Finding a gap in the market - Sunday Times, Business Section

Sunday Times

Finding a gap in the market - Sunday Times, Business Section

If you see a gap, just jump right in.

A chance to start out on your own can be staring you in the face.

"Tom Higgins worked for five years with ODL Securities, the online broker, before he spotted a gap. “There was no specialist in retail trading to buy software from, so we ended up having to do it ourselves, which was very difficult,” said Higgins, 47. “There was nobody providing something lots of companies needed.”

In September 2008, he founded Gold-i to develop software that would help bankers and brokers trade profitably and manage risk. He claims to have 120 clients on the books of his Surrey-based business, which has 25 employees.

“I knew I could do this, but as an employee you assume that you’re wrong and that the big companies must be right,” said Higgins. “You need to have faith in yourself and realise you can do it better.”

He did consultancy work to fund Gold-i and employ a team of developers to bring the product to market. “You have no product initially and nobody will buy from you unless you have something. I really worked my network and spoke to everyone I knew.” Higgins used his savings to launch the business, which will report sales of about £1.6m next month."