Peter MacLean drags MBI Coakley Limited into Fox IT Holdings 365iT plc scam

Posted by Chris on September 19th, 2012

Peter MacLean, some time Chairman of Fox IT Holdings Limited, until recently parent company of Fox IT Limited and previously 365iT plc – has now dragged Licensed Insolvency Practitioners, MBI Coakley Limited, into the great 365iT plc scam ( although they seem unaware of the chequered history of MacLean and 365iT plc ). MacLean’s long time mates at Moore Blatch solicitors in Southampton sent out a letter to shareholders on the 3 July 2012 saying that there would be a General Meeting of the shareholders on the 2nd August 2012 at which a proposal to wind up the company voluntarily would be put to the members i.e. shareholders .
( This means that MacLean would basically put his proposals to himself, Pieter Hooft  of LMS Capital and Derek King of South East Venture Growth Fund – as they were the majority shareholders before and after the sale of 365iT’s companies to themselves ).

So, a company ( Fox IT Holdings Limited ) which sometime earlier had sold nearly all of  it’s assets ( companies like e.g. 5i Limited )  to another company ( LMS Capital – where Pieter Hooft is M.D. UK Investments – he is listed as a Director of  365iT plc ) and the holding company of which MacLean was also a Chairman ( 365 it services Limited ) and a shareholder,  was now being put into Members Voluntary Liquidation despite the fact MacLean himself had been paid £millions out of it only recently, it had no creditors ( because they had all been paid off  when LMS Capital bought the companies ) and the Directors of Fox IT Limited had just done an M.B.O. of Fox I.T. Limited from Fox I.T. Holdings Limited( See Press Release below ).

In fact it turns out that ( according to Fox IT Limited ) the date of the Members Voluntary Liquidation was delayed firstly to allow the M.B.O. of Fox I.T. Limited to take place and secondly ( according to MBI Coakley ) to enable the preferential shareholders to do some fine tuning to the arrangements so that they could get nearly all of the money available in the company’s accounts leaving virtually nothing for the Ordinary shareholders.

The preferential shareholders are not listed but we can take an educated guess that they include LMS Capital, Peter MacLean and South East Growth Venture Fund. Yes folks, Peter MacLean gets even more money !!

Let’s summarise shall we ???? Most of the company’s that were in 365iT plc ( was Impera plc ) and became Fox IT Holdings Limited are now in 365 IT Services Limited which is a company owned by LMS Ventures ( Where Pieter Hooft is on the Board ) AND Peter MacLean ( who is Chairman of 365IT Services Limited ). It is run by Peter Howells, former M.D. of 5i Limited.

So basically, MacLean and LMS Capital sold these companies to themselves. ( Not sure if Derek King and South East Growth Fund is involved in LMS Capital or 365 IT Services Limited )

MBI Coakley have been presented with a nice neat set of accounts which show that everyone has been looked after except the Ordinary shareholders in Impera plc ( as was ) / 365iT plc /Fox I.T. Holdings Limited. There is virtually nothing left for them.

The terms of the arrangement to sell 365iT plc’s companies to themselves remain a mystery.

The people that got paid out when LMS Capital bought these companies remain a secret.

The terms of the sale of Fox IT Limited to it’s Directors are also a mystery.

I have been inundated with Ordinary shareholders calling me. Some of whom have been working with or for Peter MacLean since the early days. None of them have a good word to say about him.

The investigations continue.

Fox IT Limited MBO Press Release

Fox IT: Management Buy-Out

Fox IT Limited, the leading independent UK based IT Service Management specialists, has

been the subject of a full and exclusive management buyout with effect from 24th August,

2012. The current management team of Andrew Gray (Finance Director), Mike Darkens

(Consulting Director) and Ashley Bassett (Sales Director) have purchased in full the shares

from the parent company, Fox IT Holdings Limited (formerly 365iT Plc.) and will form the

new board and operational directorship of the business. The acquisition retains all current

operational and delivery UK based staff as well as its global partner network covering 25

countries and 125 accredited Service Management consultants.

Since 1981, Fox IT, formerly Ultracomp, has assisted over 500 organisations and 200000

individuals on their journey to transform IT Services in order to deliver greater business

value through accredited training reinforced with assessment and implementation tools and

services. This management buyout facilitates a strengthening of Fox IT’s core business

focus and portfolio in supporting organisations through all phases of their continual service

improvement journey.

