My Investments

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Simon Howship, managing director of Huddersfield-based mobile app development specialist, Common Agency.

What was your best investment?

An investment in time, for myself, to find the confidence to give up a six figure salary as the recession started to bite in 2009. Luckily I decided to seize the opportunity to start a dedicated app development business and, whilst I’m not earning as much, I’m certainly far more fulfilled.

Are wise investors born or made?

Categorically made and, like most things in life, practice makes perfect. So, be prepared to make some mistakes and learn from them.

Do you believe it’s become harder for entrepreneurs to make prudent investments since the crash of 2008?

Yes and no. If you need capital investment then it is certainly more difficult. However, I think the crash has brought about a new openness and honesty that cuts through bureaucracy.

What’s the worst investment you’ve ever made?

Definitely buying bank shares pre-2008.

What advice would you give to entrepreneurs looking to make a major investment?

Invest in something you are enthused and passionate about.

Which sectors are likely to offer handsome returns for business investors?

Many UK micro-businesses are waiting for the perfect investment.

Are there any sectors you feel should be avoided?

Be aware of emperors’ new clothes, especially where people are hijacking technology just for technology’s sake.

What lessons did you learn from your worst investment?

Aside from the usual “Don’t believe the hype?” It’s only money!

What was the best piece of investment advice you’ve received?

Don’t hold on to an investment for emotional reasons.