In the loop: the government tackles late payments, flower business blooms and hand gestures attract investors

Before you start putting your feet up for the weekend, check out why the government is asking SMEs to give their opinion over late payments and why TGI Fridays faces more strikes over tipping

In the loop: the government tackles late payments

Pitching with more hand movements results in more investors

The last thing you want to do when presenting to investors is twiddle your thumbs. In fact, if you get more animated with your hands, research shows investors will cough up more.

This comes after academics at Alliance Manchester Business School, Emlyon Business School and Rotterdam School of Management found that entrepreneurs using skilled gestures at key points when pitching are 12% more likely to receive funding compared to those who don’t. In particular, the researchers found that entrepreneurs who combined gestures that symbolise their startup’s growth or how their product works helps them bring home their point better to investors. 

It’s a particularly sound strategy for tech entrepreneurs, given they’re more likely to be explaining intricate ideas.

The government is asking SMEs to come forward about unfair late payments

Big companies delaying payments to SMEs can be crippling for small-business owners. And it’s so common that the government is now asking SMEs to speak up and help craft a solution.

Kelly Tolhurst, small business minister, put out a call for SMEs to evidence their experiences of unfair late payments and prompted trade bodies to point out the worst in payment behaviour. Moreover, the minister unveiled proposals to promote technological solutions for SMEs to help them manage the problem.

The call to action is unsurprising, given nearly a quarter of UK businesses cite late payments as a threat to their existence and that reducing them could bring £2.5bn to the economy and as keep 50,000 businesses going each year, according to the Federation of Small Businesses. 

If your business has encountered such an experience, you can respond to the government’s call by Thursday November 29 here.

TGI Fridays’ workers strike for higher pay following tips being taken away

These days, tipping your waiter is an expectation many rely on to the point where service charges have become mandatory. And months after TGI Fridays decided to redistribute card tips between servers and kitchen staff, the fast food chain’s facing another strike over fair pay.

Sparked by the company’s decision to give 40% of service charges to kitchen staff in February, workers from three TGI Fridays chains protested in a London rally on Thursday October 4 as part of a wider movement alongside employees of UberEats, Deliveroo, JD Wetherspoon and McDonald’s for higher pay.

TGI Fridays’ staff argue the tip distribution is designed to replace wage increases for back-of-house employees, while front-of-house servers see rewards for their hard earned work drop.

As more employees in the hospitality sector unite, more industrial action on the horizon.

Flower gifting startup looks to uproot EU competition following investment

Forget comparing tech sectors – Britain’s flower gifting market is showing some serious growth that can rival the EU. And some investors are taking a chance on the blooming sector.

Bloom & Wild, the flower gifting company, secured a £15m series C round led by Piper, the investment firm, with backing from MMC Ventures and Burda Principal Investments to bring the startup to a £21.3m funding total.

The capital comes after Piper’s research showed Bloom & Wild’s customers prefer British designed bouquets, as well as creative collaborations with British names Liberty Print, the designer brand and Nikki Tibbles, the florist.

With funding in hand the startup plans to become the UK’s market leader, to realise rapid overseas expansion and rock the EU’s £14bn fresh cut flower market. 

And having doubled its revenue every year since 2016, business is certainly blooming for Bloom & Wild.

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Angus Shaw
Angus Shaw

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