Ashley Bassett commented “I believe this is great news for our Clients, employees and the

ITSM Industry. We’re genuinely excited and confident that the buyout provides the

opportunity for Fox IT to continue being the partner of choice for Service Improvement and

transformation programs. Since its involvement in the inception of ITIL® and ISO/IEC

20000, Fox IT has continually been at the forefront in establishing, the advancement and the

practical application of Service Management best practice through thought leadership,

content provision and service delivery. Whilst continuing to support organisations with their

core training needs a key focus and challenge for the new Board of Directors is to provide

our Clients with practical education, guidance and tools to accelerate the translation of their

significant training investment into tangible business benefits.

The Fox IT brand has already seen a shift from being purely a world leading ITSM training

company to one of supporting our Clients’ service improvement programs providing

consulting and resourcing services, process development tools, bespoke training offerings

and strategic mentoring and guidance for maintaining service quality. Therefore, Fox IT is

well positioned to meet this change in demand. Part of our new mission is to raise the

profile of ITSM to meet and deliver business objectives”

Mike Darkens added “The success of the business is based on the core attributes of our

people, their experience and energy. This has led to the positive results we have delivered

consistently to our clients and through adding to our strong relationships, we can continue

the current trend of business growth.”

ITIL ® is a registered trademark of the Cabinet Office

http://www.businesslink.gov.uk/bdotg/action/detail?itemId=1084615740&type=RESOURCES – Members Voluntary Liquidation Details.

Poundbury Systems uses IME for Internet Marketing in Dorset

Posted by Chris on August 25th, 2012

Dorset based computer and telecommunications provider Poundbury Systems is dominating Google searches for ” Managed Backup Dorset ” by using a combination of the Internet Marketing Ecosystem ( IME, see link below ) and it’s own hosting facilities and National IP network ( also see below ).

Recently, Poundbury Systems launched a Managed Data Backup service from it’s Headquarters in Dorset. As part of it’s promotional campaign Poundbury Systems wanted to ensure that it was found for relevant searches using Google and similar search engines ( Many potential customers use search engines to obtain information about particular products or services).

Poundbury Systems has a WordPress based website and blogsite which is hosted in Poundbury’s Hosting Facilities in London. It is important to understand that these are high performance U.K. Hosting Facilities ensuring that a properly structured web/blogsite has the best chance of achieving a high Google search position for relevant search terms. ( Whilst the exact influence of website hosting performance on Google ranking is debated amongst SEO experts, the fact that it is a factor is not usually debated ).

The first thing to understand about the use of an Internet Marketing Ecosystem is that you must understand what search terms you want to rank for ( this means what would someone type into the Google etc search box in order to find your products or services ). In this case the products, services and therefore search terms are ” Managed Data Backup ” and similar and related words and phrases.

The ” Managed Data Backup ” blog post below was created to complement the web page dedicated to that subject here - http://www.poundbury.com/futureline-assure/ . So this meant that there was relevant content available. The links to the web page and blog post were then distributed via Poundbury’s Twitter, Twylah and Facebook pages ( amongst others ).

I also shared the links via my personal Internet Marketing Ecosystem.

The results are pretty stunning with Poundbury Systems occupying the first 4 natural search results ( this may be subject to a particular persons search results but has been tested by a number of people ) when there are nearly 6.5 Million search results ( roughly equates to people searching on this term ). Other search positions are also occupied by either the Poundbury web/blogsite or elements of my IME e.g. there is a Twylah post appearing.

There is no Pay Per Click payment being made and no ” Black Hat ” SEO techniques have been used. This is simply achieved by understanding what the company wishes to be found for and writing and distributing relevant content. i.e. Content Marketing.

It is anticipated that this particular blog post will be found by people searching on the phrase ” Internet Marketing in Dorset ” or similar and will therefore be of interest to those who might want to use Poundbury System’s excellent Hosting facilities and the Internet Marketing Ecosystem.

