The Cass 2015 Ones to Watch List
Cass academics list the CEOs, entrepreneurs & start-ups to watch in 2015
CEOs to watch
Chris Roebuck, Visiting Professor of Transformational Leadership
"Dick Costolo, CEO of Twitter, is a persona type leader who enjoys the strong backing of his employees. The company has been voted as one of the top five best organisations to work for. He's one to watch on account of how it will be interesting to see how a more "technical expert" deals with being the leader of a fast growing organisation that's becoming more corporate."
Professor Costas Andriopoulos
"Elizabeth Holmes, the CEO of Theranos. She revolutionised the blood testing industry. With a drop of blood, Theranos can perform different tests ranging from standard cholesterol checks to complicated genetic analyses. This clearly is a game changer, since the results are far cheaper, faster and more accurate than conventional blood testing methods."
Professor Jo Silvester
"Sacha Romanovitch was recently announced as the new CEO for Grant Thornton - one of the world's leading organisations of independent assurance, tax and advisory firms. She is thought to be the first woman to lead a major UK accountancy firm. She joined Grant Thornton in 1990, leading the firm's London audit and tax department from 2002 to 2007, before moving onto lead its advisory business. Sacha is definitely someone to watch. Her appointment is great news for Grant Thornton and for women in the wider financial sector but is also an important reminder that the sector as a whole is failing to make the most of its talent pool. Let's hope Sacha's appointment serves as a reminder to others that there are many benefits to be gained by recognising and promoting the leadership potential of women."
Start-ups to watch
Dr Caroline Wiertz
"I like any invention that empowers consumers and enables us to make better decisions. Raisinable is a little app that does exactly that. Like most people, I love a nice bottle of wine with my dinner, but despite trying to educate myself, I have little sense of how much a bottle should cost in a restaurant. Raisinable just launched in London and allows you to see the mark-up compared to the retail price of the wine lists of over 1,000 restaurants. How useful is that? And it will be great to see how consumers are going to use this information - I wouldn't be surprised if knowing that they are getting a "raisinable" price might entice many people to go for quite expensive wines. And of course, it'll be interesting to see how restaurants are going to respond."
Professor Vince Mitchell
"Anything to do with the sharing economy is going to be worth watching as it's a way of matching untapped value in the things we already have with unmet needs of people. In addition, there's a feel good factor because consumers are often helping to save the planet as well as give each other a little money rather than giving it to large companies. For a new solution to our UK weather, checkout Umbrella Here, or for a time out from our busy city lives checkout Breather."
Professor Fleura Bardhi
"Like Vince, I agree that in 2015 the sharing economy will continue to grow and disrupt established industries all over. In contrast to prior years where the growth was in the occasional renting market (known as car sharing), I think the growth now is focused in peer-to-peer renting and sharing marketplaces. Companies like AirBnB (peer-to-peer apartment renting) and RelayRides (peer-to-peer car renting) will dominate these sectors more and more. Such services are also increasingly transforming everyday consumers into entrepreneurs who are marketing and selling their property at a profit. Thus, the entrepreneur to watch for 2015 is the consumer as they are taking the exchange and the market into their own hands."