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Entrepreneurs Panel

Charlie Mullins
Richard O'Sullivan
David Pollock
Tony Caldeira
Brian Hay
Jennie Johnson
Debbie Pierce
Julie Meyer
Jeremy Roberts
Michael Oliver
Laura Tenison
Steve Purdham

How do i attract celebs to my venture?

Jeremy Roberts

Joined forces with Tim Bacon in 1996 to set up Life Restaurants, which launched the Via Vita restaurant chain. They opened the Living Room on Deansgate in 1999 -the first of a 13-unit chain that their company, Living Ventures, sold in July 2007 for £28 million – and did a deal with The Restaurant Group in 2005 which saw the pair take control of the Est Est Est estate, since rebranded as Blackhouse Grill and Gusto.

Question: 

I’m launching a boutique-style fashion venture and hoping to get a few celebs through the door – the area I’m thinking of has a fair few to go at. Any advice on getting them in, and will they expect freebies?

Answer: 

If the “celebrity” matches your product and the association feels appropriate then it will be a superb endorsement for your business, particularly if they are happy for the media to mention it.

If you are having a launch party/open day to establish your business then this is a natural opportunity to invite well-known personalities, either through associates who have a person al connection or via their agents. Otherwise, to avoid it appearing contrived, it is better for them to find you, albeit on your terms.

This is fundamentally a business transaction so incentives (or freebies!) are always going to be requisite – but whether this is just as a one-off introduction or an ongoing arrangement depends entirely on the value you see from their involvement.

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