UK: The Ball’s in our Court - The UK Technology Sector at a Critical Juncture (part 2 of 2)

Last Updated: 25 July 2005
Most Read Contributor in UK, August 2017
This article is part of a series: Click The Ball’s in our Court - The UK Technology Sector at a Critical Juncture (part 1 of 2) for the previous article.

Financial institutions and the UK technology sector

The UK boasts one of the most vibrant financial markets in the world, which is also one of the largest consumers of technology in the UK. However, its relationship with the UK’s technology sector has suffered since the dotcom crash. Our research suggested a degree of mistrust between the sectors.

This relationship needs to be repaired – with probably more of the initiative coming from the technology sector – whose companies need to improve their ability to express themselves in commercial terms. Deloitte’s view is that an effective partnership between the UK’s financial and technology sectors will allow UK technology companies to become the acquirers, rather than the acquired.

There was also a consensus among respondents that the financial sector should improve its understanding of technology. Conversely, and more importantly, technology companies certainly needed to improve their ability to express themselves in commercial terms. Deloitte’s view is that overcoming this obstacle will require far stronger awareness of the financing options available, as well as longer-established relationships with the financial sector than appear to exist now.

That said, within Europe, the UK’s financial sector is a leading supporter of technology. Eight of the ten most significant technology IPOs executed in Europe since January 2004 have been on London exchanges (see Figure 6) although technology IPO activity and value in the UK pale into insignificance compared with that in the US and China.

" At an institutional level, attitudes have changed for the better, and the quality of those working at institutions has improved, with more incisive questions now being asked. This change of attitude may be because those who were there during the dotcom boom have probably all left."

The UK’s financial sector comprises a wide range of funding options for the technology sector, each of which works with a varying degree of success. This section evaluates the performance of each:

Small business banking

Small business banking was criticised for both lacking understanding of business fundamentals and technology companies. This has made technology companies increasingly reluctant to use small business functions within retail banks for finance.

" We hear endless tales of small tech companies unable to get loans because the banks simply fail to understand what they are doing."

Our respondents viewed that the small business banking sector should – if it wishes to attract custom from technology companies – improve staff quality and training. However, given the strength of the UK’s small business banking sector in recent years, Deloitte’s view is that there is more onus on small technology companies improving their communication skills. The small business banking sector cannot be expected to have an expert understanding of technology.

Angel investors and seed funding

The UK has an active angel and seed funding network, although this is far smaller than its US equivalent, which is blessed by a concentration of billionaires and a history of successes. However the UK’s angel networks could be more effective if they marketed themselves better and had greater geographic scope: they tend to work at a provincial level, rather than focus nationally on a specific technology, sector or category. Our respondents also claimed that the UK’s angels tended to be relatively disinterested in their investments – this differs from the pro-active approach typical of the US. Some respondents suggested that technology entrepreneurs invest a share of their fortunes in developing and nurturing new technology companies, rather than retiring to the south of France.

Figure 5: Top 10 European information technology IPOs

January 2004 to May 2005

Date

Company

Country

Area

Exchange

Amount raised

Market capitalisation

Multiple

Nov 04

Phoenix IT Group

UK

Software

LSE

178

312

2.2x

Apr 04

CSR

UK

Semis

LSE

168

897

3.1x

May 05

TomTom

NV

Software

Amsterdam

158

2.209

8.9x

July 04

E2v Technologies

UK

Components

LSE

142

200

1.2x

Feb 04

Torex Retail

UK

Comp. Svcs

London AIM

90

259

2.3x

Feb 04

Civica

UK

Software

London AIM

84

177

1.2x

July 04

NCC Group

UK

Comp. Svcs

London AIM

71

151

5.4x

Mar 04

Atteniv Systems

UK

Software

London AIM

60

92

197.0x

May 05

Affecto Genimap

Fin

Software

Helsinki

55

85

NA

May 04

Newport Networks

UK

IT services

London AIM

49

125

NM

Source: ECVA, 2005

Venture capital

The UK’s technology sector is the most actively invested in by the European VC community. However our respondents believed that the venture capital’s support of the UK’s technology sector could be even greater if venture capitalists:

  • had the required industry expertise to complement their financial skills;
  • had more flexible business models, particularly with regard to exit. Presently, template expectations for exit simply do not map against the trajectory of a technology company – particularly early stage companies;
  • developed less adversarial relationships with investees;
  • our respondents from technology companies felt that venture capital companies provided insufficient support for their investments, focusing unblinkingly on rates of return without doing enough to actively support the company in trying to deliver.

