Like mother, Like daughter, you could say, Charlotte Fudge went into business with her mother in 2007 to create Biccies- luxury hand-made, hand-iced and hand packaged biscuits as “unique edible gifts” for both consumers and the corporate market throughout the UK.
After graduating with a first from The London College of Fashion in 2006 studying Fashion and Design, she started the business the following year, after months of research and development, they finally agreed to start biccies.com and since then charlotte has then gone to be a finalist in the nat west young business woman of the year awards.
The bespoke, handmade products that biccies produce are highly suitable as gifts. Either singly, in boxes of 12 or even biccie bouquets - these make for a highly original but tasty gift.
Gone are the days you worry about what to get anyone their birthdays, anniversaries, weddings anyone or why not even contact them to make something bespoke for you.
Hi Charlotte, How are you doing? Welcome to YHP
Can you quickly give us some background information about yourself?
After taking my A levels at Notre Dame School Cobham I secured a place at The London College of Fashion studying “Make up, costume and technical effects for the performing arts” where I left with a first class honours degree.
You had a background in fashion and design? Why didn’t you go into fashion? Why designs?
A large part of fashion is design and I draw upon skills that I learned on my degree course when creating the designs for Biccies.
Tell us about your company? How and when did you start?
I graduated in 2007 and by 2008 we had launched our website. Our company designs and makes novelty biscuits for sale from our website and to corporate clients who use them for promotional and incentive purposes.
How has the journey been so far?
Hard work, challenging, inspirational, exciting, and I’ve loved every minute of it!
What makes your products different? What is your USP?
We bake and ice each Biccie by hand which makes each biscuit unique and a little masterpiece. We produce a standard range of Biccies but we also have great fun producing bespoke designs for corporate clients.
What has been your technique in marketing your product? What has been the most effective so far?
Our website has obviously been our shop window so has a massive part to play in our business. We contacted local press when we first launched Biccies which made local people aware. Word of mouth has been a good tool and a large part of our business is repeat customers as well as the recipients of the Biccies who order themselves.
Have you had any bad experiences along the way and how did you bounce back?
Early on, in our naivety, a silver tongued sales person talked us into subscribing to appear on a large on line shopping store. It was a big expense but we stupidly parted with our money with all the promises made. We have had very little leads from this on line shopping store so it was an expensive lesson. However a lesson was learned! We are now far more discerning when it comes to sales people selling space.
Who has been your biggest inspiration so far?
Mr. Craven, my business teacher at Notre Dame School was, and is, an inspiration to me. He inspired me with his faith in me and gave me confidence to try new things. Anita Roddick was also a big inspiration to me.
How do you come up with new designs for your products?
The problem isn’t coming up with New Designs it’s limiting them! We have so many ideas but we have to be practical and put limits on our ranges.
What do you do when you get an artist block?
I am happy to say that this isn’t something I have suffered with.
If you were to start again, what would you do differently?
It’s all very well to say “I wouldn’t do this or that” but I am a strong believer that lessons are learned my making mistakes.
What do you feel it takes to be a successful entrepreneur?
Determination, hard work, passion, have confidence in an idea, to listen but ultimately make your own decision.
Do you have any plans to expand your business soon?
We have lots of plan for the future and will begin to look into franchising later this year.
What’s been your most memorable moment so far?
Lots of memorable moment but a few that stand out are:-
Taking the leap and starting the business.
Getting our first order.
Being runner up in the Nat West Business Women Awards.
Name three things you would recommend to anyone that wants to become a successful entrepreneur?
Have faith in your product or service.
Set and write down goals.
What should we be expecting from you in the future?
I have a list as long as my arm of things that I would like to explore and try out, so watch this space!