Podcastblaster Podcast Directory  Podcast Directory

Podcast Search   
Podcast title Startup Secrets Podcast | Business | Entrepreneur | Interviews
Website URL http://www.startupsecretspodca...
Description Hosted by Seb Francis, Startup Secrets delves into the stories of entrepreneurs and business leaders around the globe. We find out what makes them tick, the challenges they’ve faced, and the journeys they’ve taken to start and grow their companies. Aimed at entrepreneurs young and old, Startup Secrets will act as a complete ‘how to’ and real insight for both aspiring and established entrepreneurs. You can download each episode, and keep up with the latest news at www.startupsecretspodcast.co.uk
Updated Sun, 16 Jun 2019 19:40:17 +0000
Image Startup Secrets Podcast | Business | Entrepreneur | Interviews
Category Business

Vote for this podcast
    Currently 0.00/5

Rating: 0.0/5 ( votes cast)

Link to this podcast Startup Secrets Podcast | Business | Entrepreneur | Interviews


1. #046: “If you don’t start it, you’ll live with regret” with Charlie Pool
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 70.77Mb)


In this episode, we chat with Charlie Pool, Co-founder of Stowga, a platform for finding warehouse space on demand that’s revolutionising the sector. Stowga is regularly described as a WeWork / AirBnB for warehousing, and has the potential to have just as much impact!


Featured on both the BBC and in the Financial Times, the team from London have 650 warehouses in over 10 countries around the world. They are backed by Seedcamp, Speed Invest and CBRE, amongst others.


Their customers include BT, KFC, Nike and Unilever, in addition to plenty of other worldwide brands and multinationals.


This is a great introduction to the sharing economy and building a marketplace, and we also talk about the passion of Charlie, and that not necessarily being warehouses, but building a brilliant company!


Let me know what you think!


In this episode we discuss:

The sharing economy Assessing the size of a market Funding and whether it’s the right route for everyone The potential impact of Brexit Content marketing and becoming and expert in your field Finding your passion, no matter what the business And as always, plenty more...

2. #045: “The more you can be honest the better” with Aron Gelbard
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 66.37Mb)


Who doesn’t love a bunch of flowers? Exactly. And that’s just the market Aron and his team wanted to disrupt. Have you ever tried sending flowers but unsure whether the person would be in, or to what location, and it ends up more of a hassle than it is a nice gesture? Well if not, it really is. Enter Bloom & Wild, famous for their ‘letterbox flowers’ to be sent anywhere, anytime.


This isn’t only a quite nice idea solving a very really problem, it’s also a business idea to be reckoned with. The team of 70 now ship tens of thousands of boxes a week across the UK, Ireland, Germany and France, and have raised a whopping £21m+ in funding!

Bloom and Wild are also recognised by Deloitte as the second fastest growing company in the UK, and the second fastest growing company in Europe with a growth rate of 13,818%!


Prior to Bloom & Wild, Aron worked as a management consultant, advising technology, retail and consumer products companies at Bain & Company, having previously worked at Google and OC&C. Aron has an MA in Modern Languages from Jesus College, Oxford, and an MBA from Harvard Business School.


Let me know what you think of the episode :)


In this episode we discuss:

Funding and hyper growth

Challenges of fast growth

Customer acquisition


Managing a large team

Company culture

How to combine tech, flowers and logistics (or any other 3 elements!)

And as always, plenty more...

3. #044: “Just go for it” with David Feinman
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 35.81Mb)


David Feinman had various business ideas growing up, and plenty of those he ran with. It’s no surprise that years on he’s running his own company with his entrepreneur buddy Zach!


David explained that Zach and he ‘accidentally’ started their company, but they’ve certainly turned that ‘accident’ into a force to be reckoned with. Based out of Philadelphia, United States, David and Zach run Viral Ideas Marketing. With what started out as a consulting business, they have moved into the content creation space, and have since ‘productised’ their offering with Flixation, a video editing service.


If you’re looking at how to scale, and how to use video to better support your company and marketing then give this a listen!


In this episode we discuss:

The power of video

How to use video across social media

Evolving your company to scale

Customer retention and happiness

And as always, plenty more...


4. #44: “Under promise, over deliver” with George Lambert
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 49.45Mb)


Lambert Labs is the brainchild of George Lambert. A couple of years ago George was, and still is I should add, a very talented developer, but due to health issues he found himself unable to type or work at a desk. When faced with the dilemma of completely changing his career path or figuring out a way to continue doing what he loved, George figured out a way to do that latter!


2 years on and George employees a team of developers at their West London office, and their developments reach end-users within the NHS and Accenture!


This is a great story about how entrepreneurship can help you overcome personal challenges, and how to adapt to your customer and opportunities!


In this episode we discuss:

Starting a company when the odds are against you Scalability Filling skill gaps within your company Sales and marketing Specialisation vs generalisation And as always, plenty more...

5. #42: “Say yes to everything” with Sam Jarvis
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 73.27Mb)


“Say yes to everything” with Sam Jarvis


Ever been sworn at for carrying a big ol’ piece of art on the tube? Nope, me neither! But that’s exactly what prompted Sam Jarvis to start HubBox and solve the issue we all face around deliveries either not getting to us on time, being in the wrong place, or wasting a full day waiting at home.


Since founding, more than 100 retailers have signed up to HubBox, and among them are a number of top 500 retailers including Jack Wills, Warehouse, Joseph Joseph, and JOY - all of them utilising HubBox’s revolutionary click and collect options.


Sam talks us through their extensive ‘idea validation process’ and how they took the first steps to signing users on both sides: vendors and consumers. We then talk about their future plans for international expansion and how that will be managed stateside!




In this episode we discuss:

Signing the big clients Finding your ‘truths’ and testing them Wider business strategy Motivation International expansion And as always, plenty more…

6. #41: “Smart people want difficult problems to solve” with Dan Hegarty
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 48.82Mb)


With over £30 million raised in funding, and 70,000 people helped with their mortgages to date, it’s fair to say Dan Hegarty and the team have achieved a HUGE amount in a very short space of time!


Hegarty’s overall mission for Habito? “To make mortgages as easy to switch as your broadband or car insurance from the comfort of your home, and something you do in moments, not weeks.”


I had the absolute pleasure of chatting with Dan at their London offices and found out how Habito are managing to ‘make the un-sexy, sexy’ with mortgages (< I said that, not him!). Their growth to date is phenomenal, and their simplistic approach to tackling such a huge problem is enviable.


If you feel like you’re facing a brick wall (or brick industry!) with your new idea, then give this a listen to find out how one man is changing the game bit by bit.


In this episode we discuss:

Cashflow Investment rounds Investor expectation Recruiting secrets Tackling such a huge industry And as always, much more...

7. #40: “Get on the pitch and give it a go” with Jon Hulme and John Burke
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 40.75Mb)


Launched in January 2015, Craft Gin Club has seen HUGE growth over the past three years to become the UK’s largest subscription club for gin lovers. Jon and John are targeting the massive £1.3bn gin market within the UK, and are well on their way to being one of the biggest names with over 230,000 newsletter subscribers and 450,000 fans on social media.


