFF Model Tested: 3008 GT Line Blue HDI120 Engine: 1,560cc Power: 120bhp Performance: 0-62 11.2 seconds Top speed: 117mph Economy: 70.5mpg combined Price: £27,485.00 button, the dials fly around and customise to your whim and that’s all well and good, but if you can’t see the bloody things, what’s the point. The shrunken steering wheel is annoying at best and a disaster at best. Performance wise it does what it says on the tin and will whizz around town with relative ease although l did find the gear knob a little frustrating and the box is not as intuitive as it could be. It performs quite well but push it, and the limit of comfort in cornering is reached in a jiffy and it feels just a little unsettled on winding roads. Even a mid-spec 1.6 diesel is more than £25,000, which is proof beyond doubt that Peugeot wants us to think of this as a rival to the Volkswagen Tiguan, Ford Kuga and Mazda CX-5 as well as the Nissan Qashqai and Seat Ateca. But the uncomfortable truth is that the 3008 has neither the interior room, the versatility nor the mechanical chops to rival the bigger and better acts in the compact SUV market, and it ends up looking more like an expensive crossover than anything else. That said, it is a good looking car and does many things well and French cars certainly seem to have a following in the UK these days but l believe much of that is down to the price of the used market and that points to the elephant in the room – depreciation. Ignore those misgivings and an attractive, fresh and rather cute crossover remains. But a class leader it ain’t.


THE NEW BMW 530e iPERFORMANCE SALOON. THE NEW BMW 530e SE iPERFORMANCE SALOON MONTHLY RENTALS FROM £327.99 (Plus £2,951.91 initial rental)* Think creatively. Move with the times. Two essential concepts for automotive sustainability. The new BMW 530e iPerformance implements both approaches perfectly and remains way ahead of its time. It relies on electrifying driving pleasure and thanks to the plug-in hybrid drive, looks forward to a bright future. The new BMW 530e boasts many benefits: • • • • •

Electric motor combined with a 4-cylinder TwinPower petrol engine Intelligent energy management Convenient charging solutions Range of driving modes Emission free short range driving

For more information on our BMW Business offers please visit, or contact your Local Business Development Manager on 0800 915 4700.

Vines of Gatwick

Stephenson Way, Three Bridges Crawley RH10 1TN

BMW Business Partnership Official fuel economy figures for the new BMW 5 Series range: Urban 29.7-64.2mpg (9.7-4.4l/100km). Extra Urban 47.8-78.4mpg (5.9-3.6l/100km). Combined 39.2-141.2mpg (7.2-2 l/100km) incl PHEV. CO2 emissions: 164-46g/km incl PHEV. Figures are obtained in a standardised test cycle. They are intended for comparisons between vehicles and may not be representative of what a user achieves under usual driving conditions. *Business users only. Price shown for a new BMW 530e SE iPerformance Saloon excludes VAT at 20% and is for a 36 month Contract Hire agreement, with a contract mileage of 24,000 miles and an excess mileage charge of 11.59 pence per mile. Applies for new vehicles ordered between 1 April and 30 June 2017 and registered by 30 September 2017 (subject to availability). At the end of your agreement you must return the vehicle and vehicle condition, excess mileage and other charges may be payable. Available subject to status to UK residents aged 18 or over. Guarantees and indemnities may be required. The amount of VAT you can reclaim depends on your business VAT status. Terms and conditions apply. Offer may be varied, withdrawn or extended at any time. Hire provided by BMW Group Corporate Finance. BMW Group Corporate Finance is a trading style of Alphabet (GB) Limited, Alphabet House, Summit Avenue, Farnborough, Hampshire GU14 0FB. We commonly introduce customers to BMW Group Corporate Finance. This introduction does not amount to independent financial advice. BMW (UK) Ltd, Summit ONE, Summit Avenue, Farnborough, Hampshire GU14 0FB. Registered in England and Wales 1378137. Authorised and regulated by the Financial Conduct Authority for credit broking activities.



Platinum Classics

JAGUAR E-TYPE by Maarten Hoffmann

FACTS AND FIGURES The most beautiful car ever made Enzo Ferrari

Series 1 – 1961-1968 Series 2 – 1968-1971 Series 3 – 1971-1975 Body Styles: 2-door fastback coupe 2-door 2+2 fastback coupe 2-door roadster Engines: 3.8 litre 4.2 litre Total Built: 38,419


he Jaguar E-type is most people’s idea of a beautiful, timeless classic and they are not wrong. The curvaceous E-type first set pulses racing in the Sixties and other classics from the British thoroughbred stable include the elegant XK120 of the Fifties, while those on a tighter budget might consider the MkII as driven by television’s Inspector Morse. Classic cars escape capital gains tax as they are deemed “depreciating assets” – even if they rise in value. There is no precise definition of a classic car but in Britain vehicles built before January 1973 are “historic vehicles” so exempt from road tax. Vehicles made before 1960 no longer have to pass an MOT, but must be deemed roadworthy. One of the most sought after Etypes is the early Series 1 Roadster made between 1961 and 1964. The car, with its lusty 3.8-litre engine, is one of the most collectable but has a hefty price tag of around £75,000 for an example in great condition. You could pick up a scruffy model for £35,000 but don’t. A scruffy runner can cost a fortune to restore – far more than the initial cost of the vehicle and possibly far more than it will be worth. The one to look for is the Jaguar E-Type 3.8 Roadster produced from


1961-1964 with an original price of £2,098. For £75,000 you will get a decent Series 1 and it will not take much TLC to bring that up to a £100,000 value that will then go on to earn you around 16% per annum. Buy a Concours model for £165,000 and you

will be looking at around 22% per annum and, if you keep it garaged and drive it as little as possible, this will just keep climbing in value year after year - as one thing is sure, they will not be building anymore.

Sat 10th June 2017, 10am - 5pm Sun 11th June 2017, 11am - 4pm AMERICAN EXPRESS COMMUNITY STADIUM BRIGHTON, BN1 9BL For FREE entry, register at:



Tickets are free but you must pre-register here:


Design South East

DESIGNS ON BRIGHTON & HOVE A round a hundred invited guests drawn from a wide cross section of Brighton & Hove citizens and businesses, met at the British Airways i360 beach rooms on Brighton seafront to debate design issues and actions as part of evolving the City Plan part 2. The event was organised by D:SE who provide Design PLACE support to Brighton & Hove City Council. Following keynote talks by Julia Barfield, Marks Barfield Architects, Nick Hibberd, Brighton & Hove City Council, Dr Andy Brown, Historic England and Claire Bennie, Brighton Design Support Panel Vice Chair, the participants debated what the character of Brighton and Hove consists of, and then went on to debate ten topics, in ten roundtables, each with a facilitator, who presented the key outcomes. The event outcomes were as follows. • The natural setting sandwiched between the downs and the sea is key to the character of the city, and together with its rich culture and entrepreneurial community, is what make this a place that people want to both visit and live in. Brighton has a good export position relative to other cities in the SE, and a lively and enterprising population, but the business community needs certainty to help plan the post-Brexit future. • The City is constrained in where it can grow, but as a consequence it is compact with walkable neighbourhoods. A clear need for a movement strategy emerged from the afternoon’s discussions, one in which the role of public transport and cycling as well as walking are recognised, and future possibilities such as a tram or a new transport technology could also be embraced. • We agreed that the younger population needs new ways of engaging in the conservation and enhancement of the city’s valued historic fabric. Could the city have a digital model as a ‘place’ where everyone can find out about new projects and where emerging plans are illustrated in 3D? • Despite a thriving economy and cultural scene, much of the city fabric is tired, dilapidated and shabby and a question of who is championing design is still to be resolved. We agreed that we need a clear vision and narrative about Brighton & Hove’s future and leadership to drive it. Chris Lamb summarised at the close that the link between the density of development and the ease of movement, means that architecture and transport need to be considered together. There was a clear call for a transport strategy, involving rail and bus transport, cycling and walking. At present there is no commonly agreed long-term vision for what the city should look like. A shared vision with a strong leadership, a champion for good design, and ways to communicate it such as a 3D model would help engagement.


