Issue 1 2024

Corporate Vision- Issue 1 2024 CorporateVision The future of better business Featuring:

AI Global Media, Ltd. (AI) takes reasonable measures to ensure the quality of the information on this web site. However, AI will not assume any legal liability or responsibility for the accuracy, correctness or completeness of any information that is available through this web site. If errors are brought to our attention, we will try to correct them. The information available through the website and our partner publications is for your general information and use and is not intended to address any particular finance or investment requirements. In particular, the information does not constitute any form of advice or recommendation by us or any of our partner publications and is not intended to be relied upon by users in making or refraining from making any investment or financial decisions. Appropriate independent advice should be obtained before making any such decision. Any arrangement made between you and any third party named in the site is at your sole risk and responsibility. Happy new year from the team at Corporate Vision! We hope you have entered 2024 feeling refreshed, sprightly, and ready to take on whatever the next 12 months throws your way. Interestingly, 2024 trends are looking to include hybrid working, renewed focus on culture, sustainability, increasing presence of AI, and improved worklife balance, to name a few – all of which will be allowing teams the ability to really prosper in the workplace. Further, we are pleased to be providing you with some new year inspiration in the form of our award-winning businesses and their extraordinary success stories. In this issue, we explore businesses hailing from an array of industries, from metal fence and railing manufacturing to bulk commodity trading, from learning and development training to interior brand architecture. Each of these outstanding enterprises are raising the bar for their industries and proving themselves daily to be the very best of the best. Now, as we embark on the new year, we hope you enjoy the insight gained from the stories within these pages. With that, Corporate Vision wishes you a wonderful month ahead, and we look forward to welcoming you back again soon for our February issue. Welcome to the January issue of Corporate Vision Magazine. Editorial Team Sofi Parry, Senior Editor | Rebecca Scotland, Editor | Izzy Mifsud, Writer | Michelle Strozykowski, Writer | Emily Godbold, Writer | Matthew Wright, Writer | Joshua Beardsmore, Writer Design Team Lauren Baldwin, Graphic Designer | Ali Mohammed, Junior Graphic Designer

Contents 4. News 6. Best Metal Fence & Railings Manufacturer 2023 - China 8. Best Bulk Commodity Trading Company 2023 – Dubai 9. Most Innovative Learning & Development Training & Coaching Business 2023 - Georgia 10. Most Trusted PEEPs Training Provider 2023 - UK 11. Alldatum Business: The Data Highway Experts 12. Interior Brand Architecture Firm of the Year 2023 – South Africa 13. Business expert reveals how to start a business in 2024 on a shoestring budget 14. FINN Raises 100 Million Euro in Series C to Accelerate the Growth of its Electric Fleet 15. Business Spiritual Healing Specialist of the Year 2023 (USA): Joy Pedersen

Corporate Visiopn Two-fifths of UK workers planning to jump ship this year, with money the main driver • 40% of staff plan to move jobs this year, with one in six already on the hunt for work • Salary remains a key driver with 45% moving companies for better pay – but flexible working demands prevail • More than half of Londoners planning a move as the capital faces a talent exodus Two-fifths (40%) of the UK workforce are planning to move jobs in 2024, with one in six already beginning their search as staff look to boost their pay packet. That’s according to the latest Candidate Sentiment Survey statistics produced by specialist recruitment firm Robert Half. While this figure is lower than the 47% planning to move jobs this time last year, these statistics demonstrate the resilience of the labour market as more candidates look to capitalise on skills shortages to boost earnings. Those aged 18-34 are more likely to move roles than any other age group (56%). According to the data, salary remains a key driver of job moves – 45% of workers want a higher salary with a third (32%) of job seekers saying they would consider a counteroffer. However, flexible working prominence remains, with 29% stating that they want more agile working arrangements. Half (50%) of workers also indicated that they wouldn’t work for an organisation with values that don’t match their own – with 63% of job seekers also saying that a company’s values would steer their decision to move jobs if similar salaries were on offer. The statistics also revealed that London is set to witness the greatest talent exodus of all regions, with 56% of workers in the Capital planning a job move – with almost a quarter (23%) already looking for a new job. The West Midlands saw the second highest numbers (45%) followed by Yorkshire and Humberside (42%) Matt Weston, Senior Managing Director UK & Ireland, at Robert Half at Robert Half, commented: “The UK’s labour market has faced significant challenges and upheaval over the last few years, but the sentiment of candidates remains resilient. The combination of skills shortages and a cost-of-living crisis is causing some employees to jump ship for a pay boost, with the younger generation leading the way. While there has been a slight slowdown in planned job moves, this latest data shows that people are still confident in their ability to find new employment opportunities this year. What is certainly of note for employers, though, are the figures related to nonfinancial incentives. With workers indicating a desire for not only flexible working options but also a synergy between their values and those of their employer, firms will need to be able to offer more than just a salary boost if they are to source the right resources on a long-term basis.”

