Thinking of new carrots to get your salesforce motivated? Forget holidays in Bali, sales "conferences" in the West Indies, bonus packages or the new company car. Sam Bullard of Newmarket-based Cormack McCormack Bloodstock has the answer: buy a racehorse for them.
This new incentive has been all the rage in Japan for the past couple of years, but Bullard believes that it is just what is needed to give the British bloodstock industry a leg up. Speaking to Management Today from the Doncaster yearling sales where "we pit our wits and skills looking for the winners of the future", Bullard reckons that, with horse prices in the doldrums, now would be an ideal time to start such a scheme.
Under his plan, a company would buy a yearling (a one-year-old horse for those not in the know), for perhaps £25,000 to £30,000, though Bullard would quite happily look for cheaper animals for those on more limited budgets. The horse would be named after the company or product (giving valuable free publicity or advertising to the company or its wares) and an employee would become the registered owner. The company would pay the training and entry fees (perhaps another £10,000) while the new "owner" would receive any prize money.
After a year the horse would be sold, "hopefully at a profit depending on its winnings", says Bullard. The proceeds could then be reinvested in another horse for another lucky owner.