Monocle 24: The Entrepreneurs-logo

Monocle 24: The Entrepreneurs


Monocle 24’s weekly tour of the most inspiring people, companies and ideas in global business, whether they are starting from scratch, reinvigorating the family firm or developing new technology.

Monocle 24’s weekly tour of the most inspiring people, companies and ideas in global business, whether they are starting from scratch, reinvigorating the family firm or developing new technology.
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London, United Kingdom




Monocle 24’s weekly tour of the most inspiring people, companies and ideas in global business, whether they are starting from scratch, reinvigorating the family firm or developing new technology.




Midori House, 1 Dorset Street, London, W1U 4EG, UK +44 20 7725 4388


The new face of finance

This week we’re taking an in-depth look at how a host of start-ups are bringing more people into the worlds of personal finance and investment. We meet four entrepreneurs who are making the world of finance easier to understand and engaging people who wouldn’t ordinarily invest their money. We hear from Max Rofagha, founder of Finimize, Ben Stanway and Charlie Mortimer, co-founders of Moneybox, and Emilie Bellet, founder of Vestpod.


Eureka 115: Octopus Energy

Greg Jackson has worn many hats over the course of his career. He co-founded marketing-technology business C360 in the early 2000s and then sold it to the Tangent Group in 2006; after that he went on to work for several companies across various sectors, from healthcare to finance. Then, three years ago, he launched Octopus Energy, a green-energy provider set up to rival the so-called “Big Six” energy companies that dominate the UK market.



Tim Brown was a professional footballer in his native New Zealand before deciding to create environmentally friendly footwear. He is the co-founder of Allbirds, a booming shoe brand with sustainability at its heart; earlier this year the company sold its one millionth pair.


Eureka 114: Adorno

Adorno is a digital platform for design-lovers that enables people to discover and buy one-of-a-kind and limited-edition pieces direct from designers around the world. Part marketplace, part online gallery, the site was launched last year by Copenhagen-based entrepreneurs Kristian Snorre Andersen and Martin Clausen, and has already garnered fans worldwide.



Ben Branson spent a decade working for creative agencies, helping other people to build their brands. But in 2014 he decided to put his skills to the test on his own project. That project was Seedlip, a non-alcoholic spirit born out of Branson’s passion for natural botanicals and hobby distilling. Seedlip has since become a huge success and is stocked in high-end London retailers and served in bars and restaurants across the globe. Branson explains how his experience designing toothpaste...


Eureka 113: Yatay

When Umberto De Marco went looking for a pair of sustainable trainers and returned empty-handed, he made a decision: he would create the world’s first luxury sustainable sneaker brand. Little more than 50 years ago his father Enrico invented an eco-friendly synthetic-leather material. Coronet Group, the company that spun out of that invention, is today a global manufacturer that supplies fashion labels such as Louis Vuitton and Armani. Having put Coronet’s expertise to use, De Marco has...



We assess the importance of business mentors. As anyone who has founded a company will know, having an experienced adviser who can lend advice and an ear during the tough times can be key. But it’s a two-way street: as an older entrepreneur you can learn a lot from having a younger mentee.


Eureka 112: Stella & Dot

Jessica Herrin is the founder and CEO of Stella & Dot, a San Francisco-based jewellery-and-accessories retailer built on what it calls a “social-selling” model. The company has reimagined direct sales for the digital age, engaging with tens of thousands of entrepreneurial women around the world who want to work flexibly from home. Herrin launched the company in 2003 and by 2010 it was valued at €318m.


Special episode: Finding investors

We’re in Paris talking to a group of experts and entrepreneurs about funding – how start-ups should go about securing it and what investors are really looking for.


Bremont watches

Giles and Nick English are the brothers behind UK watch brand Bremont. Both aviation enthusiasts, the co-founders launched the firm in 2002 and named it after a French farmer whose fields they once accidentally landed in during a foggy cross-Channel flight. Giles and Nick are passionate proponents of British engineering and craftsmanship, and have set out to make as many of their watch components as possible in their factory in Henley-on-Thames. Over the past 16 years, they’ve built Bremont...


