Learn a lesson from Boo.com

Your analysis of the demise of Boo.com makes interesting reading (MW May 25).

Your analysis of the demise of Boo.com makes interesting reading (MW May 25). In the five years (plus) that we’ve been involved with Internet businesses, my colleagues and I have come up with a shortlist of universal statements that have proved invaluable in our capacity as advisers to e-commerce start-ups, expansions, mergers and acquisitions:

  • Design will influence success, but the business concept is king
  • The business must have a significantly better overall offer than its traditional counterpart
  • Have unique selling points
  • The website must load quickly, be fun and easy to use and be materially different to all other competitors
  • A virtual offer of service must translate into real service
  • The business must change constantly for the better, and it must stay ahead of competitors
  • Entrepreneurs must not be control freaks and they must be willing to hand the chief executive role to a true business professional
  • The owners must not fear selling shares – and, if necessary, accept suffering dilution – to grow either organically or through acquisition.
  • Robert Hamburger

    AGI Corporate Finance

    London W1

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