Design South East

SPEAKERS (From top - left to right)

Chris Lamb Sean Watkins Geoff Raw Claire Bennie (second row ) Andy Brown Nick Hibberd, Julia Barfield


Table Talk

A month in food By Amanda Menahem

Etch interior


shortbread with cream cheese topping.

rom a consumption point of view, last

So what have I been eating? The real

month was relatively low key. But in all

highlight of the month was the launch of

Other highlights were salmon with onion

other respects, it’s been huge. I picked up

etch restaurant, the much-anticipated first

three ways. Perfectly cooked tiny fillets of

the keys to my new restaurant you see. This

restaurant of Masterchef the professionals’

salmon, pink in the middle with crisped skin,

marked the first milestone in what has been a

2013 winner Steven Edwards. I enjoyed eight

accompanied by deep fried mini onion rings,

14 month journey to find and secure exactly

courses of precise cooking and presentation.

lightly pickled onions stuffed with an onion

cream. Another dish – a perfectly caramelised

the right premises to house my vision and fulfil a lifelong dream.

With its location right in the heart of the lanes, finally I get to contribute to the thriving gastronomic heart of the city that I have loved for so long. It has been exhilarating

scallop sat on a bed of squid ink black rice and

I ended the month at Babington House in Frome, Somerset, an almost annual pilgrimage for me and a place that has more than inspired my restaurant venture.

to learn about the industry from this new perspective. I have spent many hours tasting coffee, sampling wines, menu planning,

squid ink tapioca crisp – a kind of modern, deconstructed paella, clever and tasty. Things turned meaty with a dish of pork belly with a pork cheek croquette, sitting on a celeriac disc and a dark rich jus with a pork scratching ‘crumb’. This was a beautiful exercise in pork but would have benefitted from more of the jus and a little more seasoning in the croquette. Then came my favourite dish – guinea fowl with a charred gem lettuce and an intense chickeny jus. Such a simple dish, perfectly cooked breast meat with crispy skin,

interviewing staff, choosing designs, and trying

I had been looking forward to the marmite

the thigh cooked slowly (confit I think) and

not to spend a fortune on kitchen equipment

brioche and seaweed butter all week. This

made into a pave. This dish really epitomises

(impossible). It’s been both joyous and

ingenious and addictive delight is on my list

Steve’s style – simple seasonal elements all

fascinating, with a little bit of terrifying thrown

of best things to eat in Brighton. Canapés

cooked in a way that brings out the best of the

in for good measure. I’ll keep you posted on

included a mini mushroom doughnut,

ingredients. No mucking about, just good clean

my progress, warts and all.

intense yet light, and homemade mini cheese



Table Talk Service was mostly great with a charming front of house team and a slick operation. There were no signs of the teething problems that you so often get with new openings (note to self), a real achievement. Steve himself was ever present, circulating and chatting to guests. He is a genuinely humble, charming and talented chef (you can read my interview with him in Issue 22 April 2016). The other major recent new opening has been the reinvented Red Roaster/Pike and Pine, headed up by Michelin starred and Great British Menu winner Matt Gillan. I am yet to try the evening Pike and Pine menu but the daytime brunch menu is impressive, and it’s a stunning space (at the bottom of St James’s Street near the level) with, as you’d expect, good coffee. Look out for my interview with Matt in the coming months.

Bream and squid ink gnocchi at Plateau

And of course Plateau are still impressing me – a simple lunch of pan fried sea bream, crispy squid ink gnocchi, crispy squid, samphire and bisque was totally divine.

I ended the month at Babington House in Frome, Somerset, an almost annual pilgrimage

my restaurant venture. More about all of that next month.

for me and a place that has more than inspired

Canapés at Etch

Guinea fowl at Etch

Pork at Etch

Rhubarb and Custart at Etch


Table Talk REVIEW

The Little Fish Market By Amanda Menahem and guest food writer, Tom Flint.



ince it opened in 2013, The Little Fish

Duncan Ray. Formerly of The Fat Duck in Bray

blackboard with canapes and handmade

Market has become a restaurant that

and Latymer Restaurant, Duncan brings a

breads also included in the £55 per head meal.

Brighton can be proud of. It is the

wealth of knowledge and experience to this

We decide to go for the £30 optional wine

only restaurant in the city to hold three

venture. At The Little Fish Market, Duncan is

flight to further remove any need for decision

AA rosettes. Notable for their lack of self-

the sole chef in the kitchen. He creates every


promotion, its success has been based solely on

dish based on what is available and in season.

word of mouth with an ever-growing foodie

The menu changes daily based on what his

fan base. Their reputation is built entirely on

fishmonger and suppliers bring to him. This

the sheer quality of their offering.

means that no two visits to the restaurant

This month my friend and fellow food writer Tom Flint of provides a comprehensive review of this much praised venue. Going to eat at The Little Fish Market is always an experience. Not only because of the exceptional service and food but there is something homely and relaxing about eating here. This could be due to the single set menu format; being able to take your seat, choose your wine and wait to see what arrives, makes for an extremely cathartic dining experience. The restaurant is the creation of Head chef,


are the same, and so I was very much looking forward to returning. Something that is always a pleasure is the effortlessly welcoming presence of Rob who manages front of house. His professional and warm welcome is the first piece of the puzzle that makes The Little Fish Market one of Brighton’s best restaurants. The restaurant

Brighton’s reputation as a serious food city is well deserved and this restaurant is one of the best the city has to offer. This is a dining experience that is to be savoured and, dare I say it, cogitated over

is only small, about 20 covers, but the tables

are well spaced and lit. Local artworks adorn

Our canapes on this visit consist of a

the walls and there is nothing ostentatious or

mushroom tartlet followed by a delicate

authoritative about the dining room.

smoked mackerel pate. Both are accomplished

The five course menu is written on a

and a taste of things to come. The first course is an elegant combination of baked Carlingford

Table Talk

This dish epitomises Duncan’s style. There is nothing else on the plate, because there doesn’t need to be. The flavours are superb and balanced expertly

oyster, Jersey cream and an elderflower granita. Balancing the essence of the sea with a breath of floral citrus notes, a creamy silkiness underpins the experience. Matched with a delicate Cavit prosecco, the bubbles bounce playfully around your mouth adding to the freshness. Brill in a paprika butter arrives shortly after, matched with a Villa Wolf dry Riesling. This dish epitomises Duncan’s style. There is nothing else on the plate, because there doesn’t need to be. The flavours are superb and balanced expertly. We are gently navigated towards our next course of

‘Lemon thyme tart’

crab ravioli served with monk’s beard and a bouillabaisse sauce. Elegant and visually stunning, the sweet crab ravioli is impeccable in its execution. The sauce adds depth and the citric zing of blood orange brings a freshness. Monks beard is grown in Tuscany and this dish has all the artistic sophistication of that region. Our final savoury dish of turbot with chicken is a polished example of fine dining at its best. Beautifully presented, the dish balances the meat and fish elements with a delicate touch. Fresh vegetables give texture and colour to the plate. A glass of Pouilly-Fumé from the

