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The best ‘pivot’ business stories we’ve heard

The best ‘pivot’ business stories we’ve heard

We checked in with a few Premium members to see how they are adapting their businesses.

BY Business Chicks, 7 min READ
 
Brought to you by our friends at BOSS FRAGRANCES.
Four months in and what a wild year it’s been. Plans put on hold, employee numbers fluctuating and revenue streams decimated (or for a lucky few, surging!) All we know for sure is that we’re in this for the foreseeable future, and for many businesses the only option is to pivot. We’ve been so proud to see so many Business Chicks Premium members across the world quickly adapting and flipping their businesses to best serve the current situation. We spoke to a few of them to check in and find out how they’re coping.

Terri Vinson, Founder, Synergie Skin

Synergie Skin has launched its own hospital grade Sanitiser Spray to meet the high demands of hand and surface sprays. “As a chemist and immunology graduate, I am fortunate to have the knowledge and tools to take immediate action in this new climate. I am so proud to say that with Synergie’s vertically integrated structure and nimble manufacturing ability, I have been able to formulate a clean science Sanitiser Spray.” The antimicrobial disinfecting spray is geared to protect skin and provide a barrier against microbes, including Coronavirus. Synergie Skin are also donating 5% of Sanitiser Spray proceeds to the RBWH Foundation Coronavirus Action Fund, an Australian organisation which is leading clinical trials in an effort to prevent, detect, and respond to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Mel Sharpe, Group Operations Director at Food Equity Group, Stretch Italian, General Chao and HospoMarket

We were cheering when we learnt that Mel and her team had converted their restaurant’s favourite dishes into pre-prepared, take home meal kits.  “Our team pulled together and within 24hours of the idea it was ready for sale. I was bursting at the seams proud of everyone’s hustle, expansive thinking and resilience!” As if this wasn’t enough, off the back of pivoting their two restaurants, Stretch Italian and General Chao to take-away services, Mel’s team created and launched a whole new business to support other restaurants in Sydney’s Chatswood and North Shore regions. “Hospitality is being hit so hard and we needed to do something BIG to keep our own restaurants afloat (and as many team members as possible in jobs!) but also felt deeply for other businesses struggling through. So we came up with a concept which includes local hospitality venues, and that is also scalable to other regions.” It’s called HospoMarket and everything from product development, website, design, operations, labels and legals was completed in ten days. HospoMarket is a contactless service delivering chef-made chilled ready meals, meal kits and convenience items to your door. “Our team meetings and comms have all be focused on; “we can”, “what is in our control?”  and “what can we do completely differently to adapt to this changing market?” – literally nothing is off the table for discussion!”

Sarah Cichy, Founder, Piccolo PR

As Founder of PR and digital media agency Piccolo PR, Sarah Cichy’s business is built on the ability to evolve in reaction to the latest communication tools and trends. Never has this been felt more swiftly than COVID-19, with a raft of clients in homewares, kids, travel, wellbeing, beauty, technology and fashion turning to their agency for strategy and story-telling. “Now more than ever we need to keep communication flowing and ensure momentum remains consistent and morale remains high. We are dedicated to supporting and navigating Australian and New Zealand SMBs during this challenging time and have helped them prepare and protect themselves, think smart and think ahead. Because the better you plan, the better chance your business will survive.” When faced with potential client losses, Sarah and her team spent two weeks in full hustle mode. They reached out to hundreds of small and medium-sized businesses across Australia and New Zealand, and ran 30 minute Skype, Zoom and phone calls providing free strategy support, pro-bono. “It’s important that my team know their jobs are secure and morale remains high. Admittedly, I am making a financial loss, however it’s important that I make them know whilst we stay home, we stay together and weather the storm.”

Leanne Haining, Creative Director, Urban Rituelle

When a world pandemic was declared on 12th March 2020, the phones at Urban Rituelle were running hot with stockists and the general public requesting hand sanitiser. Did they currently offer this product? No. But that’s never stood in Leanne’s way before, and within eight days they were ready to launch the product to market. “We are small, nimble and have the ability to get sh#t done! We are known by some of our suppliers as Urgent Rituelle!” It was all-hands on deck for the Urban Rituelle team to pull it off – including extensive research, personally driving around to local suppliers to secure the in-demand ingredients, printing labels in-house, mixing, testing, filling and sharing the news on social media. “Our team are all focused on our business pivot. We are set up to despatch orders out to pharmacy as well as direct to consumer via our online store. We are also doing whatever we can to support our retail partners, the majority who are boutique gift & homewares stores Australia wide.”

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