Proof of the pudding

Proof of the pudding

This one isn’t a fabulous article about Burning Man and serendipity,leadership loneliness, or trekking in Nepal (I’m writing a leadership book which kicks off with this, you’ll just have to wait). It’s just a thing about what I dun did in terms of agency growth in 2018 and what I hope for 2019.

2018 has been a fantastic year. Most founders have dreams and aspirations, very few really succeed. It almost always requires robust planning and an experienced, steady hand holding your feet to the flames – because you know that way there won’t be any excuses.

The right approach delivers consistent, provable results. I’ve been lucky enough to be chairman of some excellent agencies and tech firms, developing and helping them execute fast-growth strategies or exit plans. This year’s results have again been fantastic…

Nucco Brain and MomentumABM

Having tripled both Nucco Brain’s revenue in eighteen months (and selling it to Unit9) and more than doubled MomentumABM’s in two years, two outgoing clients provided a flying start to 2018.


By the year’s end Impero was a three-times ‘agency of the year’ winner, with a 77% female workforce. Doubled its turnover in the two years they’ve been working with my fast-growth framework.

Alpha Century

Gross profit has tripled in the two years I’ve worked with them using the framework. This summer saw Alpha Century enter the Campaign new business league for the first time, straight in at number one with £35 million of new billings.


Ended the year announcing its successful sale to become part of newly-listed The Panoply PLC. A fantastic team and a well-deserved deal. Damn, really have loved working with them!

WoRoom VR

A great year bringing six VR software, hardware and production companies together under a single vision, and ending the year by beginning a major fundraising effort to help its expansion into China. Crazy-smart people and amazing products.


Brilliant tech startup for enabling enterprise-level behavioural change during transformation projects. Started the year with a successful funding round and ended with a brilliantly successful Global Sustainability Network (GSN) trial – and a new funding round getting under way now.

Verb Brands

My newest chairmanship, Verb Brands is the UK’s leading luxury digital agency. The team has ambitious plans to expand through further careful acquisitions in 2019, entering new markets including China. Having assembled a brilliant growth team next year promises to be fun.


While the coming year brings the distinct possibility of recession, with robust planning, surefooted execution and stellar positioning the best agencies and tech startups will expand rapidly; anyone teetering will fall unless serious action is undertaken immediately.

With Deeson’s successful sale I’ll be looking for a couple of new agencies to work with from January. If you’re ambitious, smart, and want to double or triple in size in the next year or two email me. I’d be happy to talk to you about how you can make this your most successful year ever.

Have a wonderful holiday and new year celebration — no matter your plans, I hope the next year is filled with happiness and laughter.

Best wishes

Felix Velarde
Agency chairman:

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