6 November 2017


#CBI2017 Blog: Working together to grow business through innovative technology

Ian King, business presenter at Sky News, interviews executive pairs at #CBI2017 who have adopted disruptive technologies with their companies and collaborated with others to seek growth.

#CBI2017 Blog: Working together to grow business through innovative technology

Omar Abbosh, chief strategy officer at Accenture set the scene by talking about how innovation, especially by start-ups, running into existing business models creates disruption.

Here are the key messages from each pair:

Debbie Wosskow, founder, Love Home Swap and co-founder, AllBright
Gordon Gurnik, president, RCI Affiliates

Love Home Swap is an interesting lesson about how you start, grow, scale and sell a business - whilst the business was an emerging part of the new sharing economy, it was also part of the older timeshare market. Debbie got to know Gordon’s team before it was sold to them and found much in common to reach new audiences through a different family in Wyndham. There were synergies between them and even though they were in different spaces it was complimentary to collaborate.

Estelle Brachlianoff, senior executive vice-president UK&I, Veolia
Matt Brookes, managing director, Selected Interventions

Estelle spoke about the importance of being brave and ready to fail when trying new ideas. Matt highlighted that the challenge with big enterprise is that you have to take people with you and its often the people change which is the biggest issue with taking on technology. The UK is at the forefront for investing and testing, the innovative environment is critical to the ecosystem of large and small companies working together. More people welcome disruption and we need to embrace change.

Mark Wilson, chief executive, Aviva
Eileen Burbidge, partner at Passion Capital and UK Treasury’s Special Envoy for FinTech

There is a massive opportunity to drive innovation in older companies in the UK. It is about culture, being courageous and brave, and it’s important to be open minded. Insurance is built on intermediaries and technology naturally can try to equalise the industry and bring services to more people to access. Eileen and Mark talked about how the UK has a FinTech crown because of its skills, heritage and progressive regulators, but regulation needs to be designed for a digital age.