Wayne has been around IT since his pre-teen years (thats 40 years ago)
He has held positions in small and large ventures at every level.
On several occasions he has been involved in mergers and exit planning
Lets look as some key events in the time line….
2017+ klick on it (Updraft Plus)
Earlier in 2017 Wayne assisted as a senior hands-on developer in some massive open source solutions for Updraft.com.
Updraft plus reported, at the time of writing, the 15th most downloaded WordPress plugin in the world (over 10 million downloads)… Wayne contributed to this product at architecture and code level.
Updraft Central, at the time of writing, is reported to have over 1 million downloads… Wayne contributed to this product at architecture and code level.
WP-Optimize, once again at the time of writing is reported to have millions of downloads and is the most downloaded Optimation plugin for WordPress around the world and once again Wayne contributed to this product at architecture and code level.
Keyy, newly launched unique password free QR code login process for WordPress. Wayne contributed at design and delivery level in this project.
During the time at Updraft Wayne was asked to review and report on the delivery process.
Joe the MD thanks Wayne for his valued input during the multi-month renewed contract and explains that the code etc will now form a valuable part of the products and services delivered by Updraft.
2015+ klick on it (Story Starter)
In late 2016 Another local startup venture Story Starter asked Wayne to develop a software and delivery platform linked to a marketing campaign.
So what is Story Starter… Well even the founders found it hard to explain and without breaking NDA’s etc.
Here is a stab…
Story Starter as a venture hold a series of web properties (websites in other words) to enable “viral” story creation and build by the “crowd”
A member can start a story which then grows much as open source software delivery can growWhen available there will be a demo sites available for viewing elsewhere on this site.
This venture is presently seeking seed funding for launch.
2015+ klick on it (Kooee, Paid B and Quoter)
In late 2015 Wayne was approached by a venture startup who wanted to launch a mobile app initially called Kooee and then later Paidb and then finally settling on Quoter. It’s not possible to release all the details as there are NDA’s and NCA’s all over this potentially global launch but to tease the curiosityThink of Uber meets eBay meets Amazon for consumer-related service provision.Quoter members would be able to search for registered service providers presently available in their locality. Tradesmen ready willing and able to start work now.Whilst viewing Supplier location on Quoters’ real-time map members specify the required service (such as a plumbing task) and propose a price and can even specify per hour, fixed rate or time and materials.Eligible suppliers bid on listed jobs… all bidding and payment communication is controlled within the Quoter app.Once the member agrees on terms the work is undertaken, working time is booked with Quoters’ real-time timesheet system (materials consumed are also recorded) live right inside Quoter. The member and supplier can see the time, materials and total price change minute by minute as the work is completed.Once complete billing, payments, payment confirmation, and supplier review are all covered by Quoter.Quoters’ aim is to become the one stop shop for the domestic consumer to purchase locally required services for their home, their home appliances, and vehicles etc.When available there will be a video walkthrough available on this site.
This venture is presently seeking seed funding for ongoing marketing and enhanced development.
2009 - Traveling
After Mountain software, Wayne helped a number of local business ranging from fashion to delivery to transportation and plastics manufacturing.
In 2009, after breaking from his marriage, moved on and traveled in China, Australia, Russia, Cyprus, Canary Islands, Thailand, Cambodia, Vietnam, and the US. Wayne coached a couple of clients on Tenerife. Most notably Rob Ng the owner of a growing chain of high-end restaurants.
His time with Rob was spent engineering the acquisition of new properties, reworking menus, and client care solutions across the group. It was not until 2015 was Wayne, drawn back to help with a couple of startup ventures, returned to the software development scene in a hands-on sense. These were relatively small projects or only a few man years work each.
Wayne set out to be the lead architect and developer (at code level) on both projects.
He saw this as a challenge… to return to the “code” face as it were after so long and get back in the saddle
2008 - MBA
Now in 2008 Wayne was approached by Mountain Software who had one of their software development basis close to his Lincolnshire family home.