Craft Gin Club have done an unbelievable job of growing their revenue levels, and have cut off other less profitable areas when required. Their appearance on Dragons’ Den did them great favours and I’m sure they’ll continue going from strength to strength!


Looking at a subscription business? Give this a listen!


In this episode we discuss:

Building a subscription model The impact of an MBA Content marketing Socials media Doing what you love Visiting the den of dragons And as always, plenty more...

8. #39: “Learn to say no” - Ben Saul-Garner
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 52.72Mb)


“Learn to say no” with Ben Saul-Garner


Heading to the Attachment offices you immediately get a vibe of what the company is like, with celeb pics hanging on the walls, bottles of gin lining the shelves, and bose speakers in the corner - the company and what they do is just about as cool as you’d expect!


I had the absolute pleasure of chatting with Co-founder Ben Saul-Garner. Ben, and his co-founder Chris, have built an amazing team of “superstars”, and an equally impressive list of clients and partners, including Google, YouTube, AirBnB, ASOS, and plenty more. And the talent they link these brands up with isn’t so bad either, with names such as James Corden, Lady Gaga, and Ellie Goulding.


We also touch on Ben’s ‘side gig’: Rebel Book Club. RBC is a network for like-minded individuals who love to read (typically non-fiction), but perhaps don’t always follow through on the action points or takeaways. We talk about the club itself (which I highly recommend you check out), and also the business element of building a subscription model.


In this episode we discus:

Establishing links with top brands

Building a superstar team

Freelance economy

Beer and books

Subscription businesses

And as always, plenty more...

9. #38: “Don’t innovate” - Peter Watson
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 52.45Mb)


“Don’t innovate” with Peter Watson


Peter started Distract when still at university with just £5,000 from his previous business! By the end of uni, they already had a book of clients and 5 staff. Peter has been involved in marketing since the age of 16 after honing his skills in social media, PPC, and email marketing.


Peter has some pretty strong views on why going to university is an absolute must for any new young entrepreneur, and there are some very fair points in there. He’s extremely hungry and will to try anything new to disrupt and put his own stamp on things!


In this episode we discuss:

Becoming a ‘Key Person of Influence’

Starting young

Working different

The benefits of going to uni

Relationship building and your network

And as always, plenty more...


10. #37: “The outcome speaks for itself” - Ben Corrigan
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 62.88Mb)


1 of 20 businesses selected out of 3,500 for an accelerator. Offers from all 5 dragons on Dragon’s Den. And acquired within 3 years. Ben Corrigan and the team haven’t done so bad!!


Ben joined me very very shortly after Pouch had been acquired as part of a cash buyout. To reach that stage after 3 years of founding (and only 2.5 years from product launch) is insane, and so it was great to speak to him fresh off the back of this acquisition.


We touch on the growth, product testing, preparing for Dragon’s Den, and how they managed the acquisition process.


In this episode we discuss:

Pitching and raising funds

Dragon’s Den

Finding the right co-founders

Accelerator programmes

Acquisition and the details

And as always, plenty more…


11. #36: “You need to look bigger than you are” - Sara Trechman
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 50.00Mb)




Want a snack? ;)


Sara and the team at Well and Truly have very kindly given us some of their goodies to pass away to our listeners! Simply share this episode on social (FB, IG, Twitter) and tag the Startup Secrets page (links on website) and we’ll pick some lucky winners :D


In this episode we speak with the brilliant Sara Trechman - not only because of the unbelievable business she’s built, but also because she’d had her newborn baby just 6 days before this recording and still joined us!!


Sara and her co-founder have managed to build a widely recognised product and business with Well and Truly: they’ve raised chunks of money, have exported overseas, are stocked in Tescos and Sainsburys, and rocked an electric tuk tuk around the streets of London (why not)!


If you’re in the product and/or FMCG sector then give this a listen!


In this episode we discuss:

Focus groups and testing Manufacturing Marketing Selling to the big boys Internationalisation and exporting And as always, plenty more...

12. #35: “We’ve burnt a hell of a lot!" - Daniel Jeffreys
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 70.86Mb)


“We’ve burnt a hell of a lot!” with Dan Jeffreys


In this week’s episode I speak with the refreshingly honest co-founder and COO of Resooma: Dan Jeffreys. The student accommodation platform has gone from strength to strength, after some harder times in the early days!


One of the great things about speaking with Dan is how open he is about not only the good times and their amazing achievements, but also the challenges they’ve faced, and how they’ve overcome those challenges.


If you think entrepreneurship is all a walk in the park with multi-million pound raises, 100s of staff, and beautiful exits… then give this a listen :)


In this episode we discuss:

Grants and investment Identifying skill gaps (and filling them!) Outsourced development KPIs and metrics for success Growing/hiring too big Forecasting And as always, plenty more...

13. #34: “The product has to earn your respect” - Louise Doherty
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 51.86Mb)


“The product has to earn your respect” with Louise Doherty


Did you know it can take over 9 apps, 22 app switches, 77 swipes, 13 minutes on the phone and 10 texts to make a plan, and even then, 40% of the time planning fails completely!? Well now you do, and that’s exactly the problem that Louise and the team at PlanSnap are solving!


In this episode I chat with Louise Doherty, Founder and CEO of PlanSnap, the revolutionary new app to help you and your friends manage all your plans! PlanSnap amazingly signed its first brand partnership contract for £46,500 before a single line of code was written, and have since completed Techstars Connection in partnership with AB InBev in New York. Techstars is one of the world's top business accelerators. 1000+ companies have completed the Techstars program and 90% are still active or have been acquired, with a market cap of £8.3bn. Louise and the team also ran a crowdfunding campaign which was a resounding success after funding 152% of their target!


In this episode we discuss:

Offsites and strategy days ‘Remote first’ teams User acquisition Funding and grants The calm tech revolution And as always, plenty more...

14. #33: “Don’t try and be superman” - Harry Hugo
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 62.29Mb)


“Don’t try and be superman” with Harry Hugo


Offices in London, New York, Singapore, and Monaco. 100+ staff. Working with some of the world’s biggest brands. A $50million business. Oh yeah… and they’re only 3 years old!!


In this episode, I had the pleasure of chatting with Harry Hugo, Co-founder of The Goat Agency. I joined Harry at their stunning offices in London and we chatted about their amazing growth in such a short period of time, his backstory and previous experience, and future plans for what sounds like world domination!


In this episode we discuss:

Rapid growth and how to manage it


Team culture


Social media influencing and the future of marketing

How the role of the co-founder changes as the team grows

And as always, plenty more...

15. #32: “Fail to plan, plan to fail” - Chris Forbes
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 57.97Mb)


“Fail to plan, plan to fail” with Chris Forbes


In this episode I was joined by Chris Forbes, Co-founder of The Cheeky Panda, a massively innovative company offering sustainable tissues made exclusively from bamboo!


