Successful business mum celebrates latest win for 'posh jumble sale' franchise
An entrepreneur and mum-of-two won the Best New Business in London award for her children and baby market stall franchise she started on her sofa.
Cath Harrop, who says she now plans to give eBay a run for their money, had to explain her business, Mum2Mum Market, to judges in a Dragon’s Den-style presentation.
The Wimbledon mum beat 200 entries and received the award at the London Prospects Business Awards, hosted by radio and television presenter, Neil Fox.
She said: "It was quite a shock. I realised when they called my name that I had not prepared a speech.
"I was up against much bigger companies with a lot of investment. I looked at all the other people and I thought there is no chance."
Mrs Harrop, who is six months pregnant with her third child, said she did not even have the benefit of having a glass of wine to calm the nerves.
The organisers said she should enter the national awards, having already won Merton’s Entrepreneur of the Year and Best New Business Award, last year.
Mrs Harrop, of Gap Road, set up the business in 2011, while on maternity leave with her second child Alex, four, and it now has 27 franchises in over 60 locations.
It provides a platform for people to sell their second-hand children and baby clothing, toys and goods in what she describes as a posh jumble sale.
"It is much bigger than I expected it to be, it just shows that if you have one good idea and you work hard at it you can achieve," she said.
Mrs Harrop, who gave up her career as a doctor for the business, hopes to have 100 franchises and said she should be half way there by the end of the year.
She still arranges her own market from Ricards Lodge High School, Wimbledon, which attracts over 500 people each month.
"I never won anything before in my life," she said, "I just had this idea and took the opportunity."
Mum2Mum Market run baby and children’s nearly new sales where mums sell to mums.
Parents can buy and sell baby and children’s toys, clothes, books and equipment at a discounted price.
For further information visit the website.
The awards ceremony was held on Tuesday, June 17 at The Brewery in east London.
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