Magazine article Management Today

Decisions: Rupert Clevely, Geronimo Inns, Founder of the Upmarket South-East Pub Chain

Magazine article Management Today

Decisions: Rupert Clevely, Geronimo Inns, Founder of the Upmarket South-East Pub Chain

Article excerpt

MY BEST...

A second best decision was hiring a great finance director. As a young guy building a business, it was a mistake not having one for so long. We found life so difficult in the early days because I wasn't prepared to pay good money for someone decent to oversee the numbers. When I look back at it, the issues we had were horrendous. At one stage I didn't have the money to pay my pounds 250,000 VAT bill and we nearly went bust. Our business bank didn't like our numbers and wouldn't lend us the money, but I was lucky because we were trying to get our hands on some more pubs and our personal bank gave us the money. So the finance director completely transformed our business and things ran so much more smoothly once I decided to pay pounds 60,000 instead of pounds 25,000.

MY WORST...

Because of some dodgy characters in the local gang scene, we ended up basically having to give the pub away with no money changing hands There were a lot of sleepless nights and we ended up writing off the pounds 450,000 we had invested in the site, but let's just say it was better that I did that. …

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