Starting out in 2016, The Cheeky Panda have managed to gain a presence in 15+ countries, won various awards, and have been featured in numerous publications. They have been through a number of funding rounds, including Crowdfunding and offering equity, both of which surpassed their target, and eventually gave them a multi-million pound valuation!


It’s great to hear Chris talk about specific challenges of working in the product sector, so if you’re eyeing up the FMCG market then give this a listen!


In this episode we discuss:

Sustainable companies Supply chain management Running a successful crowdfunding campaign Market testing Product launches Company valuation Angel funding Cashflow Funding and bootstrapping Working overseas and internationalisation And as always, plenty more...

16. #31: “The idea of perfect evidence is a trap” - Rob Fitzpatrick
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 78.92Mb)


“The idea of perfect evidence is a trap” with Rob Fitzpatrick


Ever since I first read ‘The Mom Test’, I’ve been obsessed with recommending the book to friends and entrepreneurs who are looking for business advice. For me, it’s the ultimate ‘how-to’ guide when it comes to validating business ideas, understanding your customers, and deciding whether you have a real idea of value. To say I’m excited to have the author, Rob Fitzpatrick, as the guest on this episode is a huge understatement!


Rob’s background is in tech companies, where he was part of incubator/accelerator groups alongside the likes of Dropbox. After running a number of his own successful companies, and (in his own words) a ‘failure’ or two, he’s extremely well-placed to write about how to best validate ideas to see when you’re on to a winner, and when you’re not!


When Rob’s businesses didn’t end up exactly the way he wanted/expected them to, he felt like he was doing a lot of work, and having a lot of conversations, but soon realised he wasn’t having the right conversations, and was also experiencing burnout. It was at this point he wrote his guide so others could avoid doing the exact same thing!


For any entrepreneurs with new businesses or ideas, if I can urge you to listen to any episodes, please let it be this one!


**As we’ve done with previous episodes, we’ll be giving away copies of Rob’s book (The Mom Test) to 3 lucky listeners who share the episode on their social platforms**


In this episode we discuss: 

How to get honest feedback Validating your business idea - a masterclass! Tips for public speak and presenting Why surveys are no good for your pitch deck Blogging to improve your writing skills Why talking to customers is not enough, you have to talk to them properly Avoiding burnout Lifestyle businesses How and when to pitch your idea And as always, plenty more...

17. #30: “Insecurity drives improvement” - Phil Neal
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 64.82Mb)


“Insecurity drives improvement” with Phil Neal


In this episode, we had the amazing opportunity to chat with one of (if not THE) most prolific EdTech entrepreneurs in the UK: Phil Neal.


For any listeners who went to school in the UK in the last 30 years, there’s a very good chance you’ve used or been exposed to Phil’s software. Phil is the brains behind the SIMS Management Information System, used in over 80% of (or 20,000!) schools in the UK. It’s reached many 10s of millions of users, and also has an international presence across 50 countries around the globe.


As a teacher in his earlier years, Phil, like many entrepreneurs, had an ‘itch of his own to scratch’ - the outcome, a system that soon caught the attention of multiple school groups and councils, and some years later, the attention of Capita who eventually acquired SIMS.


To scale any business to that size is unbelievable impressive, to do it in a market as challenging as the UK education sector is even more impressive.


In this episode we discuss:


Scaling and huge growth

Finding the right partner for acquisition

Appetite for risk and spotting opportunities

Focusing on the benefits you’re providing

Smart pricing strategies

Picking the right founding team

And as always, plenty more…

18. #29: "You need to be unrealistically optimistic" - Steven Mendel
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 58.80Mb)


“You need to be unrealistically optimistic” with Steven Mendel


Have you ever been fed up of sorting your insurance or the costs involved? Course you have! Did you do anything about it? Probably not! But, that’s exactly what this episode’s guest did back in 2012!


Steven Mendel is the CEO and co-founder of Bought by Many, a free, members-only service that helps you find insurance. Since 2012, they’ve seen rapid growth with 80+ staff and over half a million members around the globe. In 2016, they were featured in the European FinTech50 list, and in 2017 they were named as one of 15 ‘Ones to Watch’ companies by The Sunday Times Tech Track.


Further to their amazing growth, Bought by Many were able to do their own buying and acquired the UK’s leading provider of insurance for exotic pets. We touch on this topic in quite some detail so it’s a must listen for any entrepreneurs considering acquisitions as part of their growth strategy.


In this episode we discuss:


Company acquisitions SEO Email marketing Social media marketing Content writing Legal cases Pricing strategies And as always, plenty more…

19. #28: "You’ve got to walk the walk” - Jamie Bolding
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 80.91Mb)


“You’ve got to walk the walk” with Jamie Bolding


4 billion+ video views every month 100’s of millions of social media followers 150+ staff across the UK and US and all just in 4 and half years…


In this episode we chat with Jamie Bolding - Founder and CEO of Jungle Creations. Jamie spotted the potential and power of social media at very early stage, and it was that foresight, along with some careful strategy and great content, that has led him to build such an impressive company with Jungle Creations.


The team have achieved a HUGE amount in a very small amount of time, and it’s very likely that if you’re a social media user, you’re familiar with their content. Having amassed an enormous following, Jungle Creations now work with some of the world’s best known brands, including; Virgin, McDonalds, Walkers, and Oreo.


Jamie is a true entrepreneur in every sense of the word, starting his first company shortly after university. The Jungle Creations story is super exciting to date, and only sounds like it’s going to get bigger and better!


In this episode we discuss:

Hiring and recruitment Signing the big dogs Organic growth Being a disruptor Supporting Nobel peace prize applicants Delegating responsibilities And as always, plenty more...

20. #27: "Only start a business if you absolutely have to” - Brian Meece
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 97.44Mb)


In this episode I had the pleasure of chatting with Brian Meece - Co-founder of RocketHub, Founder of Wingadoos, and a pretty mean ukulele player! Brian has also spoken at world-renowned events such as SXSW, TEDx, and the World Economic Forum.


Brian has always had a huge interest in music, and for a good chunk of his life (and still to this day) has played in bands, performed, and recorded. It was his love of music that led him to his first venture, RocketHub. RocketHub was created as a crowdfunding platform allowing artists to raise the funds they needed to produce their music and continue doing what they love. After successfully working in the arts space, RocketHub soon attracted the attention of the science sector, and thereafter entrepreneurs looking to raise money. After 5 successful years of growth, this led to an acquisition valuing the company at $15million.


Following the acquisition of RocketHub, Brian worked with Citi Ventures and helped mentor and advise newer startups, with a particular focus on the FinTech sector. As with his musical background previously, Brain used his understanding of the Finance space to work on his next venture: Wingadoos. This venture was created to tackle the huge, and global, issues of under education when it comes to financial empowerment and understanding. Brian and his team aim to work with young students, with the help some clever technology, games, and music, to better educate people when it comes to all things finance!


