Please provide examples of any previous entrepreneurial initiatives you have pioneered.
I have no previous businesses I can speak of, but I would like to discuss my work and entrepreneurial spirit with you to date:
In March 2013, having identified an expanding market and a clear consumer need for ethical textiles and haberdashery, I left my job to concentrate on Offset Warehouse full time. The low-risk business model was generating 20-30% gross profit, so I decided to improve these margins and moved to Phase Two of my strategy: holding and dispatching owned stock. This increased the gross profit margin to 60%, with scope to substantially increase sales, reduce lost sales and improve customer satisfaction, with quicker fulfillment time and more accurate stock levels. As a natural entrepreneur, I took advantage of the relationships I had developed with suppliers previously, and persuaded them to offer me stock either on sale or return, or credit basis, in order to ease cash-flow and allow me to improve the business without a significant cash injection. I also persuaded most suppliers to reduce their minimum order quantities – virtually unheard of in the textiles industry! As well as easing cash-flow, this also allowed me to test the popularity of products and make more informed decisions on repeat orders based on that data.
Since then, the company has doubled its gross profit margin, while still maintaining a low-risk strategy. The business is now fully up and running, revenue-generating, making a profit and ready to scale.
Beyond your existing team, who else are you working with to achieve your objectives, eg partners, advisors, mentors?
I am very fortunate to be mentored by the following:
Duncan Ross - formerly MD of JPMorgan Chase.
Louise Roper - MD gDiapers, gNappies
Tugba Unkan - MD The Saturday Group (formerly MD Hardy Amies)
James Bradley - MD Repixl
John Bradley - Director JB Marine
Mark Roper - Marketing Professional (formerly MD Agilisys)