“We freaked out”: The scary reality of starting a web business

tinyme-press-logo-small I’ve written a lot of stories about entrepreneurial Internet start-ups over the years, and am always impressed by the willingness of so many entrepreneurs to pack in their day job and start something for themselves. Often they fail, but usually they do so before the press has even noticed them. 

But there are nonetheless plenty of success stories. Tinyme is certainly one of them, and its three business partners have built up an online retail business that during peak season employs 45 people.

Recently I was asked by the editor of to write a series of articles looking into the fortunes of small online businesses, in the hope that those that follow in the steps of Tinyme and others might be able to learn from their lessons. Tinyme has grown consistently to become a highly successful business, but even it has had the odd stumble along the way. You can read what happened, and how they overcame it, by clicking here.

BRW – Big data: Knowledge might be power, but data is money


Recently I’ve become fascinated by the topic of Big Data – essentially how new technologies and techniques are allowing the near-real time analysis of massive volumes of data to uncover useful insights. It is a field that is evolving rapidly, and no doubt is somewhat over-hyped, but story after story tells how new analysis techniques are yielding genuine advantage for the organisations wielding them.

The brilliant thing about Big Data is that it allows organisations to get an additional advantage out of an asset that they already own – one which can be augmented by taking data that is freely available, such as from Web traffic and data logs, to deliver new insights.

I’ll be posting a lot more on Big Data this year, but if you want to get a sense of what’s possible, check out this article I recently wrote for BRWk.