Charlie Osmond: FreshMinds
Osmond and Caroline Plumb set up London-based student research company FreshMinds in 2000, and are quickly becoming the faces of young entrepreneurial Britain. They made £750,000 last year and are set to bring in around £1.5m this year. The company employs 15 and has a regular pool of 50 PHD and MA students carrying out research on behalf of FTSE 100 clients, including Unilever, Diageo and HSBC.
Plum and Osmond have come a long way since starting FreshMinds in 2003. In 2013 the company’s two divisions – FreshMinds Research and FreshNetworks – merged to create an insight and innovation consultancy serving public sector organisations, multinational blue chip corporations and FTSE 100 companies. Last month, Plumb stepped down as CEO of FreshMinds to take the role of executive chair. She was also awarded an OBE in the Queen’s 90th Birthday Honours for services to business and charity and has since been appointed as a UKTI business ambassador for professional services by David Cameron. Osmond went on to found travel review site Triptease to offer an alternative to “ugly, text-heavy” rivals and Direct Booking Summit – a conference that brings together hotels to discuss how to improve guest relationships and increase direct bookings.