Growth & Customers

I started a business with a Spice Girl

Discover how Christopher Money recruited Baby Spice, Emma Bunton, to help him bring his eco-friendly baby brand, Kit & Kin, to life.

Christopher Money was on the hunt to find baby products that were both kind to sensitive skin and kind to the planet, but he couldn’t find what he was looking for—so he decided to create a solution himself.

With his idea well and truly in motion, Chris thought some star power would help to really bring his vision to life, and who better to help him create baby products than Baby Spice herself, Emma Bunton.

This dynamic duo merged their passion for creativity, entrepreneurship, and sustainability to launch a groundbreaking business that has since rocked the industry.

For 7 years, Kit & Kin have been providing eco-essentials that are kinder to your family, our planet, and always give back. Together they’ve created a future focused brand that parents can truly trust.

Get ready to be inspired by the unforgettable story of an unexpected partnership that changed the game and broke investment records.

Here is his unfiltered advice below: 

Restoring a failing factory at just 22 years old 

From constant rejection to recruiting a Spice Girl as your co-founder 

Greenwashing versus the real deal 

Winning 59 industry awards and being stocked by major retailers 

Protecting rainforests, funding scholarships, and buying vital medicines 

Raising a record-breaking £700,000 (CA$1.2 million) in a week 

Protecting your world also means protecting your home with safer cleaning products 

What kind of impact does star power bring? 

Don’t be scared, build up your resilience and innovate 

Restoring a failing factory at just 22 years old 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

So Kit & Kin, it’s an amazing idea, a catch-all, non-toxic, sustainable lifestyle brand. 

What gave you the idea? 

Christopher Money: 

So if I start right at the beginning, I’ve been in the world of consumer products for about 20 years now. So I first got into this niche world of maternity and fem hygiene products as a very young man. 

I was about 22 years old at the time, and it was thanks to my father, actually. His day-to-day was trading jumbo reels of tissue, so he was very much sort of the middleman representing these big South African paper mills and representing them for European market. 

And he’d also invested in a factory in South Wales about 45 years ago and their claim to fame was that they manufactured the first panty liner ever in the UK. 

But the factory did really well for the first sort of 10, 15 years. They picked up a lot of the major retail contracts in the UK, so predominantly Boots, Sainsbury’s, supplying private label-owned brand, and they did really well for a number of years. 

But they just got somewhat complacent. There was a lack of innovation, a lack of investment in the factory, and it started losing quite a bit of money. 

And my father and his colleagues sent various guys there to try and turn it around, they paid them lots of money, but it was going nowhere fast, and it was on the verge of closing. 

And at the time I think he thought, “Wait a minute, I’ve got a 22-year-old that’s just graduated from university. I could probably pay him a fraction of what I’m paying these guys.” 

And I think the way he sold it to me one day was, “Listen, sport, it’s probably a dead duck, but if you fancy a challenge, maybe you want to go down there and see if you can create something from it.” 

And somewhat naively at the time I thought, “Okay, well, yeah, I can do that. I can turn around a factory.” 

And so I found myself driving down the M3 a couple of times a week to this old factory that was just falling apart, old machinery, a disillusioned workforce and here I am, 22 years old, no experience whatsoever, rocking up. 

And I’m sure they thought, “Well, great, this guy’s here to save the day,” and yeah, I had to well and truly, thrown in the deep end, think on my feet and, like I said, there was going to be absolutely no investment in the factory. 

So what I did, I identified that obviously the portfolio was really strong over time. They had fem hygiene products, but over the years, they diversified to more maternity products. 

And the main reason they did that was you had the rise of the Far East. They were producing hundreds and thousands of panty liners, which given the nature of the product, it’s very thin, they could ship over to the UK at a very competitive price. 

And there was absolutely no loyalty from the retailers whatsoever. 

So they diversified to maternity products and predominantly breast pads and maternity towels, which, as you can imagine as a 22-year-old guy, I think my first question when I got to the factory was, “What is a breast pad?” 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

What is a breast pad? 

Christopher Money: 

What is a breast pad? 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

What does it do? 

Christopher Money: 

And then I found myself in front of the Mothercare buyer within a couple of days, and she’s saying to me, “So what’s the future for breast pad development in the UK?” 

