The Entrepreneurs

Planning for the long term

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29 June 2016

Episode 246

28 minutes

Founded in 1860, Sunspel was a supplier of high-quality underwear to the British Empire; come the 21st century, Nicholas Brooke explains how he and his business partner reinvented the brand. Meanwhile, the oldest traditional family business in London’s Spitalfields is Gardners, now run by fourth-generation Paul Gardner, who is also a founding member of the East End Trades Guild launched by Krissie Nicolson in 2012. Krissie and Paul talk about supporting small independent businesses.

29 June 2016

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Chapter 1

15 minutes


Photo: Malachy Donnelly

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Chapter 1

Sunspel

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Founded in 1860, Sunspel was a supplier of high-quality underwear to the British empire but it fell into a state of disrepair in its later years – that is, until Nicholas Brooke and his business partner Dominic Hazlehurst acquired it. The challenge was to fix the factory, boost the finances, design new products, reinvent the brand and bring it into the 21st century. Easier said than done.

15 minutes

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Chapter 2

12 minutes

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Chapter 2

The value of independents

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London’s Spitalfields is packed with independent businesses such as Gardners, the neighbourhood’s oldest traditional family firm. Fourth-generation Paul Gardner has been the market sundriesman at 149 Commercial Street since the 1960s and he’s also one of the elder statesmen of the East End Trades Guild, a community of east London’s small independent businesses founded by Krissie Nicolson in 2012. Krissie and Paul share stories about supporting small independent businesses.

12 minutes

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