Blog post

In the trenches

Jeez these are challenging times. I don’t know about you but my anxiety levels have been through the roof – family and business. Feeling much better now that I’ve got my eldest daughter back home in Wellington from Auckland University; having driven there and back over the last couple of days – broken windscreen and dying fuel pump just adding to the drama. Nothing wrong with Auckland Uni, just home is home and that’s where we all want to be as we head into lock-down. While this is one giant f*&kup for all of us, I really feel for our young adults who had just set out on the next phase of their life journey. As parents we now need to help them reset, refocus and keep their dreams alive.

At Movac, while we’ve all seen this coming, the intensity has shot through the roof over the last two weeks. This is what we’re working on with our CEO and Founders:

  • CEO weekly meetups – in this we’re discussing tactics for getting through, how they’re working with staff and customers, what market signals they’re seeing and how they’re rapidly innovating in their businesses. A big shout out to all Founders and Execs out there you’re doing an awesome job.
  • Mental health / Resilience building check-ins – we’ve had awesome support from our Operating Partner Ben Anderson and his team to wrap support around our wider whanau, to make sure that we’re all OK and where not doing something about it. Practically this means one on one check in’s with someone deeply experienced in managing through adversity and building resilience. Thanks Ben, Simon and Alia.
  • Business restructuring – we’re on calls day in and day out working with our teams to develop and review new financial forecasts and agree tactics for managing through. One of the key lessons from Alia on this has been to try and avoid making critical decision while our heads are still in the “washing machine”. We need to step back, pause and map out a plan of action with a clear and empowering short-term mission. What we’re encouraging our companies to do is break things down month to month…April do this, measure that, May based on April do this measure that.
  • Funding – we’re working through the funding needs for each our companies and where required moving quickly to inject funds as needed. We have to be sensitive to our investors through this time, many have seen the value of their portfolios fall by more than 30% and they have their own immediate challenges.

Right now our focus is on “standing in the trenches” with our founders and CEO’s and making sure that we can get through this.  Adding to the complexity of our world we have two new investments that we’re on the verge of closing, we’re highly convicted on these and will follow through on them. In the coming weeks we will restart looking at new investment opportunities and are talking to investors about how we can scale up to support the huge need that’s out there.

None of us have ever experienced a health and economic crisis like this before. We have, however, been through number of major economic downturns. We know from these cycles that those businesses that adapt quickly, innovate and survive, thrive on the other side. Our collective challenge is to get to the “other side”…when we don’t yet know how far away that is.

We’re going to be posting more over on the LinkedIn over the coming weeks as we all figure out how to navigate this, please follow us there. https://www.linkedin.com/company/movac/

Stay safe, don’t strangle the kids, don’t hug your parents, be kind.

Kia kaha

Phil + Movac Team

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