Simon Devonshire OBE has had a long, varied career in both the corporate and entrepreneurial field. The entrepreneur, business blogger (Tall Man Business), investor, and digital innovation expert provides insights and solutions in various business-related fields.
Simon has an impressive career record having worked for some very big corporates whilst simultaneously working for start-ups. He has a proven track record of scaling-up business both large and small.
The big businesses include O2 Business, the B2B division of the mobile telco, a €1bn annual revenue P&L, employing over 1,000 people. During Simon’s five years leadership the division doubled its number of customers to over 450,000 businesses.
Simon then helped create and run Wayra Europe, one of the first and biggest corporately backed start-up accelerators, owned by Telefonica. During the three and a half years that he lead Wayra Europe, the team attracted and assessed applications from c. 15,000 businesses, from which Telefonica invested in 234 fast growth digital start-ups.
Due to his success, Simon was, in 2014, formally appointed as the Government’s Entrepreneur in Residence. He reported to the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy. So successful was he in this role that he was reappointed in 2015, culminating, in 2016, to his being awarded and OBE for his services to enterprise and humanitarian issues.
“My career experience has given me a unique perspective from which to observe the repeat behaviours common to successful entrepreneurs.” – Simon Devonshire, OBE
Simon has had an unusual career, working with large corporations as well as start-ups. His blog gives insights and suggestions to help businesses succeed. An expert in digital innovation, corporate transformation and the upscaling of large and small enterprises, Simon provides his audience with original observations and practical applications for their business solutions.
In the way in which an Olympian or adventurer can motivate and inspire audiences to push themselves by way of personal achievement, Simon offers this intensity but with real business stories as his background. If you are a business seeking guidance on the requirements for working in an ever increasing internet based corporate world, Simon’s keynotes alleviate concern and paint a pragmatic picture that all companies can adapt to.
Simon has filled a number of roles at different companies:
Simon has also filled a number of advisory and advocacy roles:
"Simon recently presented at our Kick Off event to provide a unique and insightful view on the disruptive nature of the digital landscape and the opportunity this presents to sell differently through focus and action. Simon's presentation was very well received by all with positive feedback all round and we hope to use Simon on other speaking engagements for the right audiences internally."
"I would strongly recommend Simon to organisations interested in disrupting themselves and learning from the agility and approaches of the start-up and scale up world. His strength lies in his deep and first-hand experience of big organisations and the cutting edge of start-ups across Europe. He is able to extrapolate out key lessons from this experience and give practical, useful lessons to organisations on what they can do to drive growth in this new reality. His engaging and humble style endears him to audiences and I particularly appreciate the way he tailors his lessons to the needs of our particular clients."