A sustainable jewellery company run by three Business & Entrepreneurship BA(Hons) students, Zennor Glass, is making waves within the new business world. Their story has been picked up by the New Business Magazine and Business Cornwall, among others.
Holly Fowler, Lennie Jones and Ming Dawe, the three founders of the company, create and retail beautiful, unique pieces of jewellery out of sea glass that they find washed ashore.
The girls told us: “Zennor Glass came together after meeting on the course, where they encourage you to establish a start-up while you study. It blossomed through our friendship; we shared a love of the beach and the sea, and formed Zennor Glass as a way of making something creative and beautiful from the treasures we collected from the beaches we visited. We also wanted to raise awareness of keeping our beaches and oceans clean.”
When asked how they grew the business, they said: “A really big part of studying at Falmouth Business School is the potential and opportunity to collaborate and work with other institutes within Falmouth University. Zennor Glass was able to become the business it is today through our collaborations with other students, from Illustration and Photography, for example. The community we formed with other students was also a vital part of creating brand awareness.”
To bring the business from idea to reality, first they brainstormed what the minimum viable product would be. After several weeks of trial and error, they chose to go with necklaces.
After that, they told us: “The rest grew organically. Initially, we financed the business with our own capital, in order to make the first batch. We then promoted our brand through a stall at Falmouth University, after which we reinvested the profits into developing and producing the products that are available today.”
While the three girls take equal responsibility for the business and each take part in all aspects of it, they also take leadership in the areas of their personal strengths.
They told us: “Lennie is mainly in charge of our social media and marketing, Ming is in charge of finance and production, and Holly is in charge of external communications and reviewing product development.”
When asked what they love about running the business, they said: “One of the major highs is definitely when we see someone wearing our jewellery; it’s so rewarding to know that someone is able to wear their own unique piece and carry a memory of the sea wherever they go. We’re also involved in the Falmouth graduation ceremony; celebrating a special day with the students and knowing they are able to take away a piece of Falmouth is amazing!”
Their proudest moment? “Probably getting our first retailer. Knowing other companies were looking at us as a proper business was such a great feeling. We have gone on to stock several retailers across the UK and Ireland since.”
Their plan for 2019 is to keep going: “We want to take everything as it comes and not set anything in stone. As all three of us will be graduating this year, we want to take as many opportunities as possible.”