Relevant Links:

Internet Marketing Ecosystem link : http://mandarainmaker.co.uk/wordpress/2012/03/12/the-internet-marketing-ecosystem-this-is-the-way-it-is/

Managed Data Backup link : http://www.poundbury.com/poundbury-launches-fully-managed-data-backup-solution-from-dorset/

Poundbury National IP Network link : http://www.poundbury.com/internet-connection-dorset/

Peter MacLean – Fox IT and LMS Capital – web of Directorships – 365itservices

Posted by Chris on August 4th, 2012

Peter MacLean, who recently put Fox IT Holdings into administration ( although he kept his name off all the paperwork ) and is Chairman of the company that trades as 365 IT Services ( http://www.365itservices.co.uk/about/ – the so called trusted IT Partner for British Business – LOL !! ) has a web of Directorships that defies belief but explains quite a bit.

see here http://company-director-check.co.uk/director/915777314 and at the bottom of this blog.

Interestingly – well at least to me – he resigned from the Board of Fox IT Limited in October 2011. It is Fox IT Holding Limited that was put into administration a couple of days ago. 365 ITMS Limited and 365 Technology Limited are still in operation ( to do with 365itservices ) and just look at the 365 IT Subco’s – 365 IT SUBCO No 1 LIMITED and 365 IT SUBCO No 2 LIMITED.

This is the sort of scheming that clients of 365 itservices (  http://www.365itservices.co.uk/about/ ) can expect. 365 Technology Limited and365 ITMS are both registered at Napolean House, the offices of 365iT and the old offices of 5i Limited.

So, it’s really a similar situation to 365 IT where you have subco’s set up just in case of ?????????

Well who knows but probably another planned administration ( creditors and clients beware ) .

The real question of course is how Fox IT Holdings could be put into administration shortly after Peter MacLean took £Millions out of it and when all the creditors were paid off. Source: Leter from Peter MacLean.

Peter MacLean’s Directorships:

Director Summary

Peter MacLean has 21 company director or secretary appointments.

Short name – Peter MacLean
Director ID : 915777314
Year of Birth: 1948

Address

Napoleon House Riseley Business Park
Riseley
Reading
United Kingdom
RG7 1NW

Advertisement

Company Summary

Company Name Company Status
365 ITMS LIMITED Active
NSD HARROGATE LIMITED In Liquidation
365 TECHNOLOGY LIMITED Active
FOX IT HOLDING LIMITED Active
PHINDA MANAGEMENT LIMITED Active
FOX IT LIMITED Active (Director Resigned 24/10/2011)
365 IT SUBCO NO.1 LIMITED Active (Director Resigned 22/09/2011)
IMPERA LIMITED Active (Director Resigned 22/09/2011)
IMPERADATA LIMITED Active (Director Resigned 22/09/2011)
365 IT SUBCO NO.2 LIMITED Active (Director Resigned 22/09/2011)
SECURE NETWORKS UK LIMITED Active (Director Resigned 22/02/2011)
NEXTAROMA LIMITED Active (Director Resigned 20/12/2006)
EUROCHECK LIMITED Active (Director Resigned 20/12/2006)
W. E. L. GROUP LIMITED Active (Director Resigned 20/12/2006)
ISG TECHNOLOGY LIMITED Active (Director Resigned 20/12/2006)
WEBB ELECTRONICS & COMMUNICATIONS LIMITED Active (Director Resigned 20/12/2006)
INFORMATION SYSTEMS GROUP LIMITED Active (Director Resigned 20/12/2006)
CORPORATE SOLUTIONS GROUP LIMITED Active (Director Resigned 20/12/2006)
ISG WEBB EMPLOYEE BENEFIT TRUST LIMITED Active (Director Resigned 20/12/2006)
ISG TECHNOLOGY HOLDINGS LIMITED Active (Director Resigned 20/12/2006)
GSIG CENTRE LIMITED Dissolved

365 ITMS LIMITED

Appointment Date: 22/09/2011
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

NAPOLEON HOUSE
RISELEY BUSINESS PARK
READING
RG7 1NW
GB

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NSD HARROGATE LIMITED

Appointment Date: 05/11/2008
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: In Liquidation
Address:

4 CARTEL BUSINESS CENTRE
STROUDLEY ROAD
BASINGSTOKE
RG24 8FW
GB

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365 TECHNOLOGY LIMITED

Appointment Date: 21/08/2008
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

NAPOLEAN HOUSE
RISELEY BUSINESS PARK, BASINGSTO
READING
RG7 1NW
GB

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FOX IT HOLDING LIMITED

Appointment Date: 18/03/2005
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

NAPOLEON HOUSE
RISELEY BUSINESS PARK, BASINGSTO
READING
RG7 1NW
GB

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PHINDA MANAGEMENT LIMITED

Appointment Date: 27/02/2001
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