By the same token, those respondents from the venture capital community noted that technology companies found explaining their technology, their business model and their financial projections quite challenging. One respondent attributed this to these companies’ inability to attract – or insensitivity to the need to recruit – quality marketing and finance professionals who could both articulate the selling points and explain the business plan.

" The relatively troubled relations between VCs and tech firms in the UK derives in no small way from the communications difficulties between the two communities. Tech sector companies tend to be too technical, and VC executives tend not to be technical enough. As a result, a huge amount of information gets lost in translation."

Private equity

The private equity market was considered by most respondents to be strong, but under-exploited by the UK’s technology sector. Most respondents noted an upward trend in terms of the amount of private equity available, and a rise in the upper limit in investment size. Private equity was being considered for a wide range of opportunities, from investments of a few hundred thousand pounds to the acquisition of mobile operators, running into tens of billions of euros. According to our respondents, in common with other areas of the financial services sector, there was a lack of clarity amongst technology companies as to what function private equity funds serve, what stage of funding they typically involve themselves in, what order of magnitude of funding is available and so on.

Deloitte’s view is that rising value of funds available to private equity is testament to their success and the confidence placed in them. Technology companies need to compete to be able to tap into this source of finance. And this requires communicating in a language that private equity can understand.

Stock Markets – small company listings

In general, AIM was regarded in a positive light. Respondents generally regarded AIM as a good home for small UK and overseas technology companies looking to list. Indeed AIM has become, de facto, Europe’s technology exchange. AIM’s credibility is no small part due to its ability to survive the 2001 crash while the EASDAQ and Neuer Markt perished. The consensus view of our respondents was that AIM’s existence means that UK technology companies do not need an equivalent of NASDAQ.

However, AIM could perform substantially better still if: • It had a higher profile. There was a general unawareness of its performance – £11 billion raised in ten years, £4.7 billion in 2004, 1,200 small companies listed across all sectors, over 90 percent of which remain on the exchange. AIM's profile could be raised by marketing an index of the leading technology companies on AIM.

  • Coverage of technology companies on AIM could be better still, which in turn would raise the investment potential.
  • There are few examples of companies (from any sector) migrating to the full exchange, casting AIM as a final destination, rather than as a stepping-stone.

Stock Markets – large company listings

In recent years, technology has flailed rather than flourished on the UK's main exchanges. With the exception of Vodafone and BT, technology is more marked by its absences. Only a few companies, namely Wolfson Microelectronics and Cambridge Silicon Radio, have made it to the market. This compares to dozens of companies that have made successful listings on NASDAQ with equivalent valuations in the same time period.

" Encouraging companies to aspire to move from AIM to a full listing on the LSE will be important to the future health of the tech sector."

Several respondents commented that the UK financial sector’s inability to understand the value of technology has pushed some companies to list on the NASDAQ to attain a higher valuation. However the rigour and expense of Sarbanes Oxley, coupled with tighter US immigration policy, may cause a few technology companies to reconsider the benefits of listing in the UK or even to delist from US exchanges. Part of the solution to this situation is to raise the profile of AIM, as a stepping stone to full LSE listing – a process that will accordingly raise awareness of small cap technology companies and the genus of their businesses (the technology itself). Part of the solution, however, also requires banks and other institutions to hire more technology specialists to their analyst teams.

The outlook for the UK’s technology sector (2006 – 2010) 

The technology industry will continue to be a evolve furiously over the next five years. The UK technology sector is, in several areas, suitably positioned to exploit the upcoming opportunities.

