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Get hungry, billionaire tells business

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SELF-made billionaire Stephen Lansdown has urged Guernsey businesses to get hungry and pursue more opportunities instead of sitting back and moaning about the island's woes.

SELF-made billionaire Stephen Lansdown has urged Guernsey businesses to get hungry and pursue more opportunities instead of sitting back and moaning about the island's woes.

Mr Lansdown, pictured, made his millions with financial services company Hargreaves Lansdown, a business he co-founded in 1981 in Bristol.

He left the day-to-day business and stepped down as chairman of Bristol City football club when he moved to Guernsey in 2010. He has openly admitted that the move was also made to mitigate his tax burden.

As a panellist at the Institute of Directors annual debate, he said he believed that the island was missing a vital '20%' to push Guernsey to compete successfully on a global stage.

Mr Lansdown said that he was sure that there would be sectors where the island could compete with even major trading nations.

'But we make do with what we've got, rather than looking at what we're really good at,' he said.

'Specsavers is a local success, but did they sit back and think: "We can't compete"? I don't think they did, they built their business from here, and we should be encouraged from that that we can compete with the best.

'Guernsey goes 80% of the way there. Everybody says what a wonderful place, but to be really the best, where I come from, to hit the top you've got to work hard for that extra 20%.'

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