News UK gov’s controversial migration package is a risk to businesses needing access to global talent, says Localyze Businesses are set to lose their competitive edge if the migration process becomes even more difficult for international talent. In December, the UK government introduced a new migration package cutting legal migration and increasing the minimum salary threshold for skilled workers. This included an increase in the earning threshold for overseas workers from £18,600 to £38,700 and changes to the shortage occupation list, reducing the number of jobs where it’s possible to sponsor overseas workers below the baseline minimum salary. The ambitious five-point plan outlined by the Home Secretary to reduce immigration is due to take effect this spring, with the visa threshold initially rising to £29,000. International talent wanting to migrate to the UK faces various challenges if the government implements the planned changes, while employers are on edge, needing to be increasingly aware and prepared as policies fluctuate. The latest round of changes are set to affect British residents and their non-British/resident partners and families, British companies looking to hire global talent and families of students studying, and in response to the proposed package, Hanna Asmussen, cofounder and CEO at Localyze, said: “The proposed migration package is a step in the wrong direction for the UK, and the government is setting its economy up for failure, with the possibility of being left behind in the global employment market. There is no evidence of long-term thinking with this set of measures, and instead, it feels like a short-term knee-jerk reaction that is setting artificial limitations on supply and demand in the job market. “Brexit has already made it much harder for businesses to source the talent they need, and these policies will only exacerbate the problem. Earlier in 2023, joint research from think tank’s Centre for European Reform and the UK in a Changing Europe found that Brexit led to a shortfall of 330,000 people in the UK labour force, which is a worrying trend that is likely going to continue. “With more immigration comes more economic growth and innovation, so UK businesses must be able to acquire international talent to compete at an international level, particularly in innovative fields such as AI and tech development.” According to Hanna, the UK government continues to fail to identify the importance of the financial contributions migrants make and economic growth will continue to flatline if job roles remain unfilled. Hanna added: “Now simply isn’t the time for this package of measures. They will cripple businesses that desperately need to address the skills shortage in 2024, which is expected to be another challenging year economically for businesses of all sizes. Particularly for enterprise-sized businesses that have large employee pools and overheads needing to fill the talent gap with international hires while reducing costs - not doubling them. “A higher threshold on salary is also impractical because this completely depends on the market, the role, and many other factors. Businesses will be unable to cope with such a steep and sudden increase in employee costs, and it could lead to layoffs, stagnation, and both local and international talent suffering in the long term.” Hanna concluded: “If UK businesses are to remain competitive, boost productivity and ultimately build a stronger economy, they need access to skilled workers migrating legally and safely from anywhere in the world without more barriers being put in place. At the centre of this is the need to address the broken immigration process, which needs to be completely overhauled into an approach that is efficient and equitable, and benefits businesses, the UK economy and international talent alike.”

Corporate Vision Best Metal Fence & Railings Manufacturer 2023 - China Since 2008, QualityFence has been the leading R&D manufacturer dedicated to helping customers develop high quality, cost effective metal fence and railing solutions. These include ornamental steel fence, mechanical aluminium fence, aluminium slat fence, steel railings, aluminium railings, crowd control barriers, and more. In light of the company being recognised within the Small Business Awards 2023, we learn more in a conversation with Marketing Manager, Jacky Yen. What can QualityFence do for its customers? Our main customers are the KA fence and railing product importers who wholesale to local distributors, contractors and retailers. Our slogan is Stable Quality is Everything. For more than 15 years, we’ve been doing one thing and one thing only, which is to pursue cost-effective products based on stable quality by updating our equipment and improving our management. Thousands of QualityFence containers have been shipped overseas every year, even during the Covid-19 period. Our huge production capacity means we can offer our customers a competitive price. We have now set up three manufacturing bases, with the fourth soon to be established outside China, to meet the increasing demands of customers and the new policy. How do you approach your customers? We usually find the potential customers through Google searches and customs data and then contact them via email or Linkedin. We also attend trade shows and regularly visit our customers overseas. Our core value to our customers is CCFP, which stands for Consistent Quality + Competitive Price + Fast Delivery + Professional Service. Is there a particular advantage that you would like to spotlight? Our accumulation roller chain type powder coating lines have achieved huge production capacity and exceptional powder coating quality, which can pass the cross-cut test after two-hour boiling at 95ºC (203ºF) – No bubbles or detachments are visible. The cross-cut tests give values of ISO CLASS 1 or better. Even using a knife cannot peel the painting off from the cross point, with superior adhesion performance. The QualityFence Production Process 1. Material Inspection IQC inspection on tube sizes, thickness, coating, and weld line, etc. 2. Automated Equipment High speed automated cutting accuracy of 0.25mm, automated punching and drilling accuracy of 0.5mm, no dents or burrs left on the material.

