I am an “Entrepreneur”. I dislike using that term as it’s overused and misplaced, but it is what I am. I’m not driven by money or materialistic things, but the ability to create something greater than myself that gives purpose, security and stability to others.
I enjoy what I do and I like to share that with those who work alongside me. I had a rocky start in life growing up in debt, eviction, two broken homes, violence, alcohol and some shady experiences through my teen years. I have Aspergers Syndrome and ADD identified through tests done during the diagnosis for my son. This has its positives and negatives, but in business it’s a powerful tool which I’ve learnt to harness.
I’ve had some business failures, made a few mistakes, but again like most Entrepreneurs I have learnt from them. I don’t know everything and I approach life with an open mind and a hunger to learn, and I motivate those around me to be the best that they can be.
My more public business successes are Quick Formations and UK Business Forums. Quick Formations was formed in 2002 and I subsequently sold it in 2013. It won several business awards, revolutionised its industry and was a great success story for me, despite learning hard lessons during the 2007 recession.
UK Business Forums (UKBF) is my other success story after I purchased an online discussion forum from a web designer for £750. I then spent 2 years promoting and growing them to be the largest and most active online business discussion forums in the UK. I sold them to a media company in 2007 for a deal valued at £250,000. I met some great people on that journey, and this venture got me in the limelight a few times.
In 2013 I sold some equity in my current software company eFiling which provides cloud based software to the company formations industry, and this company has grown significantly in that time. It was this experience that opened my eyes to the value a NED (Non-Exec Director) can bring to a business, and helped me see the value I could add to others. At the time of writing this I current sit as NED on the local Chamber of Commerce as well as on a commercial business known as EMB.
For what may be obvious reasons, I’m an advocate for Special Educational Needs and Disengaged Youth, so devote my spare time to supporting these causes. I was one of the founding team for the Government pilot of the Education Advisor network which was launched in Northamptonshire before the Government took the initiative and rolled it out nationwide, connecting business leaders to schools. I still to this day work with the special needs school I connected with during the pilot. Alongside this work I also champion raising aspirations in SEND children, and promote to businesses the value of engaging with SEND children for work experience and employment.
The other cause close to me heart is supporting the young people many may cross the road to avoid, the disengaged youth in society. The ones who may not have had the upbringing to set them on the right path. For many of these academic education may not work for them either. This is where I’m an advocate for the charity Youth at Risk and where I have trained as one of their coaches, as well as currently sitting on the regional, unofficial, “board” supporting the launch of projects in the county.
Family is important, I’ve been with my wife for more than 20 years and she along with my children are my life. We enjoy skiing, equestrian activities, and movies. It took many years to reach this point in my life but I am lucky to be able to spend plenty of quality time with my family.