My Buzz

The website is close to its 3rd anniversary and during this period we have executed over 100,000 valuations, for 54,000 customers. Amongst our finds we have discovered a lost Van Gogh, valued Churchill’s dentures and even found a medieval chastity belt! So a very wide range of objects we cover and see going through our website. We are currently in negotiations to set up an insurance proposal for our customers and also teaming up to create a route to market for some of the items we have valued.

My Bio

I worked 13 years as a Director at Sotheby’s where I ran the furniture department, which still is a main passion of mine. I did notice how people feel intimidated by the big names such as Sotheby’s and Christie’s and thus I wanted to set up a website to make top level expertise easily available to all. I started the website in the Autumn of 2009 with 18 experts, and we rapidly grew to the current 62 experts, where we cover areas such as Sports memorabilia, Roman coins, medieval manuscripts and of course paintings, silver, furniture and jewellery. Since launch, the type of customers using our services have been extremely varied: local auction houses tap into our expertise, and also dealers too; this alongside private owners who are simply curious to know what they have, gives the website a very good mixture of people using our site.

My Business Tips

1. Believe in your idea and keep your enthusiasm for your venture at all times. Setting up your own business can be a roller coaster ride. So be prepared and always keep a positive attitude no matter how tough it gets.
2. Be humble and ask for advice. Even if you have the most innovative and fantastic idea for a new venture, be humble and seek advice from people who have done something similar. There is a lot to learn from other people’s mistakes and successes.

3. Make a business plan… a proper one! When I started my business I jotted down some numbers on a piece of paper, without really realising the impact of certain decisions to the figures, etc… It was really only when I decided to go into the Den that I put a proper business plan together, and I have to say it was a tremendous help.

4. Do research. When you start an idea, do check your competitors or even when your business has been up and running for a while, do always keep an eye on the competition!

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