Deloitte expects the number of technologies – in the form of processes, devices, networks and services – that are in common usage, will grow. Technology will become an increasingly important differentiator of value creation for all companies and individuals. While elements of the technology sector will undergo ever steeper price deflation – particularly for consumer electronics – the size of the overall technology sector will increase – driven primarily by new fields of innovation such as biotechnology, genomics, fuel cells and nanotechnology.

Technology will become more pervasive in the workplace and the home

There will be a growth – or even acceleration – in the number of technologies, in the form of devices, networks and services, that are in common usage. We use, in our home and business lives, far more technology than just five years ago. All manner of devices have become digital, from still camera to portable music players and toys.

Over the next five years, despite some convergence of devices, we will adopt a growing number and range of digital devices, for both private and business usage, for everything from entertainment to personal healthcare. Two of the drivers of device proliferation are nanotechnology – the manipulation of matter at the atomic level – and fuel cells, a new form of battery. Nanotechnology allows devices to be become ever smaller, while fuel cells provide greater power output over a longer period relative to current battery technology. According to our respondents, the UK is well-positioned in both of these areas, in terms of pure research and early stage companies.

" Computers will become as common as electricity sockets in the home."

We use an increasingly wide blend of wireline and wireless networks, from broadband to Bluetooth, from Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) to Wireless LAN. In the medium-term more network technologies will emerge, both wireline and wireless, of varying bandwidth and range. Wireless networks may, by 2010, even represent a separate Internet. Several respondents viewed that the UK was well placed to continue in its leading role in the mobile and wireless technology sector. Respondents noted that the UK’s relatively large and competitive cellular mobile market had created a healthy ecosystem of suppliers providing a wide range of products and services, from content to third party messaging.

Simultaneous to a proliferation in networks will be a growth in the number of objects, from games consoles to motorcars, that will become connected to a network. However while several respondents expected the UK to be a leading test bed for new products and services destined for the digital home, others questioned the UK’s ability to manufacture or deliver these new offerings.

Interaction and transaction based services are migrating more and more from the High Street to the PC. Yet the number of services yet to become web-based still easily outnumbers those that have already been transformed. Respondents viewed that while the UK has had a good track record of building web-based companies, it had not yet managed to develop a player with global scale.

Technology will become even more of a differentiator for businesses

Technology will become an increasingly important differentiator of value creation for companies and individuals. Businesses with the most extensive and efficacious use of technology will have a distinct competitive advantage over their peers. Increasingly it is not a case of technology giving an edge: technology adoption will just mean keeping up, as was shown in the UK’s retail sector last Christmas. While the High Street had a difficult Christmas, Internet-based sales jumped 20 percent to £3 billion, representing 6.3 percent of total spending. In one segment – electrical goods – sales jumped 42 percent over the previous year. Retailers that lacked an effective e-commerce operation were the net losers.

While adoption rates of technology will vary between sectors, wave after wave of new technologies will emerge. Thus while today some elements of the UK’s public sector marvel at the wonder that is e-mail, and journalists obsess with the Blackberry and on-line music, leading players in the retail sector are looking to implement billions of RFID tags to take chunks of cost out of the supply chain while some public transport systems contemplate developing electronic purses. Several of our respondents were actively involved in technology implementation and were confident about future prospects. Applications regarded as cutting edge over the previous five years, such as mobile-enabled field sales/service forces, are now becoming regarded as standard. Pilot implementations are being rolled out more widely.

" We are still scratching the surface in terms of wireless’ ultimate impact. We will get rid of wires and transmit over waves."

The technology sector grows

While some parts of the technology sector will undergo ever steeper price deflation – particularly for consumer electronics – the size of the overall technology sector, based on this report’s definition, should grow. This will result from the growing pervasiveness of technology within our daily lives, in both developing and developed worlds. Technology will play a growing role across all industry sectors, from healthcare – where spend on technology is currently only a few percentage points – to mature adopters such as financial services, whose leading players are always looking to improve their revenue to cost ratios.

