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The OffiM cial Surrey Chambers ofGCommerce A AMagazineZ




Issue E 2


Profi le of Amazon founder

Jeff Bezos

HONG KONG The City of Life


PLATINUM PUBLISHING © image Time Magazine




With more than 45 years experience we pride ourselves on our ability to provide independent, sophisticated and bespoke financial advice. Aissela, 46 High Street, Esher, Surrey, KT10 9QY 01372 471550 SURREY CHAMBERS



24 14

At a Glance 6

Policing Surrey



Chambers President


Member News


Wilkins Kennedy


Supergrowth Awards



Natwest - The Legal Landscape


New Members

Profile of Amazon, Weybridge founder Jeff Bezos


Herrington Carmichael


20 DMH Stallard 23 Haines Watts 24 Jeff Bezos 28 Surrey Means Business 30 Surrey Digital Awards 31


Farrow Creative

32 Yelo Architects


34 ACAS - Resolving disputes

Haines Watts’ advise on passing on the baton

36 Guildford College

35 Lansbury Business Estate 37

Surrey Business School

40 Reigate Manor



42 Leatherhead Awards 43 Akiko Design 44 Chambers Golf Society 46 Business Travel - Hong Kong 52 Uniglobe Travel 54 Santander Masterclass


HONG KONG The City of Life

56 Emailing the Dead 59 Motoring 64 Sandown Mercedes-Benz 66 Geneva Motor Show 68 Start-Up Surrey


GENEVA MOTOR SHOW The future of Motoring

70 Toast of Surrey 72 International Womens Day 74

Chamber Events


CSR Forum

80 Anger Management 82 Join the Chamber 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. Surrey Chambers Business Magazine is published and owned by the Platinum Publishing Group Limited.




Issue 2 - 2017

A word from the CEO 2017 is becoming a busy year Already we are in April 2017 and we have seen the Chancellor present the Spring Budget and set out his plans to build “the foundations for a stronger, fairer and more global Britain”, Scottish First Minister Nicola Sturgeon announced that she will seek a second Scottish independence referendum and Prime Minster Theresa May confirmed that article 50 will be triggered on the March 29th and Brexit negotiations will begin. Brexit Negotiations At the heart of the Brexit negotiations, we need practical considerations, not ideology or politics. What’s debated in Westminster often isn’t what matters for most businesses. Most firms care little about the exact process for triggering Article 50, but they care a lot about an unexpected VAT hit to their cash flow, sudden changes to regulation, the inability to recruit the right people for the job, or if their products are stopped by customs authorities at the border. The everyday nitty-gritty of doing business across borders must be front and centre of the negotiation process. Industrial Strategy The deadline to respond to the government’s Industrial Strategy is fast approaching and we took the opportunity at a recent Surrey Chambers Council meeting to gather a representative set of views. There is absolutely no doubt in the minds of our local businesses that Surrey is a force to be reckoned with. Second only to London in the size of our economy and the wealth we generate, which is paid into the government’s coffers, is crucial for the continued success of the UK economy. In order for this to continue the government must invest locally to help solve some of the issues around infrastructure, transport and business support. We will be putting a robust response into Westminster in support of our local businesses. British Chambers of Commerce – Annual Conference The 2017 BCC Annual Conference took place on 28th February and brought together an audience of senior decision-makers, influencers and opinion-formers, receiving extensive media coverage throughout the day across a host of national and regional broadcasters, as well as online and print media. 600 delegates attended and a strong presence from over 30 Chambers across the UK, made the day a resounding success. The #bccconf hashtag trended at number 2 on the day, with the event receiving national press coverage. Highlights from the day included speeches from Business Secretary Greg Clark MP, Shadow Chancellor John McDonnell MP, Foreign Secretary Boris Johnson MP and a personal video message from Prime Minister Theresa May.

Louise Punter CEO Surrey Chambers of Commerce

The Team GROUP


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Policing Surrey

KEEPING OUR CHILDREN SAFE David Munro, the Police and Crime Commissioner for Surrey


cross the country, police forces are having to deal with the changing nature of crime which makes modern policing more complex than ever before. The demand in emerging crimes such as Modern Slavery and Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) has risen dramatically over recent years and police are having to find ways to tackle these issues head on. CSE can take a number of forms and whilst we have specialist officers trained in dealing with these issues, identifying and investigating suspected cases can still be particularly challenging. In March a campaign was launched here in Surrey, supported by my office, specifically targeting those in our business community who could spot the vital early warning signs of abuse.



Operation Makesafe focuses on reaching out to people who work across the county – particularly hotels, taxi companies, pubs and cafes to equip them with the right knowledge to identify children who could be being exploited.

could be at risk.

The campaign, which has been successfully used by forces in Hampshire and London, is asking people to act on their gut feeling - if they see something that isn’t quite right, they need to report it to police.

Anyone spotting these warning signs can call Surrey Police either on the usual 999 system in an emergency or on 101 quoting Operation Makesafe and they’ll be taken through a bespoke question set by staff in our Contact Centre.

It could be a taxi driver who drives a child to a suspicious location, someone working in a hotel who sees the same young person being taken to a room or a pub owner that sees an adult buying alcohol for young people on their premises. We want you all to be our eyes and ears to help police identify and safeguard those who

I would urge everyone to take a look at the Operation Makesafe page on the Surrey Police website for information on warning signs to look out for and guidance on how exploitation could be visible in your place of work.

I hope this campaign will help give those working in key local industries the confidence and ability to easily report suspicions they have. It could just help protect a vulnerable child from harm.

President’s Column

A WORD FROM OUR PRESIDENT The loneliness of Self Employment and how to avoid it


ell the Budget has been disclosed and there was immediately a ruckus about NIC increases for the self employed. It will be interesting to see what comes out of the review on self employment that is expected to report back to the Government in the autumn. There is no doubt that the trade off for the freedom of being your own boss is the lack of security in terms of income. Many people reading this will fall into the self employed category (and will of course be Chamber members). It is also the case that many self employed people have in the past been PAYE employees and stepped into setting up and running their own business for a variety of reasons. Whether it is a second career “post retirement”; a conscious decision to step off the corporate ladder; that push caused by redundancy or simply an innate belief that you can do better at running a business than your “boss”, you now have a much better appreciation of the pros and cons of both worlds. Being self employed is without doubt challenging but it also requires you to quickly learn a whole host of skills that you might not have had to master in the PAYE market place.

your embryonic business and in expanding when you decide you need bespoke business premises and to take on employees of your own. I have long thought that PAYE employees, particularly if are looking to progress into some level of management, would benefit enormously from a self employed stint. It gives a better view from the other end of the telescope. I have not yet worked out quite how that would be organised – you can hardly send someone on a secondment to be self employed after all! When I have cracked that one, I’ll share it.

If you are setting up in business for the first time, it can be slightly scary as well as exhilarating but also a bit lonely. Most of us appreciate being able to bounce ideas off colleagues and sense check issues as well as having the added comfort of a generally supportive framework.

Frankie Tierney

If you are taking the plunge then ensure that you do put in place a support network whether that be a trade organisation, local business groups, Chamber of Commerce or other business contacts. That network will be invaluable both in getting through the early stages of

Managing Partner, Herrington & Carmichael LLP

President, Surrey Chambers of Commerce




MEMBER NEWS CHAMPIONING BUSINESS EVENTS Surrey law firm Hart Brown is well known for championing business events in Surrey, including the Surrey Chambers Property Group Lunch, which marks its tenth anniversary in May this year. Hart Brown is probably best known within the business community for the Hart Brown Annual Economic Forum, now in its 13th year and is the premier business event in the Surrey business calendar. Hugely successful, the Economic Forum brings businesses together from across Surrey to hear speakers discuss and offer opinions on a range of topics, with the opportunity for discussions and debates involving delegates. Last year’s theme was “Hidden Danger” with the uncertainty over the outcome of the Brexit referendum. This year’s Forum looks is an upbeat event with speakers tasked with predicting and offering advice on “Preparing for what’s next”. Marcus Wright, the Forum’s keynote speaker is the Senior Economist at NatWest. He will be joined by Malcolm Parry, managing director of the Surrey Research Park, and local businesswoman Kate Lester, managing director of Diamond Logistics. The 13th Hart Brown Annual Economic Forum will be held on the 15th June at the University of Surrey. Register on the Hart Brown website. For the Surrey Chambers Property Group Lunch on 16th May registration is available on the Chambers website.

SILVER CELEBRATIONS FOR RAMSAC Surrey-based IT Service Provider, ramsac celebrated its 25th birthday in March. The company, was incorporated on March 17th 1992 by Robert May and Sally Cooper, at a time when a personal computer cost around £5,000 and the internet only accounted for 1% of business communications. 25 years later and ramsac has gone from strength to strength in a technical environment that was not even imaginable when ramsac formed. With an initial team of just two people, who were originally supporting four client companies’ IT needs, ramsac has grown to 60 team colleagues who last year dealt with over 25,000 support cases, and delivered thousands of hours of onsite IT management and project delivery. The business has enjoyed consistent growth and recognition, being named by Surrey County Council as its ‘Business of the Year’ in December’s Surrey Business awards. As ramsac enters its 25th year the business will continue to focus on its new total IT service. The total IT package is designed to give organisations peace of mind, with the knowledge that their IT is in safe hands. ramsac executive team

❝ It is better to spend money like there’s no tomorrow than to spend tonight like there’s no money.

PJ O’Rourke




COMMITTEE ROLE FOR EMILY Emily Chalkley, Associate at Charles Russell Speechlys in Guildford, has been appointed as the Junior Representative on the Employment Lawyers Association (ELA) Management Committee. This prestigious appointment, following a national selection process, enables Emily to be the voice of the junior members. As part of her role she will lead a steering group of junior employment lawyers and also plans to build up a social networking group for junior members. Emily Chalkley commented, “I applied for the role to bring fresh ideas to the association and help ELA to provide more specialised training for its junior members. This role creates a great opportunity to raise both mine and the firm’s profile and I am looking forward to becoming more actively involved with ELA’s strategy and plans.” ELA represents the views and interests of qualified employment lawyers in the UK and internationally and is widely recognised as the voice of authority in employment law. Emily Chalky was voted Young Surrey Businesswoman of the Year by Surrey Chamber of Commerce in 2016.

PEDDLING FOR HALOW Local Guildford businessman, Andy Dore, is taking to the saddle to ride 250 miles from Guildford to Northern France and back to raise money for local charity, the halow project. Andy will be riding in support of his son Charlie, who is autistic, to help him make the transition into adult life. Charlie is just one of the 170 young people aged 16-35 with a learning disability that the halow project supports. The halow project is a local charity which provides support to young people with a learning disability by providing a range of services to enable independence including social activities, a 1:1 buddy service and supported living. Andy is the first halow parent to get in the saddle and take on the challenge of riding the annual halow250 charity bike ride starting on 28th May, which is led by Damon Hill OBE, the charity’s patron. Andy, who is owner of the wine bar Corkage on Quarry Street, is busy training and is looking forward to swapping the bar for the bike. The charity bike ride aims to raise £70,000 to support the halow project’s vital services helping young people with a learning disability to live independent, meaningful, fulfilled lives and become part of their local community. Debbie Goddard,

ALRIGHT JACK JACK has celebrated its first year on the airwaves in Surrey with JACK FM and JACK 2. In 2016, the two stations were launched in Surrey by the creators of Absolute Radio. Since then, they have attracted published listener figures of 45,500 weekly across both brands. Donnach O’Driscoll, co-CEO of JACK FM, said: “We’re delighted with JACK’s first year in Surrey; figures for the two stations are strong and off to a great start. Moving forward we’re investing even further into both brands to build on what we’ve created. We want to work closely with the local community to build something Surrey can be proud of and feel very much a part of. We look forward to increasing our presence further in the coming months.”

Coming together is the beginning. Keeping together is the progress. Working together is success.

Henry Ford





GROWING THE MARKET IN ACCESSIBLE TOURISM T2 Consulting is excited to be a partner on a new EU funded Erasmus+ project to promote and develop accessible tourism. Accessible tourism is about making it easy for all people to enjoy tourism experiences. Many people have access needs, not just those with disabilities: the elderly, the less mobile, even young families with pushchairs. They represent a huge potential market for tourism which today is still under-served. “Growing the Market in Accessible Tourism” (Growmat) will bring together teachers, subject matter experts and target groups to develop guidance and support for businesses, students and entrepreneurs who may wish to embrace this growing demand. The project is looking for champions involved in accessibility or business support who are interested in working with the project and/or are willing to help raise awareness to reach as wide an audience as possible, benefitting service users and service providers alike. If you can help, would like to receive project progress updates, or simply want to know more about it and how you might benefit, please contact Tracey Torble, the project representative for T2 Consulting. Email address: tracey.torble@

The chairman of Robinson Buckley Insurance Brokers Ltd, Graham Tomlinson, has announced the company’s acquisition by a likeminded local Insurance Broker, Headley Insurance Services Ltd, who have been known to Robinson Buckley for many years. Headley were established in 1974 and have offices in Alton, Bournemouth & Godalming and their directors. Following the acquisition, Graham and fellow Directors Alan Strudwick, Carol Aston and John Lanning became directors of Headley Insurance Services Ltd. Robinson Buckley and their staff remain based in Godalming..

This is an exciting move for longstanding Surrey Chambers member Robinson Buckley, “brought about to assure our continuing excellent relationship with our clients and safeguarding the future of Independent Insurance Broking”.

The qualities that make Twitter seem inane and half-baked are what makes it so powerful.

Jonathan Zittrain, Harvard Law School

Headley Insurance Services Ltd now employ 40 staff over 4 offices.

HELPING PREVENT CRIME With the rise in popularity and usage of contactless payment cards, cybercrime and digital theft has been a hot topic over the last 18 months – and Project Five wanted to do something to help protect clients. At the beginning of 2017, they changed the design of their ‘Help Me’ cards to include new technology that will protect against having contactless cards skimmed and money stolen. The new design is credit card sized and acts as a Contactless Card Protector – a simple and effective way of keeping your contactless payment cards safe. If you pop the Help Me card into your wallet, next to your debit or credit cards it blocks the RFID (radio-frequency identification system) signals which are collected by fraudsters, to skim and extract your personal data. The card will also protect up to three or four other cards in the same wallet.




FOUR OUT OF FIVE LACK TIME Only one in five business leaders are spending enough time working on their business, according to recent research by Smith & Williamson, the accountancy, investment management and tax group, with an office in Guildford. “Individuals looking to scale their business should aim to devote a minimum of a day a week to actually working on their business strategy and actively managing their business,” said Claire Perrett, scale-up lead at Smith & Williamson in Guildford. The Smith & Williamson Enterprise Index, a quarterly barometer of owner managers and entrepreneurs, also found that belief in the ability of the employment pool to deliver the required skills reached a two year low. Only 40% of those surveyed thought that there were enough adequately trained individuals to fulfil their business needs. Claire said, “Most people have grown their business because they are very good at what they do. To continue to scale they will need to attract talent for the day-to-day running of the business as well as specialist skills and expertise, where appropriate. What our respondents are finding is that there simply aren’t enough trained people in the employment pool to provide the right kind of skills to grow.” “Not since the start of 2015 has there been such negativity surrounding the ability of the talent pool amongst SMEs and entrepreneurs.”

BROOKSCOMM CELEBRATES TWENTY YEARS After 20 years of trading, brookscomm, a Surrey B2B PR and digital marketing agency has undergone a major strategic rebrand. Formerly Chaz Brooks Communications, the agency will now operate under the name of brookscomm. The motive for the rebrand was driven by research into the needs and demands of current and future clients. The rebrand strategy reflects the changing face of marketing and PR, with digital and social media now playing an important role alongside the more traditional methods of communication. From its humble beginnings in an attic, to opening an office in Guildford and appointing its first two personnel, the company has come on a long way. The new brookscomm will offer an evolving service package to clients, reflecting the importance of the digital age. As part of this change, new team members have been appointed. Working alongside the more traditional PR practitioners, will be a new Digital Marketing Manager, Michael Bull, and assisting all areas of the business is a new social media expert, Nirvana Wright. A new Operations Manager, Jo McKenzie completes the new team. A new web site has been developed to coincide with the rebrand and is easy to navigate, with useful information and downloads on maximising the benefits of PR. Managing Director Mandy Brooks was recently awarded Chartered Public Relations Practitioner status, the first person from a Surrey-based agency to be awarded this accreditation. The Brookscomm team

SAY IT LOUD If you would like some advice, skills and ideas on overcoming the fear of public speaking, improving your presenting skills and creating quality content, then join Presentation Excellence for a packed, high value four hour workshop covering all these areas by three different presenters. Jackie Donelan, Ges Ray and Louise Camby. You can find more information via For more information about forthcoming workshops please call Louise on 07889 304460.

❝ If at first you don’t succeed, failure may be your style.

Quentin Crisp




MEMBER NEWS HEATHROW 2.0 Speaking at the BCC’s Annual Conference, Heathrow Chief Executive John HollandKaye unveiled Heathrow 2.0, the airport’s new sustainability leadership strategy which aspires to make the airport a centre of excellence for the aviation industry. The strategy announces ambitious goals to reduce the airport’s and the industry’s environmental impacts while maximising economic opportunities throughout the UK. As part of Heathrow 2.0, the airport has invested an initial £500,000 in its first R&D incubator to minimise aviation’s impacts like noise and carbon emissions. Heathrow will consult leading experts to identify participants from the aviation industry, academia and business. By the end of the year, more funding sources will also be identified so that the incubator opens its doors in 2019. Heathrow 2.0 puts forward targets to deliver a sustainable future for aviation. It includes an aspiration to make growth from a new runway at Heathrow carbon neutral, and the use of 100% renewable electricity at the airport from 2017 in a major step toward creating a zero-carbon airport. It also proposes establishing an airside ultra-low emission zone by 2025, to improve quality of life through cleaner air. Heathrow 2.0 also outlines new initiatives for the benefit of local communities – including a voluntary Quiet Night Charter seeking to at least halve by 2022 the number of flights on non-disrupted days leaving late after 11.30pm. Heathrow 2.0 launches a “Fly Quiet and Clean” league table, which will publicly rank airlines according to their noise and emissions. Finally, Heathrow 2.0 aims to deliver a better working place for colleagues by creating 10,000 apprenticeships by 2030 with a third runway, and publishing a roadmap in 2017 setting out how to transition Heathrow’s supply chain employees working at the airport to be paid the London Living Wage.

WK CORPORATE FINANCE EXPANDS IN KENT The corporate finance arm of accountants Wilkins Kennedy has appointed David Ellis to head a new unit being established in Maidstone. He joins the firm from a local Tunbridge Wells practice where he developed specialisms in corporate and acquisition finance. He will be accompanied by Reece Wootten who relocates from Wilkins Kennedy’s corporate finance department in London. The move follows Wilkins Kennedy’s merger last October with Maidstone firm Day Smith & Hunter, which created one of the largest accountancy practices in the region. The firm is now building the new corporate finance unit as part of a wider initiative to establish a hub in Maidstone from which it can provide a range of specialist services to businesses throughout Kent. Andy Coghlan, Head of Corporate Finance at Wilkins Kennedy, said: “Our corporate finance team has a long-standing association with businesses in Kent and has advised on several major deals. However, the creation of a local delivery team is a particularly exciting opportunity as it strengthens our relationship with the county’s business communities.”



