Your Name and Age: Sanjay Aggarwal, 36
Tell us about your family: I live with my wife Laura and baby girl Zara, now 9 months old
What did you do before coming up with your business idea and how was it making the transition?
I have had my own recruitment business since I was 24 but for the last 2 years I have been full time growing Spice Kitchen. I set the business up as a retirement project for my mum and it grew much bigger than we ever imagined
When did you launch?
We started in 2012
How did you get started?
I took a picture of my mum’s traditional Indian spice box, listed it on a eBay on Xmas day 2012, and we had our first sale on Boxing Day! The rest as they say is history.
What’s your favourite thing about running your own business
I love being amongst the food sector as trade and consumer shows. This allows us to hang out with other food producers, many of whom are now dear supportive friends, but also our customers and retailers who stock our products. I also love selling!
What’s the thing you least enjoy about running your own business
What has worked well about your business?
We have stuck to our guns and never compromised on quality, from the spice blends we make to the silk sari giftwraps that my mum makes for the products.
What’s been your biggest business mistake? How did you deal with it?
Biggest mistake has been not outsourcing some business functions earlier and trying to juggle too many things, and not focusing on my strengths in areas like sales. Starting to build this structure now and its working well.
How do you fit in work with the family?Is your partner supportive of your business?
Not sure but somehow! My wife is amazing and is a fantastic mother and is also very supportive of me and the business. I am away often between September to April so the last winter was tough for her whilst Zara was small. But we have a supportive group of friends and family and we have made it work.
Are you working towards a financial goal for your business?
We are profitable and I can earn a living from the business, but we are very much in scale up stage and our retail stockists are growing quickly. I hope the business keeps growing and we maybe reach one million turnover in the next 5-7 years.
Would you ever give up your business to do somethingelse?
Possibly – but loving what we are doing at the moment.
Do you have an exit strategy?
Not at the moment but certainly starting to think about building one in the next 12 months.
Have you had your ‘I’ve made it’ moment? Tell us about it. If not when do you think it will come
We have recently started to see our hard work pay off and be approached by retailers and also feel our brand is being recognised for the first time. This is an amazing feeling.
Where do you hope to be in five years time?
Retired drinking cocktails on a beach in Costa Rica – but isnt everyone?