Mountain made several offers to Wayne for him to work with them to restructure their business and software delivery and support processes in readiness for the impending acquisition which was always going to happen. Mountain Software board of directors had no fewer than 4 people at or nearing retirement age. That coupled with the progress “The Legal Software Group” were making in acquiring market share meant this company was ripe for the taking and if it didn’t get its’ act in order before the take over offer it could cost the shareholders millions.
After several meetings, it was on one Tuesday Evening Ian Knox (the MD) and John Irwin (Software Development Director) would make Wayne an offer he could not refuse. The details are not for the public arena but Ian and John pulled on Waynes’ desire for self-challenge. During the time with Mountain Wayne achieved a great deal…
He resolved the lack of software delivery and support delivery issue, he aligned the software delivery roadmap to then business requirements all whilst partnering with FCG to build an offshore development team (taking the total developer count to well over 100 across almost a dozen projects). Traveled to what became his 2nd office in Bangalore more times than he can remember.
Also during this time, Wayne completed his MBA at Liverpool University.
Post-acquisition John Irwin says the people at LSG and ultimately IRIS were extraordinarily impressed with the end to end delivery processes and how this was aligned with business and client drivers.
All this was down to Wayne and his understanding of business, business change and software…
2007 - Rotary PPL
During the time Wayne could not let go of his ambition to fly and to constantly progress…
He qualified as a helicopter pilot in 2007 and made use of the fixed wing pilot license much as the parents of the owner of the hardwood supply company had explained his had some years earlier.
Wayne was able to be in the Midlands, in London and in Newcastle all on the same day to make things happen face to face. He also enjoyed the flying. By this point, Wayne had also purchased a Cessna aircraft as the RANS S10 could not, under air law, fly in cloud or at night…
Both of these would prevent Wayne from traveling when he needed to and the Cessna filled that gap.
Wayne tells us it was not as much fun as the RAN S10 though.
2003 - 10 MCPs and MCSD.net
When Wayne sees new things or things people struggle with he dives in and that was just the case when Microsoft launch .net all those years ago.
No one knew .net, no one knew C# as it was al brand new.
Wayne attended a few of the London based launch events and ultimately become one of the very first (if not actually the first) MCSD.net certified in the UK.
Wayne took the final 300 based exam in .net architecture only a day or so after it was launched in the UK and passed all 10 Microsoft Certified Professional exams on the first sitting. A great achievement by anyones’ standards. Indeed it was rare back then to find any none MS employee with MCP’s into double digits. You see; whilst Wayne had worked closely with MS for years he was always on the outside and he actually always liked that….
Yes he could come and go at MS office in TVP and all but having that independence way always very nice.
2001 - Price II practitioner Certified
After the project at ISA Wayne assisted C-Scape a small consultancy in London in its bids for “Help the Aged” and “Kingston Borough Council”
During the bidding process, Wayne completed his Prince II practitioner training and qualifications which helped with the bid process and in his structuring of the development process to be followed for these and other project undertaken by C-Scape. C-Scape (not withstanding the initial lack of business and development controls and process) was a stable business and Wayne was able to move on quite quickly.
Then followed a mega period of head hunting and merger and acquisition activity leaving Wayne drained and ready for a rest in 2009 …
Wayne was deeply involved in the structuring of the business and service delivery aspects of Cassium, Freedom 2000, ISA, Mountain Software, First Consulting Group and involved in the deployment of major technology projects for British Telecom, Barclays Bank, Abbey National, Virgin, Microsoft, and others.
2000 - Rational Unified Process Certified
Wayne worked closely with ISA (Information Systems Associates and assisted them in closing their first $1m software development contract for Sterling Publishing Plc.
The MD of SPP made it a contractual obligation that Wayne manage the project until phase 3 delivery (i.e. until the end of high risk) and on fulfilling that obligation Wayne moved on.
