1. What’s your name?
Rebecca Leek and Stephanie de la Briere
2. How old are your Kids?
Rebecca has two daughters aged 2 and 7 months and 7months. Stephanie has three – son aged 5 and two daughters aged 3 and ½ .
3. Where do you work? Home/office?
We work wherever we can but officially ‘from home’. There is a local pub with a soft play area which is a great favourite…… We love it like this even though it is hard to compartmentalize work and kids.
4. What childcare support do you have?
The eldest goes to school. The older two girls go to nursery. Rebecca’s Dad comes quite often and there are a few trusted friends who will help – both our husbands work quite a lot…. But ‘the other one’ is the best option: we rely on each other a lot to get things done without the kids. It never feels enough but we both don’t want to hand over our babies to strangers. It makes for quite a frustrating lifestyle but it seems the best of both worlds at the moment.
5. What inspired you to start your own business?
A good idea with a friend started it all. Steph was sort of expecting something like this to happen for a year or so. Rebecca less so being a teacher and quite involved in that until babies came along. It is all about keeping an open mind and acting on an idea, even if it seems a bit silly at first.
6. When did you start your business?
We started talking about it in August 2010 but just started trading in the last few weeks. It always takes longer than expected as you often rely on other people to do something for you and you are not always on top of their to-do list. We had in mind to start selling The NapNap Voucher by the end of the year 2010….well, that’s a 6-month delay…but better late than never we say.
7. Any start up fees?
We were extremely lucky to be able to start a business with almost nothing. It went like this: put in £1000 each, create a website, buy a few great products, design a voucher and off we go. We are now perfecting our networking skills and running a few events. The key is to have overhead costs as low as possible: if you don’t sell, at least it does not cost you much.
8. Tell me about your business?
NapNap is trying to make the process of choosing and buy washable nappies easy and affordable (and the norm!). Parents-in-waiting can ask for a NapNap Voucher at the birth of their baby or for a birthday, they can try a few nappies and it reduces the cost to them and the planet. NapNap wants to make gifts bought for pregnant mums to be really useful, rather than piles of teddies that will gather dust in the corner and just end up in the charity shop. So NapNap is also a great place to buy ethical and green products for mum, dad and baby.
9. What are your aims for your business?
We would like to be the first port of call for parents interested in sustainable parenting by offering information, advice and great products. We want to make it mainstream, easy and fun. And we want to become as well known as the book token.
10. Have you got 3 tips for any mum thinking of starting a business on a budget?
Have a business partner. We both think we could not have done this on our own. You then have a greater pool of resources not to mention the support of each other.
Do what you can yourself. Being dependent on other people can be extremely frustrating (and expensive).
Social networking and local business networking. Join a mums business group if there is one. We were skeptical at first but they will be able to do things for you (if you help them!). If nothing else you gain some friends and it is great way to get the word out, even if very locally.
What people are saying:
Thank you ladies and good luck with your business!