STEVENTON MANOR
STEVENTON
HAMPSHIRE
RG25 3BE
GB

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FOX IT LIMITED

Appointment Date: 29/10/2010
Resignation Date: 24/10/2011
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

CHESTER HOUSE
76-86 CHERTSEY ROAD
WOKING
GU21 5BJ
GB

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365 IT SUBCO NO.1 LIMITED

Appointment Date: 09/04/2009
Resignation Date: 22/09/2011
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

NAPOLEON HOUSE
RISELEY BUSINESS PARK, BASINGSTO
READING
RG7 1NW
GB

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IMPERA LIMITED

Appointment Date: 21/08/2008
Resignation Date: 22/09/2011
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

NAPOLEON HOUSE
RISELEY BUSINESS PARK, BASINGSTO
READING
RG7 1NW
GB

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IMPERADATA LIMITED

Appointment Date: 04/08/2008
Resignation Date: 22/09/2011
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

NAPOLEON HOUSE
RISELEY BUSINESS PARK, BASINGSTO
READING
RG7 1NW
GB

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365 IT SUBCO NO.2 LIMITED

Appointment Date: 04/12/2007
Resignation Date: 22/09/2011
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

NAPOLEON HOUSE
RISELEY BUSINESS PARK, BASINGSTO
READING
RG7 1NW
GB

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SECURE NETWORKS UK LIMITED

Appointment Date: 15/08/2007
Resignation Date: 22/02/2011
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

NAPOLEON HOUSE
RISELEY BUSINESS PARK, BASINGSTO
READING
RG7 1NW
GB

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NEXTAROMA LIMITED

Appointment Date: 20/09/2006
Resignation Date: 20/12/2006
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

ASHMEAD HOUSE EVERSLEY WAY
CRABTREE OFFICE VILLAGE
EGHAM
TW20 8RY
GB

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EUROCHECK LIMITED

Appointment Date: 20/09/2006
Resignation Date: 20/12/2006
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

ASHMEAD HOUSE EVERSLEY WAY
CRABTREE OFFICE VILLAGE
EGHAM
TW20 8RY
GB

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W. E. L. GROUP LIMITED

Appointment Date: 20/09/2006
Resignation Date: 20/12/2006
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

ASHMEAD HOUSE EVERSLEY WAY
CRABTREE OFFICE VILLAGE
EGHAM
TW20 8RY
GB

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ISG TECHNOLOGY LIMITED

Appointment Date: 22/02/2006
Resignation Date: 20/12/2006
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

ASHMEAD HOUSE EVERSLEY WAY
CRABTREE OFFICE VILLAGE
EGHAM
TW20 8RY
GB

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WEBB ELECTRONICS & COMMUNICATIONS LIMITED

Appointment Date: 22/02/2006
Resignation Date: 20/12/2006
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

ASHMEAD HOUSE EVERSLEY WAY
CRABTREE OFFICE VILLAGE
EGHAM
TW20 8RY
GB

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INFORMATION SYSTEMS GROUP LIMITED

Appointment Date: 22/02/2006
Resignation Date: 20/12/2006
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

ASHMEAD HOUSE EVERSLEY WAY
CRABTREE OFFICE VILLAGE
EGHAM TW208RY
TW20 8RY
GB

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CORPORATE SOLUTIONS GROUP LIMITED

Appointment Date: 22/02/2006
Resignation Date: 20/12/2006
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

ASHMEAD HOUSE EVERSLEY WAY
CRABTREE OFFICE VILLAGE
EGHAM
TW20 8RY
GB

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ISG WEBB EMPLOYEE BENEFIT TRUST LIMITED

Appointment Date: 05/01/2006
Resignation Date: 20/12/2006
Position: Director
Occupation: Company Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

ASHMEAD HOUSE EVERSLEY WAY
CRABTREE OFFICE VILLAGE
EGHAM
TW20 8RY
GB

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ISG TECHNOLOGY HOLDINGS LIMITED

Appointment Date: 15/03/2005
Resignation Date: 20/12/2006
Position: Director
Occupation: Director
Company Status: Active
Address:

ASHMEAD HOUSE EVERSLEY WAY
CRABTREE OFFICE VILLAGE
EGHAM
TW20 8RY
GB

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GSIG CENTRE LIMITED

Appointment Date: 02/01/2004
Position: Director
Occupation: Executive Chairman
Company Status: Dissolved
Address:

NORTH HOUSE, 198 HIGH STREET
TONBRIDGE
KENT
TN9 1BE
GB

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365 it services’ & LMS Capital Peter MacLean shuts Fox IT as part of his scheme

Posted by Chris on August 3rd, 2012

Peter MacLean used to refer to himself as Chairman of 365iT plc which was the holding company of Fox IT and recently became Fox IT Holdings as part of MacLean’s big plan.  Shareholders in MacLean’s companies are always kept in the dark, unless they are a big shareholder like LMS Capital.