This episode covers a lot of ground (including raising money for a meth lab… yes really!) and was great fun to record! Let us know what you think :)


In this episode we discuss:

Following your passion

Utilising your network

Recruiting the right team and how it’s like a band

Fixing pain points

Looking for ‘whitespace’ and new opportunities

Financial empowerment and education

Social impact

And as always, plenty more...


Links mentioned in this episode:


Brian Meece TEDx Talk

Brian Meece LinkedIn

RocketHub Website

RocketHub Twitter


21. #26: "Say yes to absolutely everything” - Filli Studios (Sam King, Andy Asprou, and Thev Edirisingh)
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 91.61Mb)


In this episode I had the pleasure of chatting with not one, but three entrepreneurs! I headed to the London offices of Fillistudios where I spoke with the co-founders; Sam, Thev and Andy. It was great to get a different perspective from the three guys, including the sales, technology and community growth.


Fillistudios was the result of select set of skills each of the team had, and they now have a database of close to 3 million (yes you read that right) influencers who they work with to connect amazing brands and consumers.


It was great to hear more about how the influencer model is reshaping marketing strategies, how technology is making all of that possible, and what the future may hold for new marketing methods.


This episode is for you if you’re looking to get a heads up on the latest and most effective marketing techniques, if you’re looking to grow your own social media presence, or even if you’re looking at how to best apply technology to a problem/opportunity you have identified!


In this episode we discuss:

How to add additional value to your community

How to build a strong value proposition

The future of social media influencing and other marketing methods

Building a large social following

How companies have been built on the back of Instagram and other social media platforms

Making money from social media

And as always, plenty more...


Links mentioned in this episode:

Fillistudios Website

Fillistudios Twitter

Fillistudios Instagram

Sam’s Instagram

Andy’s Instagram

Thev’s Instagram

22. #25: "You have to be in love with your problem" - with Lydia Yarlott
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 56.86Mb)


This episode we speak with Dr Lydia Yarlott - Founder of Forward Health, the ‘MedTech’ startup connecting healthcare teams around the world.


After graduating from the University of Oxford, Lydia began her career as a pediatrician. Not long into her working life, Lydia faced a challenge that thousands of healthcare professionals before her has already encountered - a lack of efficient technology solutions that would allow them to spend more time with their patients.


Lydia, along with her two co-founders Barney and Philip, came up with the idea for Forward after experiencing these real-life issues, and have since been mentioned in “The UK’s Hottest Healthtech Startups”, 70 Ways to Save the NHS, and have featured on ITV and BBC news, as well as being profiled in The Times, The Guardian, Forbes, and The Telegraph.


What we discuss in this episode:


Find a big problem to build a big company Getting the right people for your team Building a SAAS company Time management Marketing and the power of case studies Metrics and measuring success And as always, plenty more...


Links mentioned in this episode:


Forward website

iOS app download

Android app download

Forward Twitter

23. #24: "It's easy to start, but hard to master" with Jacob Wedderburn-Day
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 57.45Mb)


In this episode I had the absolute pleasure of chatting with Jacob Wedderburn-Day, the Founder and CEO of Stasher. After graduating from the University of Oxford to complete his Economics and Management degree, followed by UCL for his Masters in Economics, Jacob founded Stasher alongside his co-founder, Anthony.


In the early days, Stasher was referred to as the “AirBnB for storage” - a no doubt complimentary term for the young company, but one which Jacob and his team were keen to shake as they carved their own space in the ever-growing market place sector.


Jacob himself acknowledges that they really started as ‘kids’ trying to convince individuals and companies to work with Stasher, but after some clever moves on their part, they quickly started working with some of the most well known names in the travel industry, including; Expedia, Hotels.com, Premier Inn, and Accor Hotels, to name just a few.


In this episode we discuss:

Business validation Measuring success Overcoming objections Finding and establishing the right partnerships Raising finances, angel investment, and venture capital Marketing routes

24. #23: "The future is freelance" with Kirsty Hulse
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 67.28Mb)


In this episode, we were lucky enough to speak with the Founder of Manyminds, Kirsty Hulse. Manyminds is a digital marketing agency, BUT,, “The digital marketing agency that is actually different”... and after speaking with Kirsty, I can see exactly why!


Kirsty worked within the SEO and PR industry for 10 years before she got a bit fed up with the stale environment, and people paying above board for services that could have been delivered better, faster, and more in line with their requirements.


It was a conversation with a friend that sparked the idea for Manyminds, and Kirsty decided to follow through on her word, and in the process, won her first big deal!


Years on, Kirsty is captain of a fully functioning and ‘all steam ahead’ freelancing ship! If that’s not enough, Kirsty decided to write a book (see links), talking about her journey, and why the ‘Future is Freelance’!


If you’re currently working with freelancers, or have ever considered it, then this is a great episode to listen to. We also talk a lot about different business structures and finding the right one for you without bowing down to social pressure.


**WANT A CHANCE TO WIN A COPY OF KIRSTY’S BOOK?** - Just share this page on social media and tag the Startup Secrets account (Insta, Twitter or FB) and we’ll enter your name in the draw :) GOOD LUCK!


In this episode we discuss:


The power of freelance

How to find your perfect freelancers

Motivations for starting a company

Why a ‘lifestyle’ business might be for you

How to write a book

And as always, plenty more…


Links mentioned in this episode:


Manyminds Website

Manyminds Twitter

Manyminds Instagram

Manyminds LinkedIn

Kirsty Hulse Twitter

Book recommendation - The Future is Freelance by Kirsty Hulse

Book recommendation - Lost and Founder by Rand Fishkin

System/tech recommendation - Slack

25. #22: "Our main focus is on creating something amazing" with Ricky Hill
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 59.91Mb)


In this episode we have the pleasure of being joined by Ricky Hill: Founder of SYNCR, and CEO of Born Communications.


Ricky joined Born straight out of university, and it wasn’t long before he was running the show. He’d had an immediate impact on the company, and has since expanded it to include Born Music which is one of the most read music blogs in the UK!


As a musician himself (a drummer obviously… just look at the guy!), Ricky had a shared frustration with his band members of not being able to get their music heard widely enough. He talks about the concept of ‘music syncs’ which was new to me, but very obvious when you think about it, and it’s a key element of the music marketing mix. He then built a company around this concept to match musicians and those in need of music, such as film producers, TV shows, live events, etc. Their next step is to move into the realms of creating original content, and you can read more about this on their website (see links).


After the recording stopped, we spoke more about Ricky’s further plans with SYNCR and other ideas, and it’s safe to say we’ll be hearing plenty more… keep your eyes peeled and ears open!


In this episode we discuss:

Building a marketplace business What does an ‘exit’ look like Staying true to your mission Introducing new tech into your business Partnering with influencers Creating original content Keeping yourself fit and healthy whilst running your venture And as always, plenty more...

