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Conversations of Inspiration

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As founder of Notonthehighstreet and Holly & Co, Holly Tucker has spent the last 15 years growing and empowering small businesses around the UK. In Conversations of Inspiration, Holly will talk to a new founder each week to hear the highs and lows encountered whilst building their business, and share some advice and inspiration along the way.

As founder of Notonthehighstreet and Holly & Co, Holly Tucker has spent the last 15 years growing and empowering small businesses around the UK. In Conversations of Inspiration, Holly will talk to a new founder each week to hear the highs and lows encountered whilst building their business, and share some advice and inspiration along the way.
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As founder of Notonthehighstreet and Holly & Co, Holly Tucker has spent the last 15 years growing and empowering small businesses around the UK. In Conversations of Inspiration, Holly will talk to a new founder each week to hear the highs and lows encountered whilst building their business, and share some advice and inspiration along the way.




32. Keith Abel, founder of Abel & Cole - People are the most important thing in business

This week on Conversations of Inspiration, Holly meets Keith Abel, founder of Abel & Cole. A successful and well loved entrepreneur, Keith started his entrepreneurial journey as a salesman selling potatoes door to door, where a chance encounter led him to discovering organic vegetables. At a time when everything grown was covered in chemicals, Keith quickly realised people would pay more for organic, chemical-free produce and so Abel and Cole was born, over 30 years ago. Leading the way in...


31. Rita Clifton CBE - How To Build A Strong Brand In The Digital Age

This week on Conversations of Inspiration Holly meets the ‘Queen of Brand’ Rita Clifton CBE. Rita is the ultimate expert in brand and offers such an expert and unique insight that will be invaluable to all small business for this aspect of their business. In this conversation, Holly and Rita discuss what it takes to build a powerful and long last brand, she shares her tips for small business and ways they can implement her decades of industry knowledge into their own businesses, as well as...


30. Chrissie Rucker OBE, founder of The White Company - Slow And Steady Wins The Race When It Comes To Building An Iconic Brand

In this episode, Holly meets one of her business idols - Chrissie Rucker OBE, founder of The White Company. In this conversation, they discuss Chrissie's incredible 25 year journey, how she has weathered the storms of retail, juggling a business whilst raising a family (with an entrepreneurial husband to boot!) and her work with the Princes Trust ‘Women Supporting Women’ and how we can all help encourage, inspire and champion women to start their own business. Chrissie founded The White...


29. Joe Wicks, founder of The Body Coach - Perseverance and Purpose are the Key to Success

This week Holly meets Joe Wicks, aka the Body Coach, to discuss building a huge social following and a brand, with a purpose. Now a TV presenter and author, specialising in cooking and fitness books, Joe started his career as a personal trainer, but he only experienced success when he started posting 15-second recipe videos on social media. Joe grew his brand to become one of the most followed fitness accounts on Instagram, his first published cookbook _Lean in 15_ was one of the...


28. Pippa Murray, founder of Pip & Nut - From The Kitchen Table To The Supermarket Shelves

A fascinating insight, into the rollercoaster journey of someone who is right in the midst of scaling her business. This week, Holly speaks to the ‘Queen of Nut Butter’ Pippa Murray, founder of Pip & Nut. A must listen episode for anyone who dreams of starting their own food or drink business, especially those future female founders who can look at Pip’s journey and be inspired to start theirs. Holly & Pip discuss scaling from the kitchen table, investment and building a team. As a runner,...


27. Ash Bishop, founder of The Brilliant Signs Company - Bringing Soul Back To Our High Streets

In this episode, Holly explores the rich heritage and history of signwriting with Ash Bishop - founder of The Brilliant Signs Company. Ash started out in the Army at Sandhurst, until he decided that it was time to walk in his great-grandfather’s footsteps and followed the family trade of sign-writing. He decided to resurrect one of his most admired sign businesses, ‘The Brilliant Signs Company’ which was originally founded 1888, but fell into disrepair. Ash ‘reclaimed’ it in 1999, where he...


26. Joanne Hawker, designer and founder of 'March Meet The Maker' - The power of an instagram community

This week Holly sits down with Joanne Hawker, cards and accessories designer, to talk community and small business - two of her favourite topics. A designer by day, Joanne is also well known as the brains behind the Instagram challenge and phenomenon, ‘March Meet the Maker’. ‘March Meet The Maker’ is a tool to help shine a light on the makers across the world, by challenging them to share their ideas, favourites and what inspires them. In this conversation, Joanne discusses her journey from...


25. Rowan Gormley, Naked Wines Founder and CEO of Majestic Wines - Disrupting a traditional industry

This week Holly speaks to Rowan Gormley, founder of Naked Wines and CEO of Majestic Wines. Rowan grew up in South Africa, but moved to the UK, after following his wife to London where he worked for none other than Richard Branson! After setting up Virgin money, and then Virgin wines, he was unceremoniously fired, leading him to start his own company Naked Wines. Disrupting the world of wine with his business, through his crowdfunded platform - Rowan’s mission is to change the wine industry...


24. Will Butler-Adams, CEO of Brompton Bikes - Leadership Without Ego

Will Butler-Adams is a CEO with a refreshingly down to earth, humorous and purpose driven attitude to building a business. In his 17 years leading the company, Brompton Bikes has grown 15% year on year, but despite its growth, Brompton has fiercely retained its company culture. After taking an unexpected spin around Brompton HQ, Holly & Will sat down to discuss how to build a company with purpose beyond the product, how to lead a team and what defines a great leader. Conversations of...