Perhaps more importantly, the technology sector as a whole will continue its current path of diversification and growth on a global scale. In just two decades, the entire sector has undergone an overwhelming period of change, with literally dozens of new fields emerging in the commercial arena – from nanotechnology to genomics. This process will continue, with the emergence of ever more high potential niche markets.

In some respects this trend may favour the UK technology sector, which is characterised by relatively small companies. It is becoming increasingly difficult for multinational technology companies to compete across all the increasingly diverse fields that make up the technology sector. If the UK’s small and medium sized technology companies can leverage their specialist knowledge and experience in emerging niches, in some respects they could out-compete their larger competitors in an increasingly fragmented global technology sector. However at the same time, UK technology companies will need to have sufficient scale to be able to invest in increasingly expensive research and development.

Given its strong intellectual property base, strategic location, stable economy and undeniable research expertise, the UK is reasonably well-positioned to succeed. However, its capacity to do so will be critically dependent on the ability of all organisations in the sector – universities, applied research organisations and commercial companies – to develop outstanding management skills including ability to work with financial institutions, that allow them to properly leverage their intellectual assets.

" Stem cell is likely to lead to some of the most important pharmaceutical developments over the next five years: so this could be a key opportunity for UK companies to gain a lead."

Current areas of government supported basic research, such as genomics and stem cell, will be the basis of new generations of products and services that have the capacity to make a global impact. Our respondents noted that the UK was currently one of the countries leading research in these and other areas, and the resulting knowledge would spawn a host of new companies. The only caveat that our respondents highlighted was that the full commercial impact of such new technology companies would not be felt for some time.

Conclusions and recommendations: the ball’s in our court

The UK’s technology sector is, in Deloitte’s view, reasonably wellpositioned overall. While the performance of the UK’s technology sector varies by sub-segment, its general direction is positive. Education, finance and government are all generally supportive of the UK’s technology sector, even if, in each case, performance should be improved. Demand for technology over the next five years, from consumers and businesses, should be healthy. However at the same time, the UK technology sector is vulnerable. International competition, particularly from China and India, will intensify. While the UK has been successful at attracting inward investment from technology internationals in general, our respondents warned that this could not be taken for granted and that research and development was particularly impermanent.

The question for the UK is how it can exploit its relatively strong position and improve its performance without succumbing to its vulnerability. Deloitte’s view is that the UK’s technology sector can thrive – but that this is incumbent upon all stakeholders in the industry. The approach should be to assume responsibility, rather as some respondents noted, to blame others. Figure 6 includes a list of recommendations and suggests which stakeholders should be associated with each.

Figure 6 – Conclusions and recommendations

 

Technology Companies

Education Sector

Government

Financial Sector

Customers

Communicate, Co-operate, Collaborate

Establish the next generation of technology workers

   

Integrate commerce into technology

Embrace entrepreneurship

Specialise to survive

 

 

Leverage other countries’ strengths

 

   

Exploit other countries’ weaknesses

 

   

Be positive towards technology

 

Believe in the technology sector

Source: Deloitte

Communicate, co-operate, collaborate

A clear message coming from our research was the lack of communication between different groups in the UK’s technology sector. Whether this was the universities having insufficient dialogue with large technology companies, or angel investors being unable to reach out to potential investments, or small technology companies being unable to express their business case effectively to potential customers, the lack of communication was quite evident. Yet respondents also recognised that greater dialogue would likely lead to cooperation, which in turn may result in profitable collaboration or sales. Deloitte’s view is that all stakeholders in the UK’s technology sector would benefit from greater communication and that each could take ownership for this initiative.

Establish the next generation of technology workers

The next generation of technology workers will shape the dynamic of the UK’s technology sector as well as the UK’s economy as a whole. Technology education needs to be considered from two perspectives: as an integral part of the individual’s career and as a core skill, the latter within business and personal contexts. General aptitude in technology is a shared responsibility between the educational system, the government, business and – most importantly – the individual. The UK’s technology education system will need to specialise in order to compete with the masses of technology graduates emerging from China and India by developing more value-adding courses.

