INTERVIEW: Craig Sams (part 2)
In the second installment (part one) of our Craig Sams interview series we discover how hard it was creating two astoundingly ethical companies: Green & Blacks and Whole Earth Foods.
CityHippy: Craig, what would you say was the biggest barrier you encountered in setting up Green & Blacks and Whole Earth Foods and how did you overcome it?
