60 second start-up: Tidy Books

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

We make bookcases for children that get them reading. The innovative design completely changed the way kids books are presented to children, and has won lots of awards too.

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

We create bookcases and storage ideas which are unique designs for kids which families never knew they needed until they see them, and once they’ve seen them, they don’t know what they’d do without them. .Our products are quality, lasting investments for families, which are environmentally sustainable.  We do business ethically and support our customers with brilliant customer service.

10-15 seconds: Who are your competitors?

We found a gap in the market - when we started in 2004 no-one else was making front facing bookcases for kids that were suitable for the home.  Now, others have joined the market, but our original design, quality and use of sustainable real wood has not been equalled.

15-20 seconds: What's your USP?

We create designs (no me-too products) that fill a genuine gap in the market. Tidy Books products have been designed with children in mind - they’re not mini versions of adults’ products, and so they function the way kids do and they look great too. We help families make books part of their everyday world and grow a love of books from an early age.

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

The business has up till now grown organically from sales. Profits have been reinvested to help the business develop and put down foundations for fast growth.  We are now looking for investment to apply our scalable model to other countries through our crowdcube pitch

25-30 seconds: What were you doing before?

Violin making.  I came to England to learn at the most prestigious violin making school, the Newark School of violin making , and then became a maker and restorer at the Royal Academy of Music.

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

I was looking for a bookcase for my daughter, then aged 3, but the children’s bookcases on the market made no sense to me. Even if they are decorated for children, they’re still really designed for adults’ books. So I made the one I wanted, and my friends, when they saw it, wanted one too.

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

Being selected to be part of the Goldman Sachs/UCL  10,000 Small Business development programme.  I’ve learnt so much, it has given the company focus and my peers are really interesting business leaders- it’s been a very supportive experience.

40-45 seconds: What's the stupidest?

Where do I start? but  I do learn from my mistakes, and apply them to the benefit of the company.

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

A French biscuit, a Lu Petit Ecolier which is a bar of chocolate on top of a biscuit: Luxurious chocolate with the practicality of a biscuit.

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

Microscooter - they revolutionised the kids’ scooter market. I love seeing very small children whizzing around on them!

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

Tidy Books will be a global brand!  We’ve just added 10 Mothercare stores to our stockist list, we’re stocked in John Lewis, our plans for Germany, France and the US are well developed.  Watch us closely, invest in us - we’re going to get kids reading across the world, and become a household name!

To find out more about Tidy Books, click here, or follow them on Twitter and like them on Facebook.

Catch up with last week's 60 Second Start-Up here.

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