How did Fox IT get to be put into administration at this stage in the game ??? The short answer is that probably MacLean wanted to put it into administration.

MacLean’s name was not on the letter sent out to shareholders of Fox IT Holdings. This is probably because he wants to avoid being seen as the person who first of all sold 365iT Plc’s crown jewels to LMS Capital ( when LMS Capital was not supposed to be buying anything but was going to be split up ) and then shut down Fox IT Holdings and it’s only company Fox IT.

The whole scheme is deliberately very complicated. What readers should most of all take from this is to ensure that they don’t get into any business dealings with MacLean. Don’t invest in any company in which he is involved; sell your company to any company that he is involved in or buy any company that he is involved in. You will not be able to believe anything that is said to you.

At the moment he is hovering around as Chairman of 365 it services ( which is basically owned by LMS Capital and MacLean and run by Peter Howells, former M.D. of 5i Limited ) and is still actually the Chairman of Fox IT Holdings, the owner of Fox IT, although as previously mentioned his name did not appear on the letter to shareholders telling them that Fox It was being put into administration. ( Creditors and partners of Fox IT should note that Fox IT is the only asset owned by Fox IT Holdings ).

So, the story is basically this: After a period when information provided to 365iT plc shareholders reduced to virtually nil they were suddenly told that most of the companies in the 365iT plc group were being sold to LMS Capital. Interestingly it turned out that MacLean was the only one to get paid back out of the money that LMS Capital paid for the 365iT plc companies and that then he put money into the new 365it services group owned by him and LMS Capital. Clearly he and someone at LMS Capital had arranged this deal.

Shareholders were then told that they would be informed about the ” future ” of 365iT plc and it’s only company Fox IT. Now lets bear in mind that 365iT plc was free and clear of all debts so all that was required was for Fox IT to trade profitably for the group to be profitable. But NO !! after a short period MacLean announces that there will be a change of name from 365iT plc to Fox Holdings Limited. ( The sale of the companies to LMS Capital did not, apparently, require the approval of all shareholders but the change of name did ??? ). This seems to be so that the LMS Capital owned company could trade as 365 it services or similar. Then in the last month shareholders were informed that the decision was that Fox IT would be put into adminstration. So a company completely free of debt and profitable suddenly needs to be put into administration. Well, there’s a surprise.

The fact that MacLean’s name is not on any of the paperwork is probably to do with the fact that he does actually realise that there is such a things as a Director’s fiduciary duty. He could well be called to account to explain how and why he sold off the most valuable companies to LMS Capital, netting a pay out to himself and then shut down a profitable company.

Shareholders in Fox IT are in discussion about the details of MacLeans big plan. Watch this space.

Internet Connection Dorset

Posted by Chris on June 14th, 2012

If you are looking for an Internet Connection in Dorset then you may be surprised to know that Poundbury Systems has had it’s own National Internet and Telephone network since the early 2000′s. Prior to that Poundbury’s owners built National I.P. ( Internet Protocol ) networks for other people.

Poundbury has a number of locations in London ( for resilience ) where we connect to the Internet and Telephone networks of the world. We provide U.K. Hosting facilities ( mainly )  in the London and Poundbury areas ( which is very important for websites that want to rank well in U.K. searches ).

Our deep, long standing and extensive knowledge of Internet ( and Telecommunications ) connectivity ensures that you get a different perspective on your Internet Connection requirements to that which you find from the ” major players ” .

We can, of course, provide a like for like solution to that offered by other companies but given that we can provide almost any sort of Internet connection, anywhere we like to concentrate on what is best for you. That means understanding your business requirements and objectives before providing a solution to you.

In addition to ” Landline ” ( copper or optical fibre cable ) connectivity we can provide wireless connectivity. Where required we can mix and match.

