The story of naseba …

In 2002, I was living in London and working for one of the biggest conference companies in the world. During the 4 years I worked for that company, I had the opportunity to live and work as a General Manager in 7 different countries.

I was paid a lot of money and taken great care of by the Chairman of the company.

One day the Chairman called me into his office for a review with the company lawyer and CFO.  Throughout the review he kept looking at a piece of paper and his behavior was ackward.

Finally, after 20 minutes of small talk, he picked up the piece of paper,  a copy of an email, and said to me with a smug grin on his face, “I have unfortunately, fired your girl friend, Sophie Le Ray because I know she is going to start her own company.”

He made me understand that he believed I was part of her new company.

Apparently, Sophie, a producer for the company, had once sent me out of frustration an angry email saying something like “we could do this so much better…”

I think most people who are exceptional, like Sophie, at one time or another gets frustrated and think they can do it better when things in the office are not perfect.  Irronically,  I never received her email so I had no idea what my Chairman was talking about.

My boss felt betrayed and believed I was going to set up my own company, so that day he pushed me out …

The craziest part of my story is that I never once thought about starting my own company.  NEVER.
Neither did Sophie.

However, two days after being pushed out, when I moved back to the south of France, I discovered for many months the I.T. department had been reading all my emails including my private account emails.

Someone from the I.T department had stolen my debit and credit card numbers, and charged (stole) more than 20,000 euros on them.

After being pushed out and robbed, not to mention the terrible feeling of having all my private emails read over many months – I got very angry.

I am sure most people reading this blog will never believe me, but sincerely, I never wanted to start my own company.  My goal was to become the CEO.

God works in mysterious ways….

In October 2002, with only 60,000 euros and no outside investment, Sophie Le Ray, Fabien Faure, Adam Fletcher and I launched naseba in one of the most anti -capitalistic countries in the world, France.  Our first office was in the basement of an apartment building and  had no windows.

Over the past 6 years, naseba has doubled revenue year after year. In October 2006, we took naseba public on the Paris stock exchange.

As the Chairman and CEO of naseba, I often get credit for naseba — but the truth is, naseba exists today because of Fabien Faure and Sophie Le Ray.  These two are the ones who made naseba happen.

What an amazing learning experience…

The last thing Marcus Evans ever said to me is something which unfortunately, from experience, I have come to fully understand:  “We are all best friends…”

Over the past 6 years, I have had 9 people try unsuccessfully to black mail me; my brother like best friend betray me; not to mention all the people whom I have personally carried on my back up this mountain… only to carry them close to the top and be betrayed or screwed over… I have had friends and business partners lie, cheat and steal from me;  a previous board member, whom I kicked off my board, dumped his “free” shares to purposefully lower our share price by 4 euros…. In short, I have been let down and dissapointed by more people than I can remember.

John McEnroe said it best:  Life is one big learning experience.