Published: June 12, 2020 | Updated: June 12, 2020

Ka-ching! The beach experience which proved William was onto a winner with new business

By Andrew Diprose, editor

You could call it the ‘ka-ching moment.’

Because it was while sunning himself on the beach that William Niven realised the women’s gym wear business he had set up as a sideline during the lockdown had – in his words – “morphed into a monster.”

The 25-year-old founded XO LDN after a client of his creative digital agency, UNBXD, suggested there could be a gap in the market for an online gym wear and clothing boutique pitched at females aged 16 to 24.

William and Danni.

Facing the prospect of a quiet period at home as the pandemic crisis took hold – and with his girlfriend, Danni Cotterill, furloughed from her job as a Sales Executive – he seized the moment.

Suppliers in the UK, China and America were sourced while William, who founded Bournemouth-based UNBXD five years ago, used his agency to design and build the ecommerce website and manage the branding and marketing.

Within three weeks there have been:

  • 1,250+ orders.
  • £50k+ sales.
  • Product range expanded to more than 100 items.
  • Deliveries made to addresses all over UK and Europe.
  • Two full-time staff taken on to manage customer service and orders.

William said: “It has been absolutely crazy.

“We’re doing about ten times the amount of business we expected to do.

“It’s morphed into a monster albeit a good monster.”

XO LDN is managed from William’s home with assistance from Danni, 22.

Delivery arrangements are handled remotely avoiding the need for William to be involved.

The 100+ products range from gym tops and leggings through to swimwear and accessories.

William said: “XO LDN is created for fashion forward, free thinking women.

“We pride ourselves on only using proven and tested materials that are comfortable, sustainable, and breathable.

“We’ve been spending heavily on advertising but it’s paying off.

“XO started as a sideline but has turned into a major business which will continue into the future.”

Meanwhile UNBXD has successfully weathered the past three months with four new clients signed up.

The agency specialises in all aspects of branding, web design, marketing and content creation.

It has worked with major clients including Nike, Addison Lee and Pukka Pads and featured in publications such as Forbes, Virgin Startup and the Daily Mail.

Will also has a number of other businesses inside and outside the creative sector, specialising in branding, e-commerce, fashion and lifestyle.

Oh, and that ‘ka-ching moment’ on the beach?

William said: “We’d taken the mobile to the beach and every time an order for XO was received it would go ‘ka-ching’ as in a cash register.

“The phone just never stopped with one ka-ching after another.

“That was the proof that what we’d created was really taking off.”