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Everything posted by GregBowman

  1. Talk about history repeating itself, Bristol, Bracknell, Reading, Basingstoke were all the promised land for tech and financial services 70's/80's/90/s but are now a shadow of their former selves. The landscape has changed companies aren't international with big anywhere in the UK presence. They are global and will want to be in the capital. https://www.wired.co.uk/article/london-tech-firms-return-office Kings Cross particularly has a long way to run. Its a provincial town calling itself a city. Population 500,000 its got a little way to go to be a 2nd city.
  2. A little bit Disney main street view imho, as someone who has only worked in B2B and competed for every £ against global corps in IT you either step up or step out. Too many businesses in general fly the flag of its your obligation to deal with me because I am small. Butchers that close at 3 on a hot Saturday afternoon or 4 in the week and aren't open 5-7 in the evening as people walk home from work, Barbers that open 9-5 in the week not 7-10 and 4-8 when people are not working. Companies grow for a reason they give people what they want, when they want. What affects the High street whatever ownership model is the outrageous tilt in favour of out of own developments with free parking.
  3. what's a parage only been in B2b Myself is it a retail term ?
  4. Your still not with me are you, you are talking about a piece of software I am talking about physical infrastructure. HS2 by the way was more about capacity than shiny trains so pretty poorly sold to be fair. The 2012 Olympics isn't the best example either I think most people would consider it a success
  5. Agree well put I was thinking from a personal balance sheet perspective, I still dance between the two ways of thinking though - I don't like debt.
  6. It certainly won’t make any sense paying off a low cost loan which a mortgage usually is I reckon for two years, you lose the leverage on the house and the money will easy earn more in safe equities or assets. Stick it into a pension of course and it’s a no brainer. I put £20k in the government gives me another £5k that’s some return
  7. Did I mention a specific film or did I say infrastructure as in studio construction ? The two are completely different and even if they get some relief like a car factory the benefits usually outweigh the reliefs. Please keep up at the back there is a good chap.
  8. Great post and you lay out the hospitality case from the front line thanks. My experience is in two other sectors IT and creative media (film) which have a different workforce the former still shortage of good people, the latter an industry people want to be in. I would be surprised if many on furlough in IT, in creative media it’s being used to subsidise long breaks to use up holiday entitlement. I think the other factor certainly where I am is that people’s lifestyles have changed. My living standards haven’t fallen rather like you as a businessman I keep them on an even keel aiming for an upward trend My wife and I would pop into a pub say three times a week spend from £30 to £60 depending on whether we ate there. As late fifties we were quite typical with kids grown up etc. Have no inclination to do that anymore, will play golf together ( my wife has taken it up after seeing how nice the environment is walking around it in lockdown ) then have a couple of much cheaper drinks in the club bar. Which is actually a much better environment than most pubs since it is effectively a members club. The club is very modern ( decor and thinking no Captains parking spaces and all that bull and welcomes female members and families ) and hosts weddings so food is good as well. In fact the ladies section is flying my wife is playing 9 holes tomorrow ( a new thing now in most clubs to encourage younger time strapped members ) and they will all be having supper after - previously that would of occurred in a pub. That’s my lifestyle change but there are also friends who have rejoined tennis clubs after 20 years or simply have got used to that lockdown evening walk and have a bottle of wine at home after with a takeaway or cook a nice hello fresh or Gousto meal
  9. But so does someone on the same tax band earning more. It is sort of how life works.
  10. I am pretty neutral on the whole Brexit thing with my old man being Lithuanian. But so far this isn't panning out as disastrous as it was portrayed. There is upward pressure on wages at all levels (which I see as good and I have been an employer for thirty years )and more UK citizens seem to be taking up jobs. Investment is high have you seen the amount of money coming into the film industry not stupid loss making British films but infrastructure ? Hundreds of millions being spent at Elstree and Pinewood and brand new facilities announced for Ashford and now Cheshunt/Broxbourne. They are talking about £700 million for that site alone. Film studios create thousands of jobs from security guards to drivers and of course catering. Even the shortage of HGV drivers is overplayed. The DVLA are sitting on 30000 driver renewals, the operators used cheap EU labour to drive rates down so combine these two and you have a shortage. There is evidence though of rates going up and the renewals coming through.
