Our recent GROW@GreenPark Talks brought together four inspiring foodpreneurs, all at different stages of scaling their businesses in the Thames Valley.

We’re sharing their insights with you here, starting our mini-series with Nick Coleman, founder of Snaffling Pig.

The catalyst for deciding I wanted to make a go of the business was …

I’d co-founded Medical Supermarket in 2010 and I wanted to prove to myself I wasn't a one trick pony by starting another company, with just £500. I decided to focus on something I was deeply passionate about...pork scratchings 

The first step I took was …

I strongly believe in business, you have to surround yourself with people clever than you. That’s why my first decision was to involve Andrew Allen, who understands brands and why people buy from one brand and not the other.  

I set my business up in the Thames Valley because…  
Apart from the fact I live here, Thames Valley is such a great location for whipping up north or heading into London. There's some big corporates here but also a lot of very successful artisan food brands. Location is important for us as we need to be able to attract the right people to work for us.  

Scaling a consumer business needs …
To scale a consumer business it helps to know the trends and align your business to that. But equally, you don't want everyone doing the same thing. We think it’s important when everyone is doing something one way, we look the other and give that a go. It keeps up focussed on what our customers want, not what our competition is doing.  

We fund our growth by…
Primarily, we’ve funded through positive cash flow and invoice discounting. We took investment from Nick Jenkins on Dragons' Den but that was predominately spent on stock to keep up with the demand the show bought to us.  

The biggest challenges have been …
To move from an artisan food brand to the supermarket shelves. Upscaling your business in the right way that ensures you have just the right capacity but don't overspend and have no demand flooding in. It’s a constant juggling act. Just when you think you have everything sorted, the power goes off... just like it did today .

The major milestones have been…
So many, I've lost count. The first time I saw the brand in a shop I didn't know sold it. The first time I heard someone talking about the brand without knowing it was mine. Our first hire. Being awarded Virgin Foodpreneur 2017. I try and celebrate each one, but sometimes I get so focussed on what’s next, I forget to take a moment and go...”Wow, we did this.” 

2018 is about…
2018 will most definitely be very exciting for us. We have a heap of new product development coming out as well as some great listings, to ensure we continue getting the brand to places it’s never been before.  

 

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