[A] small Windermere-based business, which makes a range of men’s and women’s underwear that offers great fit and quality for a variety of shapes and sizes and using natural materials, has been named among the 100 small businesses in the UK to be celebrated by Small Business Saturday, the campaign that culminates in the UK’s dedicated day for small businesses on December 3rd.
Created by Shirley Crisp, everything that Unibu designs, dreams, produces, manufactures, sews, stitches and sells was found in Britain and manufactured in British factories. Shirley has sold her Unibu range in her existing lingerie shop for the past year, experiencing support from customers who want to buy a brand that is made in Britain. The company will now be among the select number of businesses to be featured by the Small Business Saturday campaign one per day for the 100 days leading up to Small Business Saturday itself.
“Between five and seven years ago, I definitely got the impression that there was no underwear manufacturing taking place in Britain,” explains Shirley.
“Between three and five years ago, I was starting to get an inkling from talking to many manufacturers that manufacturing could come back to Britain. So I have been developing Unibu over the last two years while running my own lingerie shop in Windermere.”
Small Business Saturday is already the UK’s most successful small business campaign. This is the fourth year of the campaign, which last year saw £623m spent with small businesses across the UK on Small Business Saturday, an increase of £119m or 24 per cent on the previous year. The campaign trended at number one in the UK on Twitter on the day with more than 100,000 campaign-related tweets being sent. Over 75% of local councils supported the campaign, giving considerable national reach into local communities.
The campaign is a great nationwide promotional and marketing tool for small businesses. It is totally free to participate and any small businesses can get involved – from one-man-bands, through to a high growth office, and from tradesmen to social media gurus. In addition to the big day, the campaign also delivers help and advice alongside opportunities to connect with other small businesses. In short, Small Business Saturday exists to support, inspire and promote small businesses.
“The British public has a great affection for small businesses and we continue to see that grow year on year. Small Business Saturday is an exceptional example of collaboration and co-operation with small businesses teaming up in communities around the UK,” explains Campaign Director Michelle Ovens.
“Although the campaign focuses on one day, the goal is to have a lasting impact on small businesses by changing mind-sets, so that people make it their mission to support small businesses all year round. Most people in this country own a small business, work for a small business or know somebody who does, so supporting a small business on Small Business Saturday is absolutely personal.”
Small Business Saturday, which is a grassroots, not-for-profit campaign, was originally founded by American Express in the U.S. in 2010 and it remains the principal supporter of the campaign in the UK, as part of its on-going commitment to encourage consumers to shop small. The campaign also benefits from the backing of leading business organisations including the Federation of Small Businesses and Enterprise Nation. The campaign is also supported by PRS For Music, TalkTalk Business, Vistaprint, Post Office and Clear Channel.