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“Our short term goal is to become the most credible place to buy or sell as business in the UK”: Interview with Sean Mallon, founder of Bizdaq

This week we ventured outside Europe’s leading tech hub of London and headed straight over to Leeds to interview Sean Mallon, the CEO of recently funded Bizdaq.

Bizdaq is a new online platform to help business owners buy and sell small and medium-sized businesses by simplifying the entire process from start to finish. The startup aims to ensure that small and medium-sized businesses can capitalise on Britain’s economic growth and retain more of their hard earned capital.

Mallon, an experienced business sales broker assisted over 1,200 entrepreneurs in his previous role. Bizdaq’s competitive edge is clear, and with a recent £1 million seed funding round under their belt from respected British high street entrepreneur Tim Whitworth, they will growth over the coming months and launch a nation-wide marketing campaign.

How did you and your co-founders get the idea for Bizdaq, and what made you sure it was the right one?

We are a young, dynamic team who not only have significant digital experience but also have sold hundreds of businesses between us, including our own. Having established and ran a traditional business brokerage, we knew the process could be simplified and far more cost effective for all involved by using technology.

What were the main stumbling blocks for Bizdaq as a startup (especially during the first year) and what would you do differently from today’s perspective?

As with any tech startup, we had to prove our credentials and show that the model worked. We overcame this with beta user testing from hundreds of actual customers (non paying unfortunately!). We also worked hard on our image within our marketplace and quickly gained plaudits from national banks to international press.

Looking back we worked too hard to build the ‘perfect’ platform for our users. We should have pushed the platform live far sooner than we did as we got more tangible and useful feedback in one week post-launch than we did in the 14 months it took to build bizdaq.

What makes Bizdaq unique or better than other web interfaces for e-commerce sites out there?

It’s clear, transparent and easy to use. It also allows business sellers to follow the entire sales process online from valuation to formal sales documents.

We didn’t just want to build a ‘listing’ site, we wanted business buyers and sellers to be able to navigate through their sale from start to finish, and our in depth knowledge of the process ensured we succeeded at this.

What kind of marketing strategies do you use to acquire new customers or to promote Bizdaq as a brand?

We have over 50,000 buyers registered within our group and therefore we can give our selling customers immediate access to quality buyers online. Our customers are prominent both online and on the high street, so we are working hard to build up a reputation in lots of trade press, as well as within professional circles such as accountants. We are also using innovative digital strategies to ensure we have a leading presence online.

How many people are working at Bizdaq at the moment and how do you support your company culture?

We currently have five people in the team and aim to take that to 10 by the end of the year. We are building a company culture based around a passion for small business and we push everyone to contribute openly and to share opinions that will accelerate us towards our goals.

What are the next steps or milestones for Bizdaq? Are you currently planning to enter additional markets?

Our short term goal is to become the most credible place to buy or sell as business in the UK, and we can already see what that will look like. Medium term we aim to take our platform to the US and Australia to make a global shift in how small businesses are bought and sold.

What is your experience of Leeds as a location to start a global company?

We love it. Leeds is a vibrant city with a great mix of businesses and we have an incredible amount of talent within the digital space on our doorstep. Of course we are competing with many other tech companies for the best talent. However our offering of working for a leading digital platform that is disrupting an entire industry, all happening within 30 minutes of the Yorkshire Dales is a hard one to compete with!

By the way: You can find out about other interesting startups from the UK in this list.

Mevish Aslam
Mevish Aslam
Mevish is the founder and Nomad in Residence at Terminal3.co and Sprinters.co. She empowers remote workers to leave the office cubicle to travel and work from anywhere in the world.
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