Page 31 - Demo
P. 31

NMTF AGM & CONFERENCE • JUNE 2019 31 Young entrepreneurs paint a
bright future for market trading
  A PANEL of four young entrepreneurs — including three past winners of the NMTF Young Trader of the Year title — gave their insight into building innovative market businesses from scratch in a Question Time style session.
The young entrepreneurs included last year’s competition winner Robert Leicester, who had set his heart on an army career but fell in love with market trading when he worked on the family fish and game stall in Warrington Market. He now runs his own fruit and veg business.
Rose Dyson from Barnsley won the title in 2017 and has since made huge strides with her ethical lip care brand Pura Cosmetics, including winning £10,000 of angel funding and the title of Most Promising Teenage CEO in the UK and Ireland in a competition organised by TransferWise UK.
Gloria Royer, who is now studying textile design in London, was named Young Trader of the Year 2015 with her vintage upcycled clothing brand Dustbin Vintage.
And Megan Jones is making a name for herself in Manchester with her start-up business Curated Makers finding pop-up venues for some of the north’s best artists, makers and small businesses.
During the debate, chaired skillfully by NMTF deputy projects manager Rachel Harban, each young entrepreneur described how and why they got started. Robert simply discovered he loved market life. Rose and Gloria both began making their own products because of the high price of the items in shops.
And Megan wasn’t fulfilled in her job in digital media and hit on the idea of championing small arty businesses by locating pop-up venues where their handiwork could be sold.
They were asked how their businesses had changed.
Robert said his first year was spent learning the ropes and now he was looking more into how to promote his business.
Rose said she started Pura with just £25 while
Young Traders panel — from left Robert Leicester, Rose Dyson, Gloria Royer and Megan Jones
studying for GCSEs and is now selling her lip balm products in markets, at NEC events in Birmingham and she is wholesaling to shops.
Gloria said she was planning a rebrand once she had graduated. And Megan said she started representing four makers on one market stall and she recently organised five-weeks representing 45 artists and makers in Debenhams in Manchester.
Asked about what support they received, all four cited proud mums and dads and the NMTF.
Gloria said she got amazing support from Lisa Oulton who runs Future Foundry, a not-for-profit organisation based in Kent helping young people get their art and craft work on to markets.
And what did the future hold for them? Robert said Warrington market was set to move to a permanent building and he had to concentrate on the move.
Rose said: “I want to get my brand better known in the UK through selling at markets, online and in boutique stores, and then go international.
Gloria aims to graduate then concentrate on sustainable design — “making cool things from waste materials”.
And Megan wants to grow her business nationwide from her northern base.
Questioned by attendees, the young people gave their ideas on how to attract more young people on to markets.
Gloria said: “Markets need to be more of an event advertised on social media like Facebook. On the Kent market we have had live music and a graffiti artist.”
Megan said: “People are looking for experiences. They crave human interaction. I think markets should be the department stores of the future — make them Instagramable.”
Asked how markets could improve, Rose said: “They should set up on Facebook, Instagram and Twitter — just think of it as a little message you would put on a flyer.”
And Gloria said: “Young people don’t read newspapers. We get everything from social media so markets have to be there to attract our attention.”
And she described how she collaborates with fashion bloggers. “If they tag a picture of one of my designs I immediately get seen by a large number of people.”
 Bringing young traders and shoppers on to markets
ATTRACTING young traders on to markets improves the vibrancy of a market and brings increased footfall, including more younger shoppers. But how is it done?
Steve Turney, assistant manager of Bolton Market, and Chris Cotton, who is head of markets for Kirklees Council in West Yorkshire, told conference of their experience of targeting younger traders and the huge benefits of bringing new blood onto markets.
Steve said he had spoken to Bolton College and contacted sixth formers, particularly those studying art and design, with the aim of
encouraging teenagers on to the market. Footfall improved on the days when the teenagers traded and their professionalism improved rapidly once they got experience on the market.
Steve Turney
He said Bolton aimed to run three or four teenage markets comprising about 28 stalls each year.
Chris Cotton said: “Young people bring new lines and services and
markets, goods and lines. It adds vibrancy to the market and the area.” He said making the right contact with potential young traders was a challenge. “It’s hard to get into colleges and universities where they have heavy workloads,” he
Chris said his team had tried
working with young care leavers. It helped to work with enterprise teams, local schools and the NMTF. And he said encouraging young traders and seeing them do well including taking part in the NMTF’s Young Traders Market was very satisfying.
new ways of
Chris Cotton

   29   30   31   32   33