We don’t have a monopoly. We have market share. There’s a difference.”

Steve Ballmer, CEO of Microsoft

Tax Relief

SOME RELIEF FOR ATED RETURNS By Steve Hoare, Tax Director at Wilkins Kennedy


t’s Annual Tax on Enveloped Dwellings (ATED) return season, so if you own a company or have a share in a company that holds residential property, you may be preparing to file your return or relief claims for the year 2017/2018. ATED is applied to companies that own, either completely or in part, UK residential property worth more than £500,000. It includes any grounds that make up part of that property, such as parking spaces or gardens and any buildings within them. Some properties are excluded, because they are not recognised as “dwellings” by HMRC – or are not properties that are used as a residence, either in part or as a whole. Exempt properties include hotels and guest houses, hospitals, boarding schools, student and military residences, care homes and prisons. For those properties that are not excluded, many companies will still be able to claim

relief from the ATED charge. For example, if your property is let to a third party on a commercial basis and isn’t occupied by anyone connected to the owner then you may be able to file a relief claim. Similarly, if your property is being developed for resale by a property developer, is open to the public, is being used in a property trading business or is owned by a registered provider of social housing then you are likely to meet the criteria for ATED relief. ATED bands for property valuations are set every five years. Property values were last set at 1 April 2012 (or date of acquisition if later), which means this year it is likely to change. Unlike a tax return which is returned in arrears, ATED is paid and returned in advance. For example, the return or relief claim and any tax due for the year ended 31 March 2018 must be filed or paid by 30 April 2017. The below table demonstrates how the changes will come into effect:

ATED chargeable 2015/16

For the period 1 April 2018 to 31 March 2019, the value of property used will be based on the value at 1 April 2017 rather than 1 April 2012. As a result, it would be a good idea for those who already own properties individually valued above £500,000 and those who own single residential properties close to that value, to obtain a valuation on their properties as at 1 April 2017 as these will be required next year. Remember, you could be charged a penalty if you don’t file your ATED return or relief claim on time, and/or if your return contains inaccuracies. If you would like some further advice relating to ATED returns, or you would like some further information about how the changes in ATED thresholds could affect you, then please contact your local Wilkins Kennedy representative at our offices in Guildford and Heathrow.

ATED chargeable 2016/17

ATED chargeable 2017/18

£500,000 - £1 million




£1 million - £2 million




£2 million - £5 million




£5 million - £10 million




£10 million - £20 million




More than £20 million






Business Awards

SURREY SUPER GROWERS Prestigious Surrey Super Growth Awards return to recognise the fastest-growing companies


t’s well understood that achieving sustained business growth isn’t easy. So it’s vitally important that we continue to celebrate the success of Surrey-based companies that are driving rising demand, increasing employment and generating wealth and prosperity. The Surrey Super Growth Awards return for a second year to do just that.

between leading regional law firm asb law, Lloyds Bank and national accountancy firm RSM, with the Surrey Chambers Business Magazine as media partner. The Awards produce a unique index of the fastest growing private businesses across the region and celebrates their success at a special breakfast event to be held later this year.

explained: “Despite the current uncertainties in our economy, there are many companies out there achieving remarkable sustained growth, creating jobs and helping build the national economy. Surrey Super Growth gives these businesses the recognition they deserve and the opportunity to join other businesses in celebrating their success.”

The Surrey region is a significant and growing contributor to the national economy with sector strengths in manufacturing, advanced engineering, digital technologies, professional services and pharmaceuticals. Over 60,000 active businesses contribute to a regional economy worth over £30 billion, employing more than half a million people.

Unlike traditional business awards, there is no cost involved in participation and companies do not need to apply to be included provided full accounts are filed at Companies House over a 3-year accounting period. This information is assessed against rigorous qualifying criteria to identify the fastest growing companies.

The Surrey Super Growth team is busy analysing financial information filed at Companies House and creating an index of the 60 fastest growing private businesses across the region. Jon Da Costa, Partner, at RSM, explained: “We’ll shortly be contacting all the Surrey-based companies that are finalists. Surrey Super Growth is a great opportunity for them to celebrate success, increase brand

Surrey Super Growth is a collaboration



Russell Bell, Senior Consultant at asb law

Business Awards exposure and attract the best talent. All of this with no cost and minimal effort.” Gavin Potter, Business Development Director, for Lloyds Commercial Banking, commented “Despite the economic challenges, it is great to see so many local companies across all sectors achieve strong profitable growth. Surrey Super Growth provides a great opportunity to recognise and celebrate the success of these businesses and their talented management teams.” The fastest-growing company in last year’s Surrey Super Growth Awards was The Gym Group with an outstanding growth rate of 241% over three years. John Treharne, Chief Executive of The Gym Group, explained: “It’s a great achievement to be recognised and be named as the region’s fastest growing company. Having launched in 2007, we have taken The Gym Group forward through continued investment and strong financial backing. We’re now looking forward to building on our success and deliver our award-winning service to even more of the UK population.”

Russell Bell, Senior Consultant at asb law

The Surrey Super Growth team is busy analysing financial information filed at Companies House and creating an index of the 60 fastest growing private businesses across the region.

John Treharne, Chief Executive Officer, The Gym Group

❞ The Surrey Super Growth analysis is currently underway and shortlisted finalists will shortly be contacted. Should your company meet the Awards criteria below but has filed abbreviated accounts at Companies House without profit and loss data, you still have an opportunity to be assessed for inclusion in this year’s Awards. Please send full accounts for your latest available and three preceding financial years to neil.gardner@asb-law. com before 5.00pm on Friday, 28 April 2017.

Jon Da Costa, Partner at RSM,

The winners will be announced at a special awards breakfast taking place at Denbies Wine Estate in Dorking on Thursday, 6 July 2017.

Surrey Super Growth Awards Criteria • Privately-owned business, trading and registered in Surrey. • Growth in turnover measured over a 3-year accounting period based on latest full accounts information fi led at Companies House. • Minimum turnover of £2m in base year and positive turnover growth in latest year.

The Surrey Super Growth 2016 winner John Trehane, Chief Executive Officer of The Gym Group, with the awards sponsors SURREY CHAMBERS


Benchmarking Report

THE LEGAL LANDSCAPE Steve Arundale, NatWest’s Head of Commercial Professional Sectors, reviews the latest NatWest Legal Benchmarking Report


he annual NatWest Legal Benchmarking Report consolidates the financial performance of 269 legal firms covering the financial year ending 2016 and also reviews the actual performance predicted by firms in late 2015. By focusing on firms operating at the SME level across England, Wales and Scotland, they’re able to compare their financial performance against those of local and national peers. In many cases, the report has helped promote further business focus and encouraged firms to incorporate new processes that drive improved performance. Economically, 2015 and the majority of 2016 were positive years with high levels of consumer and business confidence, certainly pre-Brexit. The financial performance of SME sized legal firms is usually closely aligned to that of the economy and as such average revenue growth of 5% is not a surprise. The combined average growth rate over the last two years at 11% is very positive when compared to many other industries.

Revenue growth by volume has facilitated an improvement in profit for the owners of legal firms and in 2016 the average profit per equity partner (PEP) was £120,000. Year on year, PEP has improved and the 2016 performance is 33% up from 2013. So once again the business climate for legal firms has been positive and generally firms are in good financial shape.

The findings found in the Legal Benchmarking report are based on historic financial data and therefore give a rear-view perspective on the sector which may not be entirely relevant moving forward given the potential headwinds predicted for the domestic and global economy in 2017 and beyond. Indeed, the Law Consultancy Network half year survey recently identified that the top three issues for legal firms in 2017 would be cashflow, Brexit / global political uncertainty and improving profitability. This report highlights some obvious areas of focus and opportunity SURREY CHAMBERS



expe bank impr to 46


249 small


expe bala

Total Contributions



have business plans in place


with fee income > £1.5m

have a detailed time recording policy 89% of large firms 52% of small firms

with fee income < £1.5m


believe that fee income will grow over the next year That’s down from 81% in 2015

64% of large firms 58% of small firms think that fee income will grow 36% of large firms 25% of small firms expect income to grow over 10% throughout the next year An increase on last year: 12% small firms, 24% large firms


of fir impr


27% Fees

If we are entering a period where the economic waters will get a little choppy then it is those firms that manage their cash who will be best placed to sail through the storm.


Legal Conference Series Survey 2017 Predictions



believe that margins will improve in 2017 2% less than previous year Only 39% of all firms link their profit sharing to partner performance 47% of large firms expect profits per equity partners to increase 13% expect an increase of over 10% Down 7% on last year 46% of small firms that expect profits per equity partners to increase 19% expect an increase of over 10%



for legal firms if revenue growth does not continue at the pace witnessed in recent years. Efficiency has to be an area worthy of more attention. Much of the recent revenue improvement has been accommodated by an increased workforce as can be seen through the increased gearing number but in turn this has reduced fee earner efficiency with the majority generating just 3.9 hours of daily billable time with the actual net profit (before drawings) position reducing back to 23%. It’s always wiser for firms to focus on their cash position but in


Benchmarking Report recent months this has become even more prevalent. If we are entering a period where the economic waters will get a little choppy then it Legal Conference Series Survey is those firms that manage their cash who will be best placed to sail 2017 Predictions through the storm. Firms should look to reduce their lock-up which at an average of 113 days is now longer than at any time in the last 5 years. Without a constant flow of new matter starts and paid fees they would, on Participants average, run out of cash within 40 days, possibly something worth thinking about before Total all the cash is distributed in the form of partner’s Contributions 90% profits.


have business plans in place

A further for legal firms comes in the form of cyber small area largeof risk73% with fee income attacks. Our findings suggest that one in four of all legal firms have 79% > £1.5m a detailed time been the subject of a criminal attack and some ofhave them would have recording policy 27% 89% of large firms incurred a financial loss with andfeepotentially reputational damage. There is income 52% of small firms < £1.5m huge pressure on firms to be ever more diligent and to ensure that they haveFees a disaster recovery plan in place. Profits




Its believed that a reduction in debtor and WIP days would help improve cash flow

expect their bank balances to improve compared to 46% last year


expect their bank balances to fall


of firms expect their gearing to improve compared to 30% last year

profits per equity partners

think WIP days will be improved

think debtor days will be improved

Down from 35%

Down from 39%

That compares to WIP reduction at 43% in 2015 and 35% last year

That compares to debtor reduction at 44% in 2015 and 39% last year

There has been a significant fall in the firms confidence to manage their lock-up, especially among the large firms


of large firms are expecting to reduce their WIP compared to 42% last year


of small firms are expecting to reduce their WIP compared to 26% last year

profits per equity partners to

12% small firms, 24% large firms


4% of small firms expect to improve their debtor days (compared to 27% last year)

At58% NatWest, we remain committed to toincrease supporting legal firms largein of small firms 13% expect an increase developing a successful and sustainable business. Our specialist think that fee income will grow of over 10% Down 7% on last year relationship directors understand the professional services sector and 36% of large firms benefi t from accredited training and regular sector updates. 46% of small firms that expect 25% of small firms increase expect income to grow over 10% small To download the Legal Benchmarking throughout the next year 2017 NatWest 19% expect an increase of over 10% Report, please visit An increase on last year:

Debtor Days


8% of large firms expect to improve their debtor days (compared to 46% last year)

Working closely with our report’s co-author, Robert Mowbray, and 43% 63% to maximise its practical experience and wealth ofbelieve knowledge, believe that fee that margins we income will grow over will improve in 2017 havetheincluded a new section “Improving productivity – the best way next year 2% less than previous year That’s down from to improve profi tability”. It provides a simple diagnostic tool to enable 81% in 2015 Only 39% of all firms link their profit you to identify what areas of performance improvement will have the sharing to partner performance greatest impact. 47% of large firms expect 64% of large firms

WIP Days

Source: Conference Series Survey Results – September 2016.

The survey is a substantial review of law fi rms with fee income of up to £123m. 269 fi rms employing 16,000 people took part in the survey from across England, Wales and Scotland. The total income of the fi rms in the survey was £1.42bn.

SURVEY HIGHLIGHTS: Profits • The median profit per equity partner (PEP) is £120,000 which is £9,000 higher than the figure reported in the survey last year. • The median profit per equity partner in small firms of £75,000 is less than half of the median figure in large firms being £164,000. • The median profit margin dropped to 23% which shows that the growth in profit per equity partner is coming from an increase in volume which has morethan offset the drop in efficiency. Firms need to focus more on delivering better margins.

Fees • Median fees per fee earner were £136,000 which was down from £144,000 in the previous year and demonstrates a significant drop in productivity. • The median fees per equity partner is £539,000 with the lower quartile point being £340,000 and the upper quartile point being at £858,000. This is a significant increase on last year. • Fees have grown by 5% compared with a 6% increase last year which is still considerably above inflation. There is some regional variation with the South East achieving 9% growth while the North East & North West declined by 1%.

Finance • Law firms remain cautious about carrying debt and the median bank balance was £94,000. • The spare capacity in the overdraft has a median figure of 11% of annual fees with little variance in this number for different sizes of firm. This suggests that the median firm would run out of money in about 40 days if they received no further money from clients in that period. • Client money balances are typically 129% of annual billings. The firms in the survey are holding about £2.3bn in client deposits. It is clearly important that firms do everything possible to ensure that these funds are kept secure and that there is a focus on cyber security. • 24% of firms have experienced a fraud related loss or cyber-attack in the last year.





Real Estate

PROTECTING YOUR LAND The Benefits of Property Registration by Steph Richards, Solicitor in the Real Estate Department at Herrington Carmichael


or most people and businesses the land and properties that they own are their most valuable assets. Land registration provides a secure way of noting an owner’s legal interest in land and provides additional safeguards and protection to landowners when compared to the old system of relying on hardcopy title deeds to evidence land ownership. The requirement and ability to register property at the Land Registry has been in force in English law since 1925, however a small but significant portion of land within England and Wales (up to 20%) remains unregistered. The Government issued a White Paper entitled “Fixing our broken housing market” on 7 February 2017 which, amongst various other matters, has set a goal of achieving comprehensive registration of land by 2030. So what is land registration and why is it important to landowners?

The Government issued a White Paper which has set a goal of achieving comprehensive registration of land by 2030.

What is Land Registration? Land registration means that details of the ownership of property, together with the rights and agreements concerning that land, are held on a central register administered by the Land Registry. The land registers are open to public inspection and easily accessible online or by application to the Land Registry. This replaces the old pre-registration system of relying on hardcopy historic deeds and documents used to evidence land ownership. By storing land ownership records centrally, land registration seeks to protect the interests of landowners by providing a state-backed guarantee securing the title to the Property. This means that should a landowner be deprived of the title to their property owing to an error or omission in the register, or because the register needs to be corrected, they will normally be compensated. Furthermore land registration helps landowners to protect their land from fraud and to resist third party applications for adverse possession (“squatter’s rights”)

over their land and property and also safeguards against the title deeds being lost, damaged or destroyed. The registration of land also offers landowners a quicker way of proving title to their property, which can help to speed up conveyancing transactions by increasing certainty and simplicity.

When must you apply to register land? The compulsory requirement to register land has been rolled-out across England and Wales in stages, and now all transfers of land and the grant of new leasehold interests of over seven years are caught by the requirement to register, as are numerous other land transactions such as entering into a new mortgage over land. This does not limit owners of land from applying for registration of their property, as applications for voluntary first registration can be submitted at any time prior to a transaction requiring mandatory registration of their property. In applying on a voluntary basis the cost of registration is reduced owing to preferable rates provided by the Land Registry and the owner will benefit from the protection of registration sooner. In light of the advantages of registering your land and the Government’s stated intention to achieve comprehensive land registration in the next 13 years, we would advise landowners to consider investigating whether their land is registered and, if not, considering applying for registration.

If you want to find out more about registration of land, or any other Real Estate matter, please contact the Herrington Carmichael LLP’s Real Estate department on or call 01276 686222. SURREY CHAMBERS



AVOIDING PROBLEMS IN ESTATE MANAGEMENT Michael Derrick, Partner at DMH Stallard LLP, explores three considerations for business owners in estate management.


lanning for the day when you are no longer able to run your own affairs, whether due to ill health or death, is not an especially cheery topic to consider. However it is extremely important, especially if you’re a business owner (or have shares in a business) and have dependents. Dealing with the affairs of someone who has died is called administering the estate. We often work with business owners who choose a business partner to be one of the



‘personal representatives’ (PRs) of their estate. This makes a lot of sense, as often much of an estate’s value is held in the business. Having someone who has intimate knowledge of the business can help avoid nasty surprises further down the track. If you’re asking your business partner to be one of the PRs of your estate, or are being asked to act in the administration of someone else’s estate, it’s important to know what it entails as it involves considerable responsibility,

as well as duty to the beneficiaries.

Three key considerations in estate management 1. Locating the original will If a person dies without a valid will, then their estate passes under what are called intestacy rules. Individuals must apply to the probate registry to administer the estate in this way as an ‘administrator’. There must be a very thorough search

Legal for any will before this application though, because if an estate is administered in accordance with intestacy rules and a will is later discovered, then the PRs can be liable to the beneficiaries who missed out. A thorough will search would include, but not necessarily be limited to: • Contacting any solicitors the deceased may have used in the local area. • Placing a notice in the Law Society Gazette, requesting information about the location of the will. • A search of the Principal Registry of the Family Division or a local district registry where the deceased may have lodged a will. • A search of any commercial services which offer to provide a registration centre for wills. 2. Non-disclosure on inheritance tax forms In most cases, when a person dies an Inheritance Tax return needs to be filed (an IHT205 or an IHT400). This usually needs to be completed whether or not the deceased leaves a will, and even if there is no tax to pay. It’s important to investigate and disclose full and accurate information in the Inheritance Tax returns, as if it’s wrong, a PR may have to pay heavy penalties. The penalties are calculated as a percentage of the ‘potential lost revenue’ by HMRC as shown below: Type of behaviour

Unprompted disclosure

Prompted disclosure

Reasonable care

No penalty

No penalty


0% - 30%

15% – 30%


20% - 70%

35% to 70%

Deliberate and concealed

30% - 100%

50% - 100%

Falling foul of the rules can have serious consequences. One recent tribunal case saw the PRs appeal against a penalty which HMRC imposed for what it judged to be a deliberate, but not concealed, declaration of the tax due in relation to the estate. The PRs argued that the mistake, although careless, had been unintentional. And while HMRC accepted that the error had not been deliberate, they argued that a 30% penalty for carelessness should still be paid. Critically, the tribunal chose to comment that it is not the function of the tribunal, or HMRC, to relieve PRs of the results of their choice to undertake the administration of the estate without professional advice. By administering the estate without expert advice, the executors had chosen to risk the consequences of any shortcomings in their legal and accountancy knowledge.