Obviously in rural areas there may be some bandwidth ( size of your Internet pipe ) restrictions but if you need high bandwidth and quality service then we will do our best to provide this wherever you are. If you need resilience and fault tolerance ( no single point of failure ) then we can provide this aswell.

So, pretty well, you can think to yourself that whatever your Internet Connection requirement is, Poundbury Systems can provide it. The question is more what you want and need ??

We can provide copper and fibre broadband Internet Connections at up to 75 Mbps and a U.K. Ethernet network at speeds up to a Gigabit per second.

Whatever your requirement please give us a call on:

01305 259849

Superfast Broadband for Lichfield and Tamworth Staffordshire

Posted by Chris on May 1st, 2012

It is fantastic news that Staffordshire C.C. has decided to invest in Superfast Broadband for the Lichfield and Burntwood area as highlighted in the blog on Lichfield Live here:

http://lichfieldlive.co.uk/2012/04/15/broadband-speed-boost-as-staffordshire-investment-scheme-is-approved/

There’s a good blog here, on Staffordshire IT’s website which describes the sort of improvements that ” Superfast Broadband ” can bring to Internet speeds:

http://www.staffordshireit.co.uk/fibre-broadband/

This whole idea of improving the internet infrastructure complements my own thoughts on the promotion of ” Silicon Crossroads ” ( as I have dubbed it ). ” Silicon Something ” has become a global brandname for a High Tech. area. Probably the most famous is ” Silicon Valley ” in California in the United States. Here in the U.K. we have ” Silicon Roundabout ” ( London ), ” Silicon Fen ” ( Cambridge ) and Silicon Glen ( Scotland ) to name a few. The Irish refer to the whole country as ” Silicon Ireland ” or the ” Silicon Republic “. Well, the Irish are probably one of the most successful European nations to take advantage of the development and expansion of High Tech. companies out of the U.S. and into Europe.

Whilst we hear a lot about High Tech. companies being located in London actually these are mainly relatively small ” sales offices ” and the bulk of the administration and development people are located in Ireland and perhaps Belgium or Luxembourg for “tax” reasons.

One thing is for sure: High Tech. companies in Silicon Valley are beginning to struggle to find the talent that they need. They have to look to other parts of the U.S. and abroad to find that talent. In a recent conversation that I had with a Silicon Valley based C.E.O. of a High Tech. startup he said that he would be looking across the U.S. to where his ” alma mater ” ( his old University ) was based and also to Argentina.

High Tech. startup  http://hootsuite.com/ recently highlighted that what had initially appeared to be a negative factor in their startup profile ( to venture capitalists and angels ) – being based in Vancouver – had turned out to be a blessing in disguise because they were able to find hot local talent at bargain prices and that talent didn’t want to go anywhere else.

Silicon Valley took a long time ( 30-50 years ? ) to get to where it is today. Arguably the preeminent startup location in all the world. Talent runs deep in Silicon Valley as this blog highlights:

http://medriscoll.com/post/9117396231/the-guild-of-silicon-valley

The software engineers that are ACTUALLY building the products that we now know about over here – Google, Apple, Facebook, Twitter etc etc are a secretive bunch and their wants and needs are probably different to a lot of people’s.

Internet ( communications ) infrastructure is going to be high up on their list though – from work AND from home AND in between.

According to this blog:

http://www.santaclaraweekly.com/2012/Issue-16/the_right_stuff_santa_clara_infrastructure_foundation_for_todays_stadium.html

The ” Holy Trinity ” that set Santa Clara to be the right location for High Tech. growth was:

“Gillmor calls that infrastructure the city’s “holy trinity of success:” city-owned land and electricity, and strategic use of redevelopment funding.”

More specifically what made Santa Clara such a great location was the road infrastructure; the electrical power strategy and the general utility provision  ( electric transmission, water and sewer lines – to be built in advance of development ). This when combined with a financial strategy ( bonds being sold to finance development which increased in value dramatically after developers built ) led to Silicon Valleys success.

The story of Silicon Valley is a blueprint for success for Silicon Crossroads. Many of the component parts are already in place and Superfast Broadband is another one of those key infrastructure pieces.

