Young entrepreneurs who set up their own businesses in Hastings have become the faces of a major international advertising campaign.
Katie and Tom Philipson tell their story in a short film which is being shown online and at cinemas in the UK. They also feature in adverts on billboards and taxis for LinkedIn’s ‘In It Together’ campaign all across London.
The couple were chosen for the campaign following their recent success in the Natwest Business Builder project, a course run for entrepreneurs culminating in a Dragon’s Den style pitch for a £1,000 award. Tom’s mobile wood-fired pizza business, Tommy’s Pizzeria, was the overall winner, while Katie’s business, One Small Shop, was a runner-up.
Tom and his business partner Mark Edwards developed the mobile business into a pop-up restaurant, specialising in sourdough pizzas and fish caught by local fishing fleet. Tommy’s Pizzeria opens on July 13 in the former Simply Italian unit in Old Town.
Tom said: “The Business Builder course taught us the nitty-gritty of running a business – things like marketing, legal stuff and how to keep on top of the accounts. It was also great to meet other people like us who were setting up businesses. Everyone from the local business community has been incredibly supportive.”
Katie launched her ethical retail business last August. One Small Shop sources stylish, cruelty-free vegan goods including clothes, cosmetics and cleaning products. While the majority of sales are online, Katie runs several pop-up shops, including one at Borough Wines, Beer and Books and another at The Crown pub, where customers can refill empty skincare containers.
Locate East Sussex helped Tom and Katie with free business support and provided advice on funding, financial planning and finding premises.