If you’re asking your business partner to be one of the PRs of your estate, or are being asked to act in the administration of someone else’s estate, it’s important to know what is involved

Devastavit is a Latin expression and when used in connection with estate administration, means the mismanagement of the estate by the administrators or executors. Some of the reasons beneficiaries could claim devastavit include: • Misuse, such as by using assets in their business or using the assets for themselves (where they are not a creditor or beneficiary). • Negligence, for example failing to get in or convert the assets (in this case shares) in a reasonable time, or failure to invest the estate’s funds where there is a duty to do so. • Maladministration, which covers paying out a legacy without reserving sufficient sums to repay the estate’s known debt. It also includes paying sums to someone pretending to have a claim when they actually don’t.

Administering an estate is a vital role and it is necessary to be aware of the numerous responsibilities that come with it

Administering an estate is a vital role and it is necessary to be aware of the numerous responsibilities that come with it. If you’re asking a business partner to take on the role for you, or you’re taking on the role for someone else, it’s important to take professional advice on the administration. This can help avoid getting both the PRs and the estate into difficulties.

If you would like further information about estate management, please contact Michael Derrick (, Bryan Dean (, Belinda Butler-Smith ( or Sarah Higgs ( or phone our Guildford offi ce on 01483 302345.

3. Devastavit claims If the administration of an estate is not carried out properly, the PRs may be subject to a devastavit claim from the beneficiaries.







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Succession Planning

PASSING ON THE BATON Don’t leave the future of your business to fate, says Dan Morgan, Partner at Haines Watts


wners are uniquely bound to the businesses they create – emotionally and financially. One of the most difficult things to accept is that at some point you will need to step aside and let go. Imagining your business thriving without you isn’t easy. Often there is no internal pressure for change, no model for how to go about it – so it’s tempting to do nothing. But poor succession planning can eat away at the value of your business and in turn erode your personal financial security. So what should you do to tackle your succession? Plan your transition well in advance There’s no such thing as the perfect time to hand over. Start putting planning in place as soon as possible. Reviewing options early gives you a hand in grooming your successor and controlling how you make the transition. Event-driven succession can be disastrous – don’t leave it to chance.

process your team build trust and common ground and you garner/generate support for your succession plan You don’t have to go ‘cold turkey’ Succession need not be an overnight event. With a considered plan, you can gradually shift responsibilities, take less of an active involvement in the day-to-day running of the business but keep a say in strategic decisions. Make sure you have an agreed-upon role that doesn’t leave you meddling or micromanaging your successor. Support the plan Often, even where a formal plan exists, the actual transition ends up being chaotic. You need to manage each step of the plan. This involves a wide range of activates like: communicating with customers, suppliers and employees, planning retention of key staff, negotiating remuneration for the incumbent

leader, the actual transition and timing of your departure. Letting go gradually can be a benefit for both the business and your well-being, after all letting go isn’t easy! I’d challenge all business owners who haven’t done so, to start thinking about the transition process for you and your business. Don’t leave the future to chance. If you would like to explore how we can help you with your succession or business planning, please get in touch.

Dan Morgan T: 0208 549 5137 E: Surrey offices in Esher and Godalming

Link leadership development and succession Over time leadership skills can be gained. Natural leaders may emerge but there is merit in creating a long-range process for nurturing key people. The very process itself can help shape your succession plan. It provides you with reassurance that you have the right people in the right roles to build on the legacy you leave. Share knowledge with your management team It can only be of benefit to your company to encourage an active process of sharing knowledge and experience across the senior members of your organisation – from which your successor may emerge. Through this



The Big Story

THE SERIAL DELIGHTER by Maarten Hoffmann

Amazon marked its arrival in Surrey in 2015 when it purchased the Logic305 warehouse on the Brooklands Industrial Estate. At that time it was the only available Grade A warehouse within the M25 which exceeded 300,000 square feet. With the roll-out of Amazon Prime and the enormous volumes that are shipped out on a daily basis, the Weybridge site marked a significant investment in the county. Amazon was created by one of the most disruptive of the modern day business pioneers, Jeff Bezos. Maarten Hoffmann profiles the maverick whose ambitions are not limited to just our planet!


ever has an individual so deserved the comparison to a James Bond villain as Jeff Bezos, founder of and space explorer extraordinaire. Especially after seeing photographs of Bezos looking a bit too excited recently when he piloted a 13-foot Avatar-style robot at a tech conference in Boston. As the founder of Amazon, no one man has such profound effect on the shopping habits of the population of planet Earth, and the slow death of the high street, with intentions to conquer other planets in our solar system. Amazon Pluto, Amazon Mars - personally, l wouldn’t bet against it. His stockpile of riches grows by the day. Amazon stock climbed 67% in the past year in part because of the success of its cloud-computing unit, Amazon Web Services and Bezos was the named as the biggest dollar gainer on the Forbes’ 2017 World’s Billionaires List. With a net worth of $72.8 billion, Bezos is now the third richest billionaire in the



world, behind Microsoft co-founder Bill Gates and Berkshire Hathaway Chairman and CEO, Warren Buffett. Bezos took a, by now, familiar route through education, excelling at just about everything. Born to teenager Jacklyn Gise and Ted Jorgensen in 1964, his parents divorced and his mother remarried a Cuban immigrant, Miguel Bezos, when he was four. He was very close to his maternal grandfather, who worked for the US Atomic Energy Commission and slowly built up a considerable land holding in Texas. With this all passing to Jeff, he became the largest private land owner in the Lone Star state. When the family moved to Florida, Bezos enrolled in the Miami Palmetto Senior High School. He attended the Science Training Programme at the University of Florida, receiving a Bachelor of Science degree in electrical engineering and computer science. After his move

The Big Story to Princeton, he was elected to the honour societies Phi Beta Kappa and Tau Beta Pi and served as the president of the Princeton chapter of the Exploration and Development of Space. That would certainly have inspired his love of space, and the fact that, as a three year old, he was found in his room having totally dismantled his cot, piece by piece, demonstrated his interest in engineering. Following various jobs on Wall Street and with the Bankers Trust, Bezos took a drive cross-country from New York to Seattle and wrote the business plan for Amazon along the way. Initially, he ran the company from his garage, having learnt about the rapid growth of the internet and, more importantly, this coincided with a Supreme Court ruling that mail order catalogues were not required to collect sales tax in states where they lack a physical presence. The thought that an internet company that sells goods across the country would not be subject to sales tax sparked the notion that this was a winner - and sparked the furore about such companies not paying tax in countries in which they trade but do not reside, immediately making their goods cheaper than any bricks-and-mortar store. Bezos worked night and day on the development of the business and became known as “a happy go lucky mogul and a notorious micromanager” who left no stone unturned and no job undone. He was particularly upset when the New York Times wrote a scathing

As the founder of Amazon, no one man has had such a profound effect on the shopping habits of the population of planet Earth

article entitled Inside Amazon: Wrestling big ideas in a Bruising Workplace and described Amazon as “a soulless, dystopian workplace where no fun is to be had and no laughter heard,” although they could not find a single worker who agreed with this insulting description. The insults continued apace, with the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) voting him the World’s Worst Boss at their World Congress in 2014. In making the award, General Secretary Sharan Burrow said, “Jeff Bezos represents the inhumanity of employers who are proving the American corporate model,” and an article in the Morning Call newspaper described working for Amazon as gruelling and inhumane, with many employees being terminated or quitting. As a riposte to the New York Times article, Bezos purchased the Washington Post in 2013 for $250 million of his own cash and proceeded to publish a long and complimentary profile of his activities and beliefs.

His ethos with all of his companies is quite simple: “Starting with customers, working backwards – that’s the kind of thing that has become a habit at Amazon,” says Bezos, when asked how the company remains innovative despite its size, having grown from three employees to in excess of 150,000 staff around the world, including 9,000 in the UK. “We also have an eagerness to invent that is a deep part of our culture, as is a willingness to think long-term. We can work on things that don’t need to work for five, six, seven years…there aren’t many companies willing to take that kind of time horizon. “And then, finally, a culture of operational excellence, and I mean that in the sense that Toyota might mean it. Finding defects, doing root cause analysis, working to fix things - that kind of operational excellence has also become a big part of who we are. So when you apply those four things (trust, invention, investment, and operational excellence) they work in a lot of different parts of our business.” “The original Amazon plan was focused exclusively on books, and I expected the company to grow slowly over a large number of years. But it actually grew very quickly right from the beginning. “These are very humble roots, I can assure you; I drove the packages to the Post Office in my old Chevy Blazer.” The company is now worth in excess of $245bn, and generated an unexpected profit of $92m on sales of $23.2bn in the second three months of 2015. The profit was a rarity in Amazon earnings releases; Bezos prefers to reinvest earnings rather than return them to shareholders. At the company’s heart, whether it has been going up against book retailers or publishers or even other technology giants such as eBay, appears to have been one concept: disruption. But Bezos doesn’t wholly agree. “Disruption is a consequence of customers liking the new way. Maybe it’s just a mindset…but a better mindset, and one that we use, is: How do you delight customers? “We don’t seek to disrupt, we seek to delight. If you invent something completely new and radical and customers don’t care about it, it’s not disruptive. Radical invention is only disruptive if customers love it.” Over its relatively young life, Amazon has had its fair share of failures, SURREY CHAMBERS


The Big Story

from its $175m investment in daily deal site LivingSocial to the Amazon Fire phone. But they have been more than outweighed by its successes. “Our three most durable inventions at this point – and we’re of course always looking for more – are Prime, Marketplace and AWS,” he says. Prime is its membership club: in exchange for an annual fee, customers get access to the most up-to-date services Amazon has to offer – from one-hour delivery in certain cities to original programmes such as Ripper Street, rescued after being dropped by the BBC, and music streaming and Kindle book-borrowing. Prime’s profile in the UK was boosted when it was announced that Jeremy Clarkson, Richard Hammond and James May, of Top Gear fame, now present the Grand Tour series on Prime.. Bezos didn’t say if he had met the trio, but admitted he was “very excited” about the concept. He also didn’t discuss how much the three men were making from the deal, but conceded the show was “very, very, very expensive,” for Amazon. “They’re worth a lot, and they know it.” “I think we’re in a golden age of television, so if you go back in time even just five years, you couldn’t get A-list talent to do TV serials, or, if you could, it was a rare thing. But that’s flipped completely.” Bezos points to Amazon’s investment in series such as comedy-drama Transparent, for which lead actor Jeffrey Tambor won a Golden Globe, as the main reason for the transformation. “The investment is very high now in serialised TV, and the amount of time you have to tell a story is much greater. That format change opens up a lot of storytelling possibilities, which, when mixed with the movie-like production standards, and the A-list talent, is why we’re seeing amazing television.” Marketplace allows anyone, from an individual to major companies, to sell products on the Amazon platform, and, thanks to recent innovations, even to have the products delivered by Amazon, opening up export markets and international sales. AWS – or Amazon Web Services – is the company’s business-focused cloud computing platform, whose customers include Pinterest, AirBnB



The Big Story Given his rather considered management quirks – he doesn’t allow PowerPoint presentations, as he believes bullet points don’t convey quality information, and rotates senior managers as his “shadow” every 12 to 18 months to create “ambassadors” around the business who can model his thinking – Bezos is a little less considered when it comes to managing his own money. “I just get all weak-kneed around entrepreneurs. I just love it. If I have a meeting with an entrepreneur, I’m always charmed by them,” he smiles. Is it important to him to share his wealth with fellow inventors? “Absolutely. In my personal investments I’m mostly doing things that I’m curious about. And passionate about. In many cases I don’t necessarily expect them to be good investments.” and Just-Eat. There has been speculation among investors that AWS may be spun off at some point, but Bezos guides against that, saying: “I think that would be a big distraction and, really, there would be very little benefit from it.”

His list of personal investments is wide-ranging, from tech companies, including Uber and AirBnB, to more unusual projects, such as the 10,000-Year Clock in the San Diablo mountain range in California, to a centre at Princeton, his alma mater, dedicated to neural circuit dynamics (understanding how the brain works).

Although Amazon doesn’t strip out financial results for the first two – it only began separating numbers for AWS last year. It is clear each plays its part in delivering the company’s numbers.

Despite any investment distractions, Bezos remains focused on the job in hand, even 20 years on.

“I’m hopeful we might find a fourth over time; we have many things in the pipeline. But I would say those three are at the top of the list of the things we’ve created over the last 20 years that have a good chance, as long as we continue to work hard, of being here 10 years from now, 20 years from now.” But Clarkson and Co. are far from the only new innovation Bezos is backing. As the company seeks to find a fourth important business line, small teams – Amazon has a two-pizza rule, which stipulates that no meeting should involve more people than could be fed by two pizzas – are working on the next big bet. One of these is drone delivery, first flagged by Bezos 18 months ago in an interview with American broadcaster Charlie Rose. The drones, or Prime Air to give the project its official name, are being worked on in a number of research centres, including one in Cambridge (in the UK, not Massachusetts). “One day Prime Air deliveries will be as common as seeing a mail truck,” says Bezos. “The technical problems are very straight-ahead. The biggest issue, or the biggest thing that needs to be worked on, is the regulatory side.” Although tight-lipped about which country the service will launch in first, Bezos hints strongly that the UK is near the front of the pack. “What I would say is that in the scheme of things the UK regulatory agencies have been very advanced. The FAA (the US aviation regulator) is catching up a little here in the US, but the UK has been a very encouraging example of good regulation. I think we like what we see there.”

“I’ve liked every phase of the company. I loved the beginning, and I love it just as much now,” he says. “I took my extended family on vacation in the south of France, and we had an unbelievable time, and we had great food, and we were there for a week. “But when I got back to Seattle, I ran into the office, I danced in. I love my job and consider myself incredibly lucky – and that’s been true for 20 years, it hasn’t changed.”

The UK has been a very encouraging example of good regulation. I think we like what we see there.

❞ Can he see himself at the helm in another 20 years, by which point he’ll be in his 70s? “I hope so. Almost all the people I work with on a daily basis are paid volunteers. At this point I’ve been working with them for more than a decade, and they can do whatever they want; they could be sipping margaritas on a beach, but they’re here. Paid volunteers are the best people to work with, as they’re here for the right reasons. I have a team of people that I love. And we get to work in the future, and that’s so fun, so I hope so.” Like so many other multi-billionaires, his secret love is space travel, and this led to the formation of his company Blue Origin - a company that was kept top-secret for many years whilst he and a phalanx of top engineers burrowed away, wrestling with the extreme complexity of the mission. Elon Musk, the Tesla Car company founder, and our own Richard Branson, with his Virgin Galactica, are all at it. Planet Earth has been conquered; therefore, there really is only one mission left for these super over-achievers, and that is to find another planet to build a customer base on. Reusable rockets are the holy grail of space travel, and that is exactly what Bezos has been working on. His New Shepard rocket booster




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The Big Story

took off last November and safely returned to earth in one piece. “I was very optimistic about the flight, but I’ll tell you, when I saw that vehicle land, it was one of the greatest moments of my life. Judging by the fact that there wasn’t a dry eye in the house, I’m pretty sure all my teammates here at Blue felt the same way. This is a field that people go into in large part because of real heart and passion, and that team did a remarkable job. It was just incredible.” For Bezos that isn’t a mission impossible, it’s what the last 20 years have been all about. “Full re-use is the holy grail of rocketry. You cannot throw the hardware away every time and expect to ever realistically lower the cost of access to space. It’s just impossible. What we did is an existence proof that you can vertically land from space and reuse the rocket booster. Our architecture is scalable to a very large size. So I’m super-excited about that. It’s something that puts us – and not just Blue Origin, but it’s something that puts humanity on the path to eventually having millions of people living and working in space. “For the tourism programme, I’m hopeful that we’re a couple of years away from

commercial operations at this point. We consider this the first of many successful test flights. We’re going to conduct a very thorough, very deliberate test program. For the next couple of years, we’re going to fly this vehicle many, many times and put it through a lot of stressing conditions. When we’re completely confident in the vehicle, then we’re going to start selling tickets and putting people on board. That’s very exciting.

Amazon has a two-pizza rule, which stipulates that no meeting should involve more people than could be fed by two pizzas

“As for what it means for our orbital vehicle, one of the reasons I love the verticaltakeoff, vertical-landing architecture is that it’s so scalable. We’re going to take the same architecture we just validated with New

Shepard, but at larger scale with our BE-4 engines, and have a completely reusable vertical-landing booster for the orbital vehicle that we’re going to fly out of Cape Canaveral”. Branson has made no secret of his desire to be the first to fly in Galactica and l wonder if Bezos feels the same way? “I can’t wait to go! I’ve wanted to do this since I was 5 years old. One thing I love about our vehicle architecture is that it flies autonomously, so we can do this very methodical test program without risking any test pilots. We’ll go through this for the next couple of years, and then I can’t wait to climb into that vehicle”. So if the BBC (Billionaire Boys Club) get their way, we will all be flying into space within a decade, and, of course, paying them for the privilege, but if governments can no longer afford to explore the possibilities of space travel, then thank goodness the BBC can. The rate at which the human race is burning through the resources of planet Earth, we are going to need somewhere else to go when we finally destroy this planet. We can only hope that we learn the lesson and don’t just destroy every planet we inhabit.



Digital Awards

DIGITAL GOLD The county’s leading companies were recognised for their innovation and technological achievements at the Surrey Digital Awards.

The Spirit of Surrey award was presented to the 5G Innovation Centre, University of Surrey.


he online achievements of businesses, charities and schools across Surrey, have been celebrated at the third annual Digital Awards. The Surrey Digital Awards was set up in 2015 solely to showcase online work from across the county. Honours across 15 categories including - Website, Blog, Mobile App and Use of Social Media for Business - were presented to progressive organisations at the HG Wells Conference and Events Centre in Woking last month. Hosting the awards was former BBC presenter Robin Bailey, who handed gold, silver and bronze prizes to a host of worthy winners. Special guests included Mark Pearson, from Headline Sponsor, Surrey County Council, Cllr Saj Hussain from Woking Works, Louise Punter from Surrey Chambers of Commerce, Steve Coburn of Projectfive and Neil Langston of Nero Blanco. Leading the way on stage with double gold were Farnham-based design agency and IT firm, Ansell & Clarke, who picked up the top prize in the Online Retailer and Website: Small



Business categories, for their work on behalf of designer swimwear retailer Coco Bay. Clinching gold in the flagship Website classification was Dorking vineyard and venue, Denbies Wine Estate. TG Media Group in Guildford, landed on top of the podium in the Use of Social Media for Business category, for their ‘Guide To Surrey’ digital accounts. Online writer, John Adams, won gold in the Blog category for, and the top Mobile App gong went to Forfeit Football by Sonin App Development, based in Reigate. The independent SDA judges chose Guildford designer and app developer, Kyan as the gold winner in Responsive Website, and Content Creatures for their Happy Socks project in the Use of Video for Business. Shippo by WATB Creative in Nutfield, came out on top in the Website: B2B category, and Somlo by Plug and Play in Website: Lifestyle & Culture. Posy Brewer - The VoiceOver Voice - took the plaudits in Website: Marketing and Creative, and Lumen Learning Trust Academy

in Website: School, Education or Charity. Also winning gold awards were Anthony Philipson by Thunderbolt Digital for Website: Sports and Entertainment, and Dorking web designer, OH Creative for Paella Fella in the Website: Tourism & Hospitality category. For the first time in the award’s history, a People’s Choice Award – voted by the public for finalists in all website categories – was won by disabled children’s charity, Challengers. The Spirit of Surrey award, which is given to one organisation chosen for “attracting significantly positive exposure and investment into the county” was presented to the 5G Innovation Centre, University of Surrey, which is the world’s leading research centre for next generation mobile and wireless connectivity. The Surrey Digital Awards 2017 was sponsored and supported by Surrey County Council, Woking Works, Surrey Chambers of Commerce, Projectfive, Nero Blanco, Natwest, Something Big, Arcom IT, Hamlyns, Clare Reeves Voiceovers, Tandridge District Council, Surrey Mirror and Capricorn Media.


