So it’s been over a year since we last spoke. How’s the dynamic due behind Doisy and Dam?
We’re AWESOME thanks for asking!
Business is booming – we’re now heading into primetime choc season so it’s a bit hectic in the office but we’re still expecting turnover to over double year on year.
What does the team look like now? Are you both still handling everything between yourselves or have you taken on any help?
The team has grown big time since last year, we’ve taken on 4 people so we now stand at 8 and we need a bigger office! We’ve now got a fantastic marketing and sales team working on taking D&D nationwide.
When we spoke last time, you hinted at expanding your range of products. Do you have any new products in the pipeline?
Interesting you should ask…..we’ve just released our newest flavour: Dark Chocolate with Maple, Toasted Rice & Himalayan Salt. It’s delicious we promise. We’re constantly working on lots of new and exciting products but we can’t release them all at the same time!
In terms of expansion, have you managed to convince more distributors to take on your products now that you’re more of an established brand?
I think now we’re more established we can prove to distributors that our choc sells – we’ve got such an active sales and marketing team that we make sure we work really closely with all of our stockists to help get our bars into people’s mouths. We have a really personal touch as there’s no point selling our bars into stores and just forgetting about them, we like to make friends!
What new challenges have you faced in the last year or so?
We moved our production to a larger facility at the beginning of this year – our previous location just couldn’t handle the number of bars we were selling! Making the switch was a lot tougher than we expected, we ended up spending more money than we anticipated to make sure the transition was smooth and the product quality ended up being better than ever.
Apart from the obvious highlights (selling into new stores, growing the team, releasing new and interesting flavours) for me the best thing is seeing our packaging littered on the street! Littering is obviously bad…..but there’s something satisfying when its an empty bar of your choc!!
Things seem to be ticking along, how do you enjoy the success of your business?
Well whilst the business is doing well, everything we make goes straight back into helping us grow so we’re certainly not sitting on Scrooge McDuck piles of gold! We love what we do though so that’s reward enough and seeing the passion our team has is incredibly satisfying (cheesiest answer ever). We’re all working on getting the business certified as a B-Corp and I think that’ll keep us all focused on the fact that success to us isn’t just defined by monetary gain, it’s by building something that has an impact we can be proud of.
You’re both quite passionate about “paying it forward” so on the heels of your experience since launch to date, what advice would you give to younger start-ups preparing to launch?
The main piece of advice would be to test the concept before spending a single pound! There are very, very few ideas (particularly in the food industry) that can’t be given a test run for almost zero money. If you want to sell cookies, go and get a stall at Maltby Street Market and sell it there to see if people a) care, b) like what you’re doing and c) are actually willing to pay money for it! Doesn’t matter if it looks rubbish, that side can come later. Pip & Nut is an awesome example of this.
How do you keep the momentum going?
There’s so much to achieve for us, in the grand scheme of things we’re still an incredibly young business, we feel like our momentum is only just starting. I’m not sure how to reply really because we’re in a lucky position that there’s more coming in than we can handle and we have an incredibly passionate team who are all hugely motivated. Ask us again in 2 years!
Where do you see the business in the next 3 years? And yourselves?
In 3 years we’ll be kings of the world! Realistically I think we hope we’ll be running a successful chocolate business that’s had a positive impact on the market in the UK and hopefully abroad. Ideally we won’t weigh 300kgs each but that’s unrealistic given the amount of choc we scoff in the office.
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