Cass Business School sits on the edge of East London,
and on the edge of the financial district,
of the City of London. It's a really interesting place. On the one hand,
we have probably one of the richest parts of the world with highest value of
real estate and billions of pounds, billions of dollars traded every single day.
On the other side, we have one of the poorest areas of not just London,
but the rest of the UK.
So, every day we see this kind of big gap between absolute wealth
which is generated through business and trading and the absolute poverty.
Now, this got us thinking every day how did
these two things exist and how did they work side by side?
Are they simply two worlds which don't see each
other or can they come together in some ways?
Now, one person who we did see bringing
these two worlds together was a builder called Steve Rawlings.
He founded a building company which was called Lakehouse.
Now this building company was typical of most building companies in the area.
They slowly built up from a house in Wannstedt with a small group of employees,
and they began focusing their efforts on two particular sectors.
One was affordable housing,
people who are relatively poor often provided by social housing,
and the second sector was buildings for public sector organizations,
such as education, schools etc.
And this business built up from a very small and humble beginnings,
a house in Wannstedt to his 540 employees with a turnover of 154 million pounds.