Exclusive Interview – Featuring Neil Clarence Founding Partner of Location Bank

Estimated read time 5 min read

Neil Clarence, the founding partner of Location Bank and Director at Vicinity Media, is the subject of this exclusive interview. Neil describes his early days as an entrepreneur, as well as his successes and interests.
He offers us a clear idea of what he wants his firm to accomplish and tells us how he has dealt with challenges in the past.

This highly successful and respectable business owner, provides nuggets of gold by giving other entrepreneurs guidance on how to launch a firm, in the final portion of the interview.

How it all began:

Neil: “After completing my studies in marketing at Rhodes University and UJ, I began my advertising
career. Through hard work, dedication, and plenty of luck, I won numerous local and
international awards, and by the age of 26, I was promoted to the position of Creative Director. I
then joined a couple of smaller agencies (but by this time I was moonlighting (or side hustling as
it’s now called) on my own business ideas…”
“Although I enjoyed the creative side of advertising, I eventually decided to leave and pursue my
entrepreneurial aspirations. Alongside my business partner, Daryl van Arkel, I’ve successfully
built three businesses across South Africa and Europe in various industries, including media,
advertising and technology. I’m passionate about entrepreneurship and relish the challenge of
identifying and capitalising on new opportunities.”

Just a background on your business, what kind of sector do you focus on? What’s
the name and where do you operate from?

“Location Bank is a proudly South African MarTech company that specialises in the centralised
management of digital locations and online reputation across the digital ecosystem. Our mission
is to provide brands and SMEs with a 360-degree view of their online presence and optimise
their local SEO through our comprehensive product suite.
Our company was founded in 2008 as Business Positioning Systems (BPS) by myself and my
co – founder. Today we have expanded globally with headquarters in Johannesburg and
additional offices in CPT, the UK, India, and Singapore to serve our growing international client
base. We work with clients in 57 countries.”

What kind of an impact do you hope your company will have around the World?

“Our best-of-breed technology and comprehensive product suite have already made a significant
impact on our client businesses, empowering them to take control of their online reputation,
improve their local SEO, and ultimately drive growth. We believe that every business,
regardless of size, deserves a chance to thrive in the digital world, and we are dedicated to
making that a reality. Our focus is to bring 1 st world level technology to businesses in emerging
We envision a world where businesses can harness the power of location and reputation
management to unlock their full potential. Our goal is to remain at the forefront of the digital
transformation evolution, providing our clients with the tools they need to stay ahead of the

What has been the biggest obstacle you have had to overcome as a business

“The early days are tough. Our first 2 businesses were built without any real funding, so it was a
case of bootstrapping. We took second bonds to allow us to quit our jobs and operate as full-
time entrepreneurs.
We had roughly 5 months to start making some money or would lose our properties and have to
move back in with the parents as failures’ – that was a very stressful time, but also invigorating
as you have your destiny in your hands and no one else to lean on or blame. By month 5 we
managed to pay ourselves and have done ever since.
As you have some success and grow you are faced with plenty of opportunities – being able to
turn these down and focus is also very difficult because as an entrepreneur you naturally
identify and want to execute on opportunities. There’s no doubt that staying laser focused is a
major obstacle.”

What aspect of being a business owner do you enjoy the most?

“Watching your vision, which only existed on paper or on a slide become real and then become
an industry leader is a great feeling. Having that kind of impact is very rewarding. Equally
rewarding is seeing your team grow and develop. We have several employees who have been
with us going on a decade and have grown from assistants into top level management, which
has been fantastic to witness.”

What advice would you give to someone who would like to start their own

“Be prepared for a wild ride. Business is tough and resilience is key. The biggest mindset change
once you go on your own is that the day doesn’t end at 5pm. You may go home but your
business and its problems and opportunities are with from every second from that day onwards.
If you can’t get things done despite setbacks in every direction, then you’ll struggle BUT the
daily struggle is what gets you back to your desk every day.
Its critical to find a business partner who you trust 100% or you’ll end up in prison, rehab or a
mental institution.”

Find out more about Location Bank here – https://locationbank.co/

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