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Monday, February 27, 2006


The first time I heard the term "Live R&D" I thought, "this is something I understand".

I've know many companies who spend hundreds of thousands in designing and perfecting their technology and then realise that it's not what the market wants. Sure, you've got to have the vision and gut feel to get started but, as soon as possible, you need to test the market.

"Everyone really likes it" or "everyone thinks it is a great idea" are two of the most common phrases I hear...often followed by "but we haven't sold any yet".

Why? Well, once you ask someone to put some money down you begin to get real market feedback. It's where the "rubber meets the road", as they say ;-)

Now, this is where our lead generation and sales outsourcing services are the ultimate in "Live R&D" for startups or companies developing new products or services.

We take your product or service and test it in the real market. We develop and refine your value proposition, give you feedback on what the market thinks (and is prepared to pay) as well as providing valuable insights on the competition.

Plus we're developing a sales process for you; one which you can quickly scale up to really acellerate your growth, which is a very important factor if you have a headstart in the market.

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Saturday, February 18, 2006


I've been a member of the Go BIG Network for some time and find it an excellent tool to tap into the latest deal flow running through the startup business community.

Essentially, Go BIG is an on-line community for start-up companies. Members of Go BIG post a request for what they are looking for, such as investment capital, job opportunities, partners, etc., and the network routes that request to other members who have expressed interest in that type of opportunity. Members can also post their requests publicly so that everyone can see who needs what.

Well worth checking out.

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Friday, February 17, 2006


I was reading an article recently in Outsource Magazine which was a pretty comprehensive view of the Sales Outsourcing space. Some key quotes from the article "Selling the Family Silver?" (issue 3) are:

"In direct sales, there are 3 main elements to engaging with a customer...and it is always the least relationship-driven aspects of these [lead generation, making appointments, telesales and telemarketing] that are the most likely candidates for outsourcing."

"New business creation is the least complex to outsource, and this is reflected in market demand."

"A number of UK companies have more than 40 to 45 per cent of their sales force outsourced because it brings in best practice and internal competition to the industry and it also frees up internal resources and people"

"Organisations that often choose to go down the outsourcing route are startups and small businesses because the move enables them to reduce their overheads, improve their cash-flow and access different skill sets as and when they need them."

I couldn't have written it better myself :-)

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Thursday, February 16, 2006


I've just got back from a few days at the 3GSM World Congress in Barcelona.

Amid the million dollar stands and hospitality suites, I've been networking with VC's and Startups in this exciting space.

I always enjoy events such as 3GSM because you get to see the different layers of the industry and the buzz of deals being done in the aisles and cafes (not to mention the bars and parties).

Hopefully, my feet should stop aching before it comes around again next year ;-)

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Friday, February 10, 2006


I've recently joined the RFID Tribe, a global radio frequency identification (RFID) collaboration forum.

The group of industry experts collaborates on RFID and sensor technology, standards, venture capital, products, solutions, industry trends, people and events.

I joined the tribe because of our previous work in the RFID space, including an outsourced sales project for a $500m Japanese Manufacturer.

Maine Associates is also currently in discussions with a number of startups in this interesting space.

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I'm a big fan of Guy Kawasaki since reading "The Art of The Start". I came across this great quote in a recent blog of his The Art of Rainmaking

"Sales fixes everything. As long as you have sales, cash will flow, and as long as cash flows, (a) you will have the time to fix your team, your technology, and your marketing; (b) the press won't be able to say much because customers are pouring money into your coffers; and (c) your investors will leave you alone because (i) they will focus on companies with weaker sales and (ii) they won't want to jinx your success."

I've know more than a few startups that who should have read his book before they started :-)

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I'm going to be at the 3GSM World Congress in Barcelona this year. This is the first time 3GSM, the world's premier mobile event, has been to Barcelona, previously being held in Cannes.

962 companies have signed up as exhibitors, showcasing their latest mobile products, services and solutions. 50,000 visitors are also expected in Barcelona.

I'm representing a number of new startups and will be networking with the ususal crowd of VC's, Entrepreneurs and Wireless Industry professionals.

If you're there...drop me a line and we meet up to say "hola"

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Tuesday, February 07, 2006


I was alerted to a website called TopLinked today. Someone approached me and said they found me on the site so, naturally, I had to find out more.

Essentially, the site aimes to chart the growth of Linkedin and lists the top 50 people by the number of connections they have - I'm #37 apparantly :-)

The thing that surprised me most is the growth of LinkedIn. In July 12th, 2003 there were less than 12,000 people on LinkedIn (compared to 4.8 million now). LinkedIn predict that there will be 10 million users by the end of 2006 - that's some growth.

If you're not on Linkedin and are wondering what this is all about...sign up for free!

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