‘Crab ravioli’

Loire valley matches the classic French style of the dish wonderfully. Dessert should be the highlight of a meal, a showpiece to end on, and after such fabulous savoury courses this could have been difficult to achieve. Duncan manages this with an exceptional lemon meringue tart. Playful, sweet and invigorating there is a wealth of skill on show. The tart lemon filling might be a bit much for some, but when balanced by the silky-smooth meringue and crisp base it all works. Brighton’s reputation as a serious food city is well


deserved and this restaurant is one of the best the city has to offer. This is a dining experience that is to be savoured and, dare I say it, cogitated over. It is a restaurant that you go to for the evening, allowing Duncan and Rob to take you on a culinary journey and share in their passion for excellent food and faultless service. Some restaurants are loud and brash in their approach, dazzling their customers with the latest trends and flashy showmanship. The Little Fish Market doesn’t need any of that, the food speaks for itself. The Little Fish Market 10 Upper Market St, Hove BN3 1AS Phone: 01273 722213

‘Carlingford Oyster’



SPARKLE FROM THE VALLEY Lucy-Ann Prideaux, co-founder of Fizz on Foot, sings the praises of sparkling wines from the Loire Valley


hen thinking about wine, and the Loire Valley in France, one’s thoughts no doubt turn to a nice chilled Muscadet, Sancerre, or Pouilly Fume, or one of the many expressions of Chenin Blanc, the grape used to produce Vouvray wines. One may even think of, or know better, the Loire’s well known rose, Rose d’Anjou.

and may even have popped into BouvetLadubay for a wine tasting. Founded in 1851, this historic “maison” is now back in the hands of the Bouvet family, and is producing some of the best sparkling wines of the region.

But when I think (or dream) of the Loire Valley however, I immediately hanker for one my favourite sparkling wines from the region.

Rubis is made solely from the Loire’s famous red grape variety, Cabernet Franc. Think of red fruits such as redcurrant, raspberry and cherry, and you’ll have the essence of this gorgeous, and surprising wine. It has an ever-so-slight hint of tannin, and what I love the most… a persistent, fine and delicate mousse… the hallmark of a quality “methode traditionelle” sparkling wine. You’ll taste a little sweetness in this demi-sec too, which is why it goes brilliantly well with a piece of dark, smooth chocolate.

Sparkling wines are well-known in the Loire, with Cremant de Loire wines from either the Saumur, Touraine, or Anjou regions, Vouvray Sparkling wines (produced only in Vouvray), and Saumur Sparkling wines, which originate only from Saumur. The Loire is the largest sparkling wine producing area in France, after Champagne, and although produced in the same way as Champagne, these wines can’t be called Champagne wines. Some however, are just as good, and one such wine that I simply have to introduce you to, is a red sparkling wine from Saumur… Bouvet Rubis Demi-Sec, from the renowned sparkling wine house, Bouvet-Ladubay.

May’s Featured Wine – Bouvet “Rubis” Demi-Sec Sparkling Wine - 100% Cabernet Franc… available from Majestic Wines

Tel: 01323 737271

OK, so a red sparkler is a bit different, and probably not something you’d immediately go for! But trust me, this wine is truly delicious.

If you’ve been lucky enough to visit, or cycle tour along the beautiful River Loire, near Saumur, you will have undoubtedly passed at least one of the excellent sparkling wine houses in St Hilaire-St Florent,

Lucy-Ann Prideaux is co-founder of Fizz on Foot, the South East’s premier Walk and Wine Tour Company. She previously enjoyed working as a wine tour guide at two renowned wine estates here in the UK, Bolney Wine Estate in Bolney, and Denbies, in Dorking, Surrey. She’s completed the WSET Intermediate and Advanced Certificates Wine and Wine Production, at Plumpton Agricultural College, and continues to build on her knowledge of “world wines”, viniculture and viticulture by attending tastings and wine fairs, and of course visiting many wine estates and hearing of the winemakers “little secrets”!



Sunday 18th June une 9am - 6pm Compete in our award winning raft-racing tournament on a beautiful private lake in Chichester - featuring 18 corporate teams from the Sussex business community - in order to raise vital funds for our two chosen charities, Chestnut Tree House and Lifecentre. Included in your day: • All raft-building materials (you are welcome to accessorise) • Teambuilding fun for 4 - 6 people per team • Racing on the lake with your team paddling as fast as they can • A delicious lunch for your team served by The Gourmet Chef • Live commentary and music from our compere Tom Foolery • Health and safety equipment (buoyancy aids/helmets) for your team • Snacks and refreshments throughout the day for teams • A sparkling wine award ceremony at the end of the day • 3 teams will be awarded our sought after bath tap trophies! Spectators welcome to come along and cheer on teams ! “We’re delighted to be able to support and participate again in this year’s tournament. A brilliant, fun and extremely well organised event, we couldn’t think of two more deserving and worth while local charities.” NatWest Business Banking Sussex

Entry F ee £250*

well looked after and the atmosphere is brilliant.” Caremark Limited “Fantastic team-building event in support of two very worthy local causes” Focus Group Enter a team: ww

*Teams must be mixed sex with a team fundraising target of £1000 via or via company donation.


str at e g y . l e a ders h i p . t e a mwo r k


Registered charity number: 1127779

Registered charity number: 256789

More info: ww

The Thinking Pod


he Thinking Pod events launch on June 13th and aim to offer a 360 degree view on the issue of the day. Leading experts from government and commerce will meet to debate the subject of International Trade and explain why it is so important to the future of our economy. The think tank will also offer advice on how to begin the process of exporting and the significant benefits it can bring to a company’s bottom line. Attendance is complimentary for business leaders and there are limited places available so apply for your place now to info@ Thinking pod events begin at 5.30pm with a flight on the i360 and following the debate there will be a drinks reception and an exclusive networking event.

A 360 degree view on business




Recruitment Case Study

WE ARE ALL FLEXIBLE Ten2Two Sussex helped Digital Marketing specialist Jayne Carverhill find a role with a forward thinking company, WAAC. Jayne shares her thoughts on the benefits of flexible working


o you ever daydream about the benefits of flexible working? I certainly did and often. With previous employers, I was too scared to formally apply for a flexible hours contract, as it was not the done thing in the corporate culture I found myself in. I learnt from former colleagues that the only way to achieve flexible work hours was to go it alone and become self-employed. I wanted to pursue postgraduate study and volunteering to nourish my soon-to-be burnt out spirit. Going freelance seemed like my only option. Before taking my role at We Are All


Connected, I had been actively looking for professional part-time roles for some time and often faced a “computer says no” response from recruiters and hiring managers alike, learning that flexible contracts were like trying to find hen’s teeth.

What is flexible working? Flexible work policies vary across organisations from full-time, part-time and career flexibility arrangements with a whole range of options. We adopt a flexitime approach which works for us all but may not work for every employee’s needs.

Yet if professional part-time contracts were more popular, workers would discover a value in freeing up more time to focus on personal pursuits like volunteering or starting their own business. Businesses could benefit from a more cost-efficient resourcing model by hiring good people, highly qualified and motivated professionals, who desire flexible work.

