I travelled to Florida this week to sort out a few legal details for our new office in Clearwater, and to sign a few forms for our new US business - CADsmart LLC. I now have the title of CEO to add to my resume :) Whilst over here, we are also pleased to be Silver Sponsors of the Bentley Florida User group conference (http://www.flugsite.com/) in Tampa. I delivered a class on 'Measuring & Improving CAD Productivity' to a full room, which was well received; I think they liked the accent! The conference was well run, albeit a little down on numbers this year; no doubt a result of the current economic squeeze.
One of the highlights of my trip came when I had the chance to spend a few moments chatting one-on-one with Bentley Systems' CEO, Greg Bentley, following his keynote speech. I found him to be warm, intelligent and personable; refreshing in today's world of big business. Mr Bentley's keynote delivery was interesting; the man clearly has a sound grasp of economic matters, and shared his vision for the next phase of Bentley's strategic plan. With 142 different products to manage, they certainly have their work cut out! The pending release of the 'Athens' suite of products - he wouldn't be drawn on the actual product name! - looks to spell a new chapter in the support of global infrastructure projects. To quote a recent article from the Wall Street Journal, '...the future is engineering'. Recession or not, there will still be plenty of opportunity to develop new business in the coming year and beyond.
One final observation from my trip this week; apart from some unhappy Tampa Rays fans (their team lost to Philadelphia in the world series) I couldn't help but notice how many people mentioned the 'cold' weather they've had over here this week. Now, when I left Blighty at the weekend, it was wet, grey and cold. Here, the temperatures have barely dropped below 60 degrees! I'm walking around in t-shirts, shaking my head at the locals in their winter woolies! :) Ah well, it's back up to 80 degrees tomorrow; now where did I put my sun-block...