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Bill Lewis, Co-Founder of Temasys Communications

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Bill Lewis is a determined entrepreneur who is impressed by others creating new and interesting businesses. Lewis is in the tech industry and sees great potential in technology, if managed properly.

What’s your story?
British. Countryside boy from poor but honest family (“rags to riches”) to global citizen, corporate director and entrepreneur. Progressed through life driven by sheer determination and bloody mindedness. Always believed in “big hairy goals” as a means to step change your life. Succeeded academically at two top institutions, Lancaster University and Harvard Business School. Led large complex businesses in the airline space, and ran the course as an entrepreneur – making mistakes along the way, but emerging successfully. Believes in giving back and is presently founding an online entrepreneur’s mentoring program. Extremely well travelled (50 countries) and have a passion for sailing.

What excites you most about your industry?
Technology – change and potential can create a positive impact on people’s lives. But I am also concerned about the “left behinds,” the unconnected. I am concerned about the potential for unseen control and manipulation. One of the greatest challenges is for technologists to create a moral dimension to the innovations that are pouring out of labs.

Entrepreneurship – I am constantly amazed at young entrepreneurs and their ability and willingness to step out and create something new, fresh, and what people want and need.

The on line world – so much is at your fingertips.

What’s your connection to Asia?
I first came to Asia in 1986 to negotiate a deal with the Chinese government. I was in and out of Asia from that time through 2002, when I moved permanently to Singapore, initially to head the Asia operations of a UK based technology company but by 2004 I had moved on and set up my own consulting practice. Less than a decade later (2012) I co founded a tech company and we took some big bets on an emerging technology – which is paying off handsomely today. I now commute between Singapore and Chiang Mai, in Northern Thailand, and wherever my clients take me.

Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
Singapore – location, regulation, reputation, talent

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
Never believe that anything is impossible

Who inspires you?
I draw inspiration from so many people that it is difficult to name one person.
My grandfather – self-taught and a leader of men
As a boy I was brought up on stories of real men, real heroes – not celebrities and virtual characters. These were men who survived and prevailed against the odds. And they had a tangible code – of fairness, of honesty and of achievement.
My first real boss was an enabler and he encouraged everyone to think and act outside the box.
Fast forward – Howard Phelps, Operations Director of British Airways – calm under pressure, phenomenally supportive.
Vince Lombardi – brought a dead beat football team to national champions.

What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
I wrote a blog about the power of questions. A young lady found that blog and took the advice and is building herself a new business because it helped her formulate a business plan and a successful start up.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
Not very much. I think I would have been more careful with my choice of business partners. I would have been more rigorous in holding them to account. I would have been more risk averse with some investments.

How do you unwind?
Walk in the hills when in Chiang Mai, mess about on boats and sail when in Singapore. Cycle. Swim – a great way to space out from the day. Cook.

Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
Does New Zealand count? If so, it is South Island.

Everyone in business should read this book:
I will cheat here and give you three. Napoleon HIll, Think and Grow Rich; VINCE – A personal Biography of Vince Lombardi. Jonathan Living Seagull

Shameless plug for your business:
The World’s Leading WebRTC Platform – supporting businesses across the world, delivering millions of minutes to thousands of users every day, enabling communications (voice, video, data) in Apps.

How can people connect with you?
Email: [email protected]
LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/billlewisattemasys/

This interview was part of the Callum Connect’s column found on The Asian Entrepreneur:

CallumConnectsCallum Laing invests and buys small businesses in a range of industries around Asia. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is the founder & owner of Fitness-Buffet a company delivering employee wellness solutions in 12 countries. He is a Director of, amongst others, Key Person of Influence. A 40 week training program for business owners and executives.

Take the ‘Key Person of Influence’ scorecard <http://www.keypersonofinfluence.com/scorecard/>

Connect with Callum here:
twitter.com/laingcallum
linkedin.com/in/callumlaing
Get his free ‘Asia Snapshot’ report from www.callumlaing.com

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Callum Connects

Jasmine Tan, Director of Stone Amperor

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Jasmine saves her clients time and effort when doing kitchen fit outs with her biz Stone Amperor.

What’s your story?
I started working in the industry in 2003. I was in a marble and granite supplier company for 5 years. Even though I left the company, I still had customers calling me for my services. I referred them back to my previous company but they refused to because they loved the fast response service that I offered. I realised that customers do look at prices, however most of them prefer quality over quantity. Thus I have decided to establish a sole proprietor company also known as 78 Degrees which later rebranded as Stone Amperor in 2014.

What excites you most about your industry?
The kitchen countertop industry is a very confusing market. There are many brands, materials and prices to choose from. What excites me the most is my ability to help clients choose the best materials and brands within their budgets, whilst saving them time and effort.

What’s your connection to Asia?
I have been in Asia all my life and I love Asia. No matter where you go there is no place like home.


Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
I love Singapore. This is because Singapore has always been a stable country and it is great for doing business. However as it is a small country, it can be really competitive. I believe that if just do your best and give your best to your customers, you can overcome this.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
“Take actions. Learn and improve continuously. An idea without action is just a dream.” This was really good advice that I received from my partner.

Who inspires you?
A very down to earth billionaire from Malaysia, Robert Kuok

What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
Property is the foundation of every business.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
Own instead of renting property for my business.