(DON’T) ASSUME THE POSITION Over the next three months, Sam Farrow from Farrow Creative will be looking at the key pillars on which successful brands are built. In this first instalment, she considers where you place yourself in the market – your Position.


hen you’re setting up a business, one of the first things you have to decide is where to locate it. We all know what Rocco Forte had to say on the subject. In selecting premises, you base your decision on certain parameters: does it provide enough space, include any specialist fittings or facilities you might need, have good communications links, come at the right price, and so on. If a particular building meets your needs, you take it: if it doesn’t, you keep looking. The point is, the decision on where your business ends up is (more or less) entirely in your hands. For your brand, too, location is crucial; not physically, but in terms of where it sits within the market. Unlike a building, however, a brand isn’t a fixed entity, but a construct of ideas and perceptions. As such, you don’t have complete control over its position. What’s important is that you define clearly, consistently and precisely where it sits within its market. Otherwise, your customers, and competitors, will determine its position it for you. So how do you decide where to locate your brand? The first and most obvious thing to

do is work out the size and extent of your market. If you’re a single-store retailer or small professional services firm, it’s going to be local. As a specialist engineering company, you might be looking nationally. And if you’re a luxury goods producer, manufacturing on a large scale or operating entirely online, your market is potentially global.

Just as your business may outgrow its original premises, your brand may find itself on the move, too – from local to regional, regional to national, national to global.

Next, you need to define where the top and bottom ends of the market lie: the supermarket cava and the Dom Perignon, the Reliant and the Rolls-Royce, of your particular sector. Then, you need to decide where your brand sits between those extremes. This needs to be a realistic, honest

assessment. Your brand is a promise you make to your customers, and you have to be able to deliver. However hard you tell yourself you’re an upmarket brand, your customers won’t believe you if they’re getting downmarket products and service. There’s no problem in being more expensive than your competitors, as long as your customers are getting something more, different or both. Equally, it’s fine to position yourself lower down the market, but you need to have something more than just price to compete on: whatever business you’re in, someone can nearly always come along and do the same thing, for less. And just as, in time, your business may outgrow its original premises, your brand may find itself on the move, too – from local to regional, regional to national, national to global. At this point, you’ll need to re-evaluate, reconsider and decide where your new position is. The important thing is to know where you’re starting from - and where you want to end up. 01730 710033

The new branding for South Downs National Park



Housing Development

NIMBY? YOU SHOULD BE ASHAMED OF YOURSELF... Andy Parsons, Founder and Director of Yelo Architects discusses the current housing market and the future of planning and development in the UK.

Hove’s Sackville Tower - developments will need to become denser


he UK is in the grips of a massive housing crisis as we simply haven’t built enough homes for years. Current estimates are that we need 300,000 built per year. You might not think that sounds much for the whole of the country but at the top of the most recent housing boom in 2007, we still only built around 200,000 homes. Last year according to government figures we built 168,000 homes putting us massively behind achieving those targets. What is already very clear in the UK, is that we are moving further and further



What is already very clear in the UK, is that we are moving further and further into a rental market as home ownership becomes increasingly difficult for the younger generations

into a rental market as home ownership becomes increasingly difficult for the younger generations. Looking at the various generations and their opportunities for home ownership, it is clear we have a growing problem. Generation X (born between 1961 and 1980) are seen as the last band on the housing ladder. Whereas both Generation Y (born between 1981 to 1995) and Generation Z (post 1995) will predominantly be renters unless the bank of mum and dad help out. Even building 300,000 homes a year won’t necessarily increase homeownership as those

Housing Development additional homes are just to satisfy need, which is both through ownership but more increasingly for rental. The government is beginning to react to the growing problem and earlier this year launched a starter home programme, as well as announcing a series of new garden towns due to be built. Then in February the Housing White Paper was launched intending to accelerate the building of new homes. I’m still sceptical we will achieve the required goal of 300,000 homes a year but hopefully it will get house building moving at a much faster rate. The White Paper has taken a multi-pronged approach to the issue, which is undoubtedly the only route they could take with the massive increase needed in new homes. A lot of the new initiatives will impact all of our cities, towns, villages and communities, and will be evident to all of us. Good news for everyone is that there are many improvements to the planning system that are all intended to speed up the decision making process. We should feel the benefit of this through all planning applications, from large developments right through to small extensions to homes. Currently planning departments are under-resourced so planning fees are also to be increased so that more staff can be taken on. All councils will now have real housing targets that they will have to demonstrate they are achieving through a housing test. If the delivery of new homes falls below 25% of the housing requirement, then there will

be an automatic presumption in favour of sustainable development for all new planning applications. There is real prospect that if we don’t all support planning applications for new homes now, then developers will take advantage of the presumption in favour of sustainable development, and target towns and cities where the housing target isn’t met. Another interesting initiative in the paper is the reduction in planning permission duration, currently consents have had a time limit of three years but this will shortly be reduced to two years in order to get house building underway quicker.

Sadly I suspect that there will be many homes built in the future that will follow some of the bad lessons of the post-war housing boom and lead to homes with a short life.

Developers are also being encouraged to build denser schemes to really get as many homes as they can on a site. I’m always supportive of increasing densification providing that the quality of life for the occupier is a key driver of the design. Sadly I suspect that there will be many homes built

One Hove Park - dense schemes can be award winning and good homes

The Housing White Paper launched in February 2017 in the future that will follow some of the bad lessons of the post-war housing boom and lead to homes with a short life. Finally, the most interesting part for us as architects is the initiative to grant quicker planning consents for housing schemes that can be built quickly. Modular housing and accelerated builds are something we have been researching over the last few years, as we’ve felt that the traditional method of building homes has become outdated. Lots of the major developers are moving in the same direction, this is partly because speed is financially efficient but also because we have lost so many of our traditional craftspeople in this country. Our own research has led to designs for standardised modular house-types that we intend to build, with the first one starting this summer. As with many of the systems now available, the houses will be predominantly constructed in a factory and then assembled and completed on site. I began with a deliberately provocative headline, but there is a clear requirement for all of us to do our bit in helping our younger generations have their own homes - whether through ownership or rent. Over the next few years we will all be challenged by new developments in our villages, towns and cities that we may not be completely be supportive of, but we have to see that new homes are a positive initiative and need our support.

Yelo Architects 01273 608444 e: w:



Conflict Resolution

MANAGING THE UNMANAGEABLE! Paul Cook, Acas South East Senior Adviser, on dealing with ‘difficult’ staff


hy is it that occasionally one employee can appear in our professional lives and despite all our masterful skills and supportive interventions never ever get it? In fact to such an extreme that they take up a disproportionate amount of time, affect our judgement, set a collision course with others and even impact the business itself. Ever been in this situation and asked yourself: • Why won’t they listen? • What am I doing wrong? • What makes them so difficult? • Why can’t they see sense? Let’s rewind. Leadership/management skills and training tends to be based on some important baseline factors: 1.

The majority of people want to do a good job

2. Occasionally people act out of character and will appreciate support 3. Humans are sociable 4. Employees like to have a purpose at work 5. People like to add value and to help others

Unimaginable therefore that anyone intentionally and purposefully would be the polar opposite to some or all of these traits. Our free advice, conflict resolution and training services have supported thousands to effectively ‘manage the unmanageable’.

Not because we have any delusions about changing this particular employee but because we know there are different effective strategies and techniques that are needed to support you and your organisation.



Paul is a Senior Acas Advisor who specialises in leadership development, strategic management, group and individual behaviour profiling, conflict resolution and performance improvement. Paul holds a level 7 diploma in executive business coaching, is a member of the Chartered Management Institute and is a QCF (Diploma) qualified trainer in adult teaching and learning. In addition to this he is a NLP practitioner and specialist Emotional Intelligence profiler.

Acas (Advisory, Conciliation and Arbitration Service) provides free and impartial information and advice to employers and employees on all aspects of workplace relations and employment law. We support good relationships between employers and employees which underpin business success. But when things go wrong we help by providing conciliation to resolve workplace problems.



We also provide good value, high quality training and tailored advice to employers. Our expertise is based on millions of contacts with employers and employees each year. • Acas south east (01252 360701) – arrange a free advisory visit • Acas helpline (0300 123 1100) – for free and impartial advice • Acas customer services (0300 123 1150) – training events enquiries • - help & advice for employers and employees

Business Park

A QUICK GUIDE TO LANSBURY BUSINESS ESTATE All you need to know about Woking’s business estate by Director Mark Craven


ansbury Business Estate, Woking. From the early 1960’s, the site in Knaphill manufactured electrical controls, producing everything from switches used on washing machines and electric blankets to hair-care products. The company employed up to 500 people including dozens of assembly workers who were able to leave their young children in the company crèche. Chalk marks. Early tenants in the 1980’s looking for space to start or grow their business may have been unsure of the exact size required, so quite often the conversation went: “If you’re not sure how much space you need, here’s a piece of chalk, draw on the floor and we’ll build it that size”. This practical method of determining space worked for the initial period while there were still large open plan buildings available. Peripheral Development. During the eighties, a number of “starter” units were built around the perimeter of the site. These offered a mix of light industrial space and ancillary offices in 2,500 sq ft units. This type of space was particularly good for new startup companies and those expanding. Building Upgrades. The site maintenance team takes every opportunity to upgrade the building stock when possible to add double glazed windows, thermal insulation and LED lighting. Green Spaces. Great effort is made to keep the site looking green and pleasant for tenants and visitors. Grass areas are manicured and colourful planting (by Eve) in borders and tubs gives a splash reminder of nature. Car Parks. The parking areas have to deal with constant traffic movement seven days a week, so regular monitoring and surface maintenance is undertaken and new areas block paved.

Always Open Door. The management team is located on site and their door’s always open… Lawyers, Leases & Licenses. Early legal aspects were handled by a London firm, however, the management team soon became adept at drafting simple lease documents and the majority of 6 month licenses and 3 year leases are produced in house. Catering on-site. Radleys Café provides everything from a healthy breakfast to a choice of hot lunch in addition to business catering for meetings in the local area. Transport Links. One established company runs a minibus service for their employees to and from Woking station and encourages cycling for wellbeing and carbon reduction. Family Concern. Currently, there are three generations involved in the business, with the founder chairman comfortably in his nineties. MPs, Mayors & More. Lansbury Christmas

parties are one of the highlights of the year. All tenants are invited, festive food and drink is provided and distinguished guests include MPs, Mayors and mere mortals… Today. There are 30 companies on site which cover a wide range of industries including precision engineering, website development, surveying, subsea systems, instrument calibration, care agencies, bathroom fittings, water-coolers, CCTV systems, photography, PCB services, printers and the Woking Hospice main warehouse. Lansbury Linkups - Presentations & Opportunities. The site team is planning a series of presentations to tenants to share relevant advice that would benefit companies and employees on site. If you would consider participation, please email

Office Space is currently available on site, check for details.




GEARED UP FOR THE LEVY As one of the largest Apprenticeship providers in the area, the Guildford College Group have established an outstanding reputation for our commitment and knowledge towards Apprenticeships from Level 2 (an Intermediate Apprenticeship) through to Level 4 (also known as a Higher Apprenticeship). We currently offer over 20 Apprenticeships in a diverse range of subjects such as Business Administration, Electrical Installation through to Horticulture and Equine.


ith the Government’s plan to increase Apprenticeship participation to 3 million by 2020, along with the new Apprenticeship Levy which launches this month, work based learning programmes are now at the top of the agenda for organisations across the region. The Apprenticeship Levy, a new Government initiative designed to encourage large companies to maximise their Apprenticeship programmes, will be introduced to employers who have an annual payroll in excess of £3m. The first payments, at a rate of 0.5%, will be paid through PAYE and apply to employers across all sectors regardless of whether they already employ apprentices or not. All employers will receive an allowance of £15k to offset against payment of the Levy. By 2019–20, the Levy is expected to raise £3 billion in the UK. The incremental tax raised on the total payroll bill will be returned to employers through an online account by way of a voucher scheme (not unlike the Childcare voucher system), along with an uplift of 10% from the government. Training can either be given to new recruits or existing staff.



The employer can only spend the money on the delivery of apprenticeship based training offered through an approved training provider. And if the funds are not used after 24 months any unused vouchers will expire. So organisations need to forward plan in order to make the most out of this scheme.

If you are looking to hire your first, or next, Apprentice, we can help. With over 75 years of experience of delivering Apprenticeships to the local community, we have lots of experience in working with local employers and can help with finding you the ideal candidate and accessing potential government grants which could help to support training costs. Contact us today to find out more!

Services to Business, Guildford College Group Tel: 01483 44 85 30


LEARNING TO MANAGE Surrey Business School launches first UK Centre for Management Learning


n February 2017, Surrey Business School (SBS) launched the first Centre for Management Learning (CML) in the UK with the Vice President of the Management, Knowledge and Education (MKE) initiative at the British Academy of Management (BAM). The CML is a response to a business world that is in constant flux and shaken by economic, political, technological and societal events and changes around us. The business world is in need of flexible and reflective managers and leaders with versatile skills who can effectively deal with the challenges and changes ahead. Co-directors of the SBS centre primarily ask the question of how should students, at all levels, learn about, and to be, managers and leaders in a variety of organisational contexts and how should we train, develop, support and motivate teaching staff and scholars to explore, design and deliver a curriculum that meets these requirements? The mission of the CML is to be the leading

UK competency centre for such enquiry and aims to improve and enhance teaching excellence in management through industryinformed curriculum design, new teaching practices, staff development and pedagogic research and events. As such the centre is unique in supporting and practicing teaching and learning excellence and we welcome academics and people from industry across the UK to join us on a new journey that transforms the way we teach our leaders of the future. Industry partners are invited to work with CML to help develop graduates with values, skills and mind-sets ready for industry. Benefits include: • Close collaboration with CML industry partner representatives • Logo and partnership featured on CML website and communicated via various online channels • Involvement in CML events (e.g. planning, participating, attending, hosting, sponsoring)

• Involvement in the CML Annual International Symposium (e.g. planning, participating, attending, hosting, sponsoring, presenting awards) • Opportunity to meet and collaborate with other CML industry and academic partners • Online and offline social media presence via the Surrey Business School network and the Surrey Public Relations team • Discount for staff on our Post Graduate Certificate in Management Learning – a qualification in management learning designed for practitioners to teach in a business school as associates • There is no joining fee or membership at present for the first 12 months

For more information and news on research and events please visit our website If you would like to get involved please send an email to




WHY PROFESSIONAL QUALIFICATIONS MATTER Guildford College is rightly proud of its Services to Business team which is dedicated to working closely with employers to make a positive impact on their business.

The Guildford College Group is an accredited centre for many professional qualifications across a variety of business disciplines. By studying a professional qualification at Guildford College, staff acquire new skills in their field and learn the latest developments and practices. Continuing professional development also supports an organisation and keeps it at the cutting edge of its industry. Ian Trevett met Tim Newcombe, the Head of Learning: Business IT, HE & Professional Courses at Guildford College, to find out more about its professional offering. Why should businesses use the services at Guildford College?

either cherry-pick from the existing regional qualifications or we can design a bespoke training programme.

One of the strengths of our Professional Services courses is that we have got tutors who are from the business world. We have former consultants, chief execs, bankers, IT experts and lawyers. We have the skill base that can be translated into training and the accreditations.

Do you have a commercial background yourself?

and pseudo-government bodies. It helps to have been out there and done it. It also helps to understand some of the theories behind it. Sometimes I wish I’d known about the academic side when I was in business. The aim is that you can tie the two together.

I came from business. I used to be the Chief Executive of a marketing company and then became the MD of a travel business.

What made you decide to switch to education?

Fundamentally I’m a business person who’s in education. I’ll always see myself first and foremost as a commercial person and I’m learning about the business of education

I came into education about six or seven years ago, when I had one of those moments in your career when you think: “I want to do something different.” Perhaps there was also

We can address particular needs that companies have. If something doesn’t quite fit off the shelf, we can put something together. We do a training needs analysis and



Interview What are the gaps? A lot of it was basic numeracy, basic literacy and basic presentations. There is now more emphasis on embedding much more English and Maths, and more emphasis on employability. Colleges of FE often represent a second chance. We get young people who perhaps didn’t have the best of school experiences, and maybe didn’t realise how important education is. When they have grown up a bit they understand the value of education more. Maybe they are in a trade but want to study a bit more about business.

What is the main difference between the business and education environments? the agenda of wanting to give a little bit back. One of the reasons why I went into education was that I was always a little bit disappointed by the standards of the people that we recruited from the local colleges when I was based in Bristol. I started to think to myself: “Where’s the gap here?”

There are lots of similarities. Both now have to operate in the private space and the accountability space. Education was very dependent on government funding, so the strategic agenda is very much to remove that dependency.

CASE STUDY - ILM Aidan Wallis is the Programme Manager for the Institute of Leadership and Management course and also teaches CIPD courses (the professional body for HR and people development) at Guildford College. At what level are the Management courses? We have Level 3 which is for new managers or new leaders. They could be team leaders or they could be slightly more experienced managers who haven’t had a huge amount of leadership and management training. Our Level 5 students tend to be people who’ve had a few more years of experience and may be second line managers. Level 3 is academically the equivalent of an A Level and it’s designed for adults with little management training. Level 3 is quite a good place to start to train new managers. Are ILM courses based on exams? Assessment is based on coursework – no exams! We run awards, certificates and diplomas. In brief, an award is two units, a certificate is probably around five or seven units, and the diploma is usually about 15-20 units. The advantage that we have is that we’re able to deliver the course in a classroom setting. Some people are quite happy to do remotebased learning - and we can offer that too - but students tell us that most benefit is gained from the interaction in the classroom between people

What types of companies send their staff to the college? It’s very much the SME sector. We work with several large companies, but the corporations often have the budgets for internal training. Of course, where there’s a need for specialist help, we can satisfy that. Typically we’d work with companies with over ten employees, where firms are established enough to see the need for training programmes. However, it is true that companies either have a training and development culture or they haven’t. People want to develop their skills and careers, so not training staff is quite a risky thing to do. If companies treat their staff correctly and train them, then they will become more effective and will likely remain at the organisation.

For more information go to or call the team on 01483 44 85 30

doing similar jobs in other businesses. Students come in on Friday afternoons, so it’s not too disruptive for their employers.