So well and truly thrown in the deep end. And I knew obviously that our margin was so small on breast pads and maternity towels that we had to diversify the product portfolio. 

So the way I did that was by visiting every trade show I could in Europe and trying to represent every overseas brand manufacturer I could. 

Always with a particular focus on manufacturers using biodegradable or sustainable materials because this was 20 years ago. So it was somewhat ahead of the curve at that time, but it was clear that was the way the market was going. 

So yeah, I started representing all sorts of brands and manufacturers. I was representing here a wet wipes factory in France, a fem hygiene manufacturer in Slovenia, a Tunisian paper mill. 

I was trading products from the Far East, all complementing the range we were manufacturing in South Wales. I represented obviously my dad’s company, but then built this distribution company on the side. 

And I did that for about 10 years and over that 10-year period, I probably got the experience of working for a P&G for 35, 40 years. Because I learned everything from working with my dad in the early days about raw materials, tissue, paper. 

And then working at the factory, obviously taking the raw material, turning it into a finished product, selling it into retail, creating their packaging, and then trading products in the Far East and North Africa so learned so much over that period. 

And long story short, I just became somewhat disillusioned over time because there was this one factory I was representing in Central America in Mexico that was producing an eco-friendly nappy [diaper]. 

And I was trying to sell that into the main retail accounts in the UK, so Boots, Sainsbury’s, Mothercare, but it was just like banging my head against a brick wall for so many years because every decision was so profit-and-margin-driven. 

And I was just thinking, “You know I’ve got a better product here. It is better for the consumer, it’s better for the environment, but you won’t list it because it cost a few pence extra.” 

So yeah, having done that for 10 years, I thought to myself, “Do you know what? I’m going to do it myself. I’ll launch my own brand,” but there were certainly some challenges getting to that point. 

If you want to launch a nappy brand, there are a massive barrier to entry. There are huge minimum order volumes. 

So the first thing I did was I flew out to Mexico, met the directors at the factory I represented and said, “Look, I think I’ve done a pretty good job for you for the last 10 years. I think there’s an opportunity here in Europe for me to launch an eco-friendly nappy. I’m going to need a favour. I don’t have any money. I can’t commit to the huge minimum order quantity.” 

But thankfully they said, “Chris, no problem. We’re happy to support you with that.” 

From constant rejection to recruiting a Spice Girl as your co-founder 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

Wait, wait, wait, Chris, Chris, I’m lost because you had this amazing eco-nappy and Boots, and the like wouldn’t stock it because that it was a few pennies more expensive. 

But then that made you think, “Oh, I’m going to try and do it even though this has failed, and I haven’t been able to make any headway with this product all these years. I’m going to try again with a totally new product that’ll probably be even more expensive.” 

Christopher Money: 

Yeah. So I had the opportunity to create my own sort of bespoke nappy, if you like, and ultimately I believed it. I knew it was the future of the market. 

Obviously, I can come on to tell you more about the brand and why we’re different to everyone else on the market. But I knew there was an opportunity out there, but I knew I was going to have to hustle my way to launching this brand, because I’m up against the Pampers and Huggies of this world with huge advertizing budgets. How on earth am I going to compete? 

So yeah, the first thing I had to do was go out there, get the directors of the factory to agree to do me a favour on the minimum order quantity and give me the opportunity to create my own product. 

So I had their blessing, but then I knew branding was going to be all important. So I Googled top 10 branding agencies in the UK and narrowed it down to a couple. 

There was one studio in particular called B&B, and the kind of the vision I had for the brand was very sort of modern Scandi-esque, quite minimal. And that fit perfectly with the kind of brands I’ve seen them create over the years. 

And, yeah, just cold called the agency, said, “I’ve got this idea, I’d love to come in and talk to you about it.” 

I met Kerry and Shaun, the 2 founders there, and they just totally bought into it. They loved the idea, they loved the concept. I knew they were going to be really expensive, seeing they’d worked with the likes of Fever-Tree, BrewDog. 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

The premium brands, basically. They knew about premium. 

Christopher Money: 

Really premium, leading high street brands. And, yeah, they didn’t disappoint. There was a nice big sort of invoice presented, but I’d always gone in there with the intention of offering them part equity. 