Internet Marketing in Lichfield and Tamworth Staffordshire

Posted by Chris on April 30th, 2012

When SEO companies used to call me up saying that they could get my website to rank on the front page ( usually some poor salesperson who didn’t have a clue who I was ) and knew all about Internet Marketing I would casually say oh ok, so you know all about SEO ( Search Engine Optimisation ) then do you ??? of course the answer was yes. So, if I google ” SEO and Internet Marketing ” you will be on the front page will you ?? ( Usually I was doing it in the background ). Then I would give them the bad news and help them by saying well maybe if I Google ” SEO and Internet Marketing in wherever it is you are based ” you will be on the front page ??? Ummmm! Maybe .. was usually the response. ok then, last chance, what would I have to Google to find you on the front page ???

I am not TRYING to be cruel I am just saying that if you want to ring me up and tell me that you are the best at SEO and Internet Marketing then you had better be able to prove that you are !!

Nowadays there are many companies around the world who proclaim that they are Internet Marketing Experts. Previously, as explained above , I used to test this with Google,  but these days I have another tool that I use called ” HubSpot Marketing Grader “.

HubSpot is a Boston, U.S. based software company that mainly provides HubSpot based websites and promotes an Internet Marketing philosophy called ” Inbound Marketing “.

To promote the company ( and get leads ) HubSpot provides a number of free Tools like Marketing Grader ( a development of Website Grader ) and Twitter Grader.

I used Marketing Grader to look at a number of websites in the Lichfield and Tamworth area recently and that was how I came to ” rate ” Staffordshire IT as, probably one of the most knowledgeable companies in the area. I first came across them on Twitter ( where they have more followers than most other people from Lichfield and Tamworth ) and then looked at their website using Marketing Grader:

http://marketing.grader.com/site/www.staffordshireit.co.uk

When I first looked at their grade it was 76/100. They have improved it since then to 80/100. This is an amazing score and I have only ever graded one higher score ( not in the Lichfield and Tamworth area ) which is Nikki Pilkington’s website:

http://marketing.grader.com/site/www.nikkipilkington.com

which has a grade of 87/100 which is incredible. Nikki was the designer of this M&A Rainmaker blogsite.

Some info on Staffordshire IT

We are a professional website design firm based in Tamworth and Lichfield, however we are able to service clients nationally. We have very competitive prices, easy to use, clean and professional web design, and programming services.

If you give us an outline of your website or online campaign needs, we’ll return to you with a no obligation web design quote within 24 hours. We will then follow that up with concept art work before you lay out any cash. We can also offer you web site maintenance and updates to your current site, regardless of who designed it!

Not only that, last year we became Apple authorised developers, meaning we are currently working on iPhone and iPad apps too, so if you want something really posh let us know!

Staffordshire IT Services are a fully qualified and experienced graphic and web design and open source development firm. Although we program primarily in PHP, AJAX and mySQL, we also code in Microsoft .NET, and Classic ASP. We also have in-house graphic design for the front-end stuff (the bit your customers will look at).

Our web development services include shopping carts that sell your products, backend CMS to allow your employees to manage web site content, custom forms to capture data about your visitors, online or email surveys, or we can create simple 3-page brochure sites too, if that is all that you need.

Whatever your web development needs, large or small – we can and will take care of you. So why not request a quote now?

Having a website is just the start of a good internet marketing strategy: now you need people to look at it! You need to get more visitors to your site, so you need good website ranking, and it shouldn’t need to take 6 months and thousands of pounds to get to the top of Google, Yahoo & Bing.

You need a company with many years in online marketing (check), very reasonable costs (check), who are diligent and hard grafters (check), and show a willingness to constantly monitor your site alongside you, to keep you at the top of the charts! (Big check!)

From the very start we can demonstrate proven white hat (legal) SEO techniques to you and we GUARANTEE we will increase your traffic. In fact, we are so confident in what we do, that you do not need to pay a penny until you have been shown an increase in visibility of your website online!

Good, savvy Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) is not an option in today’s fast-moving markets– it’s essential and the key to success in any marketing campaign is pretty simple. The Return on Investment (also known as ROI) must outweigh the initial and ongoing outlay of funds. In a web environment, there are multiple ways in which this may be measured including online sales, enquiries through the website (be they emails, surveys or phone calls), website traffic and overall increase in brand awareness.

A well-optimised site can provide numerous benefits, as long as the site is designed well in the first place. It is important to optimise a site for the most relevant terms whilst at the same time including more popular, generic key phrases.

Please feel free to give us a call on 01827 313111 and we can provide a free SEO report for you.

