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Meet Wholey Moly
Wholey Moly, who began trading in July 2018, produce healthy vegan cookies. They currently sell their products in premium retailers such as Selfridges, Wholefoods, Daylesford farm, and over 200+ independents and coffee shops.
Founder, Meenesh Mistry, who previously worked in finance, started the business with the aim to make tasty treats that are vegan friendly, contain 100% natural ingredients, and zero refined sugars.
We sat down with Meenesh, who shared details of his businesses success so far.
What motivated you to start your business?
Wholey Moly was founded by me and my wife, Parul. The idea for Wholey Moly came from our frustration of working in a corporate office where the 3pm slump is greeted by a bombardment of sugary and empty calorie treats – donuts, cakes, biscuits and chocolates.
We wanted that sweet treat with our afternoon cuppa, but still wanted it to be good for us. And so the naturally healthier cookie was born – vegan-friendly cookies that are made from 100 per cent natural ingredients and no refined sugars, but still tastes like a damn good sweet treat with your that afternoon tea.
What has been the most memorable moment in your business journey so far?
When we started out, we set ourselves goals of where we wanted to take the business, they were mostly just wild dreams, one of which was to launch our cookies into Selfridges.
At the time we had zero experience in food retail, and that seemed unrealistic – something which you set your sights on but never in a million years believe will actually come to pass. But, lo and behold, that’s exactly what happened, we launched into Selfridges in July 2018 – our very first stockist – and that was quickly followed by Whole Foods, As Nature Intended and Sourced Market.
We are still rubbing our eyes when we see our friends and family sending us pics of them in Selfridges purchasing something we created in our kitchen.
When did you realise your company would need a barcode?
It was when we were designing the packaging and we started looking into what would be necessary.
Where do you sell your products?
Mostly in retail stores such as Selfridges, Wholefoods, Dayleford, and many more. We also sell on Amazon.
What is a typical day like for you?
As cliched as it sounds, there's no one typical day. As a founder, I am juggling, sales, operations, marketing, finance, branding, strategy and product development. I try to only focus on one thing per day so I give it my full attention.
What lessons have you learnt from running your own business?
Develop personal resilience – you will get a lot of setbacks and rejections, so learn to ride with the punches! Plan ahead for everything, execution is just as important as the business idea. Follow your gut!
What’s the biggest challenge for your business - what keeps you up at night?
We are currently scaling up the business, and that brings a lot of challenges in finance, growth, people and processes.
What is your biggest priority in the short term?
To secure a large retailer listing.
Tell us an interesting fact about yourself?
Gary Lineker once bought a Wholey Moly cookie off me.
Who inspires you?
Sir Alex Ferguson, greatest football manager of all time, won it all and did it with different players in different eras.
Where do you turn for business guidance and support?
Bread & Jam and Young Foodies are great business communities for food start-ups, and Enterprise Nation are also great in a more general business sense. I'm also on the Natwest Accelerator, which is great for business advice and guidance.