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Remembering a day at the #SBS event - Azana Photo Frames

Remembering a day at the #SBS event

International Conference Centre, Birmingham

On Friday, 30th January 2015 it was a trip to the ICC, Birmingham to attend the annual event for Small Business Sunday (#SBS) to meet fellow winners, photo opportunity with Theo Paphitis, Question time and to meet the buyers.

We arrived for the first time (nervously) to the International Conference Centre - my word it’s huge and very warm inside! Then we met up with several #SBS winners, we chatted about our businesses and shared ideas.

Then we all sat down waiting eagerly to see the man himself, entrepreneur Theo Paphitis. He came on stage to talk about his awareness of supporting small businesses, full of inspirational ideas and how to help us grow our business with the launch of his new website.  this is exclusive to Small Business Sunday winners.

Theo's new website was created by Chris Wheeler from Metalfrog for #SBS Small Business Sunday winners was launched. Chris demonstrated the website for us to see.

Then we had lunch and more networking with fellow winners.

Then we all sat down for question time with a panel of inspirational speakers with Theo. They were discussing about how they’d started their businesses.

The inspirational panel speakers were;

  • Judy Naake who bought St.Tropez to the UK, began with £4,000 - 10 years later sold business for £70 millions.
  • Julien Callede, co-founder of, founded in 2010, 160 employees, 20% of revenue overseas - £25m plus revenue.
  • Rob Forkan, founder of Gandy flipflops, began business with less than £10k following family tragedy in 2004 Tsunami, 10% of all profit is donated to fund orphan programme. 

Wow, so impressed with them all.

Questions to the panel were very interesting and the answers were truly awesome with many ideas.

Whilst we were getting to the end of question time, we’d noticed a long queue forming for the photo opportunity with Theo, so we hastily made our way to join the growing queue.

 So... a delighted sole trader Karen Dobson, business owner of Azana Photo Frames received a signed certificate by Theo Paphitis and patiently queued to have the much awaited photo with Theo and Jamie Dobson.

A truly amazing day was had by us all. We travelled back home feeling inspired and motivated. We will definitely be going to the annual event next year and look forward to meeting new #SBS winners.

In the press; TAUNTON business grabs the attention of fromer Dragon's Den investor Theo Paphitis

How to be an SBS winner?

Follow @theopaphitis on Twitter, tweet him your business with a hash like this #SBS on Sunday between 5.00 – 7.30pm. Each week Theo will chooses his favourite six business tweet will be re-tweeted to his 463,000 followers and you will gain followers and increased sales.

If you are one of the lucky six and you will then join in with the rest of the SBS family and enjoy all the benefits that entails including a profile page on the SBS website and invitation to the annual SBS event but most of all it’s a boost for your business.


Do it once in each weekly slot (5.30 – 7.00pm) but don’t repeat your tweet in the hope you are seen, don’t nag or whinge (it does not look good) - your time will come and good luck!

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