Links mentioned in this episode:


Ricky Hill Twitter

Born Communications Website

Born Communications Twitter

Born Music Online Website

Born Music Online Twitter

SYNCR Website

SYNCR Twitter

26. #21: "It can be hard to give up control" with James Gupta
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 63.39Mb)


In this episode we speak with fellow Yorkshireman, James Gupta. Founder and CEO of Synap - The revision app used by 1 in 4 medical students in the UK.


Like most great inventions, Synap was born from first-hand frustrations. 3 years ago James was a medical student at The University of Leeds where he identified issues with the way revision was taking place, so like all great businessmen, when he had a problem and no known solution, he created one.


3 years since it was founded, Synap now has 5,000 daily users, 13 million questions have been answered, and its users include; engineers, pilots, medical students and A-level students. Future plans include white-labelling and using the software within other industries, such as the work they’re doing with ‘MyTaxi’ in Dublin where they’ve seen driver pass rates increase massively since introducing the new system.


In this episode we talk about:



User Acquisition

Staying local



And as always plenty more...


Links mentioned in this episode:


James’ Twitter

Synap Twitter

Synap Website

27. #020: “Keep asking yourself why” with Tejpaul Bhatia
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 92.26Mb)


We had the pleasure of being introduced to Tej through a mutual friend of the show, and how glad we are that the intro was made!


Tej is an entrepreneur through and through, and isn’t shy about talking about the personal and emotional side of entrepreneurship. After quitting the ‘dream job’ with ESPN in 2007, Tej wasn’t exactly sure what he wanted to do, but he was fed up with being told ‘no’ and knew he needed to be in charge of his own destiny.


After a period of consulting for multiple firms, Tej founded his first startup, however, it wasn’t without a number of pivots, rounds of funding, and rebrands that they eventually landed on the company that came to be acquired: Kaptur. After Kaptur, Tej moved on to his second startup which he says ‘failed’, but he undoubtedly learnt a lot of lessons both in a business and personal sense. With years of entrepreneurial experience in his pocket, Tej moved on to Citi Ventures as an Entrepreneur in Residence, and then to Google where he works within there startup team.

This episode really jumps into the emotional side of entrepreneurship, and for anyone considering or currently in the acquisition process, it’s a great listen!


In this episode we discuss:


Taking the plunge to start your first venture When, why, and how to pivot Living through the acquisition process The power of persistence Measuring your success as an entrepreneur Bouncing back from ‘failure’ And as always, plenty more...


Links mentioned in the episode:


Tejpaul Bhatia Twitter

Tejpaul Bhatia LinkedIn

Citi Ventures

28. #19: “Always offer the right advice, not the easy advice” with Will Lewis
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 78.50Mb)


In this episode we speak with Will Lewis, Co-founder and Director of the Manchester-based boutique real estate firm, OBI Property.


“It was a stupid time to set up” admits Will, but nonetheless, 8 years on, OBI is doing better than ever, and part of their success could well be down to never having “that easy patch”!


OBI was the first company Will started, and after time within the corporate sector, he was ready to create a disruptive and innovative company that he could put his own stamp on. OBI now work with a range of national and international clients including; The Hut Group, NCC and The Lad Bible.


In this episode we discuss:


Disruption, innovation, and keeping ahead of the competition Staff values and incentives Picking your co-founders Raising finance Growing a business in a volatile market And as always, plenty more...


Links mentioned in this episode:


OBI Property Instagram

OBI Property Twitter

OBI Property Website

29. #18: "The big guys? They're only human" with David McQueen
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 74.59Mb)

David McQueen is a professional speaker. Some would describe him as a Motivational speaker, others a host/facilitator, and others will recognise him from his podcast or previous TV shows. However you'd describe him, he's an absolute expert when it comes to all things 'communication'!
David started his working life as an accountant, and, as a self-proclaimed 'proper geek', then transitioned to a second career in technology. In both of those careers he spawned a love for effective presenting and communications.
After leaving the corporate world, he went on to start his own company where he predominantly taught public speaking and coaching. He realised most presentations were pretty terrible and instead of complaining about them he thought he'd do something about it!
He really put in his 10,000 hours to hone his craft, and has since gone on to present shows on Channel4, has hosted events for Virgin Media alongside Sir Richard Branson, and has even spoken at two TedX talks.
In addition to working with individuals, David has worked with some business giants, including; Sainsburys, Barclaycard, BP, Cisco, Morgan Stanley, JP Morgan, Northern Trust, and the BBC, to name but a few!
If you're looking to sell yourself, your product, or simply better articulate your story... tune in!!
In this episode we discuss:
Presenting and public speaking
Signing the 'big dogs'
How to master your trade
Incubators and supporting startups
Minority ethnic founders
How to build a robust company that survives the 2, 3 and 5 year bumps
And as always, plenty more...
Links mentioned in this episode:

30. #17: "It's quite difficult being a pioneer" with Peter Roberts
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 71.19Mb)

In this episode we’re very excited to chat with an amazing guest, Peter Roberts, founder of Britain's largest gym chain, PureGym. 
Peter himself states that he’s come from a family of entrepreneurs and his entrepreneurial ventures have always been borne out of frustration that others were not doing things, or were not doing it right.
Peter started his business in the leisure sector, which he launched in the 70’s after becoming a qualified chartered surveyor, he then moved onto Langdale Estate where he built 120 holiday lodges and from there, moved onto Nightclubs. In 2009 he founded PureGym, which quickly grew into Britain's largest gym chain with a membership of around 900,000 and plans to open 300 locations by 2020. 
After years of planning, hard work and growth, Pure Gym was acquired in November 2017, at a valuation of £600 million!
This is an absolute must listen for all entrepreneurs, no matter where you are on your journey!
In this episode we discuss:
Spotting trends
Having a global understanding
Learning how to differentiate
Raising finance
Rapid growth
Selecting the right people to help you realise your vision
Planning for an exit
And as always, plenty more...
Links mentioned in this episode:

31. #16: "It's all about the freedom" with Fred Buckley
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 60.81Mb)

In this episode, we speak with eCommerce whizz kid Fred Buckley! Until Summer 2017, Fred was your typical student, however, he was inspired by others in his school and those he saw online to reach ‘financial freedom’. 
After receiving amazing grades at school, Fred chose to not go to University, and instead decided to create his first online store and delve into the world of drop shipping. After only 6 months he’d managed to scale his store to turn over $50k per month!!
Not content with one store, Fred has since been building additional stores, recruiting others to run them, working on his personal brand, and planning how to add other income streams!
In this episode we talk about:
Choosing the right path for you
eCommerce and drop shipping
How to build and scale your first online store
Building your email/contact list
Developing a personal brand
Multiple income streams
And as always, plenty more
Links mentioned in this episode:

32. #15: "99.9% of people are good" with Tim Fung
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 66.51Mb)


In this episode we speak with Sydney native Tim Fung, Founder and CEO of AirTasker - the online community for with over 1.5 million users!