Integrate commerce into technology

The UK has a reputation for developing world-class technology. Unfortunately this reputation does not extend to commercialisation, where many respondents regarded the UK as performing weakly. The educational system, government, the financial sector and technology companies can all help change this situation. If the UK is to exploit fully the fruits of its research, it needs to ensure that theory, practice and benefits of commercialisation are clear to all involved in the technology sector:

  • The basics of commerce should be taught in schools;
  • Technology students at universities should have compulsory courses in business studies;
  • There should be a culture of technology transfer in universities, acclimatising students to the link between invention and trade;
  • Emerging technology companies, guided by their investors, need to have a balanced management combining technical and commercial abilities;
  • Technology companies need to a good understanding of the various financing options available, from small business banking to full listings, and be able to communicate with different types of financial institutions;
  • Technology entrepreneurs should be as lauded as inventors.

Embrace entrepreneurship

A more positive attitude towards entrepreneurship and entrepreneurs can be fomented by technology companies, the government and the financial sector, all of whom could highlight the important role that entrepreneurs can have in the institution and subsequent development of a successful technology company.

A more ambitious definition of entrepreneurship twinned with a more celebratory – rather than derogatory – view of entrepreneurs by the public would be beneficial for the UK’s technology sector. The UK’s entrepreneurs should aim to get very rich over a lifetime, rather than aspire to make a few millions in a few years. This requires following the U.S. model of serial entrepreneurship.

Winning entrepreneurs need to invest their gains into new businesses, either as angel investors or as owner-managers. The UK should also change its cultural attitudes towards entrepreneurs, who tend to be envied or derided.

" Entrepreneurship is somehow ugly in the UK – the press sneer at it, the public distrust it and the government doesn’t properly support it. Americans worship the super-rich citizens that they have created – they are inspired by Gates and others – and they celebrate their success."

Specialise to survive

The UK’s technology sector, guided by its investors and the government, should compete where it has a strong chance of success – in areas where it is specialised in any form, be this expertise, experience, intellectual property or international recognition. Thus to try and out-compete China for mass technology manufacture or India for more commoditised IT services would be folly. To try and outnumber the US in terms of global technology giants is self-defeating.

Thus the UK’s specialist approach to mobile phone manufacturing is encouraging. The UK no longer manufactures mobile phones (China is now the leading nation for this) but UK companies are among the leading developers of specialist intellectual property for mobile phones. ARM Holdings contributes chip design. CSR leads in Bluetooth chip design and manufacture. Symbian provides operating systems and applications.

Similarly while it would not be sensible to locate MP3 player manufacturing in the UK, ARM Holdings and Wolfson Microelectronics are able to earn healthy commissions from each iPod sold. The UK may not mass manufacture consumer electronics, but its capacity to add value remains strong.

Leverage other countries’ strengths

Labour costs in China, India, Eastern Europe and other emerging countries are far lower than in the UK and will remain so for many years. While wage inflation will drive the cost of some developing country employees to UK levels, these will be the exception, not the norm. Figure 8 shows how the UK, for certain roles, is uncompetitive in comparison with emerging economies.

This does not, however, spell doom for the UK’s technology sector. The response should be to exploit wage rate differentials whenever this is beneficial. Successful off-shoring will drive improved profitability, in turn allowing companies to invest more. Best practice off-shoring, as delivered by US companies generates returns of up to 17 percent. While Deloitte’s research on the financial services and telecommunications sector suggests that the UK is the leading offshoring customer in Europe, it trails the US.

Figure 7: Wage comparison between UK and emerging nations for IT position (£K)

 

London

Budapest

Prague

Bangalore

Head of IT

78

36

29

20

MIS Manager

59

24

24

9

Systems Analyst

42

15

15

5

Senior Programmer

53

21

27

7

Programmer

43

15

14

6

Junior Programmer

32

13

11

5

Senior Business Systems Analyst

41

18

14

5

Business Systems Analyst

30

8

10

4

Graduate Programmer Role

25

9

9

3

Source: Deloitte analysis, 2005

Not only does off-shoring offer a way of immediately reducing the overhead associated with certain types of jobs, it also offers companies a means of establishing a strategic foothold in markets that they otherwise might not have entered. Given that the natural location for the off-shoring activities of UK companies is India, and given the rapidly growing profile of the Indian economy and its technology sector, there is clearly a strong rationale for UK technology companies to continue pursuing off-shoring options.

