Extracts from a recent business interview with Howard gives some insight into 42 Technology
What new things does 42 Technology bring to the party?
We bring together the best people and resources for a particular project, rather than relying just on what’s available in- house. This lean and efficient approach allows us to access a network of associates in a wide variety of specialism’s meaning we can tackle complex projects.
Are there any new technologies or industry sectors you plan to move into?
Healthcare and biotech; clean technology, particularly more energy-efficient heating and cooling; and drink dispensing are already important sectors for us so we plan to expand our profile and sales in those areas.
How do you plan to grow the company?
Organically – with quality people and a healthy mix of large and early-stage, venture-backed clients. We had a great year in 2007 and are looking to further grow this year by bringing in more project managers, engineers, designers and physicists. As you would expect, finding sufficient top quality people is a perennial challenge for any company that’s growing. However, that said, we’ve created and filled five new appointments in the first quarter of 2008.
Is a high-value innovator like 42 Technology insulated from competition from Asia?
We’ve seen very little threat in our core areas of applied physics, mechanical engineering, electronics and industrial design. Lots of our clients certainly get parts manufactured in Asia but they tend not to go there for design services, because a lot of our activity, whether it is technology strategy or down at the detailed design level, requires deep understanding of markets or extensive face to face contact.
What do you see as 42 Technology’s biggest achievements?
When I joined 42 Technology in 2002 there were three things that really impressed me and that’s still true today: The size and maturity of our client relationships; the number of products in manufacture; and the calibre of the team.