Founders: Ashley McKertich, Dan Procter, Dom Procter
Industry: Consulting and corporate strategy
ZENBUU was created exclusively for the owners and operators of SMEs to grow and improve their businesses performances by drawing on a network of specialists across sales, marketing, finance, trade and operations.
The business was founded in 2008 by Ashley McKertich, Dan Procter and Dom Procter, and was funded with personal savings and in-kind development and support services.
Now with just five staff on board, the business boasts revenue of $970,000.
McKertich says SMEs were always seen as the prime target of the business, based on the fact that many small business owners simply don’t have enough hours in the day to simultaneously manage and grow their operation.
“This is compounded by a lack of knowledge, skills and resources, that large businesses have, to successfully implement change and achieve continuous improvement and growth,” McKertich says.
“No one has developed a comprehensive approach that provides SMEs with an instructional approach to continuous improvement and growth in their business.”
“To be able to bring all the necessary tools, resources and expertise to a business owner means we either needed to be all things to all people, or work with specialists and generalists in a collaborative way to ensure that the business owner/operator was at the centre of all that we did and still do.”
ZENBUU works with business owners to help them implement change in their business by repeatedly focusing two hours a week of the owner’s time working on the business in addition to working in the business.
“In addition to working in the business, clients follow a structured approach consisting of reviewing their business performance, planning for change, and then implementing changes by taking action over a 90-day cycle,” McKertich says.
According to McKertich, delays in development timeframes proved to be a challenge in the start-up phase of the business, and some early partnerships didn’t work out.
He says flexibility and freedom are the best part of starting a business, particularly the ability to respond quickly to the market and consumer trends.
“We have a ‘new age’ business model where all employees work from home, and an aim to deliver all that SME business owners and operators need to achieve success, which seems to be hitting a cord,” he says.