And thankfully, they asked me first. “Chris, would you be open to an equity deal here?” 

So as you could imagine, I sort of hemmed and hawed and said, “Well, yeah, I think we can come to an agreement here.” 

So at that stage, I had the product, I had the brand, but as I said, how on earth am I going to compete with the Pampers, the Huggies-owned brand nappies, supermarket-owned brand, which is half the market? 

And I know celebrities work, and I always wanted Kit & Kin to be a global brand, a sort of iconic British brand, if you like, and there were very few people that have that global reach outside of pop stars and movie stars. 

So I was obviously thinking through who on earth could I approach with this idea? 

And on the pop star front, I obviously thought about the Spice Girls. And at that moment I thought, “Okay, well, baby products, Baby Spice?” 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

Baby Spice. 

Christopher Money: 

“Maybe there’s something there.” 

And I was, literally, driving one day and I just thought, “Well, maybe I should try getting in contact with Emma Bunton.” 

And I, literally, pulled over the car, Googled Emma Bunton’s management team, cold-called the agency, spoke to a junior agent, who thankfully gave me the time of day and thought, “Well, this sounds vaguely interesting.” 

And then went in in person, met that junior agent and a senior agent and pitched it in person. They seemed to really buy into it. 

And again, luckily from a timing perspective, the co-founder of the agency was on maternity leave at the time. So kind of everything paused at that time, and they said, “Okay, well, you can meet her in a couple of months when she comes back to work.” 

But she was obviously living and breathing that space, so she totally bought into it and understood the brand and the concept. 

And I knew that Emma knew about it at that stage. And, again, it was just serendipity later to find out that Emma’s children had sensitive skin problems, eczema, and she wanted to create a brand like this as well. So it was just perfect timing. 

But, ultimately, who is this random guy off the street that develops nappies that wants to work with Emma Bunton globally? 

So understandably, there was a lot of due diligence, it probably took another 6, 7 months of sitting down with her accountants, discussing the plan. 

And we finally got to the point where they said, “Okay, Emma really wants to do this. You just need to go have a chat with her lawyer.” 

It turns out he was the guy you really had to convince, her confidante from Spice Girl days and, yeah, I got the green light from him, and then it was, “Okay, we’re all agreed we want to do this. Now you can meet Emma and if the 2 of you get on, away you go.” 

And it was sort of 9 months later, then going in to meet Emma and thinking, “God, well, after all that, I hope she likes me.” 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

“I better be charming.” 

Christopher Money: 

Yeah, exactly. But within 10 minutes of meeting her, she was nodding to her team around the table, and we just hit it off. 

We both had the same vision of what this brand could be in terms of protecting children, protecting the environment, and making a difference. 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

But usually when you see these kind of celebrity partnerships on a brand, often they’re just a figurehead. 

But I get the sense that in this business, Emma is not only really invested in the brand, but she also involved day-to-day. You guys talk a lot. 

I suppose you didn’t know that when you entered into this journey that she would actually be a really passionate and involved co-founder. 

Christopher Money: 

Yeah, exactly. You can only go into it with good faith. But from that moment I met Emma, I knew, I could see the excitement. 

You know she’d never put her name to a brand before. She’d never launched a brand. This was something she was really passionate about because it was a problem she had first-hand with her own children. 

And it’s been that way since day one. 

Obviously, we’re 7 years in now. Like many startups, we all wear several hats. So obviously, I’m the managing director and I handle all sales and product development, and I run the day-to-day with our fantastic team. 

But Emma is my co-founder. People often ask, “How involved is she? Is she just an ambassador?” 

Well, no, she founded this brand, we founded it together. And we often joke, you know, I’ve got 3 boys, so this is my fourth baby with her, if you like. 

And no, she’s very much involved. She’s a sounding board in terms of the bigger picture, our strategy and how we grow the business. 

But as you’d expect, she really loves all the creative parts. So she’s heavily involved in all the branding decisions, creation of our packaging, our artwork, and given her experience in photo shoots, video shoots, she’s heavily involved in those. 

And then as you’d expect when it comes to actual products and testing them, she loves nothing more to give me feedback and “Can you do this? Can you do that?” 

So no, it’s worked great since day one. 

