Flying up in the lofty blue skies, the doves and hawks are locking talons over economic policy; on the open plain of the markets the bulls are battling the bears; and on the mean city streets the fat cats are being told to forget the cream of the Christmas bonus.Look carefully at the commercial savannah and you might also see a new species, the leaping gazelles. In the corridors of Whitehall these creatures are creating quite a stir and the hope is that they are the express route to the Chancellor’s much hailed “enterprise-led recovery”. High growth and owner managed, the gazelles are energetic young businesses – and the point I would emphasise is that they’re young, not small. So, forget struggling startups or sluggish ageing businesses. These enterprises are the fresh faces that are turning downturn into their own personal upturn and they’re moving fast. Adaptable and astute, the gazelles are using the barren commercial vista to create the conditions for growth. This means exploiting low barriers to entry and leaping over weakened competition. They may be in relative infancy now but make no mistake, these young businesses see themselves as the heirs to Apple or Google, who also started life as gazelles. In the depths of the early 1970’s recession it was a young Bill Gates who was the agile opportunist of his time when he founded the fledgling Microsoft. The US has become a hotbed for this sort of business – just look at what Facebook, Twitter and Groupon have achieved in the past five years. On this side of the pond, the UK is beginning to create the conditions for its own herd of successful young businesses. Keep reading on page two, below.
Share this story