28/04/2011

By Michael Tinmouth, Editor for Entrepreneur Country

Earlier this month, we saw the launch of 'Britain's Next Big Thing' on BBC 2. This latest enterprise based show is fronted by Dragon's Den star, Theo Paphitis and follows the journey of aspiring entrepreneurs as they pitch their products to some of the UK's most prestigious retailers.

Britain's Next Big Thing takes viewers behind the closed doors of three of the biggest names in UK retail, Boots, Habitat and Liberty, to expose the secret world of buying from the perspective of retailer buyers and the entrepreneurs as they attempt to get their products on the shelves.

One of the stars of the new show is Stuart Jolley, one of the UK's most exciting new young entrepreneurs, who has entered the highly competitive male toiletries market with "Wingman". Viewers of Tuesday nights pilot episode will have caught glimpses of Stuart as he wowed Boots with his unique range of masculine grooming products.

Jolley came up with the idea for the wipe while camping with friends. With no showers to use at the campsite they became frustrated using 'girly' baby wipes. Shortly after his trip he realised he had spotted a gap in the market, when on a night out clubbing with university friends, he noticed men wiping their armpits with paper towels to try to mask their body odour.

After graduating from Cardiff University, Jolley set up a "bedroom office" at his family home in Exmouth, and, aided by £25,000 investment from friends and family, set about researching and designing prototypes to sell in clubs and festivals, even testing his products on army officer friends at Sandhurst.

Settling on a name — Wingman — because it's always by your side — Jolley worked with specialists to create a wipe which contains a series of attractive but masculine smelling ingredients, including ginseng, menthol and aloe vera, and Farnesol, a natural deodorising agent.

Jolley's big break came in late 2010, when he secured a contract to sell Wingman deodorising wipes in 263 Boots stores nationwide - Wingman had taken off.

For Stuart the experience of working with Theo on the new show was a fantastic opportunity to bring his exciting range of products to wider public attention and he wasn't deterred from opening himself and his fledgling business to scrutiny, "believe in your product and your brand 100%. When you speak to businessmen and investors, they must have the same belief and catch the energy that you put out there. You have got to wear your brand on your sleeve. If you don't believe in you, why should the public believe and back you."

Stuart will be writing a weekly blog for Entrepreneur Country charting his experiences on Britain's Next Big Thing and the rise of "Wingman". Make sure you catch the show on BBC2, Tuesday's at 8pm


Watch the video below featuring Cad & The Dandy discussing successful marketing strategies

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