Airtasker was borne out of a very real frustration Tim had when moving house. He needed assistance with smaller jobs but no marketplace existed - so he did what any natural entrepreneur should do and built one!


Tim has gained a mass of experience over the years, including working in Finance, being involved with other startups, and even “looking after Victoria’s Secret’s models”!


Tim and Airtasker have raised a huge $32million in funding and are now expanding into the UK after great success in Australia.


In the ever expanding market of the “gig economy” apps like AirTasker play an important role in allowing people to outsource small tasks, and allow people to find quick jobs.


In this episode we talk about:

Fundraising The gig economy PR and marketing Virality and user acquisition The Network effect Working with a co-founder And as always, plenty more...


Link’s from this episode:

Tim’s Instagram

Tim’s twitter

AirTasker UK Instagram

Airtasker Instagram

Airtasker Twitter

Airtasker UK Twitter

Airtasker Website

33. #14: "If I knew then what I know now I'd do it differently!" with Claire Mitchell
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 124.47Mb)

In this episode I speak with Claire Mitchell - the brutally honest Founder and CEO of Mimi and Mago (formerly Chillipeeps)!
I had the pleasure of meeting Claire at an event in Leeds where we were both sharing our entrepreneurial story. What blew me away with Claire's presentation is how openly she spoke about the challenges she'd faced, the amount of time it took to get her product to market, the huge costs involved, and all the other hurdles along the way. 
Now about 10 years into the journey, Claire has overcome a huge amount to get Mimi and Mago where it is. She recalls the time she sobbed all the way through her first major presentation, missed out on an order for 1million units, and battling with Trading Standards (only later to get them on her side.
This podcast goes into all the above and more and is an absolute must listen for anyone looking to start a business in the product sector.
In this episode we discuss:
Patenting, prototyping, and testing your product
Understanding manufacturing
Creating your fanbase and marketing from day one
Pitching for investment 
Selling to the 'big boys'
The challenges of running a company on your own
The power of social media
Selling overseas
And as always, so much more...
Links from this episode:

34. #13: “It’s just as important to not start a business that isn’t going to work” with Nick Jenkins
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 24.02Mb)

In this episode I speak with a dragon... in the TV sense at least! I had the pleasure of chatting with Nick Jenkins; founder of Moonpig.com, Dragon on the BBC's Dragon's Den, Philanthropist, and Angel Investor.
Nick has an amazing backstory, starting with him reading Russian at university, before going on to live in the Soviet Union (as it then was) and surviving its downfall. Further to starting and successfully exiting a business in Russia, Nick went on to do an MBA in the UK during which time he came up with the idea for Moonpig.com.
After years of planning, hard work, and very impressive growth, Nick sold Moonpig for a cool £120,000,000 (

35. #12: "You have to be looking to build a £100million+ company" with George Burgess
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 25.53Mb)

George Burgess... where to start? Founder of revision app company that raised $3million, Venture Partner for InMotion (Jaguar Land Rover),  Stanford Uni dropout, Co-founder of EdTech Exchange, public speaker, and part-time 'tinkerer'!
Further to meeting George at The BETT Show earlier this year, we stayed in contact via the EdTech Exchange network he co-founded. After finding out more about his story it was one I just had to share.
George founded the revision app company Gojimo which is used by 1/3 of GCSE and A level students in the UK, and over the past couple of years has achieved a successful exit to the Telegraph. This however wasn't without its challenges... they achieved huge user acquisition, constantly developed the platform, but did struggle to monetise!
Alongside Gojimo, George founded EdTech Exchange which is a network for EdTech founders (of which Titus Learning are a part of!). This started off as a way to speak with peers in the sector, but soon grew into a large organisation and a real business opportunity. 
As well as George's business ventures, we discuss how he manages his time, his other interests and ideas, and what's next.
In this episode we discuss:
Nailing the process of user acquisition
Challenges and considerations for monetising your app
When is it right to look at VC funding
Validating your idea
Time management (and generally how to spin a lot of plates!)
Avoiding burnout and how to bring balance to work
Product testing, KPIs, metrics, and constantly iterating
When to pivot
Creating a network around you to share ideas
Building something that your target market love
Managing stakeholders e.g. investors
Links from this episode:

36. #11: “The most painful word for most entrepreneurs is no." with Ron Carucci
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 33.99Mb)

Ron Carucci is the co-founder and managing partner at Navalent, working with CEOs and executives pursuing transformational change for their organisations, leaders, and industries. With a 30-year track record helping execs around the globe, Ron has worked with startups to Fortune 10s. He has worked in more than 25 countries and is the bestselling author of eight books. Ron's work has been featured in Fortune, CEO Magazine, HBR, BusinessInsider, MSNBC, Business Week, Smart Business and thoughtleaders.
What's really great about this episode is we get to chat to Ron both as a business leader and founder, but also delve into the world of consultancy and how he assists startups and large companies alike to reach their potential. We talk a lot about implementing the processes needed to scale successfully, and how you can do this whilst retaining the company culture that you've created.
Having worked with the likes of Accenture, GSK, McDonalds, Starbucks, Pepsi Co. and so many more, this is a MUST LISTEN! Let me know what you think :)
In this episode we discuss:
When to start implementing processes that will help as you scale
How to spot the symptoms you're stuck in 'startup mode'
When, and why, to say no
Spotting trends and testing your assumptions
Identifying your USP
Understanding and instilling your company culture
The 'dark side' of culture
How to spot the next leaders of the company
When to add ‘senior staff’ to your company vs fostering internal talent
Keeping discipline and not just 'chasing the money'
The benefits of working with external contractors and/or consultants
Using your initial small size to your benefit
Doing business with big business
Not comparing yourselves to others when defining your placement
And as always, plenty, plenty more...
Links from this episode:

37. #10: "When everyone else sees a problem, entrepreneurs see an opportunity" with Luke Massie
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 30.86Mb)

Luke Massie started his business journey at the age of just 17 when he launched a call centre in the cut throat world of insurance. After 12 successful months of trading, Luke sold the business to start the next chapter of his entrepreneurial journey – a student discount and benefits website.
With a real taste for business, and an understanding of the commercials, Luke founded Vibe Tickets in 2013 to address a very common issue that he experienced himself - the hyper inflated ticket resale market. Luke is aiming for Vibe Tickets to become one of the most disruptive presences in the secondary ticket market. 
Amongst other achievements, Luke is the youngest person to ever make Business Insider’s 42 under 42 list – an exclusive list which tips up and coming entrepreneurs under the age of 42 for success. Luke is also a proud ambassador for Lancashire county councils Boost programme. 
In this episode we discuss:
Starting young - the challenges and benefits 
Lessons learnt from unsuccessful ventures
Vibe tickets and the problem they're solving
Disrupting markets
Creating and retaining the company culture
User acquisition and sticking to your business model
Raising finance and 'selling the dream'
Thinking of 'THE idea'
Hiring the best
Encouraging entrepreneurship in others
Cryptocurrencies and blockchain technology
And as always, plenty, plenty more...
Links from this episode:

38. #9: “If you really really want to be successful, you have to pick an arena and become absolutely excellent at it” with Matt Isaacs
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 41.41Mb)


Founding partner of one of the world’s largest digital marketing agencies, angel investor, and father of 4 just in case he’s not busy enough! In this episode we chat with Matt Isaacs, Chairman of Essence … and it’s a beauty! 

