I’m 39 with only 10 Euros to my name, and my daughter’s tuition for
private school is due. I’ve just crashed a multimillion pound business
and I’ve no idea how I’m going to get through the day, let alone the
year. Things look bleak. All I know is that I never quit.
When I was 14, I packed my personal belongings into a big plastic bag, and moved
myself to my Grandmother’s. I was tired of my home life and as a typical teen, I didn’t get on too well with my father. My Grandmother lived a couple of miles
away so I walked there.
At 17, I had bills to pay, so I got a job doing door to door sales. Door knocking first to sell double glazed windows, later alarms. This was about hustling. My first day out, I knocked on doors all day with my partner, and at midnight our boss found us walking down the road finished for the night. He told us in no uncertain terms we should still be door knocking! I once sold a young couple an alarm at 1:30 a.m.
By 19, I was the top salesperson in the country and
in that one single year I bought a Golf GTI, an Opel Manata GTE, a Ford Sierra XR4i, a 2.8 injection Capri, a 944 Porsche, and a 944 Porsche Turbo…
I was crazy about cars! That and expensive clothes.
I had a Hugo Boss silver suit, gold pen, gold bracelet, and long blonde hair. I was from a very poor background and had no understanding of money, but at the same time, I was so confident. That year I ran a sales team of 150 people and earned £100,000. I was very ego driven, yet I really wanted to teach others and help others. I dreamed of setting up a Sales Academy, but I didn’t get around to it. My life was moving too fast.
After sales, at 21, I went into entrepreneurship.
My life went from a rocket ride, to a roller coaster. During the next 20 years I enjoyed epic business successes and endured even bigger business failures. I created several fast-growing, multi-million pound companies one of which was a coupon business ahead of its time, like an early Groupon. I could always succeed at sales but I failed at cash management. In business, money is never the issue, the strategy and metrics are, but I wasn’t yet clued into this so I made a lot of stupid mistakes and lost everything several times. One of my near misses was a holiday booking website. I was making millions and enjoying huge success, but I made one simple error – not hedging my currency. That mistake put the company out of business, because I didn’t know what I didn’t know.
So there I was, 39 with only 10 Euros in my pocket. I couldn’t afford to fill up my car, couldn’t pay for my daughter’s school and I was facing a very difficult future. I did however have a few internal things going for me. I’d learned valuable business strategy through my failures, I maintained my positive attitude through it all, and I still had the drive to succeed. So I pulled myself up by the bootstraps and started again. I went on to build Staysure, which, with our acquisition and expansion plans is now on track to be worth half a billion pounds in the next year.
Solving business problems is my passion. It’s like doing a jigsaw puzzle. I can see the solutions so clearly and I feel useful. I think we’re all here to use our gifts to help not only ourselves but others.
I was once asked by one of my mentors,
Keith Cunningham, what I would do if I
inherited $100m a year with the only
stipulation being I had to work?
Instantly I knew my calling: to help bring
clarity and focus to other business
owners. That’s what makes my life
I am the founder and chairman of Staysure.co.uk, the UK’s largest travel insurer. A business mentor and investor, as well as a golf fanatic, I consider myself to be a true entrepreneur, having built a business from the ground up to be on track to be worth half a billion pounds.
One of the areas I am most proud of is my
involvement in charity endeavours. In 2016 I completed the Strive Challenge with Richard Branson and my team at Staysure.
Being a golf enthusiast, it was my love of golf that has also inspired a landmark partnership, with Staysure agreeing to become the first title sponsor the
European Senior Golf Tour. It has been renamed the Staysure Tour and has been running since 2018.
Your privacy is important to us. It is Howsam Limited’s policy to respect your privacy regarding any information we may collect from you across our website, http://ryanhowsam.com, and other sites we own and operate.
1. Information we collect
When you visit our website, our servers may automatically log the standard data provided by your web browser. It may include your computer’s Internet Protocol (IP) address, your browser type and version, the pages you visit, the time and date of your visit, the time spent on each page, and other details.
We may also collect data about the device you’re using to access our website. This data may include the device type, operating system, unique device identifiers, device settings, and geo-location data. What we collect can depend on the individual settings of your device and software. We recommend checking the policies of your device manufacturer or software provider to learn what information they make available to us.
We may ask for personal information, such as your:
Date of birth
2. Legal bases for processing
We will process your personal information lawfully, fairly and in a transparent manner.
