A major manhunt is under way after a company director was shot dead during an armed raid on his drinks delivery firm's warehouse.
Akhtar Javeed, 56, was pronounced dead after being found in the street outside his business in Digbeth, Birmingham, at about 6.40pm on Wednesday.
West Midlands Police have declined to confirm whether anything was taken during the attempted robbery but have said the warehouse was specifically "targeted" by two masked men.
Detectives also refused to comment on claims that Mr Javeed may have followed the raiders out of the building before being gunned down.
Speaking yards from the scene of the murder in Rea Street South, Chief Superintendent Andy Parsons said officers were alerted by a 999 call from staff inside the business premises.
Mr Parsons told reporters: "Officers and paramedics gave immediate first aid to assist Mr Javeed, who was rushed immediately to hospital where further medical assistance was provided.
"Tragically however Mr Javeed was pronounced dead a short time later."
Mr Javeed, from London, is believed to have run fast food supplies firm Direct Source 3 Ltd on weekdays and to have returned home at weekends.
Syed Abbas, 30, who lives at a property which Pakistan-born Mr Javeed owns in east London, said the businessman's wife and children had the news broken to them on Wednesday night.
Mr Abbas said: "Within 15 minutes of finding out his whole family went to Birmingham. They were crying and very upset."
It is understood that Mr Javeed's wife, two young children and grown-up daughter live at the property in West Ham.
As police appealed for witnesses who may have seen a car leaving the murder scene, a local business owner, who declined to be named, said he had handed in CCTV footage showing joggers from a local gym passing a road junction around 20 yards from the scene.
But Nafeesah Abid, the director of a nearby accountancy firm, said the mainly industrial area around Rea Street South was not busy shortly before the raid.
Ms Abid said: "I drove past in my car a few minutes before but I didn't see or hear anything. It's very sad, shocking and distressing."
Norman Khan, 28, a car salesman, said he saw Mr Javeed lying in a pool of blood as paramedics battled to save his life.
"All his face was full of blood and there was blood on the floor," Mr Khan said. "There were three guys standing there, I think they knew him. They said he had just been shot.
"When he was in the ambulance they were trying to bring him back to life again. It was shocking."
Issuing an appeal for witnesses, acting Detective Chief Inspector Martin Slevin, of West Midlands Police CID, said: "It happened at a time when other people may have been leaving work for the day and someone may have seen what happened or have important information about the suspects."