SME

Published: October 16, 2019 | Updated: October 16, 2019

‘Be Kind, Be Brave, Be Curious’ – Founder’s ‘inspirational’ message to fellow entrepreneurs

Tom Mercer, Founder of MOMA (Making Oats More Awesome),left, with Warren Munson, Founder of Evolve and Inspire.
By Andrew Diprose, editor

An entrepreneur who has built a multi-million pound food company said his guiding business principles were “Be Kind, Be Brave, Be Curious.”

Tom Mercer, Founder of MOMA (Making Oats More Awesome), was speaking at the opening event of the week-long Evolve Business Festival, held at Bournemouth’s Pavilion Dance.

Addressing fellow entrepreneurs and founders, the former management consultant spoke of his success in finding a gap in the market for healthy on-the-go breakfasts.

During the last decade his company has gone from a makeshift store on Waterloo Station to having its products stocked in supermarkets, trains and airlines.

Mr Mercer said he summed up his guiding business principles to one of his children as:

  1. Be Kind: Respect people you meet along your journey, they will always meet you again somewhere and you want them to be good to you when they do.
  2. Be Brave: Hard work and persistence will enable you to be a success, maybe not in your first idea, business or product but keep on going and it will eventually pay off.
  3. Be Curious: Challenge the normal, don’t accept that because it’s been done that way for years that it has to be so now. Just because nobody has thought of it before doesn’t mean you can’t make it, sell it or teach it.

One of those present, Darren Mooney, Creative Director and Founder at Global Brand Communications, said the event was “incredible” and that Mr Mercer’s talk had been “inspirational.”

The keynote speech was followed by a Q&A with a panel of entrepreneurs and founders from successful local businesses.

They included Arabella Lewis-Smith, Founder and Managing Director of Salad Creative; Barbara Cox, Founder of NutriChef and award-winning nutritionist and specialist health consultant; Mark Cribb, Founder of Urban Guild, and Cheryl Hadland, Founder and Chief Executive Officer of Tops Day Nurseries and Hadland Care Group.

Warren Munson, Founder of Evolve and Inspire, who hosted the evening, said: “It’s great when you host an event and you get such good feedback from those attending about how much they’ve taken away with them.

“My key takeaway was that you need to remain passionate about ideas and your business while being objective.”

Forming part of Bournemouth’s BOMO Festival, the Evolve Business Festival was held from October 9 to 16 in locations across Bournemouth and Poole.