Whilst working with ISA Wayne studied and qualified in Rational Unified Process which would later help a great deal as he combined that methodology with PRINCE II.
So next came the thirst of academic study and the sense of achievement this can bring.
Wayne set out initially to become a commercial pilot and ultimately achieved an ATPL (well a frozen ATPL as he never flew commercially and so never attained the level of commercial flying hours to unlock the license for Airline work). Wayne never wanted to fly for an airline but wanted the achievement in life and on the passing of the Instrument rating in a twin-engine Cougar out of Leeds airport under the guidance of Multi Flight Wayne achieved that goal.
It was during this time when Wayne first met one of the original investors into Netstore… Something else which would also come around in a few years time. Tony Denson who was also very much into aviation and was the owner of Waynes training aircraft which amazingly had a “great” registration “GR-EAT” 🙂 actually completed one of the key events with Netstore on the day he took his IR flight test. Wayne recalls Tony explaining after the test the pressure Tony had been under was completely unrelated to the flight test… Netstore had been floated on the stock exchange at that very moment…
This relationship Wayne built with Tony would come back a couple of times on a small scale and then later with the Cassium acquisition.
Whilst doing flight training at Leeds Bradford Wayne couldn’t help but advise and assist as the owner of the then oldest flying schools in the UK “The Yorkshire Flying School” as she sold it to Multiflight. Waynes experience in business change and financial management was of immense help. The challenges in that sale/acquisition were no different to the many challenges that Wayne had worked through and would be no different in real terms from those Pilot Training and Testing Limited would have encountered with its more recent acquisition of Multiflight in 2016.
Wayne was in good shape to refocus and make headway in his carrier.
1997 build RANS
At this point Wayne was busy with a large family hungry for his time, a growing client base demanding more and more time and his desire to enjoy life.
Wayne separated his time into these segments and worked to make a living part-time which was actually quite a lot as there was quite a lot of European (and to a lesser extent further afield) traveling. He recalls a conversation with a client who he had worked with during the acquisition of a hardwood timber supply company.
The client explained that his family business had developed rapidly due to the fact that his father was able to use a small private plane and travel around the US to make things happen in person as opposed to by phone or fax (remember the fax… it was all the rage back then)
It’s interesting that this same thing occurs later in Wayne’s career with the Acquisition of Cassium by Netstore. Anyhow between family and work, there was no time for flying but Wayne didn’t let go of aviation. Being, by now an addictive student and also never one for half measures he set out his plan to become a commercial pilot (not to do as a living but just because he could) and he also had sights on owning his own aircraft. Now earlier in life Wayne had rebuilt a 1964 MGB and a 1960’s land rover and had watched his brother rebuild a vintage BSA motorcycle.
Wayne was aware of the “fix me up” concept to get what you want and also to ensure you know what you have, Indeed Wayne by this point was on his 2nd home rebuild. The current home starting life as 3 narrow staff houses. Wayne changed the construction and layout of the house into an amazing 5 bedroom house with a separate office suite, swimming pool and koi pond (another one of his fascinations)
Wayne recalls read in a monthly flying magazine about the “Popular Flying Association” which under delegated authority from the CAA was able to issue permits to fly for historic and amateur constructed aircraft inside UK airspace. Hooked on this idea of owning his own plane and knowing that there was a challenge to be had Wayne jumps in with both feet and purchased a failed build GB-TJX (Rans S10 aerobatic aircraft).
The aircraft had been constructed by a fishmonger in Bridlington but had not passed its flight tests (due to some pretty poor construction techniques says Wayne). Wayne took the aircraft apart to every last nut, bolt, and washer. The parts were then examined by a certified CAA engineer and with some provisos and comments, Wayne was able to start the construction again. Over a period of 12 months, Wayne rebuilt GB-TJX to be a fine example of the type and one that was able to fly around the UK and Europe for well over 1000 hours (with him as the pilot in command)
This build lead him to help many other constructors in the UK and Europe. This was a time in aviation Wayne has very fond memories of.