 Matt co-founded Essence with his two friends and colleagues in 2005. After some seriously explosive growth (at one point growing tenfold within 3 years), and with turnover into the 100s of £millions, Essence were eventually acquired by WPP, the world’s largest marketing group. Essence focus on the paid media component of advertising, and across their 11 offices and 750 staff, they manage $1bn of digital media. Their customers (spanning 70 countries) include Google, The Financial Times, Universal Pictures, and eBay, just to name a few. What’s more impressive, they never received any external funding and managed this growth organically.

We cover a whole heap of topics in this episode which I’ve listed below, and I personally found it very inspiring to see how a company can reach such heights by focusing on what they need to do well, and doing it without the need for external finance. There are so many takeaways from this recording and I’d be really keen to hear feedback, and perhaps any follow up questions you might have.

 In this episode we discuss: 

Background on Matt Isaacs Who are Essence and what do they do How to compete with (and beat) the ‘big boys’ when you’re a startup The importance of a business plan (and not because of what you may initially think) Building a diverse team that is multi-skilled and multifaceted Goal setting and creating a mission for your company Mergers and acquisitions - the right time to consider MnA’s, the challenges, how to integrate different cultures Why and when you should consider external funding, and when to say no The future of marketing and advertising Top marketing tips from an industry expert When to start paid marketing Angel investment and what Matt looks for in new companies New technology Matt is excited about Must watch TED talks 

Links from this episode:

Essence Website

Essence Twitter

Essence YouTube

Matt Isaacs Twitter

WPP agrees to acquire a majority stake in leading global digital agency Essence

TED talks:

Simon Sinek - How great leaders inspire action

Sean Achor - The happy secret to better work

Quotes to listen out for and live by… I usually only pick one quote as the title of the episode, but this recording was absolutely littered with them so I had to list a few more :) You’ll notice a number of these quotes are referring to a similar thing; that’s no mistake. 

“This idea that you have a fixed plan and follow it - that’s not how it works, that’s just not how it works”

 “If you really really want to be successful, you have to pick an arena and become absolutely excellent at it” 

“You can build a great brand without doing any marketing”

 “The best form or marketing is to have a great product that you deliver in an incredible way to your customers, to the extent that they recommend you to all of their friends and you don’t need to spend anything“

 “The biggest barometer of whether you’ve got a winning proposition, is whether your current customers are referring you”

“Don’t get distracted by marketing, get your product right, get your brand right, and the rest will follow”

“When you get those chances to shine you have to be able to show you can do something that’s extraordinary and goes above and beyond what they might expect from an organisation at your stage”

“All the traditional rules of marketing apply: have a great product, tightly align your brand around that product, and be consistent “

“Nirvana is: someone sees marketing from you, and they know it’s you without seeing your name” 

“Setting some tangible goals, and a clear mission as a business, are incredibly powerful motivators, and mechanisms for alignment of your organisation”

39. #8: “We all want to be an overnight success… but that takes a long time” with Mike Wilkinson
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 45.22Mb)

“We all want to be an overnight success… but that takes a long time”
In this episode with Michael Wilkinson, we take our first look at an entrepreneur who has successfully started, grown and exited from their company. After 7 years hard graft, Michael Wilkinson and his co-founder Steve Holt, sold their company 'i-Education' for very healthy sum, but also realised their dream of seeing the product being used by even more students than they ever could have imagined - over 12 million worldwide!
As a fellow Yorkshireman it was great to chat with Mike about his journey from founding the company, through to the sale, and how he's stayed involved thereafter. 
In this episode we discuss:
Challenges of growing a company organically
How to let people know you exist
When to bring in a non-exec for outside advice
How to structure your business for a sale
Intrapreneur vs Entrepreneur
Should you plan to sell from the outset
When is the right time to sell
How to find your ideal buyer
Advice and top tips for those going through the sale process
How did Mike feel when they sold
How to resolve challenges with a co-partner
What to do after the sale
And much much more :)
Want to find out more about Michael? Check out the details below:

40. #7: “All new ideas will be incubated through crowdfunding” with John Auckland
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 54.45Mb)

John Auckland is the founder and CEO of Tribefirst, a published author, and a Virgin StartUp Ambassador. He's an expert on all things crowdfunding, and with the increasing interest in this area for businesses, I couldn't wait to get him on the podcast and chat further!
In their very own words "TribeFirst helps you build a loyal tribe of customers through crowdfunding, via recognised global platforms such as Kickstarter, Indiegogo, Crowdcube and Seedrs.".
Crowdfunding is a seriously hot topic amongst startups and established businesses alike, and there were plenty of questions I had for John (as well as few from listeners!) to go cover in our discussion.
Interested in running your own crowdfunding campaign, or perhaps investing? Then you need to give this one a listen :)
In this episode we discuss:
What is crowdfunding
'political campaign' vs 'marketing campaign'
What are the different types of crowdfunding
Which type of crowdfunding is suitable for your business
What are some of the platforms you can use for your campaign
The ups and downs of in investing in crowdfunding campaigns
The Seed Enterprise Investment Scheme
What control do crowdfunding investors have over your company
Overfunding and underfunding
The do's and don'ts of running your own campaign
The importance of company valuation
And as always, plenty more!!
Want to find out more about John and TribeFirst? Check out the details below:
Useful Links from the podcast:

41. #6: "I'm an absolute hustler" with Aldo De Pape
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 50.70Mb)

Aldo De Pape is the Founder and CEO of TeachPitch, a technology that helps teachers identify the best online teaching resources.

After founding in 2014, TeachPitch is already been utilised in over 125 countries (yes, 125!!) and they've received investment from China as well as the UK. Last year they completed a £300,000 investment round via Crowdcube, and they have just launched their latest round on Crowdcube which you can view via the link below.
Aldo and I have had many a discussion about 'blagging it', and doing what needs to be done in order to get the company out there. He starts off in great form by saying "I'm an absolute hustler" which is so true!
In this podcast we talk about:
Hustling and making the business your life
Validating your idea
How to increase your PR and publicity 
Key lessons to increase your chances of success as a first time founder
Working within an area you're familiar with
Founder envy
Managing and building remote teams
The importance of getting to know your team
Crowdfunding and raising finance
When (or when not) to pivot
The importance of location when starting up
And much more…
Want to find out more about Aldo and Teachpitch? Check out the details below:
Useful links from the podcast:

42. #5: "An idea is only worth anything when it's put into action" with Seb Francis
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 51.27Mb)


So this episode is a little different :) A while back I was contacted by Lisimba Pink who hosts his very own podcast. I was super excited to hear that he wanted to feature me, and chat about what I've achieved with Titus, and my own entrepreneurial journey to date. I really enjoyed chatting with Lisimba, and felt there were some useful pointers in my own story to share with everyone. I've kindly 'borrowed' Lisimba's show notes and details below for you to refer to. Hope you enjoy!