Exploit other countries’ weaknesses

UK technology companies should not be shy about identifying, exploiting and even advertising the shortcomings of other countries, particularly if these proffer the UK competitive advantage. The government should continue to use the DTI and major projects such as Foresight to monitor the performance of international competitors.

For example, the UK should market its status as one of the safest places to business in terms of the capacity to create and protect intellectual property (IP). Safeguarding of IP in some emerging countries can be poor. This is extremely important issue for technology businesses whose intellectual property represents a large share of their value.

The UK has successfully exploited regulatory uncertainty over stem cell research in the US to hold a leading position in this emerging area, which is expected to lead to some of the most important pharmaceutical developments over the next five years.

Engender a positive attitude towards technology

The UK, via the education process, technology companies and customers themselves, should engender a positive but pragmatic attitude to technology. The more this happens, the healthier the industry should be. Currently, however, the UK’s attitude towards technology is variable.

The UK’s consumers have the best attitude towards technology. They are leading adopters of technology, for communications and entertainment. The UK is one of the select markets with a mobile penetration of over 100 percent. The UK is one of only five countries to generate more than 20 percent of mobile revenues from data services. Only France has a greater number of broadband subscribers in Europe. The UK’s electronic games market is the third largest in the world.

Familiarity with technology at the consumer level is encouraging, especially when usage is by children. In the 1980s, the UK’s computer for schools program generated a generation of individuals who were amongst the first in the world to be computer literate. As a result in the early 1990s, the UK was unequivocally the world’s leading nation of computer programmers.

However technology adoption by businesses is less impressive. The UK has one of the lowest rates of usage of the Internet for receiving orders. According to some of our respondents, the Y2K obligation, the dotcom bubble and a few – but highly publicised – under-performances of public sector technology projects have all hardened scepticism towards technology.

Compare this to China, which has a seemingly voracious popular enthusiasm for technology. Perhaps ironically for a Communist State, executives of global technology companies are treated like celebrities. Reverence of technology entrepreneurs is also a feature of the US. In the UK the attitude towards technology entrepreneurs is too often one of indifference.

Believe in the UK technology sector

The UK is building a world class base of research and intellectual property in biotechnology, genomics, stem cell therapeutics, software programming (particularly in areas such as gaming, artificial intelligence and security), advanced materials, chemical engineering, advanced computing, pharmaceuticals and many other areas.

However few respondents were aware of the breadth of the UK’s knowledge base. This is a critical issue both for industry and government – the UK must regain its pride and its self-confidence, and do everything in its power to ensure that corporations and governments around the world recognise its continued ability to punch substantially above its weight in a wide range of technology markets.

" The UK technology sector lost its confidence – and indeed to some degree its access to financial resources – after the dotcom bubble burst."

UK technology companies, the financial sector and government should all make efforts to market better the UK technology sector’s commercial successes, while suppressing the British trait of glorifying failure.

All those in, or influencing, the UK technology sector should be asking: "how much can we grow?" and "where can we dominate" rather than "how much worse can it get". The ball’s in our court.

The content of this article is intended to provide a general guide to the subject matter. Specialist advice should be sought about your specific circumstances.

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This article is part of a series: Click The Ball’s in our Court - The UK Technology Sector at a Critical Juncture (part 1 of 2) for the previous article.
 
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We require site users to register with Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) to view the free information on the site. We also collect information from our users at several different points on the websites: this is so that we can customise the sites according to individual usage, provide 'session-aware' functionality, and ensure that content is acquired and developed appropriately. This gives us an overall picture of our user profiles, which in turn shows to our Editorial Contributors the type of person they are reaching by posting articles on Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) – meaning more free content for registered users.

