Monk forecasts big future as his third start-up turns a profit

Andrew Monk, who is building up his third stockbroking firm, having sold the first two for big profits, said yesterday he was watching the pennies but was confident of growing the new business.

"I like the fact that I can recruit some quite young people who are energetic and bright," Mr Monk said. "And unlike people who have been in the broking business for 30 years they do not expect to be paid £250,000 a year basic."

The new firm, VSA, said that in the year which ended last week it had made a profit of more than £500,000.

"That's pretty good," Mr Monk said. "These are pretty tricky markets but Rome wasn't built in a day. We want to get away from the boring broker-to-broker model that there is in London and be innovative."

To that end VSA is launching its first cash shell, Anglo African Agriculture, which is looking to raise £500,000 for unspecified investments in the region. VSA is putting £50,000 into the company, which will list on the Plus market and has already recruited two experienced Africa hands as directors.

Mr Monk expects VSA to get approval to begin secondary market share trading in the summer. Its staff has grown from just six a year ago to 24 today.

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