I hope you’ve all enjoyed the long weekend. Let’s get the working week going with a Behind the Biz interview. This is my weekly interview series where I discover exciting businesses, the people behind them and their business journey.
In today’s Behind the Biz interview I’m chatting with Simon, the founder of FunkyHeat.
Please tell us about your business.
FunkyHeat is the future of style led heating with energy efficiency built in. Not only do our Award Winning heaters look great but they are also very smart in the way that they work. Creating a great look for any room, keeping you warm when you need to and saving energy when the world needs that more than ever.
We manufacture in Italy and our high quality infrared heaters have been born from a desire to combine exceptional aesthetics and design with an economical way to heat space.
Where did the inspiration for FunkyHeat come from?
Our infrared heaters were conceived and created from a significant experience in both heating and interior design and combine the best existing technologies with modern design trends.
How did you decide upon the name of your business?
We wanted something that stood out and something that communicated our products in one word.
What did you do before starting FunkyHeat?
I was involved in the renewable energy business, primarily solar thermal
Did you always plan to set up your own business?
What has been the biggest challenge in running your business so far?
The lack of support by the banks for SME business in the UK, they need to take a long, hard look at themselves (but we know they won’t). That and finding high quality, motivated staff (always happy to hear from people who meet that description).
What has been the highlight of your business journey to date?
Award winning! Our design and manufacturing approach has been recognised by the designer kitchen and bathroom industry and we’re proud to have won the GOLD award from Designer Kitchen and Bathrooms for Innovation in Sustainability.
What role does social media play for your business and do you have a favourite social platform?
Social media gives us the opportunity to communicate with people who may be interested in what we do and who perhaps share similar interests. We don’t see it as a sales platform, we see it as a way of communicating. Which is the best forum for us? Facebook is certainly the most active.
What advice would you give to aspiring entrepreneurs?
Be prepared for long hours, headaches and hard work. Believe in yourself and if you’re doing it on your own have someone (ideally uninvolved in the business) to bounce ideas off and reality check things with. Celebrate your successes and when things get really tough (chances are they will) remember why you’re doing it. Don’t be afraid to admit your mistakes and don’t give up too soon or hang on too long if something really isn’t working.
Where do you hope to take your business in the year ahead?
We are going international! We now have distributors in Japan, South Africa and a number of EU countries.
I want to say a big thank you to Simon for taking part in my Behind the Biz series. I really enjoyed finding out about the FunkyHeat journey and I can’t wait to see the business continue to grow. Simon shares wise words for entrepreneurs, keep track of your successes and look back on them when times get tough.
If you fancy getting involved with Behind The Biz please leave a comment below or drop me a message over on Twitter.