Who are the professional parttimers? I am part of a new generation of professionals working part-time work and I now recruit professionals with the same

Recruitment Case Study ethos. Speaking with Emma Cleary, Director of Ten2Two Sussex, it is apparent that most employees looking for part-time hours or work from home jobs are still mostly parents or primary caregivers. The Ten2Two team has helped to fill three out of seven roles at We Are All Connected and Emma shared her own experience of not being able to find suitable professional parttime roles locally, which led her to eventually open up the Sussex office: “I think the most frustrating aspect about the lack of flexible roles is that employers are really missing out on the wealth of talent that they could harness to grow their businesses. “At Ten2Two we hear so often about the brain drain and the talent gap – to the tune of over £170 billion lost to the economy, and all it takes is for employers to look at working hours in a less traditional fashion, short days, working from home and holiday flexi-time – just as WAAC has! The payback is huge – loyal, happy staff dedicated to their work with a better work/life balance.”

Research shows that organisations that adopt flexible employment policies increased productivity, improved employee well-being, talent attraction and retention, and reduction in accommodation costs

Flexible Work Contracts

Before the government changed legislation in 2014, only carers or people looking after children were eligible to apply for flexible work contracts. Now all employees in the UK have the right to apply after twenty-six weeks

of employment. But how well is this known? I asked friends in full-time employment if they knew they were eligible to apply for a flexible working request and many were unaware, with a few male friends assuming only women are allowed to if they have children. Obviously, my ‘pub study’ does not account for the views of many but it did help to reinforce my experience that employers do not necessarily shout from the rooftops about flexible work options and the BBC reports that fathers are afraid to ask for flexible working based on a fear of damaging their career. Employers must deal with requests ‘in a reasonable manner’ and can only turn down applications if there is a good business reason for doing so. Learn how to apply for flexible working.

Flexible working benefits Working from home or flexibly in the office, is doable in our modern world with technology making it easier to stay connected. Research shows that organisations that adopt flexible employment policies increased productivity, improved employee well-being, talent attraction and retention, and reduction in accommodation costs (People Management, 2016) and flexible working case studies from Ten2Two clients back up this sentiment.

Tips for working from home Of course, there are ground rules to put in place when working flexible hours or from home. It’s vital that employers and employees are clear on the expectations set around the contracted working hours – be clear on what hours and days you are in the office and give enough notice if you need to swap things around a bit (but don’t take the Mickey!). We use a uniformed approach to managing our Google calendars, so it is clear when we are in or out of the office or working from home. If you’re client facing, ensure clients are fully aware of your working pattern so they know when you are available – not doing so can make you look elusive and unprofessional. Slack is a favourite tool of ours too, used daily by all to stay in touch and helps us stay connected when working remotely.

Planning and scheduling workload Good diary management and planning my week and daily tasks help efficiency. As a team, we manage resource using Teamwork to track productivity and organise ourselves by project and task list to promote efficiency. It’s also important to find a suitable space to work at home without too many nearby distractions such as a fridge full of food!

Ten2Two helps local businesses find affordable talented high-calibre professionals who can work flexibly. And they help professionals find rewarding, flexible jobs that uses their skills and experience. For more information, contact Emma Cleary


Business Awards

ADUR & WORTHING BUSINESS AWARDS 2017 The awards organised by business for business


he Adur & Worthing Business Awards are now under new management. The awards had been organised by the events team at Johnson Press, the publishers of the local newspapers. Now the awards will now be independently run and organised under the umbrella of the Adur & Worthing Business Partnership (AWBP) as a ‘Not-forProfit’ business model. The AWBP plays a pivotal role as an independent partnership working on behalf of the Adur and Worthing business community and Adur and Worthing Councils. The AWBP is seen as the ideal vehicle to take the Adur & Worthing Business Awards forward, securing the longevity and the future success of the event. The awards continue to grow and establish


a solid reputation within the local business community and serve to showcase and celebrate the excellent business people and organisations we have here in the Adur & Worthing district. Businesses can enter the awards under sixteen categories, designed to recognise successes and achievements across industries. The judging panel will be led by local business figures, representatives from Worthing & Adur Chamber of Commerce, and Adur & Worthing Council. Find out more about how you can get involved by joining the organisers for drinks, light bites and networking at the Worthing and Adur Chamber of Commerce Chamber Chat event from 5.30pm on Wednesday 7th June at Worthing Pier, Southern Pavilion.

You will hear about new sponsors, award categories, our chosen charity for this year and how to enter. Sponsors and previous winners will also be on hand to tell you about how getting involved benefits both your business and your team. There will be lots of networking opportunities too. You can find details of the categories and how to enter the awards on the new Adur & Worthing Business Awards website The winners will be announced at a black-tie awards ceremony at The Pavilion, Worthing on Friday 10th November 2017. Please keep visiting the website for information and regular updates.

For all enquiries about this event please email

Just Rock Up

Drop in and enjoy one course and a glass of fizz



Wednesdays 5.00pm – 6.30pm - no need to book

The Grand, Brighton, 97-99 King’s Road, Brighton, BN1 2FW

Call 01273 224 300 -


What can nova offer you? Vision

Trusted partner of valued clients creating exceptional solutions

Customer Focus We differentiate through our tailored skills and depth of customer Excellence Trust


We strive for excellence, recognising this is defined by you

We build relationships with our clients, colleagues and business partners


We work together as a team for the company and you


We take responsibility for security, performance and safety

Direct Mail, Digital Print/Personalisation

Database Profiling & Cleansing

E-commerce & Pick & Pack Fulfilment Smellymail & Augmented Reality

Marketing & Design

Postal Discounts




FIRST CLASS EASTBOURNE Eastbourne to host a Sussex fixture for the first time in 17 years on 14th May


ussex are returning to Eastbourne this season to play top-class cricket for the first time since 2000 and the local business community has firmly backed the occasion. All of the 500 corporate hospitality places have already been sold out and more advance tickets have been sold for the one-day match than the highly popular Sussex Sharks T20 games. Sussex welcome Gloucestershire for their penultimate match in the Royal London OneDay Cup South Group campaign. Both teams have a strong Eastbourne connection. Sharks’ vice-captain Ben Brown played for Eastbourne in the Sussex Premier League between 2004 and 2014. Brown said, “I think everyone connected with Eastbourne cricket is hugely excited by the thought of top-level domestic action returning to the Saffrons and I’m no different. “There’s a good history of first-class cricket

Right to left: match sponsor Ian Poysden, chairman of IEP Financial, former club chief executive Zac Toumazi, Ian FletcherPrice, chairman of The Saffrons, and Keith Greenfield, Director of Cricket for Sussex CCC.

in Eastbourne and the whole club is excited by its return. I know that many people at the club, including Ian Fletcher-Price, have worked so hard to get this fixture in the calendar. “I had some really special years at the club and formed some great friendships. We really enjoyed our cricket in that period and had a very competitive side.” Gloucestershire’s Tom Smith was born in Eastbourne and grew up watching Sussex’s players during Festival Week at the Saffrons. He progressed through the Sussex Youth and Academy system, like Brown, before moving to Middlesex in 2009 and then on to Gloucestershire in 2013. Smith said, “When I first heard that a Royal London One-Day Cup match was coming to Eastbourne, I really hoped that Gloucestershire would be Sussex’s opponents. It’s always my favourite fixture of the season to play Sussex and to play them on my home ground makes the fixture even more special.

Ian Fletcher-Price and Rob Andrew

“Going to county week at the Saffrons as a young boy with my Dad will always be a really fond memory for me and to hopefully be involved in one is amazing.”