Issue 1 2024 | 7 3. Professional Welding Professional welding workers and equipment ensure good quality with efficiency. 4. Pre-treatment System Henkel pre-treatment system automatically adjusts chemical concentration. 5. Data monitoring System Full time data monitoring system to control line speed and oven temperature. 6. Primer Coating (for Steel) Zinc-enriched primer powder coating covers all welds and cut edges to achieve excellent anti-rust performance. 7. Finished Coating Wagner large area reciprocating spray guns plus AkzolNobel powder coating enables exceptional weather resistance. 8. Final Inspection FQC test on adhesion before packing ensures only the best products will be delivered. 9. Pallet Packing Palletised packaging guarantees the integrity of the delivered product. What role do your staff play in the success of the company? We have an environment that welcomes, not just tolerates, diverse thinking. Diversity of thought is healthy because it tends to bring out the best ideas. However, once a decision has been made, it is important that the entire team is behind the chosen path. We encourage employees to be bold in expressing their constructive opinions and suggestions to promote the continued development and excellence of the business. Are there any specific industry-based challenges that are impacting the business? We have to move some of our production out of China because of anti-dumping trade wars by certain countries. But it’s also a great opportunity for us because our competitors may not be able to do the same. Do you have any plans for 2024 or beyond that you would like to share with our readers? In addition to the new manufacturing base outside China, we will be more aggressive in research and development of best-selling new products, which is very important to grow our business. We will do more marketing research online and at the exhibitions for new items. To learn more about Quality Fence or to enquire about a product, please visit the company website. Contact Details Company: Quality Fence Co., Ltd. Contact: Jacky Yen (Marketing Manager) Email: [email protected] Website:

Corporate Vision Best Bulk Commodity Trading Company 2023 – Dubai Dubai-based RWood Resources DMCC is a commodity trading company that has been operating since 2015. With head offices in Dubai and a subsidiary operating from Indonesia, the company also takes pride in being represented in China, India, Singapore, South Korea, and Vietnam, solidifying its far-reaching range and dominance in the market. Bolstered by an extensive network and dedicated efforts, the business has carved out a niche in the sector and possesses expertise in the trading and marketing of thermal coal on a global scale, offering it in the ranges of 3300 GAR to 6500 GAR. The long-term strategy of the business is incredibly well-developed, and entails the continual expansion of its services, integrating both backwards and forwards in the lifecycle of the supply chain. To date, RWood Resources DMCC (RWood) has delivered in excess of 70 million MT of coal to countries across the Eastern Hemisphere, establishing it as the region’s premier trader of thermal coal. At the centre of its success is its people, with the company proudly being comprised of experienced trade professionals from an array of backgrounds within both the coal and mining industries. As a result of the skills, knowledge, and effort put in by the team, the company has cemented itself as a renowned trade partner. Another pillar of strength that the company has secured is in the area of suppliers, where RWood boasts of exclusive life-of-mine off-take agreements with PT Arutmin Indonesia, PT Ade Putra Tanrajeng (APT) and PT Guruh Putra Bersama (GBP), with a yearly volume commitment stemming from a partnership with PT Kaltim Prima Coal (KPC). With a combination of strong relationships with renowned suppliers and a global presence thanks to its fully-fledged Indonesian operation, presence in East Kalimantan, and strong representation throughout key sectors in the rest of the AsiaPacific area, RWood today boasts geographical diversity in its services, complete with the promise of an expert operational and commercial presence across the process, ensuring smooth coordination of goods from their sourcing through to delivery at the location of a customer’s choosing. It is no surprise that with scope and quality such as this, the company has nurtured strong relationships with a host of global power producers, industrial consumers, and trade partners alike. Utilising its worldwide advantage and embodying a customer-centric approach in its day-to-day operations, RWood is proud to consistently exceed its targets and produce strong trading volume numbers year-on-year, further benefited by the expert teams who manage the business and financial elements of RWood, leveraging their expertise to yield great results. Despite its current successes in the market, the company is nevertheless determined to expand continuously, and to this end, is constantly evolving its trade network and updating its offerings as a way to support its sustainable long-term growth strategy. RWood is also committed to further enhancing the value of its brand for stakeholders, diversifying its product ranges while remaining steadfast in its drive to provide expert solutions to new customers and existing clientele alike. Anchoring the business’ fortune is still its unique ability to offer high-quality coal in the ranges of 3300 to 6500 GAR on both an on-the-spot and long-term basis, ultimately underpinning its reliability. Quintessentially, RWood is in possession of an effective development strategy, that in the last eight years alone has seen it: secure long term coal supply from some of Indonesia’s leading mines, successfully manage and coordinate the logistics chain from mining through to vessel loading, provide a diversified product portfolio complete with multiple supply sources, offer structured financing for competitive sourcing, place keen focus on product quality and assuring customer satisfaction, established a good location in proximity to the source and consumers. Spurred on by the desire to provide nothing less than the best to its client base across the Asia-Pacific region of the Eastern Hemisphere, RWood Resources DMCC serves as the prominent supplier of thermal coal, and as a result of its effectiveness and efficiency in the market, has established itself as being more than worthy of this award, showcasing its expertise and proficiency in trading thermal coal. Contact: Vinod Kumar Taliyakattil and Kiran Vinod Contractor Company: RWood Resources DMCC Web Address:

Issue 1 2024 | 9 Established in 2007, Naris Communications helps leaders prepare themselves and their teams for planned business and organizational changes, specifically new enterprise technological systems and process improvements. The team encourages clients to unlock their growth potential by realizing the opportunities that innovation can bring. With their human-centered and integrated approach, consultants enable clients to better communicate changes on a company-wide scale, ensuring that the company is prepared at all levels. Naris Communications helps organizations better support their workforce by collaborating with project teams and leaders to engage end-users affected by transformation. The business understands that people are at the heart of any organization and prioritizes the wellbeing of its clients, employees, and their communities. The team ensures that every client is met with empathy and is committed to achieving a successful result. Through active listening, consultants grow to understand clients’ individual circumstances and work with them to co-create innovative solutions. Naris Communications values collaboration and aims to foster meaningful relationships with clients and stakeholders. These long-lasting relationships enable consultants to collect intelligence and diverse perspectives to create sustainable solutions. The business caters to clients undergoing transformational changes such as system implementations, organizational restructuring, or process reengineering. Naris Communications’ size and expertise allow the business to work differently, remaining agile, responsive, and innovative in its operations. With connections to specialists and consultants with strategic change management experience, solution architecture, and facilitation skills, the business can scale its operations to match clients’ initiatives and markets. Naris Communications provides clients with the necessary skills and tools to achieve future success. Its comprehensive suite of performance solutions includes online assessments in emotional intelligence, DISC behavioral styles and leadership styles, and courses in topics such as change management, performance management, cultural communications, negotiation, and much more. As a value-add offering for all engagements, Naris Communications incorporates change management training for organization leaders, which improves change competency and user adoption. Founder and CEO Dr. Keera Godfrey shares, “Specializing in business strategy activation and digital transformation, Naris is not merely a consultancy but an architect of lasting change, adept at countering resistance and steering organizations towards unprecedented heights. Our seasoned consultants bring a strategic lens to your organization, identifying untapped potential and crafting bespoke solutions that not only align with The mission of Naris Communications is to help businesses build efficient workplaces where employees feel empowered to produce their best work amid a major shift to new ways of working with digital technology. The company aims to create a world where employees can thrive, and leaders can confidently demonstrate how to work in the digital age. Naris Communications has received our award for this year’s Most Innovative Learning & Development Training & Coaching Business – Georgia. Most Innovative Learning & Development Training & Coaching Business 2023 - Georgia your vision but propel you towards it. We don’t just consult; we activate strategies that serve as the bedrock for innovation and sustainable growth.” In 2024, Naris Communications plans to scale by launching customized performance solutions for the food and beverage manufacturing industry. The company will pursue opportunities in three major sectors, including human resource teams deploying a new learning management system, information system, or leadership program; operations teams implementing lean manufacturing or operational excellence; and IT teams optimizing financial, supply chain, or enterprise resource planning systems. For program leaders in food and beverage manufacturing, Naris Communications designs human engagement and performance solutions that empower and enable employees to embrace business and organization change. As its client base expands, the business will continue to enhance its services by integrating technology, experience design, and best industry practices. Naris Communications looks forward to fostering more strategic partnerships in the future while remaining committed to delivering transformative success to clients, nurturing innovation, and securing its position as a leader in change management consultancy and performance solutions. For its holistic approach, Naris Communications has received our award for this year’s Most Innovative Learning & Development Training & Coaching Business – Georgia. Contact: Dr. Keera Godfrey Company: Naris Communications Web Address:

