60-second start-up: Picture Fair

0-5 seconds: Sum your business up in a sentence

We provide a route for small professional and good amateur photographers to market their work as finished prints.

5-10 seconds: What's the business model?

Photographers upload images, which we market through our website. We arrange for printing, both on canvas and paper, and delivery to our home, office, and commercial customers. We pay photographers a royalty for each sale, with the remaining revenue covering our costs and margin.

10-15 seconds: Who are your competitors?

Direct competition is limited. Photographers can currently sell to stock companies such as Shutterstock or Alamy, while online art suppliers include Vivarti and Easyart.

15-20 seconds: What's your USP?

What is unique to Picture Fair is our sourcing of photography from smaller artists who often would not otherwise market their work, combined with UK printing and free delivery.

20-25 seconds: How have you funded it so far?

I used a redundancy package from my previous job to provide the initial capital.

25-30 seconds: What were you doing before?

I spent ten years working in energy finance for a large oil and gas company.

30-35 seconds: Where did the idea come from?

My parents were badgering me to print some of my photographs for their hallway and it got me wondering whether I could make some money on the side by selling finished prints. After finding how difficult this was to do, I took the opportunity to leave my old job and fill the gap.

35-40 seconds: What's the smartest thing you've done so far?

Getting to know our customers and how they think - even though we are an online business, we've had stalls at community events to talk directly with potential customers.

40-45 seconds: What's the stupidest?

Launching too quickly - everyone says get out there as soon as you can, but we were probably not quite ready.

45-50 seconds: If your business was a biscuit, what would it be?

A Bourbon - simple, trusted, multi-layered, and tasty yet affordable.

50-55 seconds: Which idea are you a bit jealous of?

Instagram - it's photography, it's simple and it's using new technology effectively.

55-60 seconds: Where are you going to be in
12 months' time?

We will be firmly established as a first choice destination for online artwork purchases, and known as a premier way for photographers to monetise their work.

For more information about Picture Fair, click here.

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