Why do students take ILM courses? What students tell us is that it’s a bit of a mixture. Some people come on the course wanting a qualification for their CV; others come on the course because they feel that they are acting in the role of a manager, but they feel uncomfortable. They lack the confidence that they should have to operate to their full potential because they don’t have that theoretical knowledge and skills. It’s a mixture of theory, of examples from case studies, and is also very much based on the experience of the individuals on the course. So the real value comes in allowing the theory to help you to take effective approaches in managing and leading. What’s your background? I was in IT. I’m a change management consultant, an IT consultant by background. I focused in the banking sector, and then a few years ago I decided to make a change. You’re always learning. There are always new theories coming up, there are always new ideas. We use sources like TED in class, so our real-world examples quite often come from social media. We use Twitter to highlight new articles, new ideas that are coming up. And we encourage our students to do the same, to bring new ideas and interesting thoughts to the class.


CONSTRUCTION CIOB Site Management Studies Level 4 Certificate &Diploma

HR CIPD Levels 3 & 5

LAW CILEx Certificate, Diploma, Higher Diploma & Graduate ‘Fast Track’ Diploma

MANAGEMENT ILM Level 3 - 5 Award, Certificate & Diploma

PROJECT MANAGEMENT PRINCE2 ® Foundation and Practitioner




TO THE MANORS BORN After the purchase of Hartsfield Manor by CQK Ltd, Giles Thomas is now the General Manager of three hotels in Surrey and Kent, all of which are converted from traditional manor houses. Is this a deliberate growth plan or just coincidence? Ian Trevett met with Giles and Group Marketing Manager, Chris Ells, to find out.


t is no surprise to find a collection of sumptuous wedding albums in the reception of Hartsfield Manor, this venue is one of the most photogenic buildings you can find. The Victorian manor house is set in 16 acres of rolling grounds, lawns and terraces, and is is one of the county’s most popular choices of brides wanting a dream wedding. However this is not just a fairy-tale wedding venue. The last time I came here was a visit, romance was certainly not in the air. Instead I had to sit through several hours of being told how to drive safely - but then that was my fault for not noticing the speed cameras! Hartsfield is also a busy conference and meetings venue, and one of their clients is the company providing speed awareness courses for naughty drivers. But even though I didn’t want to be there, I couldn’t help but be charmed by the idyllic location. So is this a wedding venue, conference centre or hotel? And how does it fit in with current collection of hotels. Sitting in the traditionally panelled lounge, looking out of the lush countryside, I asked Giles and Chris, why CQK had taken on the venue and how it fits in with the group’s current portfolio.



Giles explains: “It is all three! Hartsfield Manor is the third hotel in the group of hotels, the others are Reigate Manor in Surrey and Hadlow Manor in Kent. We have invested heavily in the two hotels and they have seen a great incline in our turnover and performance. So the owner, Geoffrey Goddard, and I had a discussion about expanding. When we saw Hartsfield we both agreed that this would be the perfect location for us as a group to take on board.

We want people to know you don’t need to book a wedding for a big corporate event to be welcome here. We want to get as much connection as possible with Betchworth and Dorking and the local areas.

“It is a venue with huge potential. There are lots of people who want to come out of London for a relaxing conference/training centre and it is very quiet here as we’re set back from the main road. Coming up the drive to the manor house gives you that expectation that you’re coming up to a very grand building.” “It also has the advantage that it is local to Reigate Manor. We know the area and we can transfer staff between the one and the other and offer better training facilities and development for our teams.” The offerings of the three hotels have common themes, but they are distinct and have strong individual characteristics. Giles describes them as follows: “Hadlow Manor is a 29-bedroom hotel, with three function rooms. It’s predominantly a wedding venue, so occupancy is seasonal. We can comfortably host two weddings on one day. Weddings are the number one priority in the summertime. “Reigate Manor is more of a private function and events venue, with six function rooms. We do weddings but it is a smaller percentage of

Interview the business as compared to the other two hotels. The majority of the functions are charity dinners, balls, lodge dinners, birthday parties and private celebrations. We also have corporate rates agreed with many local companies At the weekends rooms are taken by people attending the functions or events at local golf clubs and rugby clubs. “We are almost there on a complete refurbishment of the hotel. Both hotels have won awards recently, and Reigate Manor has just won Reigate and Banstead Business of the Year at the Surrey SME Business awards.” Now they also have Hartsfield which shares Hadlow’s strength in the wedding market and Reigate’s corporate relationships, so what are the plans?

Coming up the drive to the manor house gives you that expectation that you’re coming up to a very grand building.

Giles says, “We never intended to come in and make dramatic changes from day one. It is already a destination conference and wedding venue. It is very much a learning process for us to see what was involved. We want to have an understanding of what the structure is here, before deciding what areas we need to invest in.” Chris adds, “One thing we are already bringing in is the increased connection with the local community. At Reigate Manor, we built our name with our events for local people, such as the summer fayre or the Christmas fete. If there is an event in town you would always see us there -

usually with our hog roast. “We want people to know you don’t need to book a wedding for a big corporate event to be welcome here. We want to get as much connection as possible with Betchworth and Dorking and the local areas. Giles agrees. “Before I came to work in hotels I saw them as places you need to be invited to unless you were coming to a specific event. And that’s not at all what our brand is. We’re very much connected with our customers. We want to make sure it feels welcoming and it’s good value for money. So for instance, Sunday lunch at Reigate Manor is one of the most popular events in the local town.” Now you have three ‘Manor’ Hotels. Is this all part of a big masterplan? “We didn’t buy the hotel because of its name,” says Giles, “but it is a good story. We don’t have plans to become the “Manor Hotel Group”. We’re very much an independent group that runs our hotels with our management team on the ground, so for us our brand isn’t a number one priority. It is all about understanding the business and making sure we knew the direction we want to go to and then we could see how our brand develops. “Probably in 12 months’ time we would have set our decision on our business plan of where we’re going to go with Hartsfield Manor and what form of developments we might be putting in place. And I would have thought in three years’ time those developments would have been complete, and perhaps we may be looking at the next property.” And, of course, if the next one also is a “Manor” hotel, it will just be another co-incidence!



Business Awards




epresentatives from the local business community gathered to launch this year’s Leatherhead & District Business Awards at ExxonMobil. With six categories, the awards celebrate those who are building dynamic local and international businesses and people who inspire others to achieve their potential. This year’s award partners are ExxonMobil (Headline Sponsor), Mole Valley District Council, the Leatherhead & District Chamber of Commerce, the Gatwick Diamond Initiative, Prowse & Company Ltd, Platinum Publishing Group, the Leatherhead Advertiser, BBC Radio Surrey and Fetcham Park. Fetcham Park is this year’s trophy sponsor  Open to any individual or business located within Leatherhead, Ashtead, Bookham, Effingham, Mickleham or Fetcham in Surrey, the awards are free to enter.  Organisations and individuals may enter for more than one category or nominate others.  Entry forms are available online at: or via the Awards Office on 01372 363386.  The entry deadline is 19th May 2017. Jackie Quinn, President of the Leatherhead & District Chamber of Commerce said: “The Chamber is delighted to support the Leatherhead & District Business Awards again this year. The awards scheme is a fitting celebration of the talent which abounds in the local business community. Continuing from the success of previous years, we hope to engage even more businesses and look forward to congratulating our next round of deserving winners.” Joanne Rogers, Managing Director of Prowse & Co. added: “Over the years, these awards have become an excellent platform for shining a spotlight on local business achievements and we are sure they will be a huge success once again.”



The 2017 Categories 1. Contribution to the Community Award (sponsored by ExxonMobil). 2. Start-Up Business of the Year (sponsored by Mole Valley District Council). 3. Business of the Year (sponsored by the Leatherhead & District Chamber of Commerce). 4. International Business of the Year (sponsored by The Gatwick Diamond Initiative). 5. R etail/Hospitality Establishment of the Year (sponsored by Platinum Publishing Group). 6. Business Person of the Year (sponsored by Prowse & Co. Ltd). A panel of senior executives from organisations in Leatherhead & District will judge the awards. Finalists will be invited to an awards ceremony at St. John’s School, Leatherhead on 4th July where each winner will be presented with a trophy and certificate in front of an audience of 60 guests.

Chambers Website

SURREY CHAMBERS GET AN ONLINE MAKEOVER Akiko Design to create new responsive website for Surrey Chambers.


kiko Design Limited were delighted when approached by Surrey Chambers of Commerce to design and build their new, fully responsive website. Members of the Akiko Design team set to work to create a new look and feel for the Surrey Chambers website that will work equally well across desktop and mobile devices. David Evans, Managing Director of Akiko Design Ltd commented, “Surrey Chambers do a fantastic job of bringing together and raising the profile of thousands of businesses in the county. As a Surrey-based business ourselves, we were thrilled to be given the opportunity to build their new interactive website.” Louise Punter, CEO of Surrey Chambers of Commerce said, “Surrey Chambers is an ideal vehicle for businesses to consider as part of their marketing strategy. It is imperative that our website allows members to connect with each other and generate new business in an effective and user-friendly way.”

promotional merchandise company, Sourcing City, relies on Akiko to provide a wide range of digital solutions. Over the last 7 years Akiko has developed vast product directories, mobile apps, bespoke search tools and e-shots for Sourcing City; the website is renowned for always being ahead of the game and has won two British Promotional Marketing Association awards, including Best Website of the Year. David Long, Founder & Chairman of Sourcing City commented, “The Akiko team are innovative and creative, with excellent finished products, and are always a pleasure to work with.” In today’s modern world, mobile apps continue to go from strength to strength and Akiko are just about to launch a brand new one for online women’s health magazine, Healthista; it will combine the knowledge of health experts with the experiences of Healthista’s female readers in a new and

exciting way. Definitely one for women on the move! As part of their suite of services, Akiko can also offer compelling 3D animations for technical demonstrations, reality simulations, special effects, product launches and much more.

Further information can be found on Akiko Design’s website: The team can also be reached on (01483) 510 510 and would be happy to discuss your digital requirements or set up a free initial consultation.

On all their projects, which range from microsites to huge e-commerce platforms, Akiko aim to produce unique digital experiences for their clients. The first step is to agree a strategy that will deliver the type of website the client wants and needs. This involves helping clients choose between responsive and adaptive design and then tailoring the build to meet their needs by integrating key marketing tools such as video, social media and other marketing collateral. Jay Horner, Director and Co-founder of Akiko Design Ltd said, “Good design expresses a company’s core brand values and positions it ahead of the competition. We create digital communications that enable our clients to engage with their target audience and establish their reputation.” Having worked with a number of top brands, Akiko have established an excellent creative reputation and a track record for clear strategic thinking. The iconic British fashion brand, Ghost, recently commissioned Akiko to provide a rebrand and redesign of their website and the UK’s number one SURREY CHAMBERS



SURREY CHAMBERS GOLF SOCIETY Why not join a thriving Business Networking Golf Society? Now in itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s 21st year, it is open to all business people to join. Camberley Heath Golf Club







Walton Heath GC

Worplesdon GC

Camberley Heath GC

Bacon rolls, tee off from 9am, 18 holes (Old Course) and carvery lunch. Ends 5.30pm.

Bacon rolls, tee off from 9am, two tee start,18 holes and 3 course carvery lunch. Ends by 5.30pm.

Bacon rolls, tee off from 10am, 18 holes and late lunch. Ends 5.30pm.

SCGS & SCC Members £150+ vat

SCGS & SCC Members £120 + vat

Guests £85 + vat

Guests £165 + vat

Guests £135 + vat


I think we must be pretty unique to have such a regularly well attended golf days throughout the year – testimony to the quality of the courses and the fact that we have a really big core of business players that enjoy meeting up with each other ANDREW LANE


Coombe Hill GC Bacon rolls, tee off 8.30am, 18 holes and 3 course lunch. Ends by 5.30pm. SCGS & SCC Members £120 + vat Guests £135 + vat

WED 21ST JUNE Hayling Island GC Coffee, tee off 9.30am, 18 holes and 2 course lunch. Ends 6pm.

SCGS & SCC Members £70 + vat


Cuddington GC Tee off 1.30pm, 18 holes and 2 course supper. Ends 9pm. SCGS & SCC Members £70 + vat

Bacon rolls, tee off 8.45am, 18 holes and late lunch. Ends 5.30pm. SCGS & SCC Members £125 + vat Guests £140 + vat

Guests £85 + vat



Woking GC Bacon rolls, tee off 9.10am, 18 holes and lunch. Ends 5.30pm.

New Zealand GC Coffee and bacon rolls, tee off from 8.45am, 18 holes and late lunch. Ends 5.30pm. SCGS & SCC Members £125.00 + vat/ Guests £140.00 + vat

Excellent Society, brilliantly run, can’t fault anything JASON LURIE

SCGS & SCC Members tbc Guests tbc Membership of the golf society runs annually. Members of Surrey Chambers can register for free. Non-members £50 +VAT (per person) or 2 years at a discounted rate of £85 +VAT

SCGS & SCC Members £85 + vat Guests £95 + vat



Travel - Hong Kong

Shake hands in...

HONG KONG Rose Dykins heads to the City of Life to discover its incredible past, its present challenges and its future business prospects.


ust downhill from Hong Kong’s achingly cool PoHo district in Sheung Wan – away from the craft beer bars, pop-up fashion stores, and a (rather intimidating) glass-walled yoga studio – an unassuming square, Pak Tsz Lane Park, marks one of the most important places in modern China’s history. It is the original site of the Furen Literary Society – who spread ideas of revolution against the Qing dynasty and established a republic in China. Hemmed in by alleyways caked in graffiti and grimy high-rise buildings, with a discreet brown monument at its centre, its surrounds



are surprisingly gritty. However, my guide Danny Fung, points out they were chosen for a reason: “If the revolutionaries needed to evacuate the area at short notice, they could disappear down one of these alleyways.” Danny takes me on a fascinating and well-curated three-hour walking tour of the Hong Kong Intrepid’s Urban Adventures series ( – ideal for time-pressed business travellers who only have a spare afternoon to get to know a city once their meetings are finished. We’re led from leafy Possession Street, where the British

claimed Hong Kong as a colony in 1841, all the way to the Hong Kong Convention and Exhibition Centre, where Hong Kong was officially handed back to China in 1997, and the red starry flag was raised in ceremony. The transition from the incense-filled Taoist temples and Chinese medicine shops of Sheung Wan, to the glinting gargantuan buildings lining Victoria Harbour is extremely striking, and it’s amazing what a difference 114 years makes. In July, Hong Kong will celebrate 20 years of independence from British rule.

Travel - Hong Kong Part of Hong Kong’s appeal for the international business community has always been that it offers the best of both worlds. Having semi-autonomy from the red tape and legal system of Communist-run mainland China, while also being a gateway to its booming economy, has made it a solid investment prospect for some time. Its stability has also been a key confidence booster for entrepreneurs. It will be interesting to see how the current political tensions play out, particularly if separatist sentiment gains momentum, as it did here in the UK. Major plans are underway for a super highspeed rail service that will connect Hong

Duddell Street Steps

The Hongkongers I spoke to were unsure how the occasion will be marked, although some mentioned that the government was allocating bigger budgets for annual cultural festivals. (For example, the budget for the internationally acclaimed Hong Kong Arts Festival has been boosted by 9% this year.)

Part of Hong Kong’s appeal for the international business community has always been that it offers the best of both worlds

During my visit in November, a different kind of independence was on some citizens’ minds. Beijing’s increasing influence over Hong Kong has been a bone of contention ever since President Xi and the Communist Party of China came to power in 2012. However, while I was in the city, the news broke that Beijing had banned two legally elected pro-independence Hong Kong lawmakers from entering office, for insulting China during their oaths they took while being sworn in. Feelings of frustration and contempt for mainland China were strong – 40,000 protestors took to the streets demanding independence for Hong Kong. (Some people also expressed anger towards the two lawmakers, believing they threw away a chance to secure Hong Kong’s future for the sake of making a statement.) What’s more, the Chinese government is also launching legal challenges against even more proindependence politicians, adding fuel to the fire.





Travel - Hong Kong Kong with mainland China. Costing $11 billion, the project involves building a train station on Hong Kong’s Victoria Harbour, with 26 km of track connecting it to Shenzhen, and is due for completion in late 2018. While the development won’t sit well with Hongkongers that reject further integration with China, it’s likely to be welcomed by business travellers.

German music tech company Soundbrenner. This year, it was reported that internationally, 1,926 start-ups are operating in the city, a large number of which were engaged in the Fintech sector – including financial software, cybersecurity, foreign exchange and anti-fraud services – which is unsurprising given Hong Kong’s roots as a banking powerhouse.

On a more local level for Platinum Business readers, Cathay Pacific recently re-introduced its direct flights from Gatwick to Hong Kong for the first time in 23 years. It’s the first route that the airline has operated with its new A350-900 aircraft, which is designed to offer a wider, quieter cabin with a new in-flight entertainment system.

A final attraction of Hong Kong – just in case you’re tempted – is its enviable lifestyle. It offers the cosmopolitanism, culinary diversity and colourful heritage of London, while its chaos is far more organised, its metro system much more modern, and its days are sunnier, with plenty of attractive public spaces to enjoy them. At the weekends, residents take ferries to the Outlying Islands to enjoy hiking, beaches and festivals, or kick back with a Beaujolais Nouveau in one of the city’s hidden hipster enclaves. There’s always something new to see, do and taste in the aptly nicknamed “City of Life”.

“We are delighted to return to Gatwick Airport with a non-stop service between Gatwick and Hong Kong,” says Paul Cruttenden, marketing and digital sales manager for Cathay Pacific. “The route will offer more choice, convenience and connectivity to both business and leisure travellers when travelling to North and Southeast Asia, China and the South West Pacific.


Cathay Pacific now offers a choice of three routes between the UK to Hong Kong, and onwards to over 190 destinations globally. These include five flights daily from London Heathrow, and four flights per week from both Manchester Airport and Gatwick Airport. The new Gatwick route exclusively features the new A350.

For further information, visit or call 0208 834 8888.

The transition from the incense-filled Taoist temples and Chinese medicine shops of Sheung Wan, to the glinting gargantuan buildings lining Victoria Harbour is extremely striking

“The new Gatwick route complements our existing five-times-daily service from Heathrow, bringing six daily flights to the London and the Southeast. Those living in the area will benefit from the popular time slots at Gatwick, and this will mean they can still easily connect to other destinations on the network.” In terms of investment activity, Hong Kong has been ranked as the world’s freest economy for 21 consecutive years by the Heritage Foundation, and placed second globally (after mainland China) for inflow of foreign direct investment in 2014, which totalled US$ 103 billion. Its taxation is low and simple, its infrastructure is world-leading, and its workforce is skilled and English literate, with a strong international outlook. A slew of companies that have recently set up headquarters in Hong Kong include travel tech company Kayak, travel app Trip Guru and

Tai Ping Shan Street

CREATIVE QUARTER: PMQ Housed in a converted former Police Married Quarters in PoHo (hence the name PMQ), this regeneration project really captured my imagination. Home to more than 100 entrepreneurs and designers, PMQ is a hub for creativity; a non-profit organisation that aims to nurture Hong Kong’s young talent. It has welcomed more than three million visitors since it opened in 2014, who are free to browse the open studios and boutiques of the entrepreneurs, making purchases and interacting with the people behind the products. The potential for collaboration and business partnerships with visitors is huge. I visited in the evening and perused the long corridors of the five-floor building. I found avant-guard jewellery, ground-breaking gadgets, artisan crafts and tantalising food concepts. PMQ also stages regular events, workshops and exhibitions, and was the host venue for the inaugural Hong Kong Fintech week last November.