Greenwashing versus the real deal 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

And tell me about the product. Because especially in nappies, there’s a lot of greenwashing that goes on, and there’s been a lot of wrists being slapped for saying that they are biodegradable, they’ve got eco-credentials, and then actually there’s a lot of plastic in them, et cetera. 

So what is different about your product, and how did you design them so that there was never a question of greenwashing, this is the real deal? 

Christopher Money: 

Yeah. So obviously given my background, nappies was always going to be the go-to product. And we built the brand on 3 really key pillars, and that dictates every decision, the creation of every product, that everything we do has to be better for baby, better for our world and give back. 

So better for baby, obviously we strip out all the unnecessary toxins found in everyday products. 

Better for our world. We use as many plant-based sustainable materials as we can, and every item gives back. 

So a massive inspiration for me growing up was Tom’s shoes, where if you sell a pair of shoes, someone homeless gets a pair of shoes, too. So I really wanted to create the mother-and-baby version of that brand. 

And the strap line of our brand is Protecting Your World Naturally. 

So it’s about protecting your little one from the harmful toxins found in everyday products, but also about protecting the world they’ll grow up in. 

And there’s that really nice tangible benefit to our subscription business, whereby for every 10 subscriptions we sell, we purchase and protect one acre of rainforest. 

So I often say to parents, “Your child is going to be in a nappy for probably 23 hours of the day. They’re going to be changed anytime from 6 times to 10 times in a day. Would you prefer for your child to sat in a nappy that’s made from petrochemicals or plants?” 

And I think the answer’s pretty obvious. 

So fundamentally, we use sustainable plant-based materials derived from sugar cane, instead of petrochemicals. And obviously, there’s a fantastic giving-back scheme to every product we sell also. 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

And if it’s from sugarcane, does that mean it’s sort of using a waste product that might already be kind of thrown away? 

Christopher Money: 

Yeah, exactly. So all our materials come from sustainably harvested forests. So again, that’s another key differentiator with some other sort of mainstream brands. 

Winning 59 industry awards and being stocked by major retailers 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

And how is business going? Like you’ve been going a little while now, you’re just out of the startup stage pretty much, but has there been the uptake that you were hoping for? 

And I’ve seen you’ve launched quite a few new products. So what does your roadmap look like now? 

Christopher Money: 

So when we first launched, it was obviously a real focus on our subscription model. Having supplied retailers for so many years, I must say it’s very different when you are supplying a supermarket-owned brand product to being a brand and actually supplying something they really want from you. 

But my mindset when we first started was definitely I don’t really want to supply those interesting people, let’s say, any longer, especially given my whole background in South Wales and working at the factory and seeing no loyalty whatsoever. 

And obviously in today’s age, you can sell direct via the internet, and the subscription model gave us a perfect model whereby with the nappy, obviously customers are coming back every month to be adding additional products to that, products that have a synergy. 

So obviously, we have certified natural skincare for mum and baby, along with our nappies and our wipes. We have baby wear, which is fantastic for gifting, all organic cotton, all multi-award winning, I should add. We’ve won 59 industry awards. 

Bex Burn-Callander: 


Christopher Money: 

And that’s across everything from Best Eco Nappy to Best Toiletries Collection to even the Mother and Baby Award for Best Organic Cotton Baby Wear. 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

Oh, congratulations. 

Christopher Money: 

Thanks very much. 

So we started with a subscription model, but then within 2 to 3 months, we were actually approached by Ocado. They were the first and I think it’s just the reality of the business. 

You know, nappies, we are low margin, high volume, and when a Mr. Ocado comes along and says, “We love your brand, we love what you’re doing, we’d love to be the first British retailer to launch you,” it would be silly to say no. 

So we started with Ocado. We’re now also stocked by Waitrose and Boots as well, so we’re certainly very much omnichannel. 

The bulk of the business is online, but then obviously we supply the key retailers here in the UK, and now we’re in about 35 countries, which just blows my mind a little bit. But everything is moving in the right direction. 

And I touched obviously on our giving back scheme. That is growing and growing and growing as well. It’s an evergreen project for us. It will always be there. Our charitable partner is the World Land Trust, who do absolutely fantastic work. 

Actually, to go back a step, when I launched the brand, I wanted to support people ultimately, and I tried to set up a partnership with Bliss for premature babies, but it turned out they actually had an exclusive with another very well-known nappy brand, so I couldn’t do anything with them. 