23. Lord Bilimoria, founder of Cobra Beer - The Soulful Businessman

In a truly soulful and enlightening interview this week, Holly meets Lord Karan Bilimoria, founder of Cobra Beer. Lord Bilimoria founded Cobra Beer after spotting a gap in a market that had hardly changed in over 200 years, with a student debt of £20,000 in hand - and not much else. His story of building this iconic brand, as well as the ethics and values he places at the heart of everything he does, is truly remarkable. With a rich heritage of successful relatives, Lord Bilimoria has...


22. Veronica Dearly, founder of Veronica Dearly Illustrations - Being an Introverted Entrepreneur

This week Holly speaks to artist and illustrator Veronica Dearly. Veronica brings joy to the world with her smart, relatable, funny and very real illustrations, which she prints onto cards, gifts and shares daily, with her Instagram community. Her well-timed, highly empathetic posts often go viral and are shared with thousands of people around the world - not bad for someone who didn’t have any conventional training, was a young mum and had started life as one of the shyest people she knew!...


21. Tamara Lohan MBE, founder of Mr & Mrs Smith - The Power of Curation

This week, Holly meets Tamara Lohan MBE, founder and CTO of Mr & Mrs Smith: a travel company that's grown from a single curated book of 35 hotels in 2002, to an online community of over 1.5 million members with offices in London, New York and LA. With the competition high and automation the current currency, Tamara explains what it's taken to grow a brand that focuses on the details. In this meeting of minds, they discuss the early days of building Mr & Mrs Smith, what it's really like being...


20. Bill Collison, the founder of Bill's - The Power of Retail Theatre

This week, Holly meets Bill Collison, the founder of Bill’s restaurants. In this episode, Bill shares his journey from the very early days as a barrow boy all the way to taking on investment to grow the business into what it is today. As a Romany gypsy, Bill grew up planting and foraging, which helped fuel his love for fresh, seasonal produce. It was this love of fruit and vegetables which led Bill to work for a brief time as a chef, before going back to work for his dad. Together, they...


19. Freddie Garland, Founder of Freddies Flowers - Turning An Industry On Its Head

This week Holly meets Freddie Garland, founder of Freddie's Flowers. Fresh out of university, Freddie started work as one of Abel & Cole's delivery drivers. Cutting his teeth selling subscription models and having parents who were florists - Freddie spotted the potential for a floral subscription delivery service. With little knowledge of the mechanics of running a business based in subscriptions, Freddie set out on his journey to success. Despite a few hard learnt lessons along the way; an...


18. Annoushka Ducas MBE, Founder of Links of London and Annoushka Jewellery - Success Without Following The Trends

By her own admission "an accidental jeweller", Annoushka Ducas has built an empire that revolutionised the jewellery industry. Links of London was the first brand to bring personalised, well crafted and highly gift-able jewellery under one beautiful brand to the high street. Annoushka and her husband John launched Links of London in 1990 and built the brand over 15 years until they made the difficult decision to sell. Within 18 months Annoushka launched her second brand, Annoushka Jewellery....


17. Richard Reed CBE, Co founder of Innocent and JamJar Investments - You Can Visualise Success

This week, Holly meets Richard Reed CBE, co founder of Innocent and now co founder of JamJar Investments. The story of Innocent is a phenomenal one - simply built on 3 friends deciding at university they wanted to start a business together that allowed them to hang out everyday. They settled on smoothies as 'the product' (decided on a hangover!) and the entrepreneurial rollercoaster ensued. With numerous highs along the journey, as well as epic lows during the financial crisis, Richard...


16. Dave Buonaguidi, Artist and founder of Karmarama & St Lukes Advertising Agencies - Do We Need To Shake Up The World Of Advertising?

You might not immediately know the name Dave Buonaguidi or be able to pronounce it, but he's truly one of a kind, and the ultimate pin-up in the world of advertising. He's made it his life's work to go against the grain and shake up the creative world. This straight talking, creative and expletive-ridden interview is one of life's one of a kind conversations! After many years in advertising, Dave set up St Lukes, the world's first advertising co-operative, which was ahead of its time. After...


15. Danielle Newnham & Natalie Bardega, founders of F equals - Putting Women At The Heart Of Business

This week, Holly meets founders of F equals, Danielle and Natalie. As twins, they were natural co founders and, 4 years into building their business, are going from strength to strength as they find themselves in a political landscape which is crying out for a brand such as F equals. The company was founded when both sisters found themselves at a cross roads and decided to bring together their individual skills, expertise and belief, that women in business, were under represented. The F...


14. Zack McLaughlin, founder of Paper and Wood - When Creativity Sets You Free

In this episode, Holly meets Zack - a phenomenally talented maker, who crafts lifelike and delicate birds by hand out of little more than paper and wood. In his deeply personal conversation, Zack reveals why birds became his source of inspiration, the journey from struggling as a maker to the beginnings of becoming successful, and how ultimately his urge to create, set him free. This episode is truly inspiring and Zack is a testament to the powerful belief that the combination of talent,...


13. Henry Dimbleby MBE, co-founder of LEON - Turning Business On Its Head

This week, Holly meets Henry Dimbleby, co-founder of LEON. Sharing his journey from gossip columnist and business consultant to restauranteur, Henry discusses the importance of being a founder with purpose. He talks about his huge ambition from day one at LEON to build as a global brand, as well as how to navigate the difficult transition that is being a founder exiting a business. With entrepreneurial spirit in his blood, Henry was never going to sit back after handing over the reins, and...