Tell us about yourself?
Born in Jersey Channel islands I am the Founder & CEO of Joy Resolve – where we design and manufacture products. I am a passionate and curious ‘design-preneur’ motivated by innovation, design, sustainability and a desire to challenge boundaries and develop change.
What lessons has being an entrepreneur taught you?
I’ve learnt over time that there is no finish-line, just constant obstacles to encourage you to take risks, fail, learn, refine and improve.
There are always up’s and downs, but they will pass, so try and maintain a consistent behaviour and level of emotions instead of correlating it with the failure or success of the businesses. Enjoy the journey.
If you could go back in time to when you first started your business, what piece of advice would you give yourself?
Surround yourself with people that you look up to and have the answers. Try not to compare yourself with others, everyone is on their own timeline and doing a different exam paper.
A lot of entrepreneurs find it difficult to balance their work and personal lives. How have you found that?
I found it very hard at the beginning, but now I try and have evenings off and make time for hobbies, family and loved ones on the weekend. I’ve really got into golf over the past few years, and I find it the perfect hobby for me.
I’m competitive and I love getting out in the open, having a chat and a walk with friends, phone away and focusing on getting the ball in the hole.
Give us a bit of an insight into the influences behind the company?
Joy Resolve is an award-winning lifestyle & homeware brand on a mission to enrich life through tangible solutions; without causing unnecessary harm to nature.
How we spend our days is how we spend our lives; so we re-envision products for an enjoyable experience and intended purpose, for people that value design, the environment and the power of experience.
At Joy Resolve we make products to last and age gracefully with our community; driven less by cost and more by functionality, craftsmanship, experience, and style.
What do you think is your magic sauce? What sets you apart from the competitors?
Our main product (The Barisieur, coffee or tea brewing alarm clock) was originally inspired by vinyl record players.
We were excited to see how vinyl record players were resurging despite the digital era we find ourselves in.
Which we interpreted this to mean that people still valued a tangible solution to listening to music, and found that the ritual of slowing down and listening via vinyl was enjoyable.
We try to put that type of magic into the products we design and manufacture.
How have you found sales so far? Do you have any lessons you could pass on to other founders in the same market as you just starting out?
We have been growing 60% year on year. Sales are always difficult to come by, especially when you are competing with larger brands who have the big bucks to spend on marketing and content creation. The beauty of today is that people are becoming more in tune with authentic content.
So don’t be afraid to make content that isn’t as polished, and try and find some personality with what you are doing that the big brands are to scared to experiment with.
What is the biggest challenge you have faced so far in your business, and how did you overcome it?
How quickly everything is changing; making forecasting impossible as each year is so different to the previous year.
For example when we first raised Brexit was announced. Then when we got to market Brexit was finally put in place.
Then there was a globa pandemic and lock-down for 2 years, so E-commerce grew but retail stalled. But covid-19 increase shipping prices due to having to get PPE across the world which directly affected us.
Then there was a world war; which was catastrophic increase in prices not only for the consumer (energy prices), but the supply chain we order from.
We are now seeing a recession and inflation hit us, which will reduce consumer buying.
What do you find are the advantages of operating your business in London?
We can easily meet investors, go to events that are on near by, and travelling to places from Gatwick is a plus!
Are there any issues with having a London based business? Have you experienced these?
Rent and the price of a pint seems too high, but that is the compromise of living in the best city in the world I guess.
How has the higher than UK average cost of living impacted your ability to work and live in London and how has this also impacted your ability as an employer?
This of course has an impact as an employee, as not only are the wages basically worth 9% less due to inflation, but the energy crisis means that we need to pay more and make sure every one is coping OK (instead of putting it back into the business to grow).
A company means a group of people. So as long as everyone is coping OK and we are here for one another, whilst being able to pay the bills and keep the lights on. We can get through it.
If you had to relocate your business to another city in the UK, which one would it be and why?
St.Albans – Because it’s a bit greener and the transport links into London are great.
How has BREXIT impacted your business (if at all)?
Massively. Not only did it affect the value of the GBP compared to the dollars (Which is important as we pay our factory in dollars), but when the channel tunnel was blocked around Christmas time, we had a lot fo angry customers.
It also make exporting into the EU difficult, so we have had to set up a warehouse in Germany. But it’s just stunted our growth due to further complexity.
What is your vision for your company in the next 5 years?
The most important thing is that we bring joy to people that use our products. If we can continue this trajectory and build our product pipeline with products that resolve problems. then we will be happy. Think Bang & Olufson meets Joseph Joseph, meets Smeg.
And finally, if people want to get involved and learn more about your business, how should they do that?
This is our preferred way to answer questions or see content people are making about us. We look forward to hearing from you.