But that’s obviously switched my attention to, “Okay, well, we’re a sustainable brand, so what can we do to support the environment?” 

And again, thank God for Google. I Googled for some sort of plant a tree programme, and I saw this amazing quote by Sir David Attenborough that said, “In my estimation, the money that is given to the World Land Trust has more effect on the world than anything else I can think of.” 

So with David Attenborough saying that, then I certainly paid attention. And so I reached out to the World Land Trust, and decided to start supporting their buy an acre fund. 

So we’ve bought land all around the world now really, in Guatemala, Brazil, Kenya, Argentina, Namibia of late so, yeah, we’re having a real impact. 

Protecting rainforests, funding scholarships and buying vital medicines 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

What happens when you buy an acre? Is that to protect rainforest or is that to protect land that might be used for farming? 

Christopher Money: 

Yeah, exactly. So it’s to protect rainforest, first and foremost, but we’ve been able to take it sort of a step further. 

So not only now do we protect that land through local NGOs, so it’s saved forever and obviously the people that live on that land are protected and can live there and earn a living from it for the rest of their lives. 

But we’ve been able to take things a step further. So we also now fund educational scholarships for predominantly girls that live in these areas, so obviously “girl power”. 

And now we also buy vital medicines for these remote communities as well. 

So coming back to that original goal to every time you change a nappy or you give someone a bath, you know someone is benefiting from that purchase, just like Tom’s were doing back in the day. 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

I mean, to play devil’s advocate here, tired, grumpy parents just trying to get nappies on their kids, how much do they care about the world? They are sleep-deprived. 

Are they actually really conscious and thinking about picking a brand that makes an impact in that way? Is that what the modern consumer does now? 

Christopher Money: 

I think ultimately, as a dad of 3, when you are bringing children into the world, you become more conscious of the impact you are having. And we’re certainly seeing that. 

The eco sustainable market is growing year-on-year and families are willing to spend that little bit extra on our nappies. People might think eco nappies are so much more expensive than the mainstream brands, but the reality is it’s only a couple of pounds more a month. 

So people can be quite price-sensitive when it comes to nappies, and then they’ll walk around the supermarket aisle and pick up a bag of kale, but it’s 1 or 2 coffees a month. 

Raising a record-breaking £700,000 (CA$1.2 million) in a week 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

I guess if they are willing to spend a bit more on a premium product that’s really good for their baby’s skin, does that mean that you have to raise less funds because you’ve got people spending a bit more, you retain a bit more of a margin? Or has it been tricky fundraising this brand? 

Christopher Money: 

We’ve grown the brands in a really sort of sustainable, profitable way, which I think is a lot more in fashion nowadays. 

At this moment in time, coming out of the back of the cost of living crisis, when there aren’t sort of available funds that there used to be. So yeah, we’ve raised about £1,000,000 (CA$1.7 million) to date over the 7 years, which I think is a lot less than people might expect. 

We’ve done that from Angels, high net worths. We haven’t taken institutional money at this moment in time. 

So the Angel Investment Network has been a great platform for us. We’ve done a couple of raises over the 6, 7 years. 

We actually had the fastest raise in AIN history about 3, 4 years ago now, where we raised just over £700,000 (CA$1.2 million) in a week. And I think that just goes to enforce again there are people out there that are really passionate about what we’re doing and are willing to support it. 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

And just for our listeners, one week, that compares to an average of 6 weeks, so it really was an astonishingly fast fundraising. 

And you said that it’s more the norm now that you kind of prioritize organic growth versus loads of venture capital and then trying to pursue really aggressive growth goals. 

Is that also because if you are trying to be a sustainable business, it’s kind of at odds with the sort of capitalist mentality of grow, grow, grow, get as big as you can, as fast as you can? 

Do you find that there is a bit of that tension between trying to have this very sustainable switched-on brand, but also being a business? Is there ever a kind of trade-off there as ever quite difficult to make decisions with both of those hats on? 

Christopher Money: 

Look, there were two ways to go about it. So obviously, the route we’ve taken, Emma and I were really keen to retain control over the running of the business for as long as we possibly can. 