How do you unwind?
I enjoy going shopping, watching movies and hanging out with friends. I am quite a simple being.

Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
I love going to Taiwan as I love the culture there. Everyone is so polite and the weather is great.

Everyone in business should read this book:
Sun Tzu, Art of war

Shameless plug for your business:
Perfect top, Perfect price, Perfect life from Stone Amperor

How can people connect with you?
Email me at [email protected]

Twitter handle?
@StoneAmperor

This interview is part of the ‘Callum Connect’ series of more than 500 interviews

Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder of The Marketing Group PLC. He is the author two best selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’ and ‘Agglomerate’.

Connect with Callum here:
twitter.com/laingcallum
linkedin.com/in/callumlaing
Download free copies of his books here: www.callumlaing.com

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Callum Connects

Dextre Teh, Founder of Rebirth Academy

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Dextre Teh is a consultant and marketing guru, helping F&B businesses to tighten their operations and grow their businesses.

What’s your story?
I help frustrated F&B business owners stuck in day to day operation transform from a glorified operator into a real business owner. I’m a 27 year old Singaporean second generation restaurant owner and a F&B business consultant. Entering the industry at 13 years old, I have always been obsessed with operations and systemisation. At the age of 25, I joined the insurance industry and earned a six figure yearly income. However, I left the high pay behind because it was not my passion and returned to the F&B industry. Now I help other F&B companies to tighten operations and grow their businesses with my consulting and marketing services.

What excites you most about your industry?
The food. I’m a big lover of food and even have a YouTube show on food in development. But that aside, it is really about impacting people through food. Creating moments and memories for people, be it a dating couple or families or friends. Providing that refuge from the daily grind of life. So in educating my consulting clients and training their staff to provide a better experience for their customers, I aim to shift the industry in the direction of creating memories instead of just selling food.

What’s your connection to Asia?
I was born and bred in Singapore. I love the culture, the food and travelling in Asia.

Favourite city in Asia for business and why?
Singapore hands down. The environment here is built for businesses to thrive. The government is pro business and the infrastructure is built around supporting business growth. Not to mention the numerous amount of grants available in helping people start and even grow business. If I’m not mistaken, the Singaporean government is the only government in the world that offers grants to home grown businesses for overseas expansion.

What’s the best piece of advice you ever received?
Learning to do things you do not intend to master is a BIG mistake in business. Focus on what you are good at and pay others to do the rest.

Many business owners including myself are so overwhelmed by the 10,000 things that they feel they need to do everyday. We try to do everything ourselves because we think it saves us money. The only thing that, that does for us is overload our schedules and give us mediocre results. Instead we should focus on what we do best and bring in support for the rest.

Who inspires you?
Christopher M Duncan.

At 29, Chris has built multiple 7 figure businesses. He opened me to the possibility of building a business on the thing that I loved and gave me a blueprint of how to do it. He also showed me that being young doesn’t mean you cannot do great things.

Imran Mohammad and Fazil Musa
They are my mentors and inspire me every single day to pursue my dreams, to focus on celebrating life and enjoying the process of getting to where I want to be.

What have you just learnt recently that blew you away?
Time is always more expensive than money. Money, you can earn over and over again but time, once you spend it, will never come back.

If you had your time again, what would you do differently?
I am a firm believer that your experiences shape who you are. I am grateful for every single moment of my life be it the highs or the lows, the successes and the failures because all these experiences have led me to become the person I am and brought me to the place that I’m at so I will probably do things the same way as everything was perfect in its time.

How do you unwind?
Chilling out in a live music bar with a drink in hand, listening to my favourite live band, 53A. Other than that I’m big on retail therapy, buying cool and geeky stuff.

Favourite Asian destination for relaxation? Why?
Bangkok. It feels like a home away from home where the cost of living is relatively low, the food is good and the people are friendly.

Everyone in business should read this book:
Everything you know about business is wrong by Alastair Dryburgh. It is a book that challenges commonly accepted business “truths” and inspires you to go against the grain, think different, take risks and stand your ground in the face of the challenges that will come your way as a business owner.

Shameless plug for your business:
I’m the creator of the world’s first Chilli Crab Challenge. It gained viral celebrity earlier this year with 3 major newspaper features and more than a dozen blog and online publications featuring it in the span of two weeks. In the span of the two weeks, the campaign reached well over a million people in exposure without a single cent spent in ads.

Now I help F&B companies to tighten operations, increase profits and grow their businesses with my consulting and marketing services. Chilli Crab Challenge (https://www.chillicrab.com/nationalday)

How can people connect with you?
You can connect with me on Facebook (www.facebook.com/djtehkh) or visit www.rebirthacademy.sg for more information or book a 10 minute call with me @ www.tinyurl.com/dexclar

This interview is part of the ‘Callum Connect’ series of more than 500 interviews

Callum Laing is an entrepreneur and investor based in Singapore. He has previously started, built and sold half a dozen businesses and is now a Partner at Unity-Group Private Equity and Co-Founder of The Marketing Group PLC. He is the author two best selling books ‘Progressive Partnerships’ and ‘Agglomerate’.

Connect with Callum here:
twitter.com/laingcallum
linkedin.com/in/callumlaing
Download free copies of his books here: www.callumlaing.com

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