Dr Will’s is on a mission to reduce our sugar consumption. Its sauces, dressings and mayonnaise are made with only natural ingredients and are sweetened with dates rather than added sugar. Its eponymous cofounder, Dr Will Breakey, teamed up with Liam White and Josh Rose to launch its products in 2017, and they have since won listings in the likes of Tesco and Waitrose. In 2021, they secured £1.1m on crowdfunding platform Seedrs to invest in marketing, e-commerce, recruitment and packagi
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Entrepreneurship is a disease…but I don’t want the cure’
This technology start-up unlocks the world of whisky. It has developed proprietary image capturing software that allows mobile phones to scan and identify any bottle of the ‘golden elixir’. The Bevvy app displays a variety of information on the scanned whisky, including an estimated valuation, tasting notes, user ratings and distillery history. Its database stores details of more than 200,000 bottles, and the app is aimed at anyone from novices to collectors and distillery owners. Headquartered on the Isle of Islay, the company was set up in 2021 by leading whisky expert Laurie Black, and entrepreneur Luke Heron, co-founder of medtech firm TestCard.
“HOW TO HANDLE FAST GROWTH? ASK FOR HELP”
Connie Nam felt her confidence draining away. The founder of London-based lifestyle jewellery brand Astrid & Miyu had built a fast-growing, multi-million-pound company, but that didn’t matter. As unbelievable as it sounds, imposter syndrome was creeping in. The Seoul-born, US-raised Londoner explains why: “I’d hired someone who’d started to challenge how I ran the business. They were an expert in that field; I wasn’t. I saw myself as a founder, not a CEO, so the criticism hit home.”
The quiet tech entrepreneur who’s modestly building a half-billion-pound empire
It’s not about having gleaming offices, hiring tons of staff and shouting about how successful you are. These can be the trappings of ego-trippers. Effective entrepreneurship is more often about coming up with an idea, proving the concept as cheaply as possible, and scaling it as quickly as possible.
WHY ‘LET’S GO AGAIN!’ IS THE ULTIMATE ENTREPRENEURIAL MANTRA
Vanilla Underground’s recent growth has been formidable, with online sales of its officially licensed clothing and apparel going – to use a technical term – completely ballistic. Armchair shoppers are ordering Minecraft T-shirts, Peppa Pig slippers and Harry Potter rucksacks faster than Sonic the Hedgehog. And the trend has handed the company’s Tamworth-based co-founders, married couple Deniz and Jason Yarnell, a heady combination of excitement, joy, and – because you can’t run a business without it – worry.
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Peter Roberts is the sort of investor you want on your team. The 75-year-old has been there and done it as a founder, marshalling his biggest recent success, PureGym, to a £160 million turnover and a place in the Sunday Times Fast Track 100. He’s also been there and done it as an investor, fuelling several exciting start-ups on their journeys towards rapid growth…
‘WE’RE FOUR YEARS IN AND WE’VE JUST TURNED DOWN AN £85M BID’
Until last year, Wayne Starkey still filed his own VAT returns. Many co-founders of four-year-old companies do – old habits die hard and it saves a few quid in accountancy fees. What VAT-DIYers don’t do, however, is turn down £85m buy-out bids. Ever. Yet that’s the jaw-dropping offer Wayne and co-founder James Whiting rejected just a few months ago. Those facts indicate how far and how fast The Skinny Food Co has come since its 2018 launch. They also reveal how down-to-earth yet ambitious these two entrepreneurs are.