More destinations than any other UK airport


Source: OAG schedules 2016


Travel - Hong Kong

TOP FOUR EVENT SPACES HONG KONG CONVENTION AND EXHIBITION CENTRE Protruding out to sea in the Central Business District, this cutting-edge 91,500 sqm venue hosts hundreds of conferences and events each year.

➠ HULLETT HOUSE Set on the edge of Kowloon in a landmark colonial building, this special hotel has individually designed suites, and offers a ‘heritage meeting experience’ with themed coffee breaks.

➠ UPPER HOUSE HOTEL With just 17 rooms, this original luxury property – with design inspired by nature – has a secluded open air terrace in the heart of the Central district, which has space for 100 guests.

➠ JUNK EXPERIENCE Set sail on the South China Sea on board a beautiful teak ship for the best way to experience Victoria Harbour. A range of catering options and extra activities are available.





It’s all in the eye of the business, says John Burroughes Managing Director, Uniglobe Preferred Travel


n 12 February 1898 the Brighton Evening Argus reported the sad demise of Mr Henry Lindfield. Mr Lindfield, aged 42, described as a gentleman, resided at 42 Montpelier Street in Brighton. He has the unique distinction of being the first ever victim of an electric car accident whilst driving in an Imperial electric carriage. As Mr. Lindfield’s car passed through Croydon, on route to Brighton and descended a steep hill where he lost control, it swerved off the road through a barbed wire fence and crashed into a tree where sadly Mr. Lindfield sustained injuries from which he never recovered. Exactly 100 years later another momentous occasion in transport history happened when on Friday, 22 May 1998 the very first British Airways “GO” flight took off from Stansted



airport to Rome Ciampino. The Go airlines project had the full backing of Bob Ayling, then CEO of British Airways, for it was in November 1997 that BA announced under the project name, Operation Blue Sky, it would launch its own low-cost carrier to meet the changing demand for air travel in Europe. After a brief spell of expansion and establishing a second operational base at Bristol airport, BA announced in November 2000 that it planned to sell Go in order to stem mounting losses and improve profit levels for the group, coupled with the concerns that Go was attracting customers from BA’s main line services. History now teaches us that this was an ill-conceived idea, Go was sold in June 2001 in the management buyout backed by private

equity firm 3i for £100 million. In May 2002 EasyJet announced that it would buy Go for £374 million to expand its own operations and by December of that year Go was fully integrated under the EasyJet banner. We are all aware that a top brand name is worth considerably more than any multiple of a bottom-line, although the two can very often go hand-in-hand. British Airways is undoubtedly the Premier brand in the airline industry, it stands head and shoulders above many others, it is renowned for being a full-service airline, its quality of aircraft together with high quality maintenance regime, superb professional cabin crew plus the stiff upper lip sounding vocals of a captain that immediately gives you confidence.

Travel There are also many other nonvisible qualities that go to make up this brand such as training, number of hours a plane flies, pilot experience and dedicated crew members passionate about the brand. So when BA announced inclusive food would no longer be part of your ticket price on their short haul routes of up to 5 hours (unless you’re travelling business class), alarm bells started to ring again. It has been reported that BA will reduce the legroom by 1 inch on some short haul flights to European cities from next year. The airline is understood to be adding two extra rows to its Airbus A380 and A321 aircraft by cutting the gap between seats to 29 inches (74 cm).

We are all aware that a top brand name is worth considerably more than any multiple of a bottom-line, although the two can very often go hand-in-hand.

An analysis shows that this move would put BA on a par with EasyJet and Monarch but give passengers marginally less legroom than those flying with Ryanair, Flybe, Norwegian and the Hungarian budget airline whiz air. You don’t have to be a marketing expert to work out what Ryanair would do with that bit of news!

What is actually happening in the airline industry is the legacy carriers such as BA have looked at the yield per seat and profits the no-frills carriers are making and thought we want some of that thank you! It was Michael O’Leary with his Ryanair business model that pioneered the way of incredibly cheap seat price and charge for everything else. He’s a classic, and expert, business disrupter. However there are subtle differences between the two business models, the no-frills carriers do not have the huge infrastructure that legacy airlines have inherited over the years. They are also built on modern technology platforms that allow much more flexibility in terms of distribution and how you can charge for different products.

The big legacy airlines have been working to deliver more seamless and complete online capability, they are now on the precipice of a new distribution system, called NDC which stands for “New Distribution Capability” that will revolutionise many aspects of how we purchase travel in the future, and allow airlines to charge extra for just about everything.

It has been reported that BA will reduce the legroom by 1 inch on some short haul flights to European cities from next year

It is therefore interesting that today (March 17th) International Consolidated Airlines Group (IAG) owners of British Airways, Iberia, Aer Lingus and Vueling, have announced the launch of another new airline called Level, which will be based in Barcelona, initially flying long haul budget flights to Los Angeles, Oakland, Buenos Aires and Punta Cana in the Dominican Republic from June.

The airline will use Iberia crew and two new air bus A330 planes, fares should start from €99/$149 each way. This will give IAG five different brands to manage and many see this as an attempt to counter the challenge posted by low-cost newcomers such as Norwegian airlines. Although this looks good news for the traveller it remains to be seen what impact these sorts of initiatives will have on the more established mainstream airline brands such as BA. I believe history teaches us that before we run headlong towards the golden goose of profit one should pause a moment to reflect and ask, what we can learn from history? Following Mr Linfield’s unfortunate accident, Imperial Electric Cars ceased to trade having lost the trust of the public – is there a lesson here for BA? I’m sure we all sincerely hope that Willie Walsh and the amassed brainpower at IAG have looked at this proposition from every angle. Certainly one to watch.

If you’d like to know more, please contact me on SURREY CHAMBERS





antander has created a series of Masterclass events aimed at supporting and inspiring SME’s amongst their suite of initiatives under their Breakthrough Programme. The Breakthrough Programme includes Growth Capital Loans, access to university interns with their partner universities, insights into overseas markets to aid in exporting, Connection Events and their signature Masterclass events. These events are aimed at giving SME’s an insight into a range of marketleading companies and iconic brands and recent events have been held in partnership with Google, Saatchi Masius and Innocent Drinks. The events gives companies first-hand knowledge of how these businesses have accelerated their growth and unlocked their potential - something we are all looking to achieve. I joined a recent Masterclass at the home of McLaren in Woking as a guest of Colin



Berkeley, Santander’s Regional Director for Kent, Surrey and Sussex to understand what these events bring to the table.

To be told to take the highly specific technology from the rarified world of motor racing and apply it to other corporate sectors is not the average request

Few will argue that McLaren is one of those inspiring companies and just arriving at their HQ is inspiring in itself. Ron Dennis constructed a building that could of come straight out of a James Bond movie, with sweeping curves and wide open spaces that would appear to have been lifted out of an interior design magazine.

Add to this the scattering of Formula 1 cars and an astonishing 50 metre wall of trophies, this building sets the scene for an inspiring day. The first speaker was their COO of the McLaren Formula 1 racing team, Simon Roberts, and it was incredible to hear quite what it takes to run such a team. The logistics alone of moving 40 Colin tons of equipment and personnel Berkeley around the world to each race on the calendar was daunting let alone having to race these highly strung machines in an attempt to win every race. He also explained the ethos behind the seamless team work that goes into every weekend. Before lunch, we toured the legacy F1 cars and the McLaren Automotive factory where the road cars are built. No robots or conveyor

Masterclass belts here. Every car is hand built on rolling trollies in a spotless building - no oil or grease on the floor - in fact, l could of eaten my lunch from that very floor. Their new model, the 720S, was going into production and it was a privilege to see them being assembled.

Common sense does not make it common practise

After lunch, their Chief Innovation Officer gave a talk on where McLaren Applied Technologies (MAT) is heading and quickly realised that they needed to be speaking with market disruptors not market leaders as this is where progress was to be made. This takes quite an inspiring approach. To be told to take the highly specific technology from the rarified world of motor racing and apply it to other corporate sectors is not the average request but then this is not your average company. MAT’s world-class team of designers and engineers did not miss a beat. They immediately looked at a whole host of sectors to see where their technology could best be deployed. Along with certain sectors l am barred from revealing, they looked at bicycles in the same way they look at racing. Race cars are fitted to the individual driver and they are sculptured around their individual frame and weight therefore how could bicycles possibly be one size fits all? Apart from leg measurement, there is no further requirement and this just did not seem right. Therefore, working with Specialized, a well-known US cycle brand, MAT devised a system whereby the bikes are now made to adjust to the weight, stature and height of the rider and the ground over which they would ride.

This entire day starkly demonstrated to the fifteen business leaders attending that thinking outside the box is a mandatory action and not an optional action. Any technology, regardless of sector or size, can be utilised way beyond its intended use which has the effect of extending its life and its profitability, and therefore the company’s bottom line. It demonstrates that there is no need to be afraid of breaking into new markets, treading new ground or disrupting the status quo.

It is no surprise that McLaren support UK Government’s “GREAT Britain” campaign”

Great Britain was, for centuries, the home of brilliant engineers, inventors and designers that changed the world and they are still there now but, perhaps, a little cowed by the might of the US and China and the size and speed of international markets but, as McLaren aptly demonstrates, we can still be market leaders if we have the courage to adapt and overcome and, to use that hackneyed old phrase, think outside the box.

I was inspired by my day at the Santander Masterclass and everyone l met at McLaren and find myself bringing much of what l learnt back to my business - if it works for me, then I would heartily recommend a Santander Breakthrough Masterclass to every business leader in the UK.

Santander Business Banking Colin Berkeley Tel: 07739 860023 Mail: Web: breakthrough

“Through Santander’s series of Masterclasses delivered in collaboration with ambitious, innovative businesses such as McLaren, we provide locally based, similarly ambitious SMEs with practical tips to help them prosper. It's connectivity like this that we believe differentiates us from other traditional banks and enables our customers to take away knowledge and connections, and apply the learnings to their own businesses.” Colin Berkeley

This transformed the manufacture of Specialized bikes and this technology has been incorporated into every bike across its entire range, further disrupting the market. There are further applications for their technology and one in particular is within the medical industry, be launched soon and, again, l cannot reveal it here but it will fundamentally change important aspects of healthcare for patients across the world.



Direct Marketing

MAILING THE DEAD Is your email or direct mail database up to date? Do you know if you are sending marketing messages to people who have moved away - or even may be deceased. Misplaced direct marketing is costly and may cause distress. It’s never been more important to clean your data. By Andy Fry, Managing Director of Nova Direct. “Surely there’s an easier way to reach our customers, Lavinia?”


n 2016, amidst a flurry of celebrity deaths, the mortality rate in the UK increased by 5.4%, its highest rise for nearly 50 years. As a direct result, there is a greater risk that your direct marketing, either by email or post, may be going to a person who has passed away. It is important to keep up to date with ‘deceased supression’ i.e. the process where



your data is vigorously checked to ensure that those who have passed away are no longer on your lists. The number of pieces of direct mail sent to deceased people annually is set to cross the 200 million mark for the first time in 2017. On average, 80 mailing pieces are sent within the first year to the deceased individual. It is a

costly exercise, especially if you are using direct mail, but the human cost may be even higher. It is a waste of money and time, but this is insignificant compared to the emotional distress that can be caused when someone receives mail or email for a family member or spouse who has recently passed away. It can act as a painful reminder of the loss of a loved

Direct Marketing one. It also gives the impression that you have no interest in your customers if you do not know if they are dead or alive. The negative PR and brand damage may far outweigh the benefits of the marketing campaign. Surveys reveal that the two thirds of consumers would boycott a company if they received a piece of direct mail in the name of a loved one that has passed away. John Mitchison, head of preference services, compliance & legal at the Direct Marketing Association (DMA), says that marketers should be checking their customer database’s regularly to ensure they are up-to-date.

The negative PR and brand damage may far outweigh the benefits of the marketing campaign.

❞ He says, “The solution is to ensure marketers are using sources available totem to easily check their customer records, for example by using deceased lists or the Mailing Preference Service.” Although the idea of mailing to a person who has passed away is the worst scenario, there is a huge level of wasted time, money and effort spent mailing people who have moved home or businesses who have changed location. 500 million more pieces of direct mail are being opened and read compared with 2013, equating to an additional £1.6bn being added to the channel’s ROI, according to new research. It is estimated that 60 million pieces of direct mail are being sent to wrong addresses every year. Direct mail is still a massively powerful tool if it is done right. The perception that this is an old-fashioned method that has had its day was demolished when a leading American charity

decided to ditch is direct mail campaigns. Susannah Birkwood, writing for Fundraising Week reported: “The American Cancer Society’s income from new donors fell by $11.3m (£7m) after the charity suspended its direct mail acquisition programme in 2013.

The American Cancer Society’s income from new donors fell by $11.3m (£7m) after the charity suspended its direct mail.

“The cancer charity said at a conference that its new-donor numbers also fell by 11 per cent over the course of year. They estimated that the charity would have lost $29.5m (£19m) in new-donor income if the ACS had continued

without a direct mail programme over a fiveyear period and said the negative impact on planned gifts had not yet been determined, but was likely to be noticeable because direct mail-acquired donors had contributed $51m (£33m) to planned giving between 2002 and 2012.” Direct marketing is still a vital tool, but it only works if the data is clean, relevant and targetted. Now is the best time to have your data analysed, purged and cleansed in order to take ensure your Return on Investment in direct mail campaigns is maximised. Nova Direct offers a host of data management services, allowing you flexibility, while increasing opened mail and lowering waste. Next issue I will explain how we cleanse our data and ensure that a marketing campaign is properly targeted.

E: T: 01444231400



THE MINI BUSINESS PARTNERSHIP PROGRAMME. BIG BENEFITS FOR SMALL FLEETS. If you manage a small fleet of company cars, our Business Partnership Programme has been specifically designed for you. The MINI range is available to browse online, from the iconic MINI Hatch to the sophisticated MINI Clubman, with a variety of business contract hire terms to suit you and your business needs. To find out more, call the MINI Business Development Team on 0800 915 4700 or visit your local MINI Centre: Vines of Gatwick Stephenson Way, Three Bridges Crawley, West Sussex RH10 1TN

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Vines of Redhill 10-12 Bonehurst Road, Salfords Redhill, Surrey RH1 5EP

MINI Business Partnership Official Fuel Economy Figures for the MINI range: Urban 27.2-72.4 mpg (10.4-3.9 l/100km). Extra Urban 47.9-91.1 mpg (5.9-3.1 l/100km). Combined 37.7-83.1 mpg (7.5-3.4 l/100km). CO2 Emissions 175-89 g/km. Figures are obtained in a standardised test cycle. They are intended CHAMBERS for comparisonsSURREY between vehicles and may not be representative of what a user achieves under usual driving conditions.



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 fi nd 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 SURREY CHAMBERS before the selected day as restrictions may apply.


TITANIC TORQUE BMW M4 COMPETITION PACK By Motoring Editor, Maarten Hoffmann


ack in my days at the BBC, l was asked to consult with a London ad agency on the launch of one of their client’s brands. Being a very snotty BBC god, l refused to lower myself to work on a commercial ‘brand’ as that was not the done thing in 1979. We were above such things as soiling ourselves with ‘trade’. Then they sent me the budget and, for some inexplicable reason, l immediately changed my mind. This was my introduction to the ‘real’ world outside of the BBC bubble, and, co-incidentally, it was to launch the BMW M Series range of merchandise. And very nice it was too but l was not totally convinced until they invited me to drive an M Series car. Low and behold, they let me have the M1 for the day. That was my quite incredible introduction to the M Series. One of those has just sold for £603,000.



Now those lovely folk at BMW have delivered an M4 Competition Pack to my drive, as l presume the M4 is not quite quick enough!

Stand on the brake and this behemoth will leave bruises across your chest for the seatbelt.

This is the first significant upgrade to the M4 since its launch in 2014 and it offers more power, a new suspension with new springs and adaptive dampers, 20” tyres and an upgraded exhaust. The 3-litre straight six twin-turbo continues but they have managed to tease out

an extra 19bhp, bringing it to 444bhp, which cuts a tenth of a second from the 0-62 time to 4 seconds. The standard M3 & M4 have always been great cars but there was a tendency to be slightly unpredictable on the limit and it certainly kept you awake. The CP has sorted this out although it is still a car that keeps your eyes wide open when under full power. Is there too much power for the chassis? The engine feels like it is trying to rip itself free from its mountings. It’s a very angry car, some might say, furious. The optional carbon ceramic brakes are astonishing. I approached a left turn l needed a tad late and in any normal car l would of carried on and turned around when possible but the M4 needed no such consideration. Stand on the brake and this behemoth will

Motoring leave bruises across your chest from the seatbelt. They are remarkable and caused me to almost miss every turn all day! Beware though of those folk in ‘normal’ cars behind you as they will be mightily surprised and will never stop as fast as you do.

The engine feels like it is trying to rip itself free from its mountings. It’s a very angry car, some might say, furious.

Being front engine and rear wheel drive it is, shall we say, lively under power. There has always been a tendency for the back end of M3 and M4 models to come around to visit the front end under eager gear changes whilst cornering and that is only slightly improved here and a trigger happy right foot in the wet brings a recommendation that you file your last will and testament before you set off. But then, it would not be an M Series if a vicar could drive it now would it? If you feel the standard M4 is a bit of a handful, here you will need much larger hands. The ride is very firm no matter how many settings you tweak although the excellent seats hold you well. The interior is what you would expect from Munich. It is beautifully put together with great bolstered seats and although some reviews remark on squeaks and groans, l heard no such thing. The steering wheel is a tad too fat for me as you can’t quite get the tight grip you want (and need) but there is nothing else to moan about it. The M stripe seats belts are

a nice touch as are the M4 lights in the back of the seats. I am a great fan of head-up displays and this £825 option is a vital bolt-on and the iDrive media system seems easier to use than the vastly complex system l first used but then l am probably just getting used to it. Rear seat access is not great but then try getting two passengers into the back of a 911 and taking them more than 100 metres. If that’s a major concern, buy the M3 saloon but don’t wail when these things come charging past. If this is not quick enough for you, either visit your shrink or go for the fastest BMW out there – the M4 GTS. 500bhp and a hater of all speed bumps, you will need £122,000 and it

really is a track day car. A phenomenal, albeit bloody expensive, track day car. Competition comes in the form of the Mercedes C63 AMG and at 469bhp, it outguns the M4, whilst the S version offers 503bhp. Until the new Audi RS5 arrives, this could be seen as the alternative to the 911, as it is £16,000 cheaper and offers 83 more horses, if not quite the badge envy of the Porsche. The Competition Pack is only an extra £3000 over the standard car and really is a must have. The company expect more than 70% of M4 sales to be the CP. Write your will and buy the M4 CP – you will not regret it.