In the episode we discuss:

An introduction to Seb Francis

Seb's motivations for becoming an entrepreneur

We hear a story about one of Seb's first money making ventures

Seb explains if you need to reinvent the wheel in creating a new business?

What is a lifestyle business?

We find out if sacrifices helped get Seb to where he is today

Seb shares how his company grew internationally

We learn how to deal with the cultural challenges of doing business abroad

We find out how Titus Learning is doing in business

We find out how technology is affecting the education industry

What to do if you want to create software for your business

What to do if you don’t have money to develop your idea, and your scared of someone stealing your idea

Seb shares where he gets his inspiration from

What Seb learnt from Sir Richard Branson

We find out more about Seb's up and coming podcast, Startup Secrets

Seb shares a story about one of his failures in business

We learn what Seb wishes he knew before he started in business

Good places to network

We find out what is working in promoting Titus Learning


Links and resources mentioned:

Seb Francis Twitter 

Seb Francis Instagram

Titus Learning Website

Titus Learning Twitter

Education is GREAT Blog post

Department for International Trade 

Lisimba Pink Podcast



Make a list of problems or things that bug / pester you everyday

Review your notes to see if there is anything in your list, that could be applied to a wider audience

Use this to find a real market pain point, not just an irritation, and a solution thereafter

43. #4: "You don't know what you don't know" with Lucy Stonehill
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 48.45Mb)

Lucy Stonehill is the Founder and CEO of Bridge-U, has been selected as one of Forbes’ 30 under 30, and is responsible for raising a huge $2.5million investment.
After working in the legal and consultancy sectors, Lucy had the idea of Bridge-U, a platform that harnesses big data and machine learning to enable schools and students to make smarter and more efficient decisions about their university/college placements.
In the podcast we talk about:
Lucy’s background and key influences
Validating your business idea
Finding the ideal co-founder
Accelerators and incubators
Investment - when to do it, how much you need, and what steps to follow
Breaking the entrepreneurial stereotype
And much more…
Want to find out more about Lucy and Bridge-U? Check out the details below:
Useful links from the podcast:
The Lean Startup - Eric Ries
Predictable Revenue - Aaron Ross

44. #3: "Don't try to boil the ocean" with Oliver Page
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 49.49Mb)

Having grown up in a family of entrepreneurs, you could say that Oliver Page was always destined to start his own companies - however, it's his drive and passion for finding and fixing very real problems that has led him to where he is today.
Having started his first company, Nutkase Accessories, at 17, he has since gone on to attend Draper University, talk on the TedX stage, travel the world, and start up business no.2, Scooterino. He's had some amazing success with fundraising and has recently closed a round for €500k.
In this episode we discuss:
Being a lifetime learner
Starting young
University - to go or not to go
How and when to get investment
Involving family in your venture (and/or creating a family ethos)
The benefits of having a co-founder
Giving equity to your starting team
Motivations for starting a company
How to find your focus 
Links mentioned in the podcast:
The Lean Startup - Eric Ries
Zero to One - Peter Thiel
80/20 Sales and Marketing - Perry Marshall
Want to get in touch or find out more?

45. #2: "If you work hard enough, you will create your own luck" with William Adoasi
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 34.19Mb)



Before I tell you more about Will, I have to mention the amazing chance you have to get your hands on one of the unbelievable watches by Vitae London! Will and Vitae have kindly agreed to giveaway a watch to one lucky listener!! All you have to do is share this podcast with the hashtag #startupsecrets on Twitter, or tag the Startup Secrets Facebook page on FB. We'll the pick one lucky listener at random and announce the winner on 20th May 2017! Good luck :) 
Now on to Will... I had the absolute pleasure of meeting Will Adoasi in Richard Branson's home after we'd both been selected as Virgin StartUp Ambassadors. His charisma and charm is immediately evident, and you quickly understand how he's been able to create such an amazing brand around his company, Vitae London.
As a fan of watches myself, and obviously being in the education sector, it was brilliant to hear his story of not only creating awesome timepieces, but also having such a positive impact on those who struggle to get access to one of the most valuable things; an education. Each watch purchased puts a child in a developing country through school for a year.
Will is currently focused on providing the equipment needed (uniform, stationary, etc.) to help a child through school, but has future plans to actually build schools!

Vitae have sold watches within 26 countries and had some amazing names supporting them such as Emeli Sande, Paloma Faith and Philip Schofield. Hope you enjoy the episode and please get in touch on twitter if you have any comments!


In this episode we discuss:

Early inspirations Providing a quality product at an affordable price Profit with a purpose vs social enterprise Maintaining margin as you scale Branding, marketing, social media, PR and influencer marketing Risk taking  Utilising your network How to start with little/no immediate funding Creating a product - sourcing manufactures, design, etc Understanding your customer base What's next for Vitae and Will

Links mentioned in the podcast:

Vitae London Website
Vitae London Twitter
Vitae London Instagram
Will Adoasi Twitter
Will Adoasi Instagram

Want to get in touch or find out more?

Buzzmarketing - Mark Hughes
Backed by Richard Branson, this start up has African children at its heart - CNN

46. #1: “The ultimate failure is giving up” with Jacob Hill
http://startupsecrets.libsyn.c... download (audio/mpeg, 73.02Mb)


Jacob Hill is first and foremost an entrepreneur. He caught the business bug as a teenager running a sweet selling enterprise, followed by local music events. During his enterprise degree he founded his first ‘proper company’, The Lazy Camper. His entrepreneurial antics led to him winning a string of awards, including the Yorkshire Post’s Young Entrepreneur of the Year, and the Duke of York’s Young Entrepreneur Award.


However, after some challenging times, Jacob’s personal and business life took a shocking turn for the worse when he was arrested for possession with intent to supply class A drugs. He was sentenced to 28 months in prison. Immediately remorseful, and keen to repay his social debt, Jacob spent his time ‘inside’ helping others to see a future after time behind bars.


Jacob has since embarked on a new business venture, Offploy, a recruitment agency developed solely to support companies who are looking to hire ex-offenders as part of an ongoing commitment to reducing re-offending within society. With support from the likes of Sir Richard Branson, Offploy is on track to revolutionise the recruitment and justice system.


In this episode we discuss:


Access to funding and investment

How to handle the ‘hype’

What is success

How to flip the negatives to positives

How to overcome negative stereotypes

Establishing a support network

The basics of business

And much more… :)


Links mentioned in the podcast:








G Suite by Google Cloud




Want to get in touch or find out more?


Jacob Hill Twitter

Jacob Hill Website

Offploy Website