Ultimately, we’ve got a very clear vision of what we want the brand to be, and we don’t really want interference in that. 

Now there are several emerging funds that have a different mindset where profit and purpose can live together. So if we do go down that route, then they will be the right sort of partner for us, I think. 

Businesses ultimately have the power to do good and be a force for positive change and I do, I truly believe that profit and purpose can live together and ultimately as a brand, the bigger we get, the more we can help people and planet. 

Because God knows I don’t think we can really rely on government to do the right thing nowadays. So that’s what we set out to achieve, and I think we’re well on the way to doing that. 

Protecting your world also means protecting your home with safer cleaning products 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

And your strap line is quite a catch-all. It seems like you’re leaving a lot of space to bolt on a lot of interesting new products and go in lots of different directions. 

Was that your plan at the start, or did you originally think, “Oh, I’ll just do nappies, or I’ll just do nappies and wipes,” but then as time has gone on, you’ve got more and more ambitious, and your confidence has grown? 

Christopher Money: 

Yeah, I think that’s absolutely right, but to be honest, we have sort of stayed true to the original vision, if you like, and that was to create a brand of sustainable essentials for the family. 

As I mentioned, given my background, it made perfect sense for us to start with nappies and wipes. 

And skincare was kind of a must-have at that time because with the subscription model, at some point, you’re probably going to get a little bit of nappy rash. 

So nappy salve was obviously a good add-on and skincare, hair and body wash, bubble bath, all the essentials you will need. 

But cleaning was part of the original plan and just at the time I really didn’t have the money or the expertise to launch cleaning. 

I met various manufacturers at the time who were telling me, “This is the best thing, that’s the best thing,” and to be honest, I didn’t really know. 

So over the last 6, 7 years, it’s been a real learning curve, if you like, and it just felt like now, with really solid foundations in place, it was the right time for us to branch out and add household cleaning products. 

Any product area that we think we can move into and create better products, then we’re going to try and do that. 

And when you bring your child into the world, you want to do everything to create that safe space for your child, so we’re doing that with all your everyday essentials. 

But when you’re bringing them into the home, some of the most toxic things you can have in your home are cleaning products, chlorine, bleach, et cetera. 

So our range of household cleaning products is 100% plant-derived or vegan, cruelty-free and available with a refillable model and, as ever, some very nice-looking packaging as well. 

So they’re products that do the job and, again, fits really well into our subscription model and makes it really convenient for the consumer. 

And I think, over time, we’ll see some natural product extensions come from that range. As the strap line suggests, it’s all about protecting your world and that includes your home. 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

On the point of cleaning, you’ve just reminded me that I stumbled across my toddler, who’d managed to get a bottle of toilet cleaner out of the bin and was, literally, holding it over her mouth. 

Luckily, the lid was on, and it was empty. But on the subject of toxic chemicals in the home, that was quite a wake-up call. 

But it’s very much a different, I suppose, market approach because when you were going for the nappies, you were kind of a pioneer. 

Whereas in cleaning now, especially eco-cleaning, there’s been such an explosion of different products, there’s a lot of competition, so it’s a slightly different ballgame. 

Does that mean that it’s kind of a trickier approach? Or do you feel that because you’ve got this customer base and the subscription model already set up, they just sort of naturally migrate into these new product lines because they trust you already? 

Christopher Money: 

Exactly that. Obviously with our nappies, with our wipes, we’ve got, to your point, a very loyal customer base in our subscription model. There’s a reason why we’ve won 59 industry awards, and we have more than 2,000 five-star reviews across Trustpilot. 

First and foremost, yes, we have a beautiful-looking brand, but we focus, firstly, on products that work and products that are effective. 

So we saw an opportunity in the cleaning world as well. I think there’s still kind of a general feeling that eco is not as good, or it doesn’t do the job as well as the mainstream products. 

So we saw an opportunity there to come in with the best performing products that are also 100% plant-derived and give back and purchase and protect rainforest. 

So, again, I think with our niche in terms of protecting families and having that loyal subscription base, I think it’s the perfect add-on to our existing product range. 

What kind of impact does star power bring? 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

And back to Emma B, the lovely Emma, you said that you wanted a celebrity on board because that gave you the confidence that you could make more of an impact with a startup, so I’d love to know a bit about what impact she’s had. 

