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Overcoming Challenges to Achieve Business Success

Tue, 15 July 2014

Contributed by Bean2Bed co-founder and Shell LiveWIRE alumnus, Matt Roberts
So much has changed in the seven and a half years since our involvement with Shell LiveWIRE. The exposure and prize money really helped Bean2Bed to grow and helped get the word out there about our unique British made bean bags with guest beds inside. 
Our branding has been refreshed along with a strap line which we love: ‘Comfortably the world's cleverest bean bag’. We now dispatch our beanbags across Europe on a weekly basis. There are now over 30 different covers to choose from in colours, patterns and materials to suit any home or office interior. We are able to do bespoke products, including corporate branding, which have gone down a storm in boutique hotels, libraries, serviced apartments, coffee shops and offices with breakout areas and creativity rooms. Several new products have been developed including our Pet Bed range, our Twin Bean2Bed (a bean bag with two Single Mattresses inside) and a Junior Bean2Bed – perfect for kids and children's sleepovers. During the Olympics we even had the pleasure of supplying the USA and Jamaican Track and Field Team Training Camps with our products – a huge honour in such an exciting period for our country.
There have been many challenges over the years and we've certainly learnt many lessons and improved as a business along the way. It's crucial that every entrepreneur listens to their customers and adapts their product and service accordingly. I have never stopped wanting to learn more and meet other entrepreneurs to become a better, more rounded business person. In fact, I am still in touch with several entrepreneurs that I met through Shell LiveWIRE who are still going strong.
Matt Roberts (Bean2Bed)
Once you sit on a Bean2Bed you fall in love with it, however, I would say getting the exposure is our main obstacle. We love to try new things and have worked with pop-up cinemas, music festivals, Glamping companies and consumer/trade shows however there is still more work to do so that Bean2Bed comes a guest bed solution and the ultimate item of furniture that everyone knows about and wants to own.
My three tips for young entrepreneurs who are just starting out would be to always remain positive, surround yourself with the right people and set goals/targets on both a business and a personal level which excite you.

About Matt Roberts (Co-founder of Bean2Bed)

Matt Roberts is the Co-founder of Bean2Bed, a company that started up in 2004 with a simple aim; to take the humble old bean bag from the 70’s, jazz it up and re-introduce it to the 21st Century. Then put one in every home. After several months of Research & Development, 44 Prototypes, Patent & Trademark applications, the sourcing of materials & finance, and Fire Safety certification, the product was first unveiled on 23 January 2005 at the Soft Furnishings Show at the NEC in Birmingham under the name uLazyB.

You can follow Bean2Bed on Twitter @Bean2Bed.