If Anthony’s name rings a bell, then you have no doubt seen him pottering around the Baltic Triangle where he also partners up with Hannah Cave to run Fodder Canteen in Queen’s Dock Business Centre.
Asking Anthony and Hannah how they met you can see an exchange of cheeky grins as they admit they met through both being a bit daft on a Facebook group – which led to friendship, which led to an unstoppable catering force…
Hannah’s tale of how they launched Fodder goes something like a fairy tale: “One night I went to bed and I literally had a dream that I had a café. In the café there were lots of people dotted around with sewing machines out and I was just pottering around them serving food. When I woke up I knew exactly what I was going to do, so rang Anthony and he said, ‘Let’s do it’.”
Stumbling upon the Baltic triangle during Light Night of 2014 the pair “fell in love with the vibe” of the area and were determined to find a home for their businesses there. And the rest was history.
Having made a success of Fodder Canteen Anthony decided it was time to set up a new business focusing on external catering but sharing the Fodder kitchen as a base.
The pair heard about an opportunity through Enterprise Hub to join a free programme tailored to those within their first 12 months of trading: ‘Boost Your New Business’. Anthony thought it would be useful for the new business to see if they were missing any opportunities and to take time out to strategise and reflect on their business plan.
Some of the key lessons they have taken from the training were around re-evaluating who their customer is and pricing strategy.
Anthony said: “While I may have been in this industry for 40 years, it has really made me reassess. Straight after completing the programme we put our prices up, and to our surprise we had people queuing up for the food we were offering and going out of their way to come back for more.”
Hannah added: “Yes, I think we are always conscious of giving value, but sometimes that has meant being too cheap, and we’ve now realised that cheap sometimes puts people off assuming there must be something wrong with what you are offering. We’ve now got the confidence to re-assess what we are doing here and realise ‘I’ve got to be paid for what I’m doing’ and that isn’t something to be embarrassed about”.
The pair told us that they now start the day’s planning for the new business with “well Bernie said…” referring back to what they learned from the training as they found it “so useful”.
They commented: “The course was brilliant. Our trainer, Bernie, really made it personal and created an environment where I could say ‘actually I realise I’ve made a mess of this’. Everyone is totally free to open-up, which is great as we could learn from one another’s businesses. The most positive part for us was being able to face up to any problems in the business in a constructive way.”
Hannah and Anthony have been sharing tips across their businesses since attending the ‘Boost Your New Business’ programme and are both feeling really positive about the future. Their next challenge is to use their business lessons to support other food industry start-ups.
To find out more about Anthony’s business, you can contact:
Telephone: 0151 588 1772
If you’ve been inspired by Anthony and Hannah’s story and would like to see how Enterprise Hub can help you boost your new business, then get in touch with us. Email email@example.com or ring us on 0151 706 8111.