IOEE Spotlight: Raj Burman

We speak to IOEE Fellow Raj Burman this month to get an insight into some of the fantastic work Raj is currently involved with and some of the reasons he felt it important to become an IOEE Fellow.

This month we’re looking at some of the brilliant work IOEE Fellow Raj Burman is involved with. Raj works for GS1 UK, a part of the multinational non-profit GS1 organisation that sets worldwide standards on the application of barcodes and data services used by a global community of over two million members in bringing industry together with small and medium businesses to solve supply chain problems.

As Head of Small and Medium Business, Raj is responsible for leading the small business growth accelerator and community partnerships programme that provides services helping passionate artisans, innovators, value creators and growth implementors to improve their trading efficiency and visibility through the supply chain to upscale their growth for business success.

Prior to his current role, Raj led a UK business acceleration scaleup programme for a leading pan-European independent body of the European Commission; enabling digital transformation across industry sectors in commercialising innovations to market and working with several growth ventures for access-to-market, international soft-landing and access-to-finance, including entrepreneurship education.

He was also Ambassador to the UN Global Poverty Project where in partnership with The Co-operative Group, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, Fairtrade and other renowned international development organisations, led grass-roots advocacy to inspire local communities to act on extreme poverty and fair-trade. He also co-founded a social purpose unit within Forward Worldwide, subsidiary of WPP Group to leverage venture philanthropy and development through enterprise working on select initiatives in Africa and Asia.

As a venture growth builder and commercial specialist, Raj has successfully established and invested in several disruptive startup ventures. He currently mentors several commercial businesses, social enterprises & non-profits to build growth and orchestrates catalyst partnerships to scale disruptive innovative solutions across international markets. Raj’s passion lies with mentoring and enjoys working with passionate, driven entrepreneurs who have disruptive ideas whilst being persistent in applying fresh ways to make things happen for growth & impact.

Raj is equally busy outside of work as he in work, we asked Raj what he gets up to: “Outside of work, I love to travel, read and a philanthropist to several international social impact ventures supporting the UN Sustainable Development Goals in making a difference to disenfranchised and marginalized communities, particularly supporting maternal & child, education and inclusion.”

Here at the IOEE we know the importance of mentors within UK business and what they are able to bring to the table to enable businesses to grow. Raj’s view on mentoring is “The challenge for any company that wants to scale up is getting access to knowledge. Mentorship is a critical foundational component for building a successful organisation. Having a great product or service for a searing pain point and getting market traction are good, but working with a great mentor who has experience depth and breadth is equally important to grow these elements and sustain for the long term.”

Like Raj, as an IOEE Member you will gain access to our library of e-learning courses which range from getting the idea and starting your business all the way through to scaling your business and growth. There is also the ability to organically search for mentors through our Mentor Directory giving you the opportunity to find the guidance you need to grow your business further.