I’ve finally met one of my business heroes! A few days ago I set my alarm for 4am and travelled down to Birmingham to meet multi millionaire Theo Paphitis. As mentioned in earlier Selby Times & Post columns I won the Small Business Sunday (SBS) prize earlier in the summer and have been looking forward to the trip ever since. Theo had various senior executives from his retail stores on hand to meet and greet us as we arrived and put any nervousness we had at ease. He owns the high street retail stores Rymans, Boux Avenue, Robert Dyas and 50% of Red Letter Days. Some of these had gone into administration when he purchased them, so it was great listening to how they had gone from nothing to high street favourites in just a few years. I introduced myself to the various other winners and we discussed our own businesses and how trade has been slowly improving from the recession. Theo arrived in the room and did a great Question and answer session. We was allowed to ask anything, and many discussions took place about his business and personal background. He showed us the new and improved SBS website and how we are allowed to edit our own profiles and site pages. After lunch we took it in turns to have our photo taken with him. When I won back in July, I sent him a trophy like the one in the photo as a thank you. The first thing he said to me was ‘I’ve got one of those in my office!’ I was quite chuffed he remembered and I asked him to post a photo of it on his twitter page for his 400,000 followers to see. In future columns, I will let you know about the other parts of the prize once the terms and conditions have been agreed.

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We are pleased to announce the merger of LRB Trophies with Cameo Engraving in York and The Trophy & Print Shop in Norton.

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