1996 Fixed wing PPL
Wayne did a fair bit of traveling for work and pleasure at this time and met up with a chap (who’s name is not available for print but lets call him John). John was a registered stunt man and actually, Wayne assisted him on his scuba diving training to allow him to progress in that career, which it is understood he has done to a great height.
Wayne learned from John, specifically that you can do a great many things in life and do them well. John was a scuba diver (to a high standard), a horse rider to a high standard, a commercial pilot etc etc. The conversations with John lead Wayne to recall conversations with Buzz and the team at Kennedy Space Centre and recalls saying the his wife I wonder if I can get a pilots license to fly us to France next month.
It turns out he could get the licence but Wayne did not fly to France that month (although he has several times since done just that). Wayne approached a flying school in Welshpool UK about an intensive training course form start to finish in 3 weeks. The CFI at Welshpool took up the challenge and within days Wayne was in the pilots seat and within 3 weeks had qualified as a private pilot.
Once Wayne achieve the licence he looked locally at options for recreational flying. Most of the local clubs were all to “clicky” for Wayne. He just wanted to fly and didn’t want to get into part plane ownership or restricted usage of school owned planes that had all seen better days.
Enter the PFA and GB-TJX.
1996 Scuba diving instructor including trained to MSDT
On his return to the UK Wayne continues his training in Scuba diving and by now had discovered the power of getting things done and done right.
He quickly progressed through the various scuba diving courses and tests until he attained the education status of Master Scuba Diver Trainer. Not wanting to take Scuba up as a career and left with no more progression in terms of education he set about traveling and diving and visited some very nice dive sites around the world (but thats another story for another day)
Now Wayne moves on to flying…
1995 started to scuba dive
Once things had started to settle after the birth of the girls Wayne worked part-time and contracting to various international firms who found themselves in trouble with IT, Software or business change.
Wayne aligned himself with Systems Management (a management consultancy firm), Stephen Page & Co (a firm of solicitors) and Knights and Co (A registered insolvency practitioner).
Between these 3 Wayne was kept as busy as he wanted to be and he was able to enjoy some of the things other people do whilst at University (when he was working in the spare time) and explore some partying and hobbies but Wayne style. (excess is the norm)
Wayne qualified as a scuba diver just days before a trip to Disney World Orlando (another event to be noted)
On this trip, he was accompanied by his mother, brother, wife and 4 daughters… During the stay the family made the almost mandatory (for none locals) visit to to Kennedy Space Center. Whilst on that visit Wayne met Buzz Aldrin and a number of other key NASA people. Wayne got the bug for learning to fly… not into space but the freedom of flight and its relationship to the freedom of scuba.
Later that week Wayne and Anita visited the Space Centre again as they were invited to the launch of the Space Shuttle. Sitting some miles away the sight of the Shuttle launch was still something very special and marked the event in Waynes mind and would trigger again in a year or so.
1989 - BSc Manchester
Once Wayne qualified he had more time on his hands and worked with a number of local business large and small and at one such business met Anita who soon became his wife and mother to his daughters (including triplets).
were a key driver for Wayne for 2 decades as he progressed both personally and commercially.
Wayne took some time )a couple of years or so) out to support the family including his 4 daughters Amelia, Kimberley, Collette, and Jennifer.
1987 - BDP and CARBS
At the completion of the contract with NCB, the Managing Director of CARB’s, the company creating Eagle, approach Wayne about an opportunity to work on another aspect of EAGLE.
CARBS had teamed up with The Building Design Partnership (a very large building design firm in Europe) and they needed someone to spearhead a series of developments in CAD and in particular 3D CAD. Wayne initially rejected the approach as he had by this time been accepted at Manchester to study for his BSc. He was convinced to attend a meeting that would once again change the direction of his life. 6 days after the meeting Wayne packed up home and left for sunny Preston on the west coast of the UK.
