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The University of Southampton
Mathematical SciencesAlumni

Steven Edkins BSc Maths with Operational Research , 1982

CEO FusionExperience and founding partner of FusionAI

Steven Edkins's Photo

Hi, I'm Steven Edkins and I studied BSc Maths with Operational Research within Mathematical Sciences at the University of Southampton.

Enjoy the time you have at the University, as it’s unrepeatable and sets you up for the rest of your career.

What was your first job after graduating?

Immediately following graduation I travelled to the USA on the University soccer tour and remained travelling in the USA for a further six months. On my return I spent the next six months playing soccer full time at Colchester, finishing up the season at Wimbledon. I then applied and was successful in achieving a graduate consulting role at Scicon, a software house, part of BP.

What is your current job?

I am CEO of FusionExperience and a founding partner of FusionAI partners, an entrepreneurial investment fund based in London.

What has been your favourite job since you graduated?

Having played football, set up my own business twice and worked for a number of large institutions, each has its own rewards. The most rewarding however has been the setting up of my own business and creating a brand and a new entity from scratch. A common theme across all the businesses is that, whilst it is important to delegate and surround yourself with people who have complimentary skills to yourself, one should always remember the devil is in the detail and there is no short cut for hard work and diligence. Another great saying in any service industry is that the client is always right and having the ability to see things from the 'other side' is key.

What have been the turning points in your career?

Keeping an eye out for opportunity and meeting and befriending some great people along the way.

What advice would you give to Southampton graduates?

Enjoy the time you have at the University, as it’s unrepeatable and sets you up for the rest of your career. Work hard but try and keep a balance between both work and social skills. Also don't get too lost in the education system and try to interact with non-campus life at the same time if possible.

Any other relevant career information?

Don’t get too set on a single path and evaluate every opportunity that comes your way.

Why did you decide to do your course?

My strongest subject was mathematics, but I wanted to do something that had a broader application.

How did your education at Southampton prepare you for your chosen career?

I think the whole experience of Southampton helped prepare me for my chosen career. Whilst at university I was negotiating my own football contracts and interacting with a range of ages and professions not just my fellow students. My actual education taught me to think analytically about problems and always trying to obtain as much data as possible before making a decision. One very important point is that listening is an art. Too many speak before they've listened.

Why would you recommend studying at Southampton?

The place, the courses, the staff, the campus are all excellent.

What advice would you give to prospective students looking at the University of Southampton?

Ensure you can get the course you want, gain your place but then consider a year out before you start as it puts your experience more into perspective and helps you appreciate your time further whilst you’re there.

What are your future career plans?

To continue to develop the Fusion brand through acquisition and organic growth.

Are you still in touch with fellow alumni?

Yes, in particular my best friend at University, who now lives in the USA and who was over catching up on old stories this Christmas.

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