Monthly Archives: December 2014

Talk Your Way To Success

People say talk is cheap. I’m not sure because nothing can happen in our lives until we speak our thoughts.

We constantly move towards what we keep talking about be it success or be it failure.

Change what we’re saying and we’ll change what we’re seeing.

One of the reasons we fail to achieve business targets is because we don’t voice our goals and our vision often enough.

So many of us share our dream at the start of the year and leave it there. We forget that people forget.

We need to be constantly reminded of things that are important.

When it comes to goal setting, remember this universal truth – the more we say it, the more we’ll believe it, the more we’ll achieve it!

Golden Rules For Company Investing


I love launching, building and selling companies. I enjoy the challenges, relish the triumphs and learn from the setbacks.

Today I own a raft of businesses ranging from PR agency Beattie Communications to the Only marketing boutiques. You will find a list of our brands here.

Over the years I’ve also made a shilling or two by investing in businesses where I have no day-to-day involvement.

When deciding whether to put my hand in my pocket, there are ten golden rules that guide my investment decisions:


1. Understand The Business

I will only invest if I understand how the company makes money.  For instance, I like media businesses, transport companies and food or drinks retailers because I understand how they generate revenues. I avoid financial businesses if I don’t understand how they create wealth.


2. Admire The Management

It’s essential that I admire the management. They must be smart, ambitious, hard-working and dedicated. They must come with a proven track record.


3. Invest At A Good Price

You make money in a business when you buy in at a low price and sell at a high price. Paying over the odds, always results in a much poorer return when you sell.


4. Invest In A Company That Can Last For Decades

You don’t want to invest in a company that relies on technology that may soon be superseded or operates in a fast-changing environment.


5. Track Record Of Success

I always expect the company to have a proven record of success. If it’s a start-up, the founders need to have had an impressive career


6. Consistently Makes Good Profits

Past profit consistency is a prerequisite. I’m not keen on investing in turnarounds, no matter how talented the management team.


7. Good Growth Prospects And Low Expansion Costs

I always look for growth businesses where expansion requires a low re-investment of capital. For instance, I would much rather invest in a bus company than a cruise line because the cost of buying an extra bus is tiny compared to the cost of purchasing an additional ship.


8. A Premium Brand

I like companies with a strong brand reputation that can command a premium for their products or services.


9. Little Debt

We all know how ruthless the banks can be when it comes to repayments so I always avoid companies with a mountain of debt.


10. High Barriers To Entry

I like businesses where for cost or skill reasons it’s difficult for rivals to start up and gain a toehold.