James Caan CBE

CEO Hamilton Bradshaw and former chairman of Start Up Loans

James Caan CBE is one of the UK’s most successful entrepreneurs. He made his fortune in the recruitment industry, which included the global success of his companies Alexander Mann Group and Humana International. In 2004 he founded private equity firm Hamilton Bradshaw, which has grown to a portfolio of over 30 companies.

James is best known for joining the panel of the hit BBC show Dragons’ Den, where he invested over £1m across 14 companies. He now hosts The Business Class on CNBC, where he and various industry experts provide guidance to UK SMEs.

James has received various prestigious awards including 'BT Enterprise of the Year', PricewaterhouseCoopers 'Entrepreneur of the Year' and Chairman of the Year at the 2013 International Business Awards.

A passionate supporter of small businesses, James is Chairman of the Government’s Start Up Loans scheme, which provides funding and mentoring to young entrepreneurs.

Why Corporate Businesses Should Adopt A Startup

Why Corporate Businesses Should Adopt A Startup Mentality

The common themes with each of these aspects are pride and humility and I think these are two concepts corporate businesses can often take for granted or leave behind. By incorporating these into your business you are considering the importance of people and will create a work culture that is attractive, effective and ultimately, remunerative.
15/09/2017 11:16 BST
How To Make Your Business

How To Make Your Business Investory-Ready

You've managed to scale your business from startup to a profitable venture with employees, cashflow, a thorough understanding of your strengths and weaknesses, a solid business structure, flexibility and an established brand. What now? The next step to crystallising your value is almost always finding and securing additional investment.
10/01/2017 12:32 GMT
Addressing The Recruitment Productivity

Addressing The Recruitment Productivity Puzzle

A great recruiter understands that to generate trust with clients and provide a valuable service, you need to excel at the entire process, end-to-end, not just one component. Sadly, over 25% of people joining our industry leave within first 12 months. Why?
18/08/2016 15:42 BST
Why Do People Move

Why Do People Move Jobs?

Given how competitive it is to recruit top talent in today's market, it's important as an employer to think about these things before you begin your search for employees. To hire the best, you need to offer the best and that starts with refining you're offering for them and not just looking at the hiring process as a one way street.
12/05/2016 12:20 BST
The Best Investment You'll Ever

The Best Investment You'll Ever Make

A lot of people switch off when someone tells them they should 'love what they do' but I genuinely find it shocking that anyone would fulfil a role for 35 hours a week that does not leave them feeling satisfied, valued and content.
10/03/2016 14:02 GMT
The Real Impact of Wage

The Real Impact of Wage Stagnation

Productivity has been at the forefront of George Osborne's plans for building a more prosperous nation, but how do we expect to put this into practise if wage growth continues to stagnate? Employees will not become more productive if we do not have the financial levers to encourage them to do so.
25/01/2016 17:33 GMT
The Rise of Savvy Consumers This

The Rise of Savvy Consumers This Christmas

Everybody loves a good bargain and although brand loyalty will always be a winning factor, as will the consumer need to feel as if they got themselves a great deal.
14/11/2015 16:29 GMT
Results Day: Qualifications vs Life

Results Day: Qualifications vs Life Experience

Lots of people I meet automatically assume that employers would veto any candidate who has no degree or generally doesn't perform well academically. However, this isn't always the case. I, and most other employees, look for something more than just an impressive CV. We want a candidate to tell us when they have applied learnings to real life experiences.
12/08/2015 22:45 BST
Getting Tough on Soft

Getting Tough on Soft Skills

It's not just about qualifications. It's not just about education or background. How do I know? Because I didn't excel in either of these areas - instead, I actually put my own success down to something called soft skills - the vital skills such as communication, teamwork and time management which everyone needs to succeed at work and beyond.
02/07/2015 17:18 BST
Are Leaders Born or

Are Leaders Born or Trained?

I am often asked whether leaders are born or trained and personally, I believe that a healthy dose of both is what truly defines our best leaders... My thirty years in business has taught me that as employers it's up to us to identify employees with potential and develop them to become the next Mark Zuckerberg or Larry Paige.
16/06/2015 17:11 BST
What a Conservative Majority Means for Small

What a Conservative Majority Means for Small Business

This week Sajid Javid announced new measures to support entrepreneurs and job creation in his first speech as Business Secretary. Cutting red tape by £10billion would make an almighty impact on the growth of small businesses and I hope this rhetoric has lit the flame for a future all-encompassing entrepreneurial Britain. This is the start of a very exciting journey for us all.
19/05/2015 20:38 BST
How to Sell a

How to Sell a Business

Be sure to think carefully about these three aspects when you're looking to sell and don't just take the first offer you get. You built this business from the ground up - exit with the confidence that it's in good hands and will continue to be something you're proud of...
22/03/2015 20:52 GMT
Observe The Masses, Do The

Observe The Masses, Do The Opposite

In the past few years there has been a huge soar in the number of people considering entrepreneurship as a career and actually taking the leap into starting their own business. Entrepreneurs are the new rock stars!
11/02/2015 15:01 GMT
The Secret to My

The Secret to My Success

Soft skills are a game changer for career development and business growth and it's time for employers, government, educators, parents - everyone - to take action to recognise, promote and improve them. Part of the success in my journey wasn't about my qualifications or experience, but it was the value I gave to soft skills that helped me get to where I am today.
16/01/2015 16:45 GMT
New Year, New

New Year, New Career?

Don't be afraid to be open and ask your employees why they are still around and why they still work for you. The insight you gather from this exercise could be the difference between your staff thinking 'new year new career' or 'new year I'm happy here'.
01/12/2014 17:37 GMT
Four Ways to Get

Four Ways to Get Headhunted

One of the most flattering things in the professional world is getting headhunted on behalf of a renowned company. If someone rings you out of the blue and takes an interest in you, it is a sure sign that you are doing all the right things in your current job. When I started my first headhunting firm many years ago, almost every time I approached a candidate on behalf of a prestigious company their self-esteem would instantly be boosted. It would be a very risky approach to sit back and purely wait to be headhunted but when great opportunities do present themselves over the course over a career it is always important to grasp them.
27/10/2014 17:12 GMT