We collect and process information about you only where we have legal bases for doing so.
These legal bases depend on the services you use and how you use them, meaning we collect and use your information only where:
it’s necessary for the performance of a contract to which you are a party or to take steps at your request before entering into such a contract (for example, when we provide a service you request from us);
it satisfies a legitimate interest (which is not overridden by your data protection interests), such as for research and development, to market and promote our services, and to protect our legal rights and interests;
you give us consent to do so for a specific purpose (for example, you might consent to us sending you our newsletter); or
we need to process your data to comply with a legal obligation.
Where you consent to our use of information about you for a specific purpose, you have the right to change your mind at any time (but this will not affect any processing that has already taken place).
We don’t keep personal information for longer than is necessary. While we retain this information, we will protect it within commercially acceptable means to prevent loss and theft, as well as unauthorised access, disclosure, copying, use or modification.
That said, we advise that no method of electronic transmission or storage is 100% secure and cannot guarantee absolute data security. If necessary, we may retain your personal information for our compliance with a legal obligation or in order to protect your vital interests or the vital interests of another natural person.
3. Collection and use of information
We may collect, hold, use and disclose information for the following purposes and personal information will not be further processed in a manner that is incompatible with these purposes:
4. Disclosure of personal information to third parties
We may disclose personal information to:
Third party service providers for the purpose of enabling them to provide their services, including (without limitation) IT service providers, data storage, hosting and server providers, ad networks, analytics, error loggers, debt collectors, maintenance or problem-solving providers, marketing or advertising providers, professional advisors and payment systems operators; our employees, contractors and/or related entities; courts, tribunals, regulatory authorities and law enforcement officers, as required by law, in connection with any actual or prospective legal proceedings, or in order to establish, exercise or defend our legal rights; and third parties, including agents or sub-contractors, who assist us in providing information, products, services or direct marketing to you.
5. International transfers of personal information
The personal information we collect is stored and processed where we or our partners, affiliates and third-party providers maintain facilities. By providing us with your personal information, you consent to the disclosure to these overseas third parties.
We will ensure that any transfer of personal information from countries in the European Economic Area (EEA) to countries outside the EEA will be protected by appropriate safeguards, for example by using standard data protection clauses approved by the European Commission, or the use of binding corporate rules or other legally accepted means.
Where we transfer personal information from a non-EEA country to another country, you acknowledge that third parties in other jurisdictions may not be subject to similar data protection laws to the ones in our jurisdiction. There are risks if any such third party engages in any act or practice that would contravene the data privacy laws in our jurisdiction and this might mean that you will not be able to seek redress under our jurisdiction’s privacy laws.
6. Your rights and controlling your personal information
Restrict: You may choose to restrict the collection or use of your personal information. If you have previously agreed to us using your personal information for direct marketing purposes, you may change your mind at any time by contacting us using the details below. If you ask us to restrict or limit how we process your personal information, we will let you know how the restriction affects your use of our website or products and services.
Access and data portability: You may request details of the personal information that we hold about you. You may request a copy of the personal information we hold about you. Where possible, we will provide this information in CSV format or other easily readable machine format. You may request that we erase the personal information we hold about you at any time. You may also request that we transfer this personal information to another third party.
Correction: If you believe that any information we hold about you is inaccurate, out of date, incomplete, irrelevant or misleading, please contact us using the details below. We will take reasonable steps to correct any information found to be inaccurate, incomplete, misleading or out of date.
Notification of data breaches: We will comply laws applicable to us in respect of any data breach.
Complaints: If you believe that we have breached a relevant data protection law and wish to make a complaint, please contact us using the details below and provide us with full details of the alleged breach. We will promptly investigate your complaint and respond to you, in writing, setting out the outcome of our investigation and the steps we will take to deal with your complaint. You also have the right to contact a regulatory body or data protection authority in relation to your complaint.
Unsubscribe: To unsubscribe from our e-mail database or opt-out of communications (including marketing communications), please contact us using the details below or opt-out using the opt-out facilities provided in the communication.
8. Limits of our policy
Our website may link to external sites that are not operated by us. Please be aware that we have no control over the content and policies of those sites, and cannot accept responsibility or liability for their respective privacy practices.
9. Changes to this policy
For more information on your data please contact
This policy is effective as of 25 October 2019.