Createxplore : Louise and Jeremy Forshew
Names of founders: Louise and Jeremy Forshew
Location: South East, UK
Date Launched: August 2019
Number of employees: 2
Which university, if any, did you attend? Cardiff (Louise) and Manchester (Jeremy)
A crafty startup getting creative with the concept on an online community, bringing creatives and businesses together to work on a vast array of projects. From charities, clubs and other SMEs, Createxplore is serving the creative community by putting those with skills in touch with those that need them most. Read the full Q&A to find out more.
Tell us what your business does:
We have created a community where amateurs and hobbyists with creative skills (we call them Creators) can meet other people, charities, community groups, clubs, small businesses, etc who could use their creative help (we call them Explorers).
We're not primarily profit based, but exist instead for the love of being creative and giving people with creative skills the chance to help others.
Where did the idea for your business come from?
Jeremy has been an amateur musician and photographer since he was a teenager, and more recently discovered a passion for making films too. He enjoys working on projects to help other people and pushing himself to learn new skills in the process.
We want to give access to creative help to charities, small businesses and individuals who otherwise wouldn't be able to afford to use a professional.
How did you know there was a market for it?
We spoke to family and friends, plus we drew from personal experiences. We also carried out research on Facebook, Gumtree and Helpfulbeebs.
What were you doing before starting up?
I work in Human Resources and my husband is a Management Consultant.
Have you always wanted to run your own business?
Yes it has been a dream of ours for a long time, we love watching the business develop and hope to be able to take on a team in the not too distant future!
How did you raise the money?
We are self-funded and are using our personal savings.
Describe your business model and how you make money:
Creators will be asked to pay a subscription from September 2020 to use the service (£5 per month).
What challenges have you faced and how have you overcome them?
We have faced some criticism from professionals who see this as a threat to the work they do. We are clear that this is not a site for professionals, instead we are trying to access a market which otherwise wouldn't access creative help.
We are constantly reviewing our marketing messaging to ensure that this is clear to professionals.
What was your first big breakthrough?
When we started to get our first sign ups and projects posted on the site. It has been fantastic to start to get positive feedback on the site from Creators and Explorers who have been using it.
What advice would you give to budding entrepreneurs?
You have to have passion for what you do, as starting a business is hard and will take a lot of your personal time. If you really believe in what you are doing, then this will help you through.
Where do you want to be in five years’ time?
We would love to have an office and employ a team of people! We feel really passionate about helping people to access creative help so would love to see lots of examples of where this has happened.