Sanjeev Patel (’01), founder of York, England-based CNG Business Services, recently was named a “Young Entrepreneur of the Year” finalist by Yorkshire ‘s Evening Press in its annual business award competition. Open to nominees under 30, the category targets ventures that are successful “due to drive, enthusiasm and vision of an individual.”
CNG Business Services enables small- and medium-sized businesses to save money on products and services. A London native, Patel was inspired to found the venture upon returning to the UK to work with his family’s property and retail business. There he learned the power of buying groups, which triggered the idea to create his company in September 2003. As managing director, Patel does everything from business development to marketing to overseeing the company’s web site (www.cngbs.com).
“We facilitate the introduction of a customer to a supplier at very preferential terms,” says Patel. “Because we act on behalf of many businesses, we have excellent negotiating power and secure large discounts – up to 50 percent.”
Patel credits UCLA Anderson as a major influence on his entrepreneurial success. He says he honed his ability to take an external view in Alan Carsrud’s business plan writing class and to take concepts to the next stage in Al Osborne’s business plan implementation course. In addition, the Venture Development Program provided first-hand experience with a start-up.