A woman who quit her high-flying fashion job at British brand Burberry to launch her own business is set to rake in millions.
Mum Charlotte Valentine was a merchandise planner at the heritage brand, but decided she wanted to branch out and take a shot at her own business.
Unfortunately, she had no ida what that business should be.
She thought long and hard, but only came up with the idea to move into the building trade after a conversation with family members.
Charlotte's father and uncle both work in the sector.
Charlotte, from St Albans, spoke to the Mirror and said: "I became excited by the challenge – working in such an industry would be a world away from fashion.”
So, in 2011 she quit her job at Burberry and started an eBay business – Healy’s Tools.
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Since 2016, her turn over has tripled each year.
The business specialises in selling power tools to sole traders and businesses.
Charlotte now runs a team of four.
She said: "Before Healy's Tools, I worked for Burberry as a merchandise planner.
"I used to forecast sales and work alongside buyers planning what products to buy, in what quantities and at what price to sell them.
"It was a completely different market, working environment and customer base to that of power tools.
"But I had always wanted to run my own business and had been thinking about possible ideas.”
Charlotte continued: "After a discussion with my father, who runs a builder's merchant, we decided to start an online tool shop.
“The two businesses would work separately – but also with a shared customer base."
The mum combined her savings with a loan from her dad to start the business with £30,000.
Charlotte said: "Before running Healy's, I am embarrassed to say I knew very little about power tools.
"I must have been mad going into an industry I knew nothing about, but I loved the idea of a challenge. My thought was that, if I can get this off the ground, I have really achieved something.
"I was young, enthusiastic and eager to learn about a whole new industry that was worlds away from that of high fashion.
"Healy’s was originally a local business that went bust, I bought the name as I thought it would give me a helping hand getting started in the local area.”
Now, the company makes £3million per year and is on target to hit £10million.
Charlotte said: "We plan to continue growing. Our aim is to reach £10million turnover within the next four years.
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"We also plan to diversify and expand into different areas, not just power tools. We are also considering developing our own products."
If you’re looking to start your own business, Charlotte says not to be afraid.
"Don't be afraid to expand even before you think you and the company are ready. You need a good team who you can trust in order to grow."
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