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Business / Podcast

The Entrepreneurs

Monocle 24’s weekly tour of the most inspiring people, companies and ideas in global business, from startups to heritage brands, covering the best in hospitality, design, fashion and retail.

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String Furniture:

String Furniture was founded in 1949, following a contest by Swedish publisher Bonnier to find the best bookshelf. After being popular across Europe for decades, the company behind the modular shelving system was on the brink of collapse when it was taken over by Peter Erlandsson and Pär Josefsson in 2004. This week, we speak to Erlandsson about growing the brand for the 21st century. Plus: Radha Vyas talks about reviving the fortunes of travel company Flash Pack.

Latest episodes

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3 Dec 2021
17 min

Eureka 273: Slush 2021: 

Slush is billed as the world’s leading startup event and is well attended by investors, founders and C-suite executives from a long list of top companies. While the focus is largely on the world of technology, much of the discussion also leads into Monocle’s areas of interest, including design, retail, hospitality and city-building. The event has also become a great showcase for the vibrant business scene in the Nordics. Monocle’s Helsinki correspondent Petri Burtsoff reports from this year’s conference.

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5291 Dec 2021
30 min

String Furniture: 

String Furniture was founded in 1949, following a contest by Swedish publisher Bonnier to find the best bookshelf. After being popular across Europe for decades, the company behind the modular shelving system was on the brink of collapse when it was taken over by Peter Erlandsson and Pär Josefsson in 2004. This week, we speak to Erlandsson about growing the brand for the 21st century. Plus: Radha Vyas talks about reviving the fortunes of travel company Flash Pack.

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26 Nov 2021
12 min

Eureka 272: Masterclass: 

David Rogier is the CEO and founder of Masterclass, the online learning platform on which a host of global leaders and celebrities teach their craft. From Martin Scorsese offering tips on film-making to Malala Yousafzai discussing how to drive change, and Ringo Starr teaching you how to play the drums, the video lessons are created as a celebration of learning. Rogier spoke to Monocle’s Tomos Lewis about what they’ve discovered about the way in which people learn.

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52824 Nov 2021
30 min

Freitag: 

Freitag was launched in Zürich in 1993 by brothers Daniel and Markus Freitag and is known around the world for the messenger bags, backpacks and accessories that they make mostly from recycled truck tarps. The company has recently been working with trucking companies to create a more sustainable tarp, which can be fully broken down or repurposed after use, first on the highway and later as a bag.

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19 Nov 2021
9 min

Eureka 271: Aether: 

Estonian entrepreneur Hannes Unt co-founded audio-eyewear brand Aether in 2019 to develop glasses and sunglasses that would allow wearers to take calls and listen to music via frame-integrated speakers. The goal of Hannes and his Canadian business partners is to create distinctive, technologically advanced eyewear that allows style to take centre stage.

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52717 Nov 2021
30 min

Firebelly Tea: 

David Segal co-founded Davidstea in 2008, helping to grow it into a retail giant. After leaving the Montreal-based company in 2016, he started gourmet fast-food brand Mad Radish. Now he is launching Firebelly Tea, focusing on great tea, smart packaging and well-designed accessories.

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12 Nov 2021
14 min

Eureka 270: Avec: 

Alex Doman and Denetrias Charlemagne are the co-founders of Avec, a New York-based premium mixer brand. Avec’s line of drinks are made with natural botanicals and real fruit, which are low on sugar and calories. The pair met at Columbia Business School, after Doman had a previous career in consulting in UK hospitality, where Charlemagne worked in brand for a number of notable US companies.

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52610 Nov 2021
30 min

Brewgooder and Mara Seaweed: 

Scotland’s first minister, Nicola Sturgeon, hopes that Glasgow will go down in history as the place where world leaders finally committed to a sustainable future. We look at two businesses that were spotlighted at Cop26 for leading the way towards a greener future. We meet Alan Mahon, co-founder of Certified B beer company Brewgooder, and Fiona Houston, CEO and founder of Mara Seaweed.

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5 Nov 2021
11 min

Eureka 269: Plum Play: 

Paul Schaffer is the managing director of Plum Play, a leading UK brand in the active-play category that makes outside toys for children. The company was founded by Schaffer’s parents more than 30 years ago and exports to over 50 countries, with offices in the UK, Hong Kong and Australia. Schaffer has been working hard to help the brand grow and evolve, while living up to the values of the company his parents built.

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5253 Nov 2021
30 min

Bombas: 

Randy Goldberg is the co-founder and chief brand officer of Bombas, the New York-based sock-maker founded in 2013. Using its one-for-one model, Bombas has to date donated more than 50 million garments to homeless shelters and charities across the US. The company has expanded into making other essential items such as T-shirts and underwear. And recently, the brand has launched in the UK, its first market outside the US.

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29 Oct 2021
11 min

Eureka 268: Eym: 

Poppy and Sam Wall are the husband-and-wife team behind natural-fragrance brand Eym. They came up with the idea when Poppy was pregnant and researching some of the negative effects of synthetic candles. The couple created and launched the business in the UK but now run it from their home in Sydney.

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52427 Oct 2021
30 min

Amass and Clearco: 

This week we’re off to Los Angeles, to meet Morgan McLachlan, head distiller and chief product officer for premium botanical spirits brand Amass. Its range of spirits, hard seltzers and personal-care products are a celebration of the terroir of the Canadian’s adopted home in California. Plus: we get fundraising advice and explore the world of revenue-based financing with Clearco co-founder Michele Romanow.

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22 Oct 2021
11 min

Eureka 267: Valpas: 

Martim Gois is the founder of Valpas, a Finnish company that was launched to combat the scourge of bed bugs at hotels. The idea was born out of Martim’s frustration while on his own travels in 2013. The firm’s products are now used in more than 60 prestigious hotels around the world. Valpas was launched out of Maria 01, a city-supported start-up hub in Helsinki that houses 180 companies and 1,400 entrepreneurs, part of the country’s incredible start-up ecosystem.

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52320 Oct 2021
30 min

Irene Forte Skincare: 

Irene Forte is the founder of beauty label Irene Forte Skincare. A native of Italy, Forte has worked with skincare expert Francesca Ferri on the formulations, using natural ingredients from her family’s organic farm in Sicily, including prickly pear, lemon and hibiscus. Just a few years since an exclusive launch with Net-a-Porter, her products are now carried by more than 20 top retailers, including Liberty London and Nordstrom.

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15 Oct 2021
10 min

Eureka 266: The Pack: 

Judy Nadel and Damien Clarkson are co-founders of The Pack, a UK company offering plant-based meals for dogs. While you might question the need for your pet to go vegan, Nadel and Clarkson are keen to show the scientific benefits.

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