We are only able to provide the material on the Mondaq (and its affiliate sites) site free to site visitors because we can pass on information about the pages that users are viewing and the personal information users provide to us (e.g. email addresses) to reputable contributing firms such as law firms who author those pages. We do not sell or rent information to anyone else other than the authors of those pages, who may change from time to time. Should you wish us not to disclose your details to any of these parties, please tick the box above or tick the box marked "Opt out of Registration Information Disclosure" on the Your Profile page. We and our author organisations may only contact you via email or other means if you allow us to do so. Users can opt out of contact when they register on the site, or send an email to unsubscribe@mondaq.com with “no disclosure” in the subject heading

Mondaq News Alerts

In order to receive Mondaq News Alerts, users have to complete a separate registration form. This is a personalised service where users choose regions and topics of interest and we send it only to those users who have requested it. Users can stop receiving these Alerts by going to the Mondaq News Alerts page and deselecting all interest areas. In the same way users can amend their personal preferences to add or remove subject areas.

Cookies

A cookie is a small text file written to a user’s hard drive that contains an identifying user number. The cookies do not contain any personal information about users. We use the cookie so users do not have to log in every time they use the service and the cookie will automatically expire if you do not visit the Mondaq website (or its affiliate sites) for 12 months. We also use the cookie to personalise a user's experience of the site (for example to show information specific to a user's region). As the Mondaq sites are fully personalised and cookies are essential to its core technology the site will function unpredictably with browsers that do not support cookies - or where cookies are disabled (in these circumstances we advise you to attempt to locate the information you require elsewhere on the web). However if you are concerned about the presence of a Mondaq cookie on your machine you can also choose to expire the cookie immediately (remove it) by selecting the 'Log Off' menu option as the last thing you do when you use the site.

Some of our business partners may use cookies on our site (for example, advertisers). However, we have no access to or control over these cookies and we are not aware of any at present that do so.

Log Files

We use IP addresses to analyse trends, administer the site, track movement, and gather broad demographic information for aggregate use. IP addresses are not linked to personally identifiable information.

Links

This web site contains links to other sites. Please be aware that Mondaq (or its affiliate sites) are not responsible for the privacy practices of such other sites. We encourage our users to be aware when they leave our site and to read the privacy statements of these third party sites. This privacy statement applies solely to information collected by this Web site.

Surveys & Contests

From time-to-time our site requests information from users via surveys or contests. Participation in these surveys or contests is completely voluntary and the user therefore has a choice whether or not to disclose any information requested. Information requested may include contact information (such as name and delivery address), and demographic information (such as postcode, age level). Contact information will be used to notify the winners and award prizes. Survey information will be used for purposes of monitoring or improving the functionality of the site.

Mail-A-Friend

If a user elects to use our referral service for informing a friend about our site, we ask them for the friend’s name and email address. Mondaq stores this information and may contact the friend to invite them to register with Mondaq, but they will not be contacted more than once. The friend may contact Mondaq to request the removal of this information from our database.

Security

This website takes every reasonable precaution to protect our users’ information. When users submit sensitive information via the website, your information is protected using firewalls and other security technology. If you have any questions about the security at our website, you can send an email to webmaster@mondaq.com.

Correcting/Updating Personal Information

If a user’s personally identifiable information changes (such as postcode), or if a user no longer desires our service, we will endeavour to provide a way to correct, update or remove that user’s personal data provided to us. This can usually be done at the “Your Profile” page or by sending an email to EditorialAdvisor@mondaq.com.

Notification of Changes

If we decide to change our Terms & Conditions or Privacy Policy, we will post those changes on our site so our users are always aware of what information we collect, how we use it, and under what circumstances, if any, we disclose it. If at any point we decide to use personally identifiable information in a manner different from that stated at the time it was collected, we will notify users by way of an email. Users will have a choice as to whether or not we use their information in this different manner. We will use information in accordance with the privacy policy under which the information was collected.

How to contact Mondaq

You can contact us with comments or queries at enquiries@mondaq.com.

If for some reason you believe Mondaq Ltd. has not adhered to these principles, please notify us by e-mail at problems@mondaq.com and we will use commercially reasonable efforts to determine and correct the problem promptly.