If Richard Branson is right and a two hour flight from London to Australia will happen in this generation, what might business look like?
Technology is a wonderful thing. It fuels day to day interaction, development and innovation. It offers a real and tangible opportunity to craft and create the business of tomorrow. One of the ways technology is rapidly changing business is in transport; faster travel times on road, rail and air make it easier to do business around the globe. Instead of dealing with UK and European firms, London’s business community can feasibly do deals with companies in Dubai, India and Africa. It no longer takes a major company to become a multinational.
The world potentially got even a little smaller when Richard Branson predicted that two hour flights between London and Australia would happen in his lifetime. The man in charge of Virgin – who is also leading the way in terms of corporate space travel – said his engineers were exploring the idea of “point to point” air travel which theoretically offers journey times faster than Concorde.
To offer a glimpse into the potential this idea would open, consider the places that are two hours from London now; Liverpool, Manchester, Paris, Brussels, Barcelona, Copenhagen, Rome. London’s international reputation as a transport hub means that businesses from these cities regularly travel to do their work and make connections in the capital. Flying in and out of Heathrow, Gatwick and Stansted, as well as King’s Cross and Euston it positions London as a place to have conversations, to explore new ideas and to meet like-minded people who can sell services and support business growth.
If Australia were just two hours away the whole globe would be opened up. Businesses from Hong Kong and LA could fly to London to meet a tech team from Manchester. An accountancy firm in Canary Wharf could attract clients from Sydney and Melbourne, booking them in for lunch meetings and face to face updates. Hiring the very best talent from around the globe would be easier; a two hour flight home from London to Melbourne for Christmas would seem like a small chore. Think how easy it is to step off a train in London when you’re working anywhere else in the UK. That’s how easy international travel would be.
The world would be smaller and London would be at its heart. For companies specialising in supporting business travel, like Clarendon Serviced Apartments, it would mean working with businesses around the globe, offering them the opportunity to find a stylish and comfortable place to stay while they are working in London. The potential customer and client base would rapidly expand to include anywhere in the world.
A great place to do business is one that attracts people from far and wide. Diversity is the key as it brings in varied ideas and innovations, as well as different approaches. This diversity enables firms to find the best way of doing things. Richard Branson’s prediction that journey times from London to Australia could be as little as two hours could herald a new generation of commerce. London could become an international meeting place. For business travel the possibility of being able to welcome visitors from all over the globe just as easily as UK travellers step off the train at Euston, mean the future looks very bright indeed.