Startups.co.uk book a hit with Lily Allen

The singer-turned-entrepreneur turns to our Starting Your Own Shop book for guidance

You may or may not have tuned in last night to Lily Allen’s fly-on-the-wall documentary on Channel 4 – Lily Allen: Riches to Rags – about her new business venture, but if you did you would have seen one of our very own books in all its splendour.

At Startups we couldn’t be more proud that our retail guide,  Starting Your Own Shop: All You Need to Know to Open a Successful Shop (Startups Guide)featured in the show – and of course we’re not going to hesitate when it comes to recommending it as a great reference for any fledgling retail business. Okay, enough of the boasting, but what about the show itself?

The producers succeed in providing a frank insight into what it takes to launch a business – namely the difficulties surrounding financial planning. Lily and her sister Sarah – with whom she is opening a vintage clothes shop, ‘Lucy in Disguise’ – bring in the much-needed guidance of retail guru Mary Portas, whose dissection of the business is blunt to say the least: “At the moment you have a Lily concept, but you don’t have a business” – to which Lily admits: “Yes I’m slightly deluded. I don’t know the market place and I have no experience in retail.”

While watching the ex-singer embark on her transformation from singer to entrepreneur, you can’t help but wonder if she’s turning to business for the wrong reasons – to escape the media attention brought upon her by fame. Lily admits to wanting to lead a normal life as a wife and mum, where she will “cut the crusts off sandwiches”. And although she says she’s afraid of failure, the audience is never convinced by her genuine business drive.

Let’s be fair – this is a TV show and so there’s bound to be a degree of drama. And this is just the first in a three-part series, so there’s still time to be convinced that this is a commercially viable business. But let’s just hope the pair’s financial judgement reaches the same level as their passion for fashion. Hopefully our guide can give them the leg-up they need. Just in case you want to have a read of it yourself, you’ll find Starting Your Own Shop: All You Need to Know to Open a Successful Shop (Startups Guide) here.

© Crimson Business Ltd. 2011

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