What is happening in Telecommunications? – the view from Burton on Trent

Posted by Chris on March 24th, 2012

From where I sit near Burton-on-Trent nothing much has changed in ICT and Telecommunications solutions for 10 Years or so. Rubbish you might say – loads of things have changed. Part of my problem is that Voyager Networks – the company that I sold in 2000 – was way ahead of it’s time. We were a Voice over IP provider when it really was a new thing ( In fact I remember Cisco buying Celsius – whose equipment we were already using – to build some of the first VoIP systems ). We were a Managed Network Services Provider when it was a nightmare to be one ( by this I mean that there were all sorts of ” New Telco’s ” claiming to be ” better than BT ” when in fact they were much much worse. ( The problem was that we had to try them before we could find this out ). We had a ” Network Operations Centre ” ( NOC ) when this was a really cool thing to have – it even had a ” Bridge ” – and it also had some super cool software ( InfoVista ) to ” pro-actively manage our customer’s networks “.

We were only able to build and run these Managed Networks because we had some really great technical people who overcame all the technical issues that arose from being a leading edge Data Networking and Telecommunications Solutions Provider.

In fact the world has got a lot simpler in the last 10-15 years – nobody really disputes the fact that VoIP is the way to go. All the main ” telephone systems ” companies are now VoIP Solutions providers ( well actually they are Unified Communications providers having been Converged Solutions providers along the way ). Most of those Telcos are now dead and gone. ” Consolidation ” has happened big time in the Telecommunications Provider market. Network and device management software has got better and cheaper.

A look from Burton on Trent at my old companies website http://www.voyager.net.uk/partners/ serves to emphasize what I am saying – hardly anything has changed ! All of these products and services/solutions  http://www.voyager.net.uk/solutions/ were there years ago. The only hint of a change is in ” Mobility “.

A look at 365iT’s website is the same http://www.365itservices.co.uk/ ( 365iT bought 5i Limited a few years ago ). Can we find ANYTHING different ?? The only thing that stands out for me is ” Virtualization “. Server virtualization is a pretty hot area with VMware being a hot stock  http://www.forbes.com/sites/tomtaulli/2012/03/23/3-stock-picks-from-tech-ceos/ .

With nothing having changed I think one thing is certain – competition is fierce !! Which means price erosion.

If we look at Node4′s website http://www.node4.co.uk/ ( Node4 are Headquartered in Derby ) there is an indication of one of the main changes that have happened – Cloud computing. Words like ” Hosting ” and ” Co-location ” are prevalent on the Node4 website. Virtualization is also there.

In this article http://www.zdnet.com/blog/btl/vmware-cto-virtualization-is-swiss-army-knife-of-it/72151 Virtualization, Cloud Computing and BYOD ( Bring your own Device ) are the areas mentioned as being important by corporate, Revlon.

I think the real clue as where ICT and Telecommunications is going is in the phrase ” Any information, anywhere, on any device, at any time ” and the challenges that this brings both to the user ( who will have multiple communications streams coming through to whatever device they are using – more of which soon )   and also in the types of information and data that the user is accessing.

The drive to achieve this level of communication is what will drive and shape the infrastructure and Telecommunications solutions requirements.

Many companies are in denial over the use of social media ( and I am greatly amused by this as it seems to me that company management have not read or remembered their – recent – history. In our memory people have refused to accept that the personal computer would become ubiquitous, the mobile phone, emailing, texting etc etc and of course they have grown to be huge industries. Perhaps when Facebook IPO’s for $75-100 Million in the next month or so some management will start to take it and other Social Networks seriously ).

Personally I think that people will use social ( and social business ) applications alongside corporate applications and so for example the stream of communications to their smartphone, iPad and Laptop will include the ” Unified Communications bit ” ( voice calls, text and email ) and the ” Social Media bit ” and this will require the integration and control of all of those streams. Of course this is already happening for many people and it happened with the smartphone first – as looking at my Blackberry demonstrates – Messages, Text/SMS, Calendar, Phone, Facebook, Twitter, Linkedin, Google+ etc etc.

As Revlon chief information officer David Giambruno says this demand for information drives certain infrastructure elements -e.g.  virtualized server farms, security to protect those servers, storage farms for the all the data – including back-up data, smartphone and iPad compatible applications N.B. The rise of companies like http://www.apperian.com/ who specialize in ” Mobile Application Management “.

Telecommunications solutions will be driven by the need to fulfill our desire for ” Anything, Everywhere ” communications.

Chris Windley, Burton on Trent.


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