  11. Seeing it already in hospitality, food produce (not low end crop picking) and retail
  12. A truth there but I would also say the black economy is bigger than reported a lot bigger 'According to the Office for National Statistics, the black economy is ‘only’ about £10 billion a year, or 0.5% of UK GDP. The shadow economy is a different kettle of fish, though. There are many estimates as to how big it is, but most of them are in the 10-15% range when measured as a percentage of UK GDP'
  13. 1.6 million on furlough now. Many companies still using as a subsidy the jobs are probably viable. Nearly a million job vacancies, couple that with people leaving the workforce. A few chickens fluttering around. Say 600,000 additional unemployed (which I doubt) takes unemployment to 2.4 million. In the 80's unemployment was over 11% with 3 million+ unemployed. On that basis the scheme has been a success.
  14. Totally agree with your work statement sitting here at a screen. Not so sure the 2nd. Its extreme but I have a team in Qatar but can't get in. So mirrors to some extent 100% WFH. There are are a myriad of things I can't get moving, fixing or just generally leading remotely. I know you are writing in jest but it's more than discussing the trivia. I could once I have stablished practices etc. I think my situation is typical of many mid sized businesses
  15. Always sounds like you have a plan. I have caught up a bit to be fair, school fees took a chunk. You wear the constant tinkering with the pension system with good humour, but the serious side is it puts people off and so they take the easy route and pile in to BTL with all its negative impact on the housing market.
  16. Sorry fella they are very closely connected look at life expectancy by postcode matches economic demographics of course not exactly
  17. We are but fairly well proven wealth brings health as well. Don’t really agree with the career bit either just because you commit to doing your best doesn’t mean you lose your identity In fact plenty of retired police, CEO’s , medics, people who had a company and sold and so on at my golf club they look remarkably happy in their own skin , a shift well put in. The harder you fall is a bit of a fallacy once you really succeed, your needs are less and you have done a lot more on the way through, you gave it your best shot In fact it’s unsuccessful people who have an identity crisis in their fifties in my experience
  18. Not a pension problem per se but most tax breaks have that effect Those people will be the ones with insufficient savings I would hazard a guess as well. My example is a bit extreme I will ‘need’ a bit more than that to enjoy life I think but skewed a little because my son and his wife live in the States so factoring in air travel. Bit of a cliche but my wife has now got into Golf. It’s slashed our drink/takeaway bill. It’s fixed fee say £3k a year (joint ) but now rather than go to a pub she will say let’s have 9 holes, although at the weekend after a usual 18 I do think be careful what you wish for… Of course might have a couple of pints but way cheaper than a pub. I still work pretty full on but now can see that I probably have enough to retire comfortably. My classic entrepreneurs paranoia blinded me to that a bit I think
  19. I have earnt good money last thirty years equivalent to a 6 figure income for at least 25 after starting my own business. I could live more than comfortably on the pension pots being discussed say £600k with a state pension as well. Your needs really go off a cliff in retirement. No kids with their hands out , no mortgage, no I deserve a takeaway because I am working hard, no this no that. I am hard pushed to get my total base outgoings to £1500 a month and that’s with golf club fees and fuel and insurance etc in the car In this cycle 60-80 thats peak as well my needs will be even less nearer 80
  20. I think KZB and ML and myself have disproved that. I never stuck anything like that in and have a £700k pot which when added to my wife’s and I’s state pension will be plenty, to live a comfortable life The key is to start early, I would be surprised if you need to put much more than 5-7% yourself in with your employer contributing 3-5% Now 59 so it gets even better since I can access immediately if I want to ( so it’s now not locked up) so if I stick £20k in £5k cash comes along about 7 weeks later and if by mistake I go into the 40% tax bracket I get a further 20% relief. Now if that money was taken out of the biz as mileage or say subsistence or even computer supplies ( my new telly) that’s tax relief on money that was never taxed anyway The pension system currently is remarkably generous in its reliefs. I would be piling in can’t see it lasting for ever
  21. Move over Martin Lewis - your last line is it in a nutshell
  22. Or £20k as a service engineer and put about 5% in during the eighties , contributed myself when I started my own business but probably stopped around 2010. Total pot is now £700k ish, could of been more but have isa’s share of commercial property etc , house equity etc. It’s the starting early and contributing regularly that makes the difference. I am not sure I ever contributed much more than 5% certainly never near 10%
  23. Well said the best combo is running your own business with all the legal tax wrinkles it has and contributing to a pension. People focus on the I don’t get two pence if I am ill, but forget you can still mimimise your tax and maximise your pension contributions like a PAYE person. stupid line re state pension it’s got nothing to do with an occupational pension whichever sector you work in.
  24. recruiters are a pain and totally agree, rarely add value. Seem to be hard to avoid in tech. You don’t get them in creative media , big industry but all the roles are niche and different , hard for the phone bashers in shiny suits to get their mind round, so recruiting is how it used to be which is much more pleasant
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