Despite the pair being great friends off the pitch, they are both looking forward to facing each other in front of what will hopefully be a huge crowd at the Saffrons. Gloucestershire won the Royal London One-Day Cup in 2015 and will no doubt prove a tough test for Sussex. Brown said, “I suppose it’s pretty ironic that the game has worked out being against Tom. What are the chances of that? It will be a unique experience for us both. We’ve formed so many great memories alongside each other in an Eastbourne shirt and to go from that to be playing professionally against each other at the Saffrons will be amazing. “I’m hoping the home crowd will be supporting me if I end up facing Tom but who knows, perhaps there will be a few split loyalties there! Tom and I are still very close friends but I’m sure we’ll both be desperate to win the battle.”

Sussex Sharks v Gloucestershire at The Saffrons, Eastbourne. 11am, Sunday 14th May. Tickets £17 adult, £10 children. Book at





ewes Ladies won the National Junior Cup in fine style at Royal Wootton Bassett in April.

They battled hard against Reading Abbey, alternating between crunching tackles and fast, open play, having put in extra training which certainly showed in their determination to overcome a penalty before half-time. This paid off with a superb try by Nicola Minchell, followed by another towards the end by Rosie Neal Triumphant Lewes Ladies RFC which converted by Josie Nelder secured the win. The squad looked really professional in their team hoodies, sponsored by Mike Shorer Fine Jewellery. Mike joined their very vocal supporters and helped lift the Ladies to a magnificent 12 : 3 win. Mike Shorer said “I am delighted to sponsor Lewes Ladies RFC and a win like this makes it all worthwhile. Well done to the whole team for winning the Cup Final!”



t’s been an award winning start to 2017 for some of PRG’s clients. The Eastbourne-based PR and marketing consultancy has seen two of its clients, Uckfield-based Neva Consultants and the Let’s Do Business Group (LDBG), scoop celebrated awards in their respective industries. LDBG won the prestigious ‘Growth Champion’ title in the national 2016 NatWest SE100 Awards, and Neva Consultants won ‘Best Leasing Broker Customer Service Award up to 4000 vehicle sales’ and ‘Best Leasing Broker 1000-4000 vehicle sales’ in the Leasing and Broker Federation Awards.


For Simon Groves, Managing Director of PRG Marketing Communications, the wins represent the dynamic nature of business

in East Sussex. He said: “We’re really pleased for both Neva Consultants and Let’s Do Business. Both are fantastic businesses and excellent clients, who highlight what a great business environment we have here in Sussex. We’re picking up more and more local work and each client we get from Sussex is unique and innovative.” Let’s Do Business was chosen from almost 1,500 social ventures on the NatWest SE100 Index – which tracks the progress and impact of social enterprises across the UK. PRG Marketing Communications is a full service agency founded in 1980. Started by Ray Groves, a former journalist, PRG offered a customer-focused and results-driven approach to PR. Today the company is run by Managing Director Simon Groves MD Simon Groves, with Ray remaining closely at PRG Marketing involved as Chairman. PRG is an open Communications and friendly team and would welcome Agency you to their offices for a coffee and a chat. PRG is responsible for developing the vibrant Eastbourne Chamber website and sites for both the Hastings Chamber and Business East Sussex. Simon is particularly proud of the letsdobusiness. org site and If you would like to join PRG’s roster of award winning clients then email or visit

Battle Chamber of Commerce


Bexhill Chamber of Commerce 01424 842892

Crowborough Chamber of Commerce

Eastbourne UnLtd Chamber of Commerce 01323 641144

East Sussex County Council 01273 481570

Federation of Small Businesses 01424 754686 Reg Office: 01323 482018

Hailsham Chamber of Commerce 01323 310531

Hastings Chamber of Commerce 01424 205500

Heathfield Chamber of Commerce 01435 865858




id you know that Sussex has its very own day? It is the county day for the historic county of Sussex, and is celebrated on 16th June each year to recognise the rich heritage and culture of


The event takes place on St Richard’s Day, the feast day of St Richard of Chichester, our patron saint, and marks the anniversary of the transference of St Richard’s body from its original burial place to an elaborate shrine at Chichester Cathedral on 16th June 1276.

The Sussex Charter For all the people of the ancient kingdom of Sussex: • Let it be known: the 16th June of each and every year shall be known as Sussex Day. • Sussex Day shall be celebrated according to the rites and traditions of Sussex.

• Finally, let it be known: as guardians of Sussex, we all know Sussex is Sussex … and Sussex won’t be druv* • In God we trust. • God Save the Queen! * “We wunt be druv” is the unofficial county motto of Sussex. It’s a Sussex dialect phrase meaning “we will not be driven”. We have minds of our own and cannot be forced against our will or told what to do. Used as a motto of the people of Sussex and the Sussex Bonfire Societies, basically it means “We’re tough! Don’t try to push us around”!

Sussex Day at Eastbourne Pier on Friday 16th June This year, Sussex Day falls on a Friday and so a huge supporter of Sussex, the colourful owner of Eastbourne Pier and local businessman, Abid Gulzar has decided to hold a special event to celebrate. Having painted the cupolas gold and invested much of his personal wealth in his beloved Grade II* Listed pier, it is only right that the Mr Gulzar should celebrate Sussex Day in style.

Abid Gulzar at Eastbourne Pier

• Let it be known: all the people of Sussex shall be responsible for the maintenance of those boundaries that join to those of our neighbours. • Let it be known: all the people of Sussex shall be responsible for all the environs within those boundaries.

Known as ‘The Sheikh’, Mr Gulzar will be hosting a three course dinner and entertainment from 6pm in The Ocean Suite. Tickets are available for £17.50 each. All funds raised throughout the day will go to Mr Gulzar’s chosen charities including: Children with Cancer, SASBAH, Cruse Bereavement, Sussex Air Ambulance, Macmillan Cancer Support and The Chaseley Trust.

• Let it be known: the people of Sussex shall recognise the inshore waters that lie inside a line drawn from Beachy Head, and extending to Selsey Bill as being, the Bay of Sussex. • Let it be known: the people of Sussex will undertake responsibility for the general well-being of our neighbours. • Let it be known: the people of Sussex shall be guardians of our wildlife.

ACES The official magazine for the Alliance of Chambers in East Sussex


Issue 2. 2017


For more information about advertising and editorial sponsorship, contact or call 07966 244046 and we have discounted members rates. The second issue is out now and in general distribution right around the region

A message to the leaders of the RMT, the Department for Transport and Southern Rail:

We, your passengers, have had enough. Enough of the daily cancellations, enough of the ubiquitous delays, enough of ering the unofficial strikes and enough of your inaction. All of us are suff lost our uncertainty and stress on a daily basis, and some of us have even so we are jobs because of your imploding ‘service’. Only you can stop this, work out a asking you to get around the table now, immediately, today, and it’s about deal. Don’t leave the room until you have one. We can see sense, time you did too. behalf of From the Reigate, Redhill & District Rail Users’ Association on all Southern Rail Passengers



The Institute of Directors 0207 766 8866

We are very proud to announce the launch of our brand new magazines for ACES. The new magazine will be distributed all over East Sussex. Make sure you pick up your copy.


Lewes Chamber of Commerce 07919 382316

Locate East Sussex 0844 415 9255

Newhaven Chamber of Commerce 0800 107 0709

Peacehaven Chamber of Commerce 01273 586222

Seaford Chamber of Commerce 0800 881 5331

South East Local Enterprise Partnership 01245 431469

Uckfield Chamber of Commerce 01825 722607

Wealden District Council 01323 443322


To purchase your Sussex Day ticket, call 01323 748710 or email

• Let it be known: the people of Sussex will, through custom support all local business.