Corporate Vision Personal Emergency Evaluation Plans have always been mandatory to meet compliance with the legal requirements of the Fire Safety Order – an order that demands all occupants are able to move away quickly and safely from immediate danger and evacuate the premises before any harm or danger to life can occur. With no exclusion to this rule, it’s mandatory that emergency planning takes into account disabled and vulnerable residents who must be able to evacuate to a place outside the building. All published guidance states that this must occur without assistance from the fire and rescue services. It is worth noting that the Government estimates that there are up to 288,200 residents requiring a PEEP in buildings covered by the Building Safety Act 2022. This figure does not include those with short term disabilities. The courses offered by Triple A Solutions are based on the practical delivery of evacuation solutions across diverse environments since 2009, and the delivery of Institution of Fire Engineers (IFE) instructor-led training since 2012. All courses are highly interactive, delivered as micro-learning, and learners are provided with courses notes, appropriate worked examples, and Continuous Professional Development (CPD) certificates on completion of each course. Triple A Solutions also offers an annual subscription, which provides unrestricted access to all existing and future PEEP associated courses, documents, and fillable form templates, with regular updates. Organisations requiring multiple learners can take advantage of additional benefits as part of the subscription, including the monitoring of training progress and the delivery of group training to participants in addition to access to the Resource Library. The PEEPS for Professionals course is a six-hour course in nine parts, which is accredited by the IFE. This course is aimed at responsible persons, principal accountable persons, accountable persons, and building managers, plus fire professionals and those responsible for advising board members and directors internally and externally. It also provides professionals with evidence of a knowledge of PEEPs, as required by the National Fire Sector Competency Framework. To assist organisations, the Strategic Planning course provides learners with an amendable PEEP framework for rolling-out PEEPs across an organisation. Organisations can use the framework in preparing the Safety Case Report required for each building covered by the Building Safety Act 2022, while the Practical PEEPs course provides learners with templates to enable the efficient preparation of PEEPs. The two-hour PEEPs and Neurodiversity course focuses on the development of effective emergency planning for the 15% of the population who are neurodiverse. Triple A Solutions training is aimed at organisations and professionals responsible for meeting compliance with the Building Safety Act 2022, Fire Safety Order 2005, Fire Safety Act 2021, and the Equality Act 2010 in relation to the emergency arrangements for vulnerable people. Proof of competency is key for both the Building Safety Act and the Fire Safety Order and providing evidence of compliance can be complex, time-consuming, and costly. Our suite of training courses delivers 18 hours of comprehensive training based on 14 years of experience of delivery of Personal Emergency Evaluation Plans (PEEPs) with worked examples, an amendable PEEP rollout framework, and fillable form templates provided on completion of a course. Most Trusted PEEPs Training Provider 2023 - UK Two courses, focused on building safety legislation and regulations, are offered at no additional charge to learners who have undertaken the Foundation, Strategic Planning and Inclusive Fire Safety courses. These focus on the requirements of Building Safety Act, the Fire Safety Act 2021, and Fire Safety (England) regulations. Further courses provide knowledge of the implementation of inclusive fire safety of the built environment. Though some may have reservations about remote learning courses, Triple A Solutions interactive courses get learners involved. As one customer stated, “The platform and modules themselves were engaging, used different techniques throughout, such as videos, podcasts, and quizzes to help you stay on track. We enjoyed the training and having different levels for the strategic and operational aspects worked really well.” Email: [email protected] Company: Triple A Solutions Web Address:

Small Business Awards 2023 | 11 Issue 1 2024 | 11 pain is about the silos and integration of their information; sometimes they do not have the data they need; sometimes they are experiencing internal political situations that are difficult to manage; owners may also not want to share the data; sometimes data is of poor quality. Hence, Alldatum sees data projects as business projects. Such projects are not limited to buying a platform. They involve collaborating with customers and understanding where they are on their Data management components strategy and create a plan with them to gain quick wins and value and move forward to become a “Data-Driven Company.” Data projects entail people, analysing current and future roles, understanding what is not working as a best practice and what is working, and communicating very well the aspirations. In everything it does, Alldatum is proud to take a handson approach, accompanying businesses on their journey towards successful digital transformation and helping them to navigate the challenges presented by the digital economy. Its best-in-class team are equipped with deep expertise in their fields, broad customer experience, and unwavering dedication. The company truly owes its success to their hard work, strong backgrounds, and commitment to excellence. For its outstanding work, Alldatum Business S.A. de C.V. has been awarded the title of Data Management & Consultancy Firm of the Year, Mexico, in the Corporate Excellence Awards 2023. We are pleased to congratulate the company on this exceptional achievement and wish its team the best of luck in 2024 and beyond. Contact: Esther Riveroll Company: Alldatum Business S.A. de C.V. Web Address: With more than 28 years of experience in the technological industry and 10 years in innovation and data, Alldatum was established in 2016 when its founders identified the increasing need for companies to gain more from their data. With a vast and diverse range of sources from which data can be obtained, including the cloud, on premise, social networks, wearables, chatbots, and more, there has been a data explosion that must be managed in order for information to be fully leveraged and utilised. Over the years, it has become apparent that poor data management leads to challenges related to decision making, data compliance, and audits due to the lack of processes and policies that inspire trust in the data. For this reason, data governance has become more important than ever. Alldatum is passionate about empowering organisations to improve their data experience, supporting them with their business strategies and data initiatives to help them maximise the exploitation of information and improve their decision-making processes. To this end, Alldatum offers a wide range of services. In this, it works in collaboration with their technology partners such as Tibco and SnapLogic. For example, TIBCO EBX® is an allin-one, easily deployed, and simple MDM solution that helps organisations from all industries to use their data more effectively and efficiently and SnapLogic as an innovative all in one data and application integration platform. By ensuring the accuracy and consistency of this data, they enhance the quality of their operational processes, reporting, and analysis. Alldatum supports and advises its clients on how to manage their complete data, covering topics like strategy, metadata management, reference data management, and cataloguing. SnapLogic’s breakthrough generative AI solution, SnapGPT brings self-service and unparalleled speed to not only data and application integrations, but also workflow automation, using simple natural language prompts. Alldatum’s Vision is to “Unleash digital transformation through data-driven innovation.” Their slogan “The Human Side of Technology” is really their point of view about who they are. Nowadays mouth to mouth recommendation like in the past continues, only now it is through social networks and digitalization, so having happy customers, employees and partners is the basis to continue positioning themselves and winning the market. Data projects are not only technological projects. Many Companies need help in understanding data and identifying the best strategy to get value from it. Sometimes their first Based in Mexico City, Alldatum Business S.A. de C.V. is a data consulting company that was created to support businesses in their journey to data maturity by helping them to create and realise effective strategies. For its excellence in achieving this mission, the organisation has been awarded Data Management & Consultancy Firm of the Year, Mexico, in the Corporate Excellence Awards 2023. Here, we explore Alldatum’s background and its extensive range of services. Alldatum Business: The Data Highway Experts

