SME Success Story – Acorn Strategy

Acorn Strategy Team - SME Success Story

Founded in 2010, Acorn Strategy is an award-winning integrated marketing, public relations, and digital communications agency with a global presence, supporting clients across various industries with expert services out of its offices in Abu Dhabi, Dubai, Melbourne, Perth, and London.  

We caught up with the company’s CEO, Kate Midttun, to learn about how the company has risen to new challenges, and how the team are using Beehive to support their growth. 

Acorn Strategy’s Story 

What does your business do? 

We’re a strategy-led integrated marketing, public relations, and digital communications agency, here to deliver sharp, agile, and creative strategies to grow businesses. With over 200 years collective experience, our team of specialists are highly experienced across various sectors such as Government, Finance, Healthcare, Education, Energy, Tourism and Leisure, F&B, and Property & Real estate. 

How did Acorn Strategy originate?

I arrived in Abu Dhabi 13 years ago as a marketing and communications professional with an interest in the emirate’s global position as a centre for innovation and development. I spent a couple of years launching the hotels on Yas Island as marketing director, I saw a big gap between what agencies were delivering at the time and what I needed as in-house. When it came time to move on and find a new role, I took some time completing freelance projects before realising this was exactly what I wanted to be doing.  And so, Acorn Strategy was launched. 

How did you find Beehive and why did you choose them for funding?  

Beehive reached out to us as they were expanding, particularly in the Abu Dhabi market. At that point, we had years of audited books, which were being kept in really great condition, however they were not recognized by conventional banks. As we understood more about what Beehive offered, we began thinking about how their services could support our business growth. Ever since the first contact, Beehive were able to answer all of our questions and were really easy and approachable to work with.

Where did you use the funds you raised on Beehive? 

Our cashflow was relatively lumpy which made planning difficult, and had knock-on effects including our relationships with clients and our employees. The funds we raised on Beehive have been so useful to smooth these challenges out and help us to grow. We were able to make things a lot more predictable within the business. Bringing in the operating capital also gave us the ability to expand when we needed to. 

Did the pandemic affect your business?  

Yes, it did and for all the right reasons! The pandemic meant that the importance and role that communications plays was elevated, it became more important than ever to communicate clearly and with impact. Because people were consuming so much information, there was a transition to a much more visual type of communication; we saw the need to build our creative function, bringing in more animators and designers. Overall, we saw an increase in demand and a transition in how things were communicated, so we shifted with it. 

What are your business plans for the next 12 months?  

We will see the addition of some more offices within the region, we’re looking forward to announcing those in the next few months. We will also continue to consolidate and build our Australia business. 

What advice would you give to business owners considering funding? 

We would absolutely recommend Beehive – very professional, easy to work with and have a great reputation in the SME lending space. Our brand awareness through Beehive’s platform with people who invest in business and use marketing and communications has been another bonus. I would suggest that you don’t wait until you really need it – get registered and find out about how Beehive can help your company grow so you’re ready ahead of time. 

Any other comments?  

Just a big thank you to Beehive! 

 

“I would suggest that you don’t wait until you really need it – get registered and find out about how Beehive can help your company grow so you’re ready ahead of time.

 
– Kate Midttun, CEO, Acorn Strategy
SME Success Story - Kate Midttun

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