TECHNICAL STUFF Model tested: M4 Competition Pack Engine: 3-litre straight six twin turbo Power: 444bhp Performance: 0-60mph 4.0 seconds Top speed: 155mph limited Economy: 32.1 combined Price: £60,055.00 SURREY CHAMBERS



SUMMER’S COMING By Motoring Editor, Maarten Hoffmann


here is nothing quite like a convertible when the sun reluctantly decides to show its face and Fiat have been missing from this scenario since 2005, when the Barchetta rolled off the production line for the last time. Unfortunately, when reviewing such cars, it has to be done months earlier in the depths of ‘so called’ Spring. Actually, for me the best time is actually in the middle of the night with the heater going and the stars overhead, blasting around country lanes. If you like the Mazda MX5, then there is nothing not to like about the new Fiat 124 Spider as that is what it is but, after a little Italian tinkering, the 124 was born. It get a new engine and suspension and, most importantly, a new body. A sexier, more agile body. The first thing to say is that is tiny. Of course, it is designed to be a compact 2-seater sports car that will take two people and an overnight bag but the lack of any type of interior storage is just awful. There is nowhere to put anything. No glove box, no door compartments, not even a place for the keys as with starter buttons, keys are pretty much redundant these days. That said, it is a lot of fun and harks back to the 60’s when such sports cars were all the rage. The 1.4-litre turbocharged engine is mated to a good old fashioned manual gearbox and a large handbrake that allows for handbrake turns, which is also something from the past. It’s easier to drive than the MX5 and it’s not Japanese, so that’s a good thing. The MX5 is naturally aspirated whereby the 124 is turbo so the lag is there but it does like to be thrashed round the country lanes and you can’t help but smile. The 0-60 times ain’t too shabby at 7.3 seconds and the 6-speed box is crisp and easy to operate. The pedal spacing is good allowing toe/heel rapid operation which again, harks back to ye olde days. The new suspension works well and solves the Mazda’s tendency to roll in the corners and its small size makes it supremely easy to manoeuvre around town. Inside, it’s compact. If you are over 6’ you will struggle to find a comfortable driving position and getting out involves some pre-arranged twisting or falling out in my case. If you have a dodgy hip, go buy another car. The 7-inch touchscreen does what it should and l like the Satnav as

it just gives you short sharp instructions with little faffing around. The seats are well built, the leathers decent and although it’s great when the tops down, when up, it is a tad dark and dingy in there and a little claustrophobic. All in all this is a cracking little car for those that have no kids, no luggage, no drinks, no tissues, no keys and no hip problems. Would l buy this over the Mazda MX5 – every day of the week.

TECHNICAL STUFF Model tested: Fiat 124 Spider Engine: 1.4-litre Multiair turbo Power: 140bhp Performance: 0-62mph 7.5 seconds Top Speed: 134mph Economy: 44.1mpg combined Price: £20,995.00



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

THE TOP GEAR EXPERIENCE Using original BBC footage and presented in full HD you feel the full force of acceleration in this exciting simulator, with slick gear changes and phenomenal breaking on the Top Gear track. This season the Top Gear Experience offers a brand new feature - the Ariel Atom - one of the fastest accelerating cars in the world, capable of reaching 100mph in 6 seconds back to 0 in 4 seconds. We then move on to a favourite with the drift community - the 197bhp Toyota GT86.

THE F1 EXPERIENCE This simulator experience is new for 2017 and offers members of the public the opportunity to take part in a fantastic, immersive experience. Featuring three time Formula 1 World Champion driver Lewis Hamilton and utilising real telemetry and footage from our Mercedes AMG Petronas F1 testing sessions at the world famous Silverstone circuit. We use the latest in motion simulation technology to offer a unique and exciting experience to thrill any age group.

Tickets are free but you must pre-register here:





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




THE 2017 GENEVA MOTOR SHOW by Maarten Hoffmann Geneva is always a great show and this year we were not disappointed. Here is a selection of the brightest and boldest, which also serves as my menu for the review cars l will order this year for your delight and delectation – this is just a job – l get no personal satisfaction from driving these cars whatsoever……..


Aston brings the track to life with this AMR that follows in the wheel tracks of the iconic winners of Le Mans and the FIA World Endurance Championships. See it as their version of Mercedes AMG and there will be an AMR version of all new models. Apparently, they are not fast enough already!


This is the latest Bentley concept car – an all-electric sports car and l would not bet against it going into production. Following on from the 4x4 Bentayga, the company seems to be on a roll of exploiting the marque so why not a drop top sports car?


JLR work on the principle that if there is the tiniest gap in their range, shoehorn another model into it. This new model, the Velar, is supposed to fit in between the Evoque and the RR Sport. Both are great cars but is there room for another? Available from the Summer 2017 at £44,830.






This new McLaren in the second generation Super Series and l watched them build one at the factory only last week. A twin-turbo V8 producing 720bhp (hence the name) and 0-60 in 2.8 seconds – this is a true supercar and deliveries will commence in May 2017, at a trifling £208,600


From one of the world’s most exclusive production lines, this little beauty will cover 0-60 in 3.4 seconds using the Mercedes AMG V12 with 678bhp. Only 5 will ever be built and at £1.3 million, deep pockets will be required. You will never see one as all 5 will go straight into investment storage.

This is the fastest road going Ferrari ever built with a brand new V12 engine and is a nod back to the 1969 365 GTB4 Daytona. 0-60 in 2.9 seconds and on to over 200mph. I licked it.


The new Ford GT is powered by the 3.5-litre V6 but creates a whopping 600bhp. They will only build 250 a year and the first two years’ worth of production has been snapped up already with 6,506 applications for the 500 cars.


This norse God is the long-awaited child of Aston Martin and Red Bull Racing. A 6.5-litre naturally aspirated V12 with a 7-speed gearbox from Sussex based Ricardo Engineering, and designed by the F1 God himself, Adrian Newey. Only 150 road going models will be built with a further 25 track only cars and deliveries from 2019.


This AMG recently smashed the track record at the Nurburgring in a time of 7.10 seconds – one of the toughest race tracks in the world. Watch this space, as l will be taking three legendary supercars over there in August for a little poodle around. Its heart is a 4.0-litre twin turbo V8 producing 585bhp with a 0-60 of 3.6 seconds and costing £143,245.



Start Up Advice


Starting a new business can be daunting, but Surrey Chambers of Commerce has all you need to make starting-up as smooth as possible.


re you thinking of starting a business or have you just started one and need advice? Our members are always at the heart of our activities, and helping Surrey businesses move towards their goals is a priority for the team at Surrey Chambers. Setting up a business is an exciting and inspirational opportunity but it can also prove to be challenging, especially on your own. We want to support your business growth by bringing you our direct Business Advice Service to help you on your journey to success. Whatever success looks like to you, our 1-2-1 start-up clinics are designed to help you make it happen. These clinics are tailored to help you write your business plan, establish the viability of



your business, find your customers, choose the best networks to join, find sources of funding, and price and market your products.

Where to find it? Start Up Surrey Heath - is a bespoke complimentary service tailored for startup businesses. Brought to you by Surrey Heath Borough Council, Surrey Chambers of Commerce and Projectfive. Start Up Elmbridge – Elmbridge Business Network, Elmbridge Borough Council, Surrey Chambers of Commerce, Haines Watts Accounts and The Digital Hub are now working in partnership, to offer all local companies and potential companies the chance to meet with experienced professional

advisors to get tailored advice on their business. Even if you are not based in these areas, please call us on 01483 735547 - we want to help you.

What our customers say “The guidance received today made the process of moving forward less daunting and clear. I would recommend seeking their advice to anyone wanting to start a business.” Wendy Hesketh-Dewar, Furbabie To book your 60 minute slot for advice on developing your business, please call Alex Spooner on 01483 735547 or email

Start Up Advice

Start-Up Clinic Case Study Kathryn Harper started art-K 16 years ago in reaction to the lack of art for children at school. The art classes follow an age-based programme which explores a wide range of media and techniques such as acrylics, watercolour, clay, paper mache, paper sculpture and oil pastels. Over the years, it has grown to 140 children attending each week with 40 children on the waiting list. Due to huge demand for the classes, Kathryn decided she wanted to franchise art-K so children across the UK could have access to an art hub where they could creatively develop. Emily Harper recently started the art club

franchise. Attending art-K from 6-16 years, Emily went on to become an art assistant and returned after graduating from Bristol University, with a First Class Honours in Chemistry, to start the franchise. Although Emily had the motivation to make art-K a success, she also knew that she needed to gain some business training. She talked to Surrey Chambers of Commerce who suggested that she should attend a Start-Up Business Clinic. At the meeting, Emily worked through some problems with Richard, her business adviser, and started formulating a business plan. After the meeting Richard suggested that Emily should apply to ‘Start and Grow’; a government programme that offered business

mentorship to start-ups. The programme was also a stepping stone to securing a Virgin Start-Up loan, if required. After being accepted onto the programme, Emily and Richard worked together to produce a business plan and financial forecast that clearly outlined the company’s strategy. Emily says: “The response so far has been fantastic, we have five franchisees in five months so we are meeting targets. We are working hard to create a market presence for art-K as we believe that schools do not dedicate enough time in the curriculum for art. The Start-Up Clinic started me on the path that helped me develop a clear strategy for art-K”.



New Members

NEW MEMBERS Surrey Chambers of commerce welcomes itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s latest member companies BUSINESS CONSULTANTS Blade B.I.S. Ltd. Contact: Barry Codrington Tel: 7827084074

CONSTRUCTION & PROPERTY DHP (UK) LLP Contact: Andrew Page Tel: 01932 850100 DHP (UK) LLP Contact: Annie Leonard Tel: 01932 850100 Gower & Mae Contact: Mark Sharman Tel: 01483 230430 LAH Property Contact: Katrina Masterson-Erandkar Tel: 01784 457174

IT & COMMUNICATIONS Phygital Contact: Diane Savage Tel: 01483 511213 Techgecko Ltd Contact: Ant Kittle Tel: 01372 642601

CHAMBERS Farnham Chamber of Commerce Contact: Andrea Harrison Tel: 01252 716639 Farnham Chamber of Commerce Contact: Jackie Denyer Tel: 01252 716639



MANUFACTURING/ ENGINEERING European Technology Development Ltd Contact: Kay Mahoney Tel: 01372 363111

MARKETING & PR Conquest Consultancy - Social Media Management Contact: Dan Adams Tel: 01276 942017 Geoff Dodds Consulting Ltd Contact: Geoff Dodds Tel: 07802 476126 Lovelight Commercial Photography Contact: Stuart Mansfield Tel: 01483 237300 Room 11 design ltd Contact: Jason McEachran Tel: 01483 422500 White Label Creative Contact: Jo-ann Gumb Tel: 02087 267968 YUnique Marketing Ltd Contact: Jarmila Yu Tel: 01276 479866

RETAIL/WHOLESALE Minerva Commodities Contact: Chris Blenkiron Tel: 01420 540440

TRAINING & EDUCATION Crescat Ltd Contact: Nick Allsopp Tel: 07702 759082 Insightful HR Contact: Uwaila Uwaechia Tel: 07725 031108

MISCELLANEOUS Angle Europe Ltd Contact: Penny Lyons Tel: 01483 685830 Everywoman Limited Contact: Seema Bennett Tel: 02079 812574 Hurtwood Park Polo Club Contact: Jayne Jones Tel: 01483 272828 KM Products Europe Ltd Contact: David Scrivener Tel: 01932 571991 MEDINA PUBLISHING Ltd Contact: Jonathan Edwards Tel: 02083 997736 Mercer Contact: Jamie Willis Tel: 01483 777265 MMRI Ltd Contact: Janet Gunner Tel: 08000 236268

Business Awards

TOAST OF SURREY AWARDS S urrey is one of the most successful and productive areas for business in the UK. It’s a county that embraces innovation and is a fantastic location to run a business. With easy access to two major airports and fast routes into London companies are well placed to expand their markets. As a place to live it offers access to fabulous locations like the Surrey Hills; an area of outstanding natural beauty and great places for relaxation.

The Toast of Surrey Business Awards aim to celebrate success, recognise achievement and highlight the innovative people and companies in Surrey who are putting the region on the map by boosting the economy and making a positive contribution to the local community.

These awards are an integral part of the business community in Surrey and give us an opportunity to celebrate success. This year there are a number of new categories, making it really compelling for every type of business to enter. At Surrey Chambers of Commerce we wish all the applicants good luck. Louise Punter CEO Surrey Chambers of Commerce

As we celebrate the outstanding achievements of Surrey’s most successful businesses over the past year, the 2017 Toast of Surrey Business Awards is set to be the most impressive and memorable event of the Surrey

International Trade award for the second year running. British products are in high demand around the world and the global profile is at an alltime high. Only around 20% of British SME’s are already exporting their goods and services so the potential for growth is enormous. These companies, who venture into new export markets, tend to be rewarded both directly through boosted turnover, and indirectly through improved levels of efficiency, innovation and credibility. Exporting helps small companies grow and become more competitive in all their markets. Trading in new markets leads to the potential increase of sales and profits as well as gaining market share.

At the Toast of Surrey Awards we want to highlight those who have entered global markets as role models for those thinking of taking the plunge!

The awards night, which will take place on 28th June 2017 at Mercedes- Benz World, Weybridge will be attended by hundreds of Surrey’s business leaders and it promises to be a night filled with fabulous entertainment. It will be a celebration of the county’s best companies and a real reminder that Surrey is a great place to do business.

Mercedes-Benz World, Weybridge

Business Calendar.

Surrey Chambers of Commerce Sponsorship Surrey Chambers of Commerce is enormously proud to be associated with such a fantastic event and to sponsor the



Women in Business

WONDER WOMEN International Women’s Day brought together a host of Surrey women to celebrate being ‘bold for change’ in the business world.


n March 8th, Surrey Chambers of Commerce, University of Surrey Business School and Business Women in Surrey (BWiS) joined together to celebrate International Women’s Day (IWD). The event, held at the University of Surrey Business School and supported by NatWest, was chaired by local author Adele Parks - whose 16 novels have all been top ten bestsellers - and a panel of inspirational speakers. This year’s theme for IWD was #BeBoldForChange with women working in Science, Technology, Engineering and Maths (STEM) celebrated. The award for local outstanding Women in STEM was also voted for and in the weeks leading up to the event, businesses were urged to nominate women working in the STEM industry. Three nominees were short-listed; Dr Katie Perry, Chief Executive of The Daphne Jackson Trust, Hilary Flockhart, Business Development Manager at Cara Technology Ltd, and Professor Kym Jarvis, Managing Director of Viridian Consultants. BWiS cochairs Sally Pritchett (Director, Something Big) and Claire Dee (Director, Claire Dee Communications) were delighted to announce Kym Jarvis of Viridian Consultants the winner. Kym who is a geochemist by background, said: “I was thrilled, and very proud, to receive

this award on International Women’s day. Women are significantly underrepresented in all parts of the nuclear industry, and as a result, the industry is missing a great deal of potential talent from its workforce. Viridian develops innovative tools for nuclear decommissioning and homeland security. We are a strong team of innovators, with complementary expertise and skills, and the drive to succeed in all we do. Our vision is to make nuclear decommissioning safer, cleaner, faster and more cost effective”. An award of special recognition was also presented to Cllr Nikki Nelson-Smith by Surrey Chambers’ CEO, Louise Punter, for her hard

work championing STEM during her mayoral year in Guildford. Speakers on the night included Fiona Dunsire, Chief Executive Officer of Mercer UK; Cath Bishop, former Olympic rower and diplomat; Emily Revess; Pauline Yau; and Alex Trebilco, McLaren Project Design Engineer and STEM Ambassador.

If you would like to know more about Business Women in Surrey, please visit www. or contact Robyn Jackman on robyn.jackman@surrey-chambers. or call 01483 735540

About ‘Business Women in Surrey’ (BWiS) Are you a Surrey business person who loves your job? Are you serious about your profession and, when you do business, you mean business? Then the Surrey Chambers Business Women in Surrey community is for you. We are a local network of like-minded business people, sharing ideas, knowledge and skills via workshops, mentoring programmes, seminars and our annual flagship event which celebrates all that is great about business women in Surrey.





usiness Women Excellence Awards are proud to be launching the Surrey Edition of these prestigious awards. The Business Women Excellence Awards stretch across the whole of the county and celebrate the success of today’s best very females in business. Whether we like it or not, many companies today still remain male-dominated despite the obvious progress that has been made over the years to change that. These awards seek to highlight the best business women and the best businesses owned or coowned by women, and from the number of entries we received this year and the massive interest shown, they are set to be fixed in the calendar for many years to come. As we review this year’s nominations, it has shown us the talent, success and sheer determination of so many women across Sussex.    Nikki Gatenby, CEO of Propellernet said: “Picking up two awards at the 2016 Business Women Excellence Awards – Sussex Edition gala final was an unexpected and immense delight. Propellernet won the Business of the Year category and I won Digital Woman of the Year. It was inspiring to see the wide range of female led businesses in the room and feel the entrepreneurial spirit amongst my heroes and peers. You rarely take a moment to stop and look back over what you’ve achieved, and these awards gave you the chance to do exactly that.” The closing date for entries is 26th June 2017 and the black tie gala final will take place at the Copthorne Effingham Park Hotel on the 20th July.

Nikki Gatenby

THE CATEGORIES ARE: New Business/Start-Up of the Year Award Small Business of the Year Award (under 10 employees) Medium Business of the Year Award (10-50 employees) Large Business of the Year Award (over 50 employees) Business Woman of the Year The Business Innovation Entrepreneur of the Year Award Digital Woman of the Year Award Woman In Education Woman In Uniform Woman In Arts/Music/Dance/Media Employer of the Year Award Employee/s of the Year Award Contribution To The Community Award Mentor of the Year Award Women Of Courage

Sponsorship opportunities are available, please contact Faiza Shafeek on 01323 461298 or 07540 406685 or email for further details.