Eureka 111: Tend

Marco Abele is the founder and CEO of Tend, a Zürich-based digital platform focused on “life-enriching investment”. Driven by blockchain, Tend allows investment in luxury assets through co-ownership, such as shares in high-end sports cars, homes, vineyards and whiskey collections. Abele’s track record in finance means he knows how to create wealth for his clients – and now he’s launched a platform to encourage them to enjoy investment.


Jo Malone CBE

Jo Malone CBE made her name – quite literally – as the eponymous entrepreneur behind her iconic perfume brand. A sensation in the 1990s, Malone later sold the brand to cosmetics giant Estée Lauder Companies. While she stayed on as creative director, she eventually left the business for good in 2006. On this week’s episode, Malone talks us through how she dealt with selling a company that bore her name and explains how she built her second global fragrance brand Jo Loves.


Eureka 110: Poilâne

Apollonia Poilâne is a third-generation baker and CEO of the Poilâne bakery brand. While she was encouraged by her father to explore the world and pursue her passions, it’s in the bakehouse where she has always felt most at home, carrying on her family’s tradition. Under her guidance since 2002, the eponymous company has grown steadily – there are now bakery locations across Paris and London, and the brand’s staple thick-crust sourdough bread can be found in hundreds of French restaurants...



While on a summer break from university in Glasgow, keen cyclist Alec Farmer taught himself to sew. Setting out to craft the perfect bag, Farmer used discarded materials that he found around the city: and soon Trakke was born. It’s now a well-known maker of waxed-canvas bags and travel accessories that are inspired by Scotland’s rugged landscapes and designed to last a lifetime. Read more on Alec Farmer and Trakke's design philosophy: [](


Eureka 109: Ashley Watson

The son of an engineer and an artist, Ashley Watson has always had an understanding of both form and function. He spent years working as a designer before deciding to combine two of his great passions: clothing and motorbikes. In 2014 Ashley launched his eponymous brand, focusing on high-quality motorcycle clothing made in England with a meticulous attention to design and detail.


The Trampery

In 2009 Charles Armstrong launched The Trampery, the first co-working space to take root in Shoreditch, a district of east London that has since become crowded with shared workspaces catering to the area’s creative and entrepreneurial communities. Over the past nine years, Charles has grown the brand and opened more properties across the capital. But he is now in the process of completing a project on a far grander scale. The Trampery Fish Island Village is a new mixed-use development in...


Eureka 108: Gormley & Gamble

Intrigued by style and craftsmanship, Phoebe Gormley started making her own clothes at a young age, and at just 15 began interning in London’s Savile Row and Jermyn Street, known for high-end men’s tailors. After two years studying costume design at university, Phoebe told her parents she would take the money earmarked for her final year of tuition to start her own venture. Launched in 2015, Gormley & Gamble became the first women’s only tailor in the history of Savile Row.


Dave Dawson

Dave Dawson trained as a lawyer but never had much love for the legal profession and always harboured a desire to one day start his own design company. That day arrived in 2003 when he decided to quit his day job and launch the Urban Electric Company, a lighting brand based in Charleston, South Carolina. For the past 15 years the brand has built a name for itself for its robust yet elegant lighting fixtures. The company now employs more than 200 people.


Eureka 107: Wonderbill

Shane Clifford is CEO of Wonderbill, a digital platform that organises your household bills while also suggesting other providers that could save you money. Just two years old, the platform now has 50,000 users across the UK and has plans to expand to new markets across Europe in the new year.


Kestin Hare

Edinburgh-based fashion designer Kestin Hare worked with a number of labels including Nigel Cabourn and Burberry before launching his eponymous label in 2014. The brand now has two shops, one in Shoreditch and one in the Leith area of the Scottish capital. Made in the UK, the styles are a nod to the working-class roots of his native Leith and are quickly changing the perception of Scottish design. Kestin’s wife Gemma worked with Harvey Nichols before taking over brand, marketing and strategy...