While assisting the board in extra equity fundraising, Phil extended the reach of the business to generate new revenue streams and achieve business profitability.
In 1996 Phil took over running the company that had set up the world’s first internet café in 1994. While making a huge impact in turning the potential of the much-hyped internet into something people could appreciate tangibly, the initial business model was heavily loss-making. While assisting the board in extra equity fundraising, Phil extended the reach of the business to generate new revenue streams and achieve business profitability.
Beyond selling time on the internet access stations, while drinking cappuccino – coffee bars, as well as the internet, were still new to the British high street in the mid-1990s – additional revenues were built up both at home and internationally. Leveraging the company’s reputation as pioneers in the world of this emerging technology, the cafes were often hired out as attractive events spaces to corporates and other organisations.
In addition, training courses were offered to businesses in how to use this new technology for media, marketing and commerce. An international franchise business was also established, with cafes opening in Tokyo, Bangkok and Manila.
The combined effect of these brand extensions was to achieve business profitability for Cyberia. Later, the ubiquity of mobile telephony removed market demand for fixed terminal internet access.
The company’s founders instead went on achieve success creating or expanding other internet-based businesses.