Telling the truth about SME life today

Huw Owen: “Exciting opportunities will always follow”

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Huw Owen

Role and company: 

CEO of sustainable data centre provider of Ark

Company turnover (and most recent ebitda/most relevant profitability metric): 

This year, we made a revenue of ?8m.

Employee numbers:


Growth forecast for the next three years: 

Although business growth will be aggressive and challenging, it is achievable.

In under 50 words, what makes your business distinctive in its marketplace: 

We offer Arks, not just data centres. We have true resilience on our side; land, power, build, efficient cooling, security and finance. Many make the claim but few truly deliver. 

What’s the big vision for your business? 

By the end of 2015, we want to be recognised as the leading UK provider of data centres to our segment of the market.

Current level of international business and future aspirations: 

The Arks are currently UK-based. Given the right deal or client requirement, however, we could flex that model.

Biggest career setback and what you learned from it: 

Personal circumstances required me to leave Hong Kong and a job I loved. I learnt that by deciding, looking forward and committing, other equally exciting opportunities will follow.

What makes you mad in business today? 

Tactical short-term thinking.

What will be the biggest change in your market in the next three years?  

These changes will stem from the continued explosion in personal and corporate data usage, big data analytics, cloud computing and technology services moving to utility pricing models.

Can businesses in your sector/industry access the finance they need to grow” If not, what can be done to improve things?  

For well-lead business with sound offerings and well-crafted business plans – yes.

How would others describe your leadership style  

Visible, robust and driven.

Your biggest personal extravagance  

I have a second home in the mountain regions of France – an investment in retained perspective!

You’ve got two minutes with the prime minister. Tell him how best to set the UK’s independent entrepreneurial, businesses free to prosper:

  • Internationalise – attract the best, brightest & most able – tax breaks/incentives.  
  • Cut the bureaucracy/red tape.  
  • Celebrate success – wealth generation is not a sin, it’s a contributor. 



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