The Business Network

The Business Network


BUSINESS ENHANCEMENT & DEVELOPMENT GROUP (BED) By Emma Pearce, Marketing Consultant – marketing planning, outsourced marketing and social media training Emma Pearce reviews a business network that aims to offer a business forum style event rather than a typical networking meeting.


he Business Enhancement & Development Group (BED) in Eastbourne is primarily for B2B companies that are interested in sharing business knowledge and ideas, as well as helping each other with problem solving. Of course it has some of the behaviour of a networking group and plenty of business is done and referred between members. Originally a group of five business owners set up the group in 2012. It now has breakfast meetings attended by 16-18 people every two weeks. One of those core members is Lawrence Culham from Troman Finance. He said: “BED offers real value because each meeting provides useful business knowledge, along with the opportunity for members to ask for help with making a decision in their own business. Group discussions provide tips, advice and insights that definitely help our business owners determine solutions.” The business learning element is usually provided by a member who must impart practical guidance and not just sell their wares. Co-organiser Stephen Elliot from Advice 4 Business added: “We encourage members to have one-to-one meetings to really get to know each other. They are always productive. Our format also allows for everyone to finish eating breakfast before we listen to each person

around the table. Everyone can focus, listen and contribute more that way. We finish the meeting promptly at 8.30 am so everyone can get back to their business.” The day I visited the group there was a great mix of business owners in attendance - from architects and brewery equipment suppliers, to air conditioning installers, caterers, health and safety, IT and more.

Meeting Format • Open networking • Breakfast • One minute round • Business Learning Presentation • Problem Solving Forum Lawrence added: “Our group is focused on business owners being in attendance. There is a high level of professionalism but with a relaxed feel. The format works. Everyone is welcome to engage in discussions and ask for help.”

Key Facts • Location: Chalk Farm Hotel, Eastbourne • Frequency: Every two weeks • Size: Average of 16 in attendance • Time: Start at 6.45 - 7 am, finish at 8.30 am • Lock out: Yes, but accommodate as much as possible • USP: Business forum style • Minute round: Yes • Speaker slot: Yes • Cost: £12.50 per meeting The BED group is independent and manages its own funds. There is no membership cost, but each member sets up a direct debit for £12.50 every two weeks. Guests are welcome and receive a free breakfast. The group also organises a couple of social events each year, typically at Christmas and a summer BBQ for guests and family too.

For more information about BED please contact Lawrence Culham on 07793 032180, lawrence@ or Stephen Elliott on 07715 313334,





o you have a member of your team who would benefit from developing their skills? Maybe improve their literacy for report writing or their numeracy for quoting or stock control? Would any of your team benefit from improving their IT skills, such as learning data management or developing formulae on Excel? If you think this sort of skills development is expensive, think again! Eastbourne based Crossland and Dudson Training, who are the biggest providers of family learning courses in East Sussex, have recently secured a new government and EU funded contract to provide skills training for employees across the county, free of charge. The funding will ensure that employers can up-skill their staff around core subjects such as basic English, maths, IT and customer service skills.

The learning can take place either at Crossland and Dudson’s fully resourced education centre in Eastbourne or if the numbers are sufficient, at your workplace. Each participant is entitled to up to 45 hours free training and there are a number of different courses on offer. For example, some employees may benefit from improving softer skills in areas such as confidence building or customer service, whereas others may prefer a formal qualification in subjects like maths or English. Every participant will receive guidance to help them make the best of the opportunity and anyone who is employed is eligible.

Steph Dudson, co-founder of the company added: ‘We are immensely proud of what we offer, and want both employees and employers to really benefit from this ‘one off’ opportunity. It’s important for us and our team to always go above and beyond, which I’m sure is why our company has thrived in such a challenging market.” Working with Crossland and Dudson on the project is the well-known and respected former MP for Eastbourne, Stephen Lloyd. As the first MP to introduce the 100 apprentices in a 100 days campaign, as well as taking the lead locally in supporting disadvantaged people into employment, Lloyd is recognised as someone who cares passionately about improving attainment for all. And coming from a business background of over 25 years, he well understands the staffing challenges of local businesses. Stephen’s role on behalf of Crossland and Dudson will be to visit

interested employers, and discuss the training their staff might need and be entitled to free of charge. He said: “I’ve known Crossland and Dudson for over ten years, and have worked closely with them on a number of apprenticeship and training projects when I was the MP. They share my passion for wanting to make a positive difference, so I am absolutely delighted to be working with them on this core skills training scheme.” If you’d like Stephen to visit you, please contact him direct at or call 01323 720072 to make an appointment. During his visit he will carry out a simple training needs analysis with either the HR Manager or the business owner, so that you can access this valuable training programme.


Crossland and Dudson have been delivering bespoke learning and training to the region for over 12 years and are market leaders in their field. Sian Crossland, Company Director said: ‘We are particularly delighted to have been given this contract as it’s a great opportunity for employers to provide their staff with targeted, high quality and certificated training and because it’s government funded, it’s also cost-free. Evidence shows that up-skilling a workforce improves efficiency, productivity and satisfaction, so we look forward to working with many chamber members across East Sussex on this excellent training opportunity.”



BROADER BROADBAND Action is needed on poor broadband, especially in rural areas and for small businesses, says Ana Christie, Chief Executive, Sussex Chamber of Commerce


usinesses across the UK, particularly in rural areas, are still without reliable broadband connections, despite companies saying the availability of fully functional broadband is extremely important to their operations, according to the results of a survey released by the British Chambers of Commerce. All companies surveyed (99%) say a reliable broadband connection is important, (82% say extremely so), yet nearly one in five (18%) suffer from unreliable connections (11% not very reliable; 7% not at all reliable).


The findings also show that firms in rural areas are at least twice as likely to have unreliable connections (30%), as those in towns (15%), inner cities (13%), and suburban areas (12%). Smaller businesses are the most likely to suffer from unreliable broadband, with nearly a quarter (24%) of sole traders and 21% of micro-businesses reporting problems.

more applications, particularly cloud-based services (24%), transfer of large files (22%), remote server access for employees (15%).

The survey suggests that more reliable connections would allow businesses to do more. Nearly half of businesses (48%) say if the reliability of their broadband connection was improved it would allow them to use

Business communities across the UK and in Sussex still report that our digital infrastructure is not fit for purpose. Throughout the country, significant numbers of companies of every size and sector lack reliable internet connectivity – a basic


requirement for businesses to operate efficiently in today’s world. Unreliable connections stunt productivity, causing needless delays, costs and frustration. Research shows that it’s rural areas and small businesses that are most likely to suffer. An unreliable connection acts as an obstacle to growth, and puts those firms most in need of support at a competitive disadvantage. Sussex Chamber and the British Chambers are calling on both the providers and on the government to fund the necessary upgrades required to deliver super fast broadband to business communities. Regulators, too, must ensure that firms actually get the quality and speeds of connection they are promised. While we welcome recent ministerial announcements about investing in 5G technology and efforts to build a world-class digital infrastructure in the UK, there is still a long way to go in getting the basics right. The immediate focus must be on providing all companies with connections that are reliable and of sufficient speed, which would boost business confidence and encourage firms to maximise opportunities for growth, trade and investment.

