Friday, December 9, 2022

Believe in your idea

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Sabine Elsässer
Sabine Elsässer is founder and chief editor of the StartupValleyNews Magazine. She started her career at several international direct sale companys. Since 2007 she works main time as a journalist. While that time she learned more about the Startup Scene, what made her start her own Startup Magazine the StartupValleyNews.

YesColours: Feelgood paints in astonishing colours

Please introduce yourself and your startup YesColours to our readers!

J&E: Hi! We are John and Emma, co-founders of the eco-conscious homegrown paint brand, YesColours.

Targeted at the new generation of home improvers, we have created Europe’s first fully recyclable pouch which aims to cut consumer waste and stop paint tins from going straight to landfill.

It’s not just our revolutionary packaging that makes us stand out from the crowd. We are turning the industry on its head to reinvent what it means to be a truly eco-friendly company. Our recyclable pouches start from 1litre, helping to avoid over-ordering at the point of purchase – one the main reasons for the waste generated in the UK. 

Customers can breathe easy knowing we’ve left out any harmful chemicals such as VOCs, APEs, NPEs and microplastics. These important details mean our paint is completely safe for you, your family, your pets and the environment. 

YesColours is more than just paint, we’ve carefully curated a palette using colour theory to support wellbeing through a collection of feel-good shades, whether Joyful or Serene, Friendly or Electric.

Putting people and the planet first is truly at the forefront of every decision we make. We recognise that we need to do our part at making a difference, which is why you’ll spot YesColours in the likes of Sheffield Children’s Hospital. We’ve also partnered with numerous community spaces and mental health charities such as Place2be, Rethink, MindOut as well as NIP cancer recovery.

How did you get the idea of YesColours?

J&E: The initial idea was based around finding a solution to a common problem: trying to recycle paint tins. Currently, only 2% of paint waste gets recycled, with over 55 million litres of paint and 14,000 tonnes of tins going to landfill every year. We put our design experience into action and innovated a completely new type of packaging, one that can be recycled in the home and save time and waste for our customers, cutting out waste at the point of purchase.

We were inspired to create a paint brand that changes the way we decorate for the better, without compromising on colour.

Why did you decide to start with YesColours?

J&E:  The way design can impact how we live has always been fascinating to us. Coming from the branding, product and digital design world —the intersection of how we live, work and travel and how design can impact all of these is astonishing. Creating a space which can improve your mental health, make you feel safe, relaxed or uplifted has never been more important.

So, when considering the home, our most valuable space, it’s important to choose materials, colours and products wisely to create a space that is not only liveable but enables you to live better.

YesColours, is the embodiment of these principles to make sure that if a customer chooses our products, they are doing so with their wellness, but also their creativity in-mind — we want to liberate home decor from the traditional approaches.

What is the vision behind YesColours?

J&E: In terms of the business strategy, this has evolved from a singular vision of how to tackle an environmental problem, to broader considerations around products and initiatives that we feel will have a benefit to our communities. Our considerations are now not only just DTC, but larger commercial projects and opportunities as well as brand partnerships.

We keep sustainability at the heart of how we operate, from our packaging to our supply chains, to our use of raw materials and supporting UK manufacturers. YesColours is Made in Britain accredited.

How difficult was the start and which challenges you had to overcome?

J&E: Supply chain management has most definitely been our biggest obstacle. Starting a business during unprecedented times has been a huge challenge, as it has for many others out there. 

However, without lockdown, we certainly wouldn’t be where we are. It’s enabled us to take the time required to get our brand, our values and our product exactly how we envisaged. 

After 20 years of friendship, having open communication every day is key to overcoming challenges. There are more joyous than difficult days. Humour is key and we’ve got that in bucketloads!

Who is your target audience?

J&E: Homeowners, renters and creatives. We aim to inspire a generation to rediscover their connection to colour with palettes that allow them to unlock their creative edge while being kind to the planet. 

What is the USP of your startup?

J&E: To inspire joy and optimism through feel-good paints in astonishing colours.

Our brand promise is the result of two passions and one commitment, which together are the beating heart of YesColours. First—we love colour. Second—we want to make people feel good, to inspire optimism and hope. Third—we’re committed to sustainability. Together, they establish a set of guidelines that bring our brand to life wherever and however our audiences interact with us. They define all that we do.

Can you describe your typical workday?

J&E: We go through our company’s email first and catch up with queries and orders, then look at our own emails for the day ahead. I’m (Emma) usually working on some form of colour content whether that’s mood boards for clients, creating colour reports or developing colours for new seasons.

There’s always a community project going on too, usually with one of the mental health charities we love to partner with such as Place2Be. 

We’re in an industry that’s going through some exciting changes and we like to think that we’re part of that. Working with such a creative community with a product that is inherently creative and diverse, gives so much room for exciting things to happen.   

The day will always start with a message first thing in the morning, often comical or something to give the other a boost. But so far, there’s never really a typical day! 

Where do you see yourself and your startup YesColours in five years?

J&E: Our mission is to create a future that nurtures creativity and celebrates different cultures to the benefit of our communities, and the world around us.  

Our ambition is also to grow YesColours beyond paints into other verticals — from homeware products to fabrics, to creative pop-ups and community spaces.

We’ll be expanding our product range, developing more innovative paints and packaging, and expanding our team. 

We have excitedly just launched our crowdfunding campaign with Seedrs, which will help us to make our ambitions a reality. 

What 3 tips would you give to founders?

Believe in your idea and always keep hold of that drive and passion which sparked the initial idea. 

Surround yourself with people who share your vision and can offer the skills and advice to help make your idea a reality

And be a nice human… That part really, really matters.

More information you will find here

Thank you John Stubbs and Emma Bestley for the Interview

Statements of the author and the interviewee do not necessarily represent the editors and the publisher opinion again.

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