Twelve businesseses are to get free exhibition space at this year’s Autumn Fair after winning a competition run with #SBS Small Business Sunday – the online business community founded by entrepreneur Theo Paphitis.
Autumn Fair’s #SBS showcase, hosted by small business champion Paphitis, will highlight the most unique and interesting new products from ambitious independent retailers.
Selected by Autumn Fair’s retail experts from a shortlist of 36, the winning candidates offer on-trend, cost effective and unique products.
- A Year of Dates
- Angels’ Share Glass Ltd
- Ascent Bath & Body
- Bottled Baking Co
- Kate Chesters Art
- Little Beau Sheep Ltd
- Our Little Globe
- Sandwick Bay Candles
- The Smokey Carter
- When Lulu met Weasel
- Whispers of Wood
The winners will take centre stage at the Fair (1-4 September at Birmingham NEC), accessing thousands of buyers ahead of the busiest retail period of the year.
#SBS, which began in 2010, allows hundreds of small businesses to tweet Theo each week to secure his endorsement. Every Monday, six of are then invited to become part of the now 2,500 strong #SBS community, benefiting from boosted publicity plus attendance at a yearly conference with access to motivational speakers and workshops.
Paphitis said: “This year’s winners represent the very brightest and boldest of the UK retail sector. Their free space at Autumn Fair will provide an invaluable opportunity, offering them access and exposure to some of the retail sector’s most important and influential buyers. Presence at the show can have a significant impact on sales and leads – it’s an opportunity that can’t be wasted. Hopefully they’ll also be able to inspire visitors with their abundant entrepreneurial spirit.”
Julie Driscoll, regional director of ITE, the fair’s organisersd, said: “They’re an exceptional cohort of businesses that reflect the current state of incredible entrepreneurialism in the retail sector. We’ve selected the absolute crème de la crème of the shortlisted businesses to come to Autumn Fair this September.”
One of the winners, Sarah Turner’s Little Beau Sheep, appeared on BBC’s ‘Countryfile’ programme earlier in June (pictured above during filming). The products – limited edition laundry balls made from wool from rare breed Hebridean sheep – will be of interest to garden centre buyers looking for a distinctive addition to the gift department.