WORTHING FOND FAREWELLS AND HAPPY HELLOS Worthing and Adur Chamber of Commerce. Peter has also reinvented the Chamber as a business development hub. During Peter’s tenure, the Chamber has added training, networking, peer-to-peer mentoring, the remarkably successful Better Business Show, and other developmental initiatives to its offering. Sadly, Peter has decided it’s time for him to step down as President. We wish Peter well and thank him wholeheartedly for his leadership, and the huge difference he has made. Without Peter Bennett we would not have the Chamber we have today. Thank You Peter.

Following a farewell, it’s good to have a hello… After due process, the Chamber Selection Committee can announce with much pleasure and pride that Chris Coopey, Practice Director of MHA Carpenter Box has accepted the Presidency for a term of three years from May 10th 2017.

Away from Bennett Griffin, Peter used his business acumen to great effect. He was a Worthing Borough councillor for 24 years and Worthing’s mayor 1993/94. He has been President of the Worthing Law Society, Chair of the Connaught Theatre Trust, and a trustee of Worthing High School. Currently, Peter is a director of both Worthing Town Centre Initiative and Adur and Worthing Business Partnership.

Around this time it became clear that local businesses and economies do not observe council boundaries. Worthing Chamber of Commerce (as it was then) needed to change to widen its appeal and Peter drove the expansion into the Adur region, changing its name to

FORTHCOMING EVENTS 28th April – Networking Breakfast 10th May – Chamber Annual General Meeting 19th May – Networking Breakfast, talk and tour at Shoreham Airport

26th May – Chamber Hub free networking 7th June – Business Awards launch night at the Southern Pavilion

Chris Coopey

Tina commented: “I consider the Chamber to be lucky to have had four strong candidates apply. They all expressed a desire to continue the good work of the Chamber, and are very keen to take the Chamber forward as the voice of business in Adur and Worthing. I am also very pleased to have received agreement from all the candidates to take up some leading roles within the Chamber, so that we can all benefit from their support and input. This has turned out to be an amazing opportunity and I really look forward to working with them all!” 2017 is shaping up to be an exciting year for the Chamber, there is no better time to get involved than now. Find out more at


Have you seen the new Chamber Connect magazine? This was launched at the Better Business Show and the second edition is out now. Contact the office for more information on our exclusive member offers for advertising. Please contact for information on advertising

Issue 2 2017

Farewell Mr Chamber

Peter Bennett steps down as President


The big dates for 2017



Business in the City of Life

The photos and highlights




Peter has also led Worthing and Adur Chamber of Commerce as its President for the last fourteen years. In that time, the Chamber has evolved beyond recognition. Peter became President in 2003 and one of the first things he did was lead the Chamber into the digital age. In 2003 only around one-in-two people in the UK had access to the internet but growth was accelerating – only six years earlier internet access was only 4%. Starting in 2003, the Chamber began to replace printed newsletters with emails; a new website followed and by 2008 the Chamber had become 100% digital.

Chris has previously served on the Executive Committee and has many contacts with economic forums, business leaders and council senior management in West Sussex. We were very impressed by his enthusiasm, ambitions and ideas for what he described as “a fantastically important role!”



f you’re in business in the Worthing and Adur area, you’ll know Peter Bennett. Over the years, Peter has given his time freely to make a difference to local business and enterprise. And he’s certainly made a difference. If the title of ‘Mr Worthing’ was up for grabs, Peter would surely be favourite. Many will know Peter as the senior partner (now retired) at the well-respected Worthing solicitors, Bennett Griffin. During his time at Bennett Griffin, Peter’s business achievements won him the Worthing Lifetime Achievement in Business Award. A year later in 2011, Peter was recognised even more widely when he won a further Lifetime Achievement in Business Award at the Southern Business Awards. Peter Bennett


THE FUTURE IS FLEXIBLE WORKING by Dianne Lambdin, Director of Chichester Chamber of Commerce & Industry and The Sussex HR Hub


ommuters in the South have had a raw deal during the past year with rail strikes causing delays, over-crowding and, in some cases, making it impossible for people to get to work. The decision to drop the Chichester A27 road improvement scheme has also dashed hopes of a solution in the near future, and the impact on businesses and the people who work in them is immeasurable. However, the creativity of businesses and their employees in responding to these problems is remarkable. While flexible working and working from home are not new ideas, more people have been forced to try them out and, now they’ve seen the benefits, they’ll most likely continue.


Businesses are re-thinking the way they do things (not a bad idea at the best of times). With customers and sales a priority, re-organising when, where and how work is done can sometimes be painful, but even simple solutions can contribute to a highly engaged workforce, and improvements in performance and customer service. Eligible employees have a legal right to request flexible working and savvy employers are taking a positive approach by balancing the needs of the business with those of their staff. When employees feel they have the trust, freedom and flexibility to work how and where they want, they are likely to be more productive. Working from home has some obvious benefits. The first is that you can actually work rather than wasting time travelling

(or not travelling if you’re a Southern Rail passenger). People say they are more productive at home, have less distractions and that it’s a less stressful environment. But even just easing back on the times people need to be in the office can help them plan their working day more efficiently (commuting at busy times is ranked as one of the main stressors for workers today). Remember, flexible working is more than just working at home, it’s about working wherever you need to be. Technology and social media are clearly important in enabling managers, colleagues and customers to keep in touch and up-to-date with what’s going on. Businesses can also widen their hiring pool with little or no geographic limits - it’s a

great way to find and retain talent. In conclusion, flexible working makes good business sense and can be a win-win for employers and employees. While flexible working may seem challenging to implement, it can offer considerable business benefits and drive productivity. The transition to flexible working will be gradual and needs to involve staff at every level; keeping them engaged and supported throughout the process and equipping them with the right technology. A flexible working environment has many benefits, ultimately giving the business a significant competitive advantage, in what continues to be a tough economic climate.



Membership benefits include:

• 10th May - The Chichester Business Breakfast in conjunction with Chichester College

• Events and networking • Policy and public affairs • Workshops and training • Business advice and services Join us now at


• 8th May - Networking Chamber monthly meeting

• 25th May - West Sussex Business Expo at Fontwell Park Racecourse • 12th June - Networking Chamber monthly meeting • 14th June - The Chichester Business Breakfast in conjunction with Chichester College


EVENTS YOU’LL LOVE by Emily Jones, Events Manager


t Brighton Chamber, we aim to have our events online at least three months in advance. In fact we have planned the first three quarters of this year already, and are now working on October through to December. The advantage of this for members is that they can plan their networking and training ahead of time, so they don’t miss out on the events they want to go to. With over 100 events a year with 3000 attendees, there is a lot to choose from. Our training programme is called Bite-sized Learning, and these are two-hour sessions led by experts. At £44 they are popular and excellent value for money. Bite-sized Learning sessions cover all the main topics you need to run your businesses: strategy, finance, marketing and PR, people, technology and operations. We offer a lot of Bite-sized sessions on social media. These are always popular because they help to keep you updated with the latest tips and advice. I attended the Twitter strategy for business at the end of last month because being a small and busy team, we are always keen to find ways to have an impact in an efficient way (in other words, not spending hours on it!) Other sessions include:

• Save time by becoming an effective

delegator • An introduction to SEO • How to gain valuable client insights • Social media recruitment • How to organise an event and market it • Making Magic Meetings with Think Productive • Using franchising and licensing to grow your brand The Chamber socials are a favourite of mine, and attract businesses who like informal networking. This year’s Brighton Fringe Breakfast host will be the Brighton

Spiegeltent at the Old Steine. It will take place on 10th May and includes a preview of a performance. We’re holding another pop-up breakfast on 14th July at Japanese restaurant Moshimo, with speaker Greig Holbrook from Oban International. We don’t tend to hold our pop-up breakfasts in pop-up venues, but then anything goes during the Brighton Fringe. I also love our Behind the Scenes events. They are so interesting and offer a different way to network. Coming up we have: Behind the Scenes at the Duke of York’s on 9th June; Behind the Scenes at The Forest Gardens and the Bevy on 28th June; and Behind the Scenes boat tour of Shoreham Port on 21st June. We have cleared the decks to start work on our big annual Brighton Summit. This year’s theme is aptly entitled ‘Embracing the unknown’. It takes place on 13th October and is a day of networking, learning, inspiration and fun - definitely an event not to miss. Finally, our monthly breakfasts get booked four weeks in advance, so if you want to hear a particular speaker then you’ll need to book early.

