Tobias Morrish & Hector Meyer (31 August 2016)
Tobias and Hector met on the BBE programme in 2013 and started Collective Spirit to import premium rum from the Seychelles. To be more innovative, they bought a van to start a bar on wheels. Noticing a demand from students moving into private accommodation, they decided to utilise the van to satisfy that need. It generated even more revenue than the initial business. They learned four important lessons: learn on the move, have a back-up plan, utilise your assets, always pay employees.
After graduating, Tobias went back to his family real estate business with a plan to double sales. He analysed and assessed an opportunity in the market that was overlooked by well-established estate agents. Following this he started IKite, a blog that was inspired by his passion for kite surfing and travelling. He wanted to share information about safe locations in the UK, beaches and more. This experience led him to start Swell Shell which designs towel ponchos for kite surfers. He recently came back from China and has sold 50% of his stock in two weeks.
Hector went back to the Seychelles and worked at Takamaka Bay Rum as a Marketing Coordinator. He then moved back to the UK in 2015 and got a position at Pernod Ricard as Account Development Executive. Through this he has learned the importance of having a selling process; using open questions to draw more information out of the customer; asking for the world and settling for France; being conscious of customers’ profiles and adapting the approach to suit them.
BBE students can be identified from the way they think and act in business. They look for simple opportunities in markets that show demand, then set out to fulfil it by creating a business driven by passion. To a BBE student, entrepreneurship has a different meaning: taking something that already exists and finding new ways of doing it differently to a higher level.
Based on a report by Lindiwe Chakhala