Jamie founded Glasses Direct while still at university, fighting
to create a business that could offer £15 pairs of glasses over the
internet. That was in 2004. Today, the business has saved the
British public an estimated £30m and has won numerous awards
including the UK Shell Livewire Young Entrepreneur of the Year,
Wales and West Country Entrepreneur of the Year Award, NatWest
Entrepreneur of the Year Award and Daily Mail Enterprising Young
Brit. Jamie is also an advisor to the both major political parties
on their enterprise strategies and has appeared in several national
newspapers and broadcasters. His enthusiasm for entrepreneurialism
means he is also an ambassador for UK enterprise.
The founder and chief executive of Glasses Direct relates how
being on the hunt for a business idea, market research at
university and a persistent approach to secure a supply route, led
to the creation of the worlds largest online retailer of
prescription glasses. He speaks of the difficulties of becoming a
young entrepreneur and how embracing the leaps of faith are
essential for all start ups.
This interview provides expert advice on how to finance a
business whether through angel investors or VCs, and how he managed
to secure over £6.5 million in funding for Glasses Direct. Jamie
talks of the process by which he created the best team possible for
his company, including PR and marketing, all people who had a
wealth of experience from working in other major businesses. The
entrepreneur also refers to the legal battle with Specsavers and
his reasoning for stepping down as managing director.
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