So obviously she’s very much involved in the day-to-day and the product, but in terms of her actual celebrity status, do you feel that you’ve got loads of Spice Girl fans on your customer base? Or how has it played out in terms of winning people’s hearts and minds, getting more people to try the product? 

Christopher Money: 

So it’s a bit heart-in-mouth when you’re launching anything, but when I think back, we didn’t have a lot of money to launch the brand. 

I think people would assume, “Oh, well, Emma Bunton is involved, you had bucket loads of cash to launch.” 

No, we didn’t. 

I think I had just about enough money to buy 1 container of nappies. So any sort of launch was really based on the star power in terms of what Emma could bring to the brand. 

So we had a press day, we had all the major titles come along and meet us and interview Emma and myself at that time. We had Emma’s social media following, which is fantastic. 

But at the same time, the Spice Girls were really sort of pre-social media. So it’s not like Emma came along with 20, 30, 40, a hundred million followers. 

But Emma brings that star power and lots of people, so any product launch, people want to talk to her and understand what she’s doing. 

And she’s so genuine and authentic, and anyone that meets her always say, “Oh, she’s just as lovely as I expected her to be,” because that’s exactly who she is. 

And she has a massive heart, which is such a big reason why she wanted to do it and why the giving back was so important to her as well. So she just brings that star power. 

I always tell people that ultimately as a brand, first and foremost, we’re about producing the best possible products, and then it comes back to the 3 pillars, right? It has to be better for baby, has to be better for our world, it has to give back. 

And then you sprinkle a little bit of Emma Bunton’s Spice Girl magic on it. And, of course, a lot of people who were massive Spice Girl fans are having babies today. So every little helps, as they say. 

Don’t be scared, build up your resilience and innovate 

Bex Burn-Callander: 

And just finally, for anyone who’s starting a business or running a business and would love to get the kind of celebrity power behind them that you have with Kit & Kin, the way that you approached Emma Bunton is just so inspiring. 

It’s just like you are just unstoppable. You’re cold-calling, you went through the agent, you just didn’t give up and you didn’t think, “Oh, I’m going to fail.” 

You just gave it a shot. 

Are there any other bits of advice you’d give anyone who’s looking to recruit a really great name or celebrity to their brand? What were the things that you did that worked really well or that you think would be really impactful? 

Christopher Money: 

So it’s hard to give advice, that’s not a cliché. But there’s a reason why they’re a cliché, and they’re repeated by founders again and again. 

And the first one you absolutely hit the nail on the head there is, you can’t be scared. Don’t be scared to fail. 

You really have to have the courage to go for it, and there’s rarely that sort of opportune perfect time in life where everything lines up, and you have that opportunity to do something. 

When I started Kit & Kin, my wife and I, we were renting. We just had our second boy. He was about 1 years old. The last thing I probably should have done was launch a startup, but ultimately, it was something I really believed in and something I was really passionate about. 

So first and foremost, you’ve just got to go for it. Don’t be reckless, of course, but go for it. 

And then once you’ve started it, don’t be scared to fail again. Test and test and test. That’s the best way to learn. 

You’re going to have to be really resilient. There’s no doubt about that. You’re going to face so many challenges along the way. 

And I’ve always tried to have the mindset to try and find an opportunity in every problem because ever since I started at the factory 20 years ago, thrown in the deep end, just problem after problem, firefighting the whole time. 

I think that’s helped me massively in terms of having a startup because I just tend to roll with the punches and just try and find a positive in any negative. 

And innovation. Innovation is so important as well because, again, coming back to the factory and the complacency there and the lack of investment. 

I’m amazed even 7 years into Kit & Kin when I think, “Oh, surely no one else is going to come into this very busy, busy market,” and then someone always does because they’re looking at what you’re doing and thinking, “Oh, I can do that slightly different. Oh, I can do that slightly better.” 

So you’ve always got to innovate to stay ahead of the crowd. 

But in terms of a celebrity-endorsed brand, I think today’s different. You don’t necessarily need a celebrity to drive your business forward, but if you are going to go down that route, then it comes back to the original one. Don’t be scared. 

If you’re really passionate about something, you really believe in it, then celebrities are normal people as well. Just pick up the phone, reach out, and see what you can do. 

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