Corporate Vision Interior Brand Architecture Firm of the Year 2023 – South Africa Multi-faceted, multi-disciplinary group of design companies, Rumour Has It (Pty) Ltd Interior Brand Architecture, specialises in services including interior brand architecture, brand development, and creative design. Bolstered by an experienced team of highly qualified designers, and overseen by a dynamic and strategic leadership team, the staff proudly imagines, develops, and operates with a 360-degree approach that ensures a client’s brand identity and its very DNA are represented across both physical and virtual spaces. As a proud member of the IID and Green Building Council of South Africa, every element of the group’s operations is laser-focused on sustainability, something abundantly apparent across its design and building services. We catch up with Director, Analise De Beer, who provides further insight into the firm and what sets it apart. Rumour Has It (RHi) is a group made up of five independent businesses: RHi Interior Brand Architecture, RHi Curate, RHi Digital & Creative, RHi Connect, and Design In A Box (DIAB). RHi Interior Brand Architecture & RHi Curate collectively focus on the commercial and high-end residential markets, whereas their online interior design platform, DIAB, serves the larger global residential market. RHi’s portfolio is extensive and includes the areas of hospitality, such as boutique hotels, guest houses, and restaurants, as well as the retail, healthcare, heritage, corporate, education, and tourism industries; this in addition to its stellar work with luxury residential homes and development projects. Of its plethora of offerings, RHi Connect is particularly noteworthy. RHi Connect serves as the social responsibility/ enterprise development section of the group, steadfast in its commitment to empowering those women who have been previously disadvantaged to lead better lives thanks to direct economic benefit, mentorship, and skills transfer. This is just one way in which Rumour Has It is pioneering innovation and change for the better across its solutions, and as a leading firm in the industry, the team is constantly striving to positively influence the market, spurring on the next level of design and transformation. At the centre of these successful operations are a series of core values that have been embedded within the team and are apparent in the way clients and business partners are interacted with. As Analise explains, “our mission is to transform and make a meaningful difference with noticeable impact. For our people, our community, the environment, and our clients.” To this end, the forging of strong, meaningful relationships is prioritised with the best suppliers the industry has to offer, resulting in strides being taken in forming the excellent reputation that is enjoyed by the firm today. The highest standards are not only set, but worked towards, with a lasting legacy in mind. Collaboration is key and formulating a thorough design brief with one eye being kept squarely on the budget, serves as the foundation from which all subsequent success is built. Furthermore, RHi holds a firm belief in the “7-second rule”; with first impressions being formed in just 7 seconds, it is important to follow this philosophy to maximise creativity and wholly uphold the values of a client’s company or brand. It is this ethos, along with holistic and sustainable design, an impeccable track record, and the strong and tenured relationships built by the firm that truly sets it apart from others working in the sector. When asked about the internal culture at Rumour Has It, Analise explains, “our internal culture is a dynamic blend of innovation, collaboration, and an unwavering commitment to excellence.” Continuous learning is blended with a sense of belonging, and a mindset of constant improvement is championed, creativity is celebrated, and knowledge thrives, something reflected in the excellent service afforded to clients. As Analise summarises, “as we navigate our industry’s evolving landscape, our culture serves as a compass, guiding us towards new horisons.” Looking ahead to the future, it is the aim of Rumour Has It to toe the line between sustainable growth and retaining the acclaimed, personalised service that is only possible with a small business. Scale is thus not the focal point of expansion, rather it is striking this much-needed balance, remaining agile and embracing opportunities while upholding its innate client-centric nature. As for the immediate future, innovative new projects are soon to be undertaken, technological capabilities enhanced, and client engagement deepened. For Analise, “the upcoming months are poised to be a dynamic chapter, characterised by growth, innovation, and a relentless pursuit of excellence.” Contact: Analise De Beer Company: Rumour Has It (Pty) Ltd Interior Brand Architecture Web Address:

Issue 1 2024 | 13 • A business expert reveals how to start a new business without breaking the budget • The cost-of-living crisis makes it harder for new businesses to start as more funds are needed for essentials like hiring, working spaces, and marketing • Business owners are urged to use savings strategically to avoid unnecessary debt • Other tips include using social media to build connections, work remotely to avoid a costly office lease, and to get feedback from your friends A business expert reveals the top tips for starting a business on a minimum budget this year. Business expert Venture Smarter advises, “Starting a business doesn’t always have to involve breaking the bank. With careful planning and a commitment to staying frugal, entrepreneurs can successfully launch a business on a budget. “Before launching a new business, developing a comprehensive plan is crucial. This plan should include a detailed description of your company model and target market, and identifying your unique selling proposition is important to distinguish your business from competitors. A well-crafted plan will help make informed decisions and make it easier to allocate funds to priority areas. “Utilize your personal and professional networks for support and potential collaborations. Attend local networking events to meet potential clients, partners, and mentors. Consider bartering or exchanging services with other businesses to minimize costs. “While personal savings can be valuable when starting a business, spending only what is necessary is crucial. Use your existing resources efficiently and prioritize your spending on aspects that directly contribute to business growth to avoid unnecessary debt. “Consider adopting a lean startup approach to your business by starting with a minimum viable product (MVP). This will enable you to Business expert reveals how to start a business in 2024 on a shoestring budget test your business concepts with minimal risks and gather feedback from your friends, family, and customers. You can refine your product or service to improve its quality based on their responses. “A lean approach also makes it easier to minimize costs. You can consider various ways to save money, such as working from home or utilizing co-working spaces instead of committing to an office lease. Additionally, you can source cost-effective equipment, furniture, and supplies. “Do your own marketing and network using social media platforms, content marketing, and emailing campaigns to reach and engage with your audience. You can find free online tools to create your marketing materials. Consider hiring freelancers or part-time contractors instead of full-time employees for specific tasks. “One should build strong relationships with suppliers and negotiate for better deals, discounts, or extended payment terms. Establishing open communication can lead to cost savings and improved financial flexibility. “It’s important to keep learning and acquiring new skills that can benefit your business. For instance, learn basic accounting, marketing, or website management to reduce reliance on external services. Remember that learning is key to running a successful business. If you don’t understand something, consider using many of the free online courses that are available to improve your skills. “Throughout starting your business, maintain a frugal mindset and scrutinize every expense. Regularly reassess your spending priorities and allocate resources that contribute to the growth of the business. “Starting a new business requires a clear focus on what truly matters and a willingness to refine your approach as your business evolves and adapts to changing circumstances. With determination and a thrifty mindset, even a budget-focused startup can thrive in a highly competitive business landscape.”

Corporate Vision • The Series C funding round of 100 million euros (110 million US dollars) was led by the growth equity sustainable investment platform Planet First Partners with strong participation from existing investors. • The valuation of the car subscription provider FINN, headquartered in Munich with offices in New York City, has increased to more than 600 million US dollars. • With fresh capital and the expertise of Planet First Partners, FINN will accelerate its shift towards a fully electric fleet and establish the car subscription model as a significant driver of electric mobility. The car subscription provider FINN has announced the closing of its Series C equity funding round of 100 million euros. The round was led by Planet First Partners, the European growth equity sustainable investment platform. In addition, existing investors reaffirmed their confidence in FINN and participated strongly in the new funding round, including HV Capital, Korelya Capital, UVC Partners, White Star Capital and Picus Capital. The round increases FINN’s valuation to more than 600 million US dollars. The Munich-based company will use the capital to accelerate growth in the electric car sector, with the goal to more than double the share of low-emission vehicles in its fleet from 40% to over 80% by 2028. FINN’s car subscription model is contributing to the adoption of electric mobility by offering customers the opportunity to use electric cars flexibly in their everyday lives – without risks such as technological obsolescence or the development of residual values associated with ownership. Last year, FINN grew further in its markets and hit the milestone of 160 million euros in Annual Recurring Revenue (ARR) with over 25,000 active subscriptions. One of the most important growth drivers was the B2B fleet business, which now accounts for half of ARR. The Series C round follows a corporate debt transaction with Atempo Growth conducted at the end of last year. Since 2019, FINN customers have been able to subscribe to a car from over 30 brands and hundreds of models in just a few clicks. The car is delivered directly to their doorstep in just a few days and comes with an end-to-end carefree package, including insurance, financing, registration, taxes and maintenance. FINN expanded to the east coast of the USA in 2022. “To achieve international climate targets, the shift to electric mobility has to be significantly accelerated over the next few years. After years of lack of production, the vehicles now need to be brought into the market. Our full-service and carefree subscription model is the perfect accelerant – for consumers and companies alike,” says Maximilian Wühr, CEO and co-founder of FINN. “With the new capital from Planet First Partners and the strong trust of our existing investors, we will expand our sustainability strategy significantly. We will double the proportion of electric vehicles in our fleet in the coming years and accelerate our growth through the e-mobility transition.” Nathan Medlock, Managing Partner at Planet First Partners, said: “The transition to electric vehicles is one of the major societal shifts taking place globally and is crucial in our move towards a more sustainable economy. With road transport accounting for around one-sixth of global emissions, electric vehicles are vital to decarbonize society. FINN’s easy-to-use subscription model offers an innovative solution FINN Raises 100 Million Euro in Series C to Accelerate the Growth of its Electric Fleet to assist consumers in making the move to electric vehicles and reducing their own carbon footprint.” Nathan Medlock will join FINN’s Board. Planet First Partners is classified as an Article 9 fund under the European Union’s Sustainable Finance Disclosure Regulation (SFDR). This means that the fund invests in line with strict guidelines, according to which portfolio companies must significantly contribute to sustainability goals. FINN aims to foster sustainable mobility for people and the planet by already having over 40% of low-emission vehicles, such as fully electric cars and plug-in hybrids, and by supporting climate protection projects. Planet First Partners’ investment will be used exclusively for growing the electric vehicle fleet.

