Retail Business of the Year 2017: Meet the finalists
Meet the big retailers of tomorrow all vying to be Retail Business of the Year. From green building materials to slip shoes...
Bloom & Wild
Designed with time poor romantics in mind, London-based Bloom & Wild’s innovative packaging allows for bouquets of flowers to be sent through letterboxes – without being damaging a single petal. Truly bringing the florist industry into the 21st Century, Bloom & Wild was the first UK flower brand to offer ApplePay upon launch, and says the process of placing an order via its website and app takes “less than one minute”.
The start-up behind the UK’s number one gin subscription box service Craft Gin Club, London-based Craft Club specialises in ‘surprise’ gin boxes which feature a special bottle of craft gin alongside gourmet snacks and a 36-page glossy magazine. Proof that the popularity of mother’s ruin shows no sign of stopping anytime soon, its customer base has swelled to some 27,000 active club members with 160,000 boxes shipped, and a community of more than 155,00 newsletter subscribers.
Duke & Dexter
Worn by the likes of Ryan Reynolds, Jose Mourinho and Eddie Redmayne, footwear brand Duke & Dexter specialises in premium slip-on shoes for men. Launched in 2014 by Archie Hewlett and handcrafted in England, Duke & Dexters are currently sold in over 120 countries worldwide with stockists including Liberty’s, Selfridge’s, Fenwick, Harvey Nichol’s and Harrods. Recently opening a flagship store in Covent Garden, founder Hewlett was recently named a Young Gun.
Founded by Rahul Parekh in 2014, EatFirst was born out of the entrepreneurs own frustrations with poor takeaway food in the city. Partnering with award-winning chef Ben Hodges, the online restaurant creates healthy, quality meals for delivery for the time-poor yet health conscience. Available from 11am to 10pm seven days a week, EatFirst now offers over 100 different dishes and has delivered more than 300,00 meals to date.
A ‘green builders’ merchant, Envirobuild supplies construction companies with environmentally friendly building materials via its online platform. Founded by James Brueton and Dr Aidan Bell, 80% of products sold by the duo, including packaging, come from recycled woods and plastics, which can be recycled and reused again. Eyeing international expansion in the not-so-distant future, the two-year-old start-up is already looking to double its headcount in the coming months.
Love the Sales
Helping shoppers find the best bargains for the best brands, Love the Sales is an e-commerce aggregator that curates discounted items from its network of over 730 retailers such as Michael Kors, House of Fraser, John Lewis and ASOS. Taking a slice of commission off each sale made via its platform, the fashtech start-up is already looking to expand beyond the UK.
Launched in 2015 by founding trio Mathijs Eefting, Olivier Stapylton-Smith and Lev Kundin, Moteefe helps fashion entrepreneurs and designers sell their creations online by taking care of all the necessaries such as payment processing, production and shipping. Already having a headcount of 37 across three offices, the start-up has been backed by £3m worth of investment.
Helping small shops up and down the UK “not only survive, but thrive”, Trouva helps brick and mortar retailers with everything they need to be able to sell their stock online. Featuring over 68,000 products from more than 300 independent boutiques on its online platform, the start-up claims its top performers bag up to £100,000 a year via the site.