Lifetime Achievement Award Overall Business Or Business Woman of the Year Award SURREY CHAMBERS


Chamber Events

SURREY CHAMBERS EVENTS DIARY 2017 To find a full list of our 2017 events visit


th April

CHAMBERS POWER BREAKFAST - YOUR VIEWS WITH THE POLICE & CRIME COMMISSIONER 07:45 - 09:30 The Mandolay Hotel, 36 - 40 London Road, Guildford, GU1 2AF Member Rate: £20.00 +VAT Non Member Rate: £30.00 +VAT Give your feedback and views to the Police & Crime Commissioner at this breakfast, being held at the fantastic Mandolay Hotel, you will be able to speak directly to the Police & Crime Commissioner about issues in the local area and about initiatives which are being put in place by the Police in order to make Surrey safer. It is an opportunity to start the day on a productive note and discuss a topic with some great business people.


th April

MEMBERS’ NETWORKING EVENING 18:00 - 20:00 Wilkins Kennedy LLP (Heathrow), Gladstone House, 77-79 High Street, Surrey, TW20 9HY Member Rate: Free Non Member Rate: £20.00 +VAT Join members and non members for another networking opportunity. Networking is a sure fire way to creating sales and ultimately growing your business. Developing fresh, new and long lasting business contacts is a constant need for any business wishing to succeed. The question is, “Are you networking enough?” The event is absolutely free to members and refreshments and canapés will be served throughout the event. What do you have to lose? Just don’t forget your business cards!




rd May

POWER BREAKFAST WITH ENTERPRISE M3 07:45 - 09:30 Sandown Park Racecourse, Stable Office, Portsmouth Road, ESHER KT10 9AJ Member Rate: £20.00 +VAT Non Member Rate: £30.00 +VAT ENTERPRISE M3 LEP drives the economic growth of the area by working with businesses, key delivery partners and central government. This is achieved by showcasing success, highlighting opportunities and inspiring thinking. The Enterprise M3 Growth Hub businesses can find out about opportunities available to them in the area and Chris Quintana will be explaining how this all works.


th May

BWIS AFTERNOON TEA & SPA NETWORKING 13:00 - 17:00 Lythe Hill Hotel Ltd, Petworth Road, Surrey, GU27 3BQ Member Rate: £25.00 +VAT Non Member Rate: £35.00 +VAT Business Women in Surrey invite you to join us for an afternoon of lively networking and afternoon tea, along with access to Lythe Hill Spa. This informal event is a fantastic opportunity to network with fellow business professionals, grow your network and enjoy a relaxed afternoon.

Chamber Events



08:30 - 17:30

07:45 - 09:30

th May


th May


Coombe Hill Golf Club, Golf Club Drive, Coombe Hill, KIngston Upon Thames KT2 7DF Member Rate: £120 +VAT Non Member Rate: £135 +VAT Open 18 Hole Stableford competition open to all business people. Join us as a team of 3 or 4 players and entertain your own clients or as a solo player and we will place you in a team. 08.00 hrs Enjoy coffee & Danish pastry, 18 hole Stableford competition followed by three course lunch and prize giving, finishing by 17.30 hrs. Golf day main sponsor :- Elite Office Systems Technology:

Lythe Hill Hotel Ltd,Petworth Road, Surrey, GU27 3BQ Member Rate: £20.00 +VAT Non Member Rate: £30.00 +VAT Ian Windle, Group Chairman from Vistage International will lead this Power breakfast and speak about ‘Building a Healthy Organisation - the seven leadership behaviours that will transform your business’ - a talk on leadership and building a strong team from the top down.


th May



th May

ANNUAL PROPERTY GROUP LUNCH Location: The Guildhall, 131 High Street, Guildford, GU1 3AA Member Rate: £ 45+VAT Non Member: £60+VAT One of our most popular networking events of the year, held at the magnificent Guildhall. Join members and their guests for a presentation followed by a networking delicious buffet lunch. Run in association with the Guildford Business Forum, this event is normally fully booked, so don’t delay if you are thinking of coming.

07:45 - 09:30 Reigate Manor Hotel, Reigate Hill, Reigate, RH2 9PF Member Rate: £20.00 +VAT Non Member Rate: £30.00 +VAT The speaker is Amanda Seabrook, who started her career in Investment Management, working as an Investment Analyst at Fuji Lord-Abbett and ABN Amro Asset Management (Australia). She set up Workpond in 2011, initially as a marketplace for flexible work. This developed into full-service recruitment. In 2016, Workpond launched its Consultancy business providing support to businesses looking to develop more agile business structures, integrating flexible working with their overriding company goals.



Promotional Features

MEMBERS’ PROMOTIONAL FEATURES DO YOU NEED A DATA PROTECTION OFFICER? The new General Data Protection Regulations (GDPR) will come into force in the UK on 25th May 2018 and will replace our current Data Protection Act 1998 (DPA) with more stringent requirements and larger fines for non-compliance, with some GDPR breaches carrying fines of up to 4% of global annual turnover or 20 million euros. Despite the Brexit vote the government has confirmed that GDPR will be implemented in the UK in May 2018 and will continue to be law long after we leave the EU. Companies whose primary activities involve processing personal data on a large scale for the purposes of behavioural advertising, online tracking, fraud prevention, detection of money laundering, administering loyalty programs, running CCTV systems, monitoring smart meters etc. will be required to appoint a Data Protection Officer. The Data Protection Officer will be an invaluable asset to your business and will be pivotal to your sales and marketing effort. A clean and accurate database is an asset to your business and enables you to hone your communications to customers who have actually chosen to hear from you. It is vital that you start to prepare for GDPR sooner rather than later. Linda Bazant is a Post Brexit and GDPR Consultant. Email: Don’t Miss our event with Linda on the 22nd June at HG Wells Centre, Woking. Visit to book now.

NEW BRASSERIE AT MANNINGS HEATH Mannings Heath Golf Club & Wine Estate has opened a brand new restaurant, Benguela Brasserie. Paired with Benguela Cove Wine Estate in South Africa it is the UK’s very first and only combined golf and wine venue. Nestled deep in the heart of the Sussex countryside it boasts not only a golf course but a beautiful clubhouse dating back to the 17th Century. The brand new restaurant has been decorated to incorporate their South African link, with beautiful ostrich leather seats, open log fire for those cold winter nights and stunning views out onto the golf course and surrounding English countryside. It transforms itself from an open, relaxed lunchtime dining setting to an intimate, sophisticated atmosphere in the evening. Taking inspiration from classic foods and techniques but adding in a modern twist to excite the taste buds, the brand new executive chef Nick McAllister is creating mouth-watering, imaginative, seasonal menus; created using only the best locally sourced produce. The Benguela Brasserie offers fine dining that is accessible to everyone, food that is beautifully presented and complimented by the delicious wines of the Benguela Cove Lagoon Wine Estate. The Benguela Brasserie will be open Thursday – Sunday serving lunch from 12pm – 2.30pm & dinner from 6pm – 8.30pm. For more information or to make a booking call 01403 210228.



Promotional Features

PERFECT PITCH GUIDE Perfect Pitch have created a six point guide to telemarketing. 1. Build a rapport. No-one will want to speak to you if you are rude. Respect your contact’s time constraints and be polite! 2. Verbal contracts. If your contact cannot talk, find out when the best time is to call back. Where possible, get them to commit to a time and date. They will be more likely to answer, as they’ll be expecting your call. 3. Ensure that you listen more than you talk. Gather information such as budget review dates, who the decision makers are, as well as soft facts such as your contact’s favourite football team or their latest holiday destination. 4. Don’t harass. We find that it takes 3-4 calls from first speaking with a contact to receiving a definite answer. Agree a time frame with your contact for when you’ll call, and keep to it! 5. Obtain direct dials and personal email addresses. All of these details will help cut down the time it takes to contact your target. 6. Know what you’re going to say. Keep it concise and relevant to your contact. Remember: Gatekeepers are your friend! They will decide if you speak to your contact so get them on your side as early as possible! Be courteous, remember their name and most importantly, keep your fingers crossed!

01483 422 998.

HELPFUL TAX RELIEFS FOR GROWING BUSINESSES Working with many growing businesses, I often have to remind them about useful tax reliefs. These can really help with managing cash flow and generating valuable investment to fund growth. Here is a quick overview of some of them. • Make the most of your capital expenditure allowance The Annual Investment Allowance gives a 100% deduction from your taxable profit for the majority of assets in the year they were purchased. Company assets here include IT systems and equipment, but not cars. Currently companies can get the 100% tax relief on up to £200,000 capital expenditure a year. • R&D tax credits aren’t just for lab coats! Some businesses assume that the Research & Development (R&D) tax credits are just for those involved in manufacturing or scientific research. This isn’t the case and more companies are qualifying to claim up to 230% relief on their corporation tax bill for any money they spend on an R&D project. • EIS and SEIS – raising investment for growth The Enterprise Investment Scheme (EIS) and the Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme (SEIS) give tax breaks to investors who invest (subscribe for new shares) in small private companies. There are qualifying criteria, but they can a helpful way for smaller growing businesses to raise finance. Certain tax reliefs are available to aid cash-flow, ease innovation and fuel growth. I’ve mentioned a handful, but there are also things like the small business rate relief and business property relief. Make the most of what is available and ask a tax specialist for advice. Contact: Dean Hardy on 01483 423607 E:

LOST IN TRANSLATION? Whether you work internationally or locally, you may need translation at some point of time to convey your message effectively to your customers and suppliers. When you order translations from an agency, you get the advantages of continuity, confidentiality, quality control and subject specialists. Your material is translated by experienced professionals, who know how to preserve your message across multiple languages. Here are few tips to guide you when you need translation: • Don’t just pick the biggest or the cheapest when searching for translation agencies. Talk to a few to see if they really can do what you want. • Decide how important time, quality and cost are to you. Then consider if you’re being offered the right option(s). • Have your documents ready in an editable format where possible, like Word or InDesign. This saves time and money. • Be ready to answer questions about language variants, delivery time and file formats. • Explain the purpose of the translation: where and how will it be used? Contact Sophie Edmondson on 01252 733999 or email



Business Events


ne of the great things about working for Surrey Chambers of Commerce is the sheer variety of what we get involved in. We listen to our members and deliver events and activities which meet with their needs. One of our recent initiatives was the revival of our Surrey Corporate Social Responsibility (CSR) Forum. We offer many opportunities for businesses to demonstrate their CSR commitment including working with member charities, taking part in Careers Fairs and supporting fledgling start-up businesses. But there are so many other ways that businesses are contributing to the local community. In today’s society running a good business is not just about providing a great experience for customers, but letting those customers know that their money is being used for something good too. Many staff members will say they want to work for a business that cares about its community and will happily volunteer for local initiatives. What’s missing is wider recognition of our enormous array of civic-minded businesses, whose people give up thousands of hours of their free time for community activities, and raise millions each year for local charities. We know of several business leaders who demonstrate their commitment to young people by giving their time to partner with local schools, serve on governing bodies, and inspire the next generation of entrepreneurs. The purpose of the forum is to highlight best practice and to create a catalyst by bringing great causes together with businesses. Ideas are created, relationships are formed and CSR activities are increased. We will then be celebrating and recognising our local business achievements. At the first Forum we heard from Skanska, who focus on employing ex-service people. Although they don’t see it as pure CSR because it gives them great business benefit they do provide significant support to their recruits.

Surrey Youth Focus presented the case for giving young people with learning difficulties an opportunity to experience the workplace and the example of the young man with autism, who had taken on a porter role at a local hospital showed how a small amount of support could benefit the employer, the employee and in this case the patients.

Many staff members will say they want to work for a business that cares about its community and will happily volunteer for local initiatives.

Finally London & Scottish International shared how working via the Rotary club they are able to have a significant impact locally and globally.

The room was full of other businesses with equally great stories and we plan to keep feeding the ideas and examples of CSR activities across our network to increase the accessibility to all of our members. On a broader note we need to be far better at talking about what we get right in business - rather than what we get wrong. There are great stories waiting to be told, good practices to share, and we want to ensure ministers understand our locally committed and embedded firms, who will ensure the future success of our community. At our next forum on the 16th May we look forward to hearing from Asahi, Unum and one of Surrey’s volunteering agencies. Let us know if you would like to join in! Contact or call 01483 735540




#TOSaw ards2017



The Awards Presentation will take place at Mercedes-Benz World



28th June 2017

For further information please contact Katy Hedge or Ashleigh Kerr at Champions (UK) plc on 08453 31 30 31 or /








www.toastofsu r reybu sinessaward

TOSBA2017 A5 Advert Landscape.indd 1

15/03/2017 11:24

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Lisa Wintrip 01372 364 160



Anger Management


OUT OF AFRICA by Maarten Hoffmann


he African continent has long been an economic basket case despite countless attempts over the generations to revitalise and regenerate the economy. Admittedly, the West’s shameful use of the continents inhabitants as slaves in the last century, and the wholesale plunder of all their resources, will not have endeared them to us but the past is the past and we should be moving forward into a new dawn for this most magnificent region of planet earth. Instead, it seems to be going backwards. The West should be utterly ashamed of itself over the debacle that is Zimbabwe. If any country with oil or other desired natural resources carried out the wholesale slaughter and enslavement of its citizens, the West would have been in there in a shot and Mugabe would be consigned to history. This starkly demonstrates our true nature. We don’t really care about the starvation and horror visited upon the people if there is nothing in it for us. Ignoring that holocaust has given rise to



the events currently taking place in Kenya. We allowed Mugabe the Butcher to overrun every white farm in the country and return them to the hands of locals. Admirable, one might think, until you look at what they have done with them. Nothing. Every white owned ranch in the country has gone to rack and ruin and the income generated for the country has dissolved to nothing. The crops growing on those farms have withered and died and the locals who worked on those farms are now unemployed. It is one of the greatest tragedies of our generation and yet we don’t lift a finger. And now Kenya is going the same way encouraged by the West’s disinterest. Last week the reports came though of the death of a white landowner, Tristan Voorpuy, who was shot when a massive herd of cattle were driven, intentionally, across his land. Mathew Lempurkel, a local MP, has been arrested for inciting the raid at which time he stated “It is a war – a third world war, against the whites” Voorpuy was, by all intents and purposes, one

of the good guys. He was a cavalry office in the British Army and settled in Kenya in 1983 and was an avid conservationist and brought vital income and employment to the country with the launch of horseback safaris. Hundreds of locals attended his funeral and his land is now overrun with local tribesmen and will, within months, be destroyed and returned to waste land. I was in Kenya last year for my daughter’s wedding and witnessed first-hand how the locals are treated. They are kind and generous people who deeply appreciate

Anger Management

Mathew Lempurkel the tourism generated by non-Kenyans and the landowners, in the main, treat them as family. They are employed, well looked after and treated with respect. This problem is not caused by the people but by the racist politicians who see it as they perverted duty to rid the country of white landowners. Lempurkel has a long history. He was arrested last year for beating up a female politician in the President’s office when she tried to deliver a petition urging the restoration of law in the Laikipia region. He was arrested for trying to burn down a police station that was holding some of his cronies. He has faced countless corruption charges but is on bail for everything and there is little chance of a prosecution. As a severe drought took hold last year, the Samburu and Pokot tribesmen were encouraged by the likes of Lempurkel, to migrate south. They were then supplied with vast numbers of automatic weapons and ahead of each incursion, Lempurkel would hold meetings to whip up support for violent trespass. The irony is that most of the herds of cattle being pushed to trespass are not owned by the local tribesmen but by politicians, police

and military officers, and other influential

country in the first place and robbing the

officials, who pay them a pittance to care of their livestock. Lempurkel’s aim is to drive the whites out and replace them with the locals who will vote for him at the next election. If he wins, he will inherit a desperate, bankrupt country over which he can rule.

world of these magnificent animals.

Admittedly, the West’s shameful use of the continents inhabitants as slaves in the last century, and the wholesale plunder of all their resources, will not have endeared them to us....

A sidebar to this is that as they invade with their newly acquired weapons, they are killing all the wildlife as they go and further depleting the reasons so many tourists wish to visit the

President Kenyatta faces an election in August and has declared that he is sending hundreds of police reinforcements into the region with a shoot to kill policy against any land invaders. In reality, he is doing no such thing as it would alienate the tribesmen and lose their votes making him reluctant to launch punitive strikes against the Samburu and Pokot militia out of self-serving, self-preservation. Investors see the invasions as a grim signal for the future, especially as it is spreading to other parts of Kenya, such as British-owned properties on the Indian Ocean coast. Tolerance of armed invasions raise the spectre of a repeat of the mass slaughter of early 2008, when the opposition claimed elections had been rigged. Some 1,400 people were butchered and Kenya only narrowly avoided a full blown civil war. With hundreds of thousands of illegal guns in the country and tensions high, there are fears that power hungry politicians will push this magnificent country to the edge of the abyss once more.



Surrey Chamber

JOIN THE CHAMBER Can your business afford not to be a member of Surrey Chambers of Commerce?

Surrey Chambers of Commerce is the county’s largest independent, not-for-profit business support organisation that helps businesses to connect locally, nationally and globally in order to gain customers, suppliers and knowledge.


itting at the heart of the business community, Surrey Chambers of Commerce connects you to opportunities, skills, knowledge and valuable contacts. We can help you grow and develop, by promoting your business, introducing you to new customers, keeping you informed and representing you locally, regionally and nationally. With a membership representing businesses of all sizes across every sector of the economy, the Chamber works hard to ensure that the continued prosperity of Surrey takes into account the needs of business, as well as providing a range of high quality services to help businesses to grow and meet new potential customers, including making introductions into over 40 countries. Surrey Chambers of Commerce is an integral part of the Surrey business support network and alongside its partners offers specialist advice, knowledge and information on a wide range of issues facing local businesses. We can: • Help you to find new customers – raise your profile, increase your brand awareness and generate new business by using our website, publications and database to communicate with thousands of business people. • Connect you to other businesses – we

run over 100 events a year that give you the chance to enhance your business network, find new customers and meet like-minded and other successful business people.

• Expand your network overseas - we provide friendly, professional advice and assistance and help you obtain necessary export documentation. Our relationship with 28 accredited overseas British Chambers means we can introduce you to our global network of experts to make your journey much easier. • Develop you and your workforce’s knowledge and skills - we run a range of training events throughout the year and can introduce you to a variety of training providers • Represent you – we believe it is important that you and your business are fairly represented locally, regionally, nationally and where appropriate, internationally on issues affecting business. We work closely with Surrey County Council, the eleven local borough councils, district and 2 Local Enterprise Partnerships and we feedback and provide input to the British Chambers of Commerce who talk directly to government, influencing policy and strategic decisions. • Support your local community - we are passionate about contributing to the wider community and encourage you to work with us. We support a variety of local

initiatives, providing you with the chance to give something back, whilst raising your company profile. • Save you money - We can provide you with a variety of discounts designed to save your company money. As well as national deals you will benefit from exclusive discounts offered by other Chamber members. You too can offer a special member to member deal.

WANT TO KNOW MORE? If you would like any further information about joining Surrey Chambers of Commerce please contact us: We look forward to hearing from you. Call: 01483 735540 Email: Visit:



Clients choose me for the same reason I choose my bank. Expertise Expert guidance and support for professional businesses Our Relationship Managers are specialists in business banking. Their in-depth knowledge of the professional services sector means they understand your challenges. From office moves or IT upgrades to supporting expansion, they will work with you, giving you the financial guidance and tools you need to succeed.

Call us 0800 694 0042 Minicom 0800 404 6161 or contact Rachel Cundall, Business Banking directly on 07920 089 199 Monday to Friday 9am-5pm (excluding public holidays). Calls may be recorded.



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With the 17 Plate just released, there is not a better time to talk to our Corporate Team at Sandown Group about a new Mercedes-Benz.

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The official magazine for Surrey Chambers of Commerce - owned and published by The Platinum Publishing Group. This month we have a profile o...


The official magazine for Surrey Chambers of Commerce - owned and published by The Platinum Publishing Group. This month we have a profile o...