Small Business Awards 2023 | 15 Issue 1 2024 | 15 or distribution. The cause is sometimes with the subconscious but also in energies of environments, property, and situations that need releasing. For Joy, it’s not about simply dealing with current situations. Her work may include deeper causes of trauma or repetitive patterns. She elaborates, “During our sessions, I am often taken to past-life scenes where a negative memory holds the unreleased trauma and then clear storylines, negative emotions and energies from the situation.” Joy’s important work is easily accessible to people worldwide. Joy says, “My industry grows as the collective’s consciousness expands. Within the spiritual community are infinite perspectives, and a client needs to find someone who resonates with them and theirs.” Her experience guides her through every interaction with her clients. It helps her to support them in any way they need for their personal lives, careers, or relationships. Joy firmly believes that her clients find her when they need someone to help them on their journeys. She explains, “People often come to me because they don’t understand why they aren’t getting the results they seek doing all the “right” things. They may not understand that results are manifested by the subconscious.” The unconscious mind can be connected through therapy, meditation, and dream analysis, but Dr. Joy uses her intuitive abilities – giving us a better understanding of how our deeper mind works and what we may feel under the surface. Joy’s spiritual healing is an extension of that work – and her understanding of the subconscious has propelled Express Success LLC to a very bright future. Bestowed with the title of Business Spiritual Healing Specialist of the Year 2023, in the USA, Dr. Joy S. Pedersen’s awardwinning status is yet another achievement as she continues to help people with their lives – regardless of where they live, their spiritual blockages, or their desired results. Contact: Dr. Joy S. Pedersen Company: Express Success LLC Web Address: Spiritual healing can be carried out through many different modalities and practices. Tools, techniques, and spiritual gifts may release energetic blockages, lower energies, and unreleased emotions and align people, places, circumstances, and things in the highest and most favorable light. Old programs, limiting beliefs, negative memories, and emotions can prevent us from manifesting what we want, whether that’s peace, love, prosperity, or any other kind of positive abundance. Dr. Joy S. Pedersen started Express Success LLC while working in Hollywood to help those struggling in the entertainment business by teaching the Law of Attraction. Dr. Joy tells us, “When working at Paramount, I noticed many people that called to network with me, struggled in getting work and other ways. I wanted to help them but found them achieving inconsistent results applying Law of Attraction techniques. Someone may have successfully found a job but continued to struggle with confidence. Someone else may have made more money but continued having relationship challenges. I realized there had to be elements within blocking the preferred outcomes. I searched for a solution and discovered spiritual healing.” Besides learning the subconscious held the programming that attracted the results people experienced, she learned spiritual healing could release the programs. She also discovered she was intuitive and could read energy, the subconscious, which creates our programming that attracts our results. Joy serves a multitude of international clients with diverse religious and nonreligious belief systems. Her practice is also varied as she frequently works with business owners on their personal and business lives. In one session, she may address issues they, their spouse, or their child may be having, then challenges with their employees, sales, Dr. Joy S. Pedersen is a licensed intuitive spiritual healer and coach, helping those who seek her services to identify the hidden, root causes of the challenges they face regarding matters such as money, business, relationships, mindset, health, and overall well-being. Serving clients from around the globe from her home base in Florida, Joy works with those from all walks of life, from stay-at-home mothers to politicians, CEOs, and celebrities. We hear from Joy as we learn more about her company, Express Success LLC. Business Spiritual Healing Specialist of the Year 2023 (USA): Joy Pedersen