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Business / Podcast

The Entrepreneurs

Monocle 24’s weekly tour of the most inspiring people, companies and ideas in global business, whether they are starting from scratch, reinvigorating the family firm or developing new technology.

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Can you keep a secret?:

Fabien Riggall is the founder of Secret Cinema, a fast-growing company that organises complex large-scale productions of much-loved films, from ‘Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back’ to ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’, in which the audience and performance come together as one. It’s all done with a healthy dose of secrecy: locations are hidden until the final moment and smartphones are strictly forbidden. So how did Fabien build a secret brand in an oversharing era? And what has he learnt along the way? He shares his story.

Latest episodes

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24 Mar 2017
6 min

Eureka 40: Floom: 

Lana Elie is the founder of Floom, a London start-up that allows some of the city’s best florists to sell beautiful bouquets through a slick online interface. She quit her job to launch Floom just over a year ago – she tells us how she did it.

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28422 Mar 2017
27 min

Can you keep a secret?: 

Fabien Riggall is the founder of Secret Cinema, a fast-growing company that organises complex large-scale productions of much-loved films, from ‘Star Wars: The Empire Strikes Back’ to ‘The Grand Budapest Hotel’, in which the audience and performance come together as one. It’s all done with a healthy dose of secrecy: locations are hidden until the final moment and smartphones are strictly forbidden. So how did Fabien build a secret brand in an oversharing era? And what has he learnt along the way? He shares his story.

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17 Mar 2017
7 min

Eureka 39: Lapp: 

French entrepreneurs Laura Faeh and Cécilia Thomas share how they created their London-based lifestyle company Lapp – maker of the poptail: stylish ice pops made of fresh fruit and premium alcohol – and what they’ve learnt along the way.

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28315 Mar 2017
30 min

Nailing it: 

Sharmadean Reid is the founder of London-based brand Wah Nails, which she started as a hip-hop magazine for girls while she was still at university. Reid has since built a business empire focused on nail art, with salons, products, pop-ups and a new virtual-reality experience that pushes the boundaries of technology in the beauty industry. This week she shares her top tips and tells us about mistakes made and lessons learnt.

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10 Mar 2017
9 min

Eureka 38: Spiritland: 

Paul Noble was Monocle 24’s original executive producer, helping to launch our radio station. Since leaving he's fulfilled a long-held dream to create a physical place in which to experience, enjoy and celebrate good music. It’s called Spiritland, a one-of-a-kind café, bar, event space, shop and studio in London, built around one of the world’s best sound systems. How did he get the idea off the ground?

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2828 Mar 2017
30 min

Second nature: 

The green revolution has made its mark in offices, with science supporting the idea that greenery boosts wellbeing, but gyms are yet to catch on. This week we meet Matt Aspiotis Morley – whose fitness brand Biofit uses natural materials, lots of plants and zero technology – and find out how he plans to attract customers in a crowded market.

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3 Mar 2017
9 min

Eureka 37: Smart ideas: 

Christian Lane’s foray into the world of entrepreneurship began with a folder for large documents, which he called the Foldio. He’s since gone on to make your kitchen a more connected place with his company Smarter, which introduced the world to the wi-fi kettle and new product FridgeCam. But how did he make the jump from paper to the ‘internet of things’?

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2811 Mar 2017
30 min

Perfect fit: 

Tom Adeyoola is on a mission to build his company into what he calls the “Google of size and shape” and he’s raised millions and hired 14 PhD holders to make it a reality. Metail is a London-based fashion-technology start-up that allows customers to discover and purchase clothes online that fit them perfectly, based on their personal measurements. It’s a lucrative space that many start-ups have tried to conquer – but few have succeeded. Why? Adeyoola explains Metail’s rocky beginnings and tells us how they’ve come out on top.

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24 Feb 2017
6 min

Eureka 36: Shedding light on art: 

Harry Triggs and Andrew Molyneux met at university, studying industrial design. Triggs went on to be a lighting consultant and Andrew a product designer but in 2012 they combined forces to launch TM Lighting, helping clients to create the perfect lighting conditions for works of art.

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28022 Feb 2017
30 min

A cut above: 

A few years ago Aron Gelbard realised that the way we send and receive flowers was pretty inefficient. It usually begins with searching the internet for florists and ends with a knock at the door when the receiver is not at home. Aron and his friend Ben Stanway decided there had to be a better way. Their company, Bloom & Wild, boxes up fresh flowers in a container that fits through your door’s letterbox. But getting from idea to execution involved a healthy dose of innovation. This week, Aron explains how they did it.

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17 Feb 2017
9 min

Eureka 35: Thom Sweeney: 

Luke Sweeney and Thom Whiddett got their start in menswear, working for the bespoke-tailoring icon Timothy Everest. In 2007 they set off on their own to create much-loved brand Thom Sweeney. On their 10-year anniversary they tell us how they did it.

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27915 Feb 2017
30 min

Brewed force: 

In the mid-1990s Australia-born Jasper Cuppaidge ended up in London after missing his connecting flight while on a surfing trip. Years later and still in London, he founded one of the city’s most famous and beloved beer brands, Camden Town Brewery, which he recently sold to much fanfare and controversy to the world’s largest brewer – for £85 million. This week Cuppaidge tells us what happened between that missed flight and that big sale, and what he’s learnt along the way.

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10 Feb 2017
8 min

Eureka 34: Grant Ashton: 

Ashton spent 30 years in global finance and banking, running trade floors and working as a partner at a hedge fund. But the entrepreneurial itch struck and it came in the form of a wine case. He's now the CEO of 67 Pall Mall, a members club for wine-lovers. He tells us how he got the club from concept to cork.

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2788 Feb 2017
29 min

India’s new tech billionaires : 

Indian entrepreneur Bhavin Turakhia has been building technology start-ups with his brother Divyank since they were teenagers, beginning with a business loan of a few hundred dollars from their father. The two have recently been catapulted into the world of billionaires after selling part of their company Directi for $160m and selling their advertising technology firm Media.net for $900m, the latter deal being one of the largest in ad-tech history. Bhavin shares what he’s learned and why he’s now deeply involved in his latest venture, the team messenger service Flock.

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3 Feb 2017
7 min

Eureka 33: Vahan Hovhannisyan: 

It’s an article of clothing that many people overlook but Vahan Hovhannisyan believes that socks are the world’s best conversation starter. Hovhannisyan is a co-founder of designer sock brand Look Mate, a company he brainstormed, built and launched with his brother while Hovhannisyan worked as an accountant for a luxury hotel in London. The socks are designed with top creative minds and produced by a father-daughter team in the brothers’ hometown in Armenia. But why socks – and how did the brothers get the company off the ground?

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