BDP had agreed to fully fund his degree at Manchester and all accommodation costs plus pay a salary. He agreed to join BDP for 1 year after which he would review the situation. At the end of the first year, Wayne elected to terminate with BDP and join CARBS and work directly on EAGLE software development.
Wayne was given several from the minicomputer based development tasks (Fortran, assembler, and UNIX) and a major task of migrating EAGLEto the PC (DOS). The next year or so was focused on assembly language programming and pre-processing the EAGLE code (Fortran and C) to compile efficiently on the PC’s of the day (running DOS – no windows back then.. oh and also 640K of memory… he used paged memory to extend this to a “massive” 2 Mb).
The projects forged and so did Wayne…
1986 - 3D graphics used by the coal board
Wayne is now just 20 years of age.
Towards the end of the relationship with CIS, another educational institute (South East Derbyshire College) referred Wayne to the National Coal Board (NCB) NCB used a 3D graphic design tool (Eagle) to map out underground mining operations and machinery in tremendous detail.
Wayne was in his element here and created a ripple in the Eagle software engine moving it forwards in area’s previously unseen by the software authors at that time. Eagle and the company that owned it would return back to Wayne sometime later (twice in fact)
The technical challenges resolved and several relatively minor development projects later working at NCB came to an end. Wayne wanted to attend University and study, filling in some of the blanks in terms of qualifications and the pieces of paper that seemed to matter so much to larger business back then.
1985 - CIS referred by Burton Tech
Wayne progressed through various low-level Degrees in IT in various forms alongside his work. A key event here was the introduction to a local firm Cast Iron Services (a business supplying under-ground large bore cast iron pipework that had just incurred a significant loss from a failed IT rollout) CIS reached out the local Technical College for help and they in term asked Wayne to go along and advise.
Wayne was quickly engaged (well at the end of the 1st meeting) by Micheal Daws the then MD of the firm. The direction is given… “fix this and save my company” Wayne went to work reviewing first the failed IT solution… Nothing wrong there, then the implementation, actually nothing wrong there. So where are the failure and the rising costs?
Look further..Wayne uncovers no reduction in manpower in stock control, invoicing, salary processing… These aspects were huge to the firm in terms of overheads and with the high finance rates of the day linked to the high rate of borrowing on the IT solution the business was on a problematic path, to say the least. Wayne took up the role of financial controller reporting directly to the board and international shareholders (all in his mid to late teens). Decisions were made about staff cuts and process changes across the business, a second cheaper storage facility was leased (all facilitated by the new IT centered business)
The business saved; Wayne was released and he progressed to more underground work 🙂 (See next section)
1980 - Teaching at Teacher Training and local technical College
Released from school several days each week to teach at both the local Teacher Training College and Local Technical College. Very strange teaching computer skills to the same people who were teaching him Maths and English.
1982 - Secondary
Secondary education at Paulette Comprehensive in Burton on Trent (UK) Achieved little in the way of normal qualifications but excelled at computers to the dizzy height of teaching local Teacher Training College and Local Technical College pre 16 years of age. Wayne spent some time at Lloyds bank working with IT (whilst still at school … things were quite different then)
By the end of his secondary education, Wayne had a few ‘O’ Levels and an ‘A’ in Computer Science. What he lacked in qualifications he more than made up for with the huge amount of IT and Business knowledge, experience and skills attained.
1977 - First computer
For Christmas that year Wayne’s parents and elder brother gave Wayne his first computer (at age 11)
Soon Wayne was writing magazine articles and creating all kinds of software for local businesses and became an expert in the field of software security and anti-piracy.
Engaged by Tandy Corporation (franchisees), IBM dealerships and several other software solution providers to advise and assist in software development and implementation.
Wayne’s first introduction to business management and specifically the management of business change. In his early teens, Wayne was aware of the impact computing was having on the business world.
1966 - born
Wayne enter the world…