For more information about Brighton Chamber events, please visit


• Basic accounting for small businesses

Keynote speaker, Camilla Stephens, Higgidy (Brighton Summit 2016)


Anger Management




n life, there must be some things kept sacred to ensure that our traditions, history and way of life are preserved. This must take precedence over profit, corporate progression and corporate greed. Take Buckingham Palace, for example. The building is in a terrible state, is the worst kind of palace to house the royal family and, being slap bang in the middle of our capital, causing traffic gridlock and a security nightmare but would we demolish it for any of these reasons? Of course not. Take Windsor Castle. As an American tourist once said “Why would they build a castle so close to Heathrow?” But we retain this heritage regardless as they are an integral part of the fabric of this country and should, and must, be preserved. So why is another historic tradition of this


country being devastated? Not just devastated but wilfully destroyed by corporate greed, political apathy, and worse, political fraud and corruption. I refer to London black cabs and that scourge of modern life, Uber. And not just black cabs but family run taxi firms across the country are being destroyed by a $60 billion on-line American corporation that’s causing heartbreak and community firestorms wherever they go. Uber does not give a damn about community, families, tradition or heritage. It does what all American corporations do – they employ a few corrupt local politicians, chase the almighty dollar without any respect for heritage as, with so little of their own, they have zero respect for anyone else’s. On April 6th, the black cabbies demonstrated that they had had enough.

Thousands of taxis descended on Whitehall bringing central London to a standstill, demanding curbs on Uber and an investigation into David Cameron’s toxic lies. In short, Cameron and his wingman Osborne denied that they attempted to lobby against an investigation into Uber despite the fact that in 2015 a Cameron advisor urged then-London Mayor Boris Johnson not to introduce curbs on Uber’s UK operations. Cameron denied any involvement in a Freedom of Information request until it was revealed that his deputy head of the policy unit, Daniel Korski, sent an e-mail to Johnson stating exactly that. It was also revealed that both Cameron and Osborne met Uber communications chief, Rachel Whetstone, a former Tory staffer and wife of Cameron’s strategy Director, Steve Hilton, in December 2015 for talks. Johnson announced an

Anger Management investigation into Uber’s operations and their failure to pay a bean in UK tax. Four months later, it was dropped. Cameron and Osborne lied through their teeth. George Osborne now earns £650,000 a year working with BlackRock, the major Uber investor. This, frankly, stinks of hypocrisy and corruption worthy of a failed third world dictator state. Black cabs in London are as traditional a sight as beefeaters, red buses and Bobbies in pointy hats but we seem totally fine with their destruction to save a quid or two on a trip across town. Cabbies are fully licenced, CRB checked and spend over three years learning their routes. Uber drivers comprise anyone who can get their hands on a car. Would you put your 17 year old daughter into one of these cars? I spoke to a taxi firm owner in Sussex recently who is down over 30% in revenue in a month. Brighton cabbies refuse to operate with Uber therefore the City is now plagued with Uber cabs from Portsmouth,

Southampton and London, driving into the City to destroy livelihoods, community and family income. Any why? Just so that passengers can save £2 on a trip whilst endangering their lives, putting thousands out of work and destroying communities. This is utter madness. Serial disruptors within the corporate world

are lauded and there is little doubt that some are moving life forward into a brighter and better tomorrow but to accept them all as life affirming is walking blindly into a future where no job is safe, no community is secure and no life is valued. Looking around the globe, Uber horror stories are there for all to see: An Uber driver tragically struck and killed a 6 year old girl and Uber denied responsibility as the driver was not logged into the app at the exact time it happened. An Uber driver assaulted a passenger and it turned out he had a felony conviction. An Uber driver choked his passenger in a racist attack and Uber’s CEO was mad at the media about it and instructed the Uber PR team to blame the press. A serious rape allegation against an Uber driver when the driver hit the female passenger over the head with a lump of concrete and raped her. Uber refunded half her fare. Uber driver accused of “fondling” female passengers and all Uber do is deactivate his account for a month. An Uber driver attacked his passenger with a hammer as they showed insufficient respect for Islam. This took but a three minute search of the internet and another half hour would have been terrifying. This has to stop. This rape of traditional values and services, this destruction of any type of heritage and the danger we place ourselves, and our children, in to save a few quid. Every bean of profit goes back to the US, not a penny in UK tax is paid and 297,600 UK licenced taxi drivers are thrown onto the heap. If we don’t stop it now, when will we?


Institute of Directors


By Dean Orgill, Chair of Sussex IoD and Chairman of Mayo Wynne Baxter •


n a world (now go back and read that in your best ‘voice over man’ intonation), where uncertainty reigns, where the old rules no longer apply, where no-one can predict the future and the unthinkable is happening every day, running a business presents more challenges than ever before. So why am I about to suggest that you set yourself another challenge? Do you not already face enough challenges to keep you going for a lifetime? Yes, you probably do. But I would suggest that taking on an alternative, completely different challenge will alter your perspective, give you a different focus and help you meet the existing challenges with a different approach. Meeting our financial targets in order to keep clients, customers, shareholders, investors and/or financiers happy, presents a large scale challenge. Along the way will be smaller hurdles such as contract issues, transport delays, illness to key people and so on. However, I would suggest that you may be able to face all of those with a more positive


perspective if away from all of that, you face a personal challenge, one that is just for you but is potentially outside of your comfort zone. It could be intellectual, creative or physical, but it might be something alien to your normal role and its requirements, so that you have to utilise different parts of your brain and/or body. As a ‘desk jockey’, I like to set myself physical challenges, as an incentive to ensure that I get the exercise that will hopefully help maintain my health and fitness. A targeted challenge will push me out to train on those days or evenings when the comforts of the sofa and the TV seem enticing, particularly after a busy day. Once I am ‘out there’ exercising, the concentration required simply to keep the legs moving can help relax the brain too. I know I am by no means alone in that. The growth in running, and more recently cycling, as activities for age groups who not so long ago would have thought themselves well ‘past it’ has been massive in recent years.

But other pursuits can also work. Learning to draw or paint, learning a musical instrument, taking up dancing or studying a different language, can all help to engage different parts of the brain and so bring a fresh perspective to the ‘routine’ issues. Even if you do already have a hobby, there can still be benefits of trying something fresh. I recently took on a challenge to learn sword-fighting for a charity event. It had some familiar elements, but many were wholly different to things I had done before. Those elements gave a fresh angle on the sports I already participate in, and a different outlook to some situations that I would not have encountered otherwise. Historical European Martial Arts may not be the challenge for you – but there will be one that offers a lot to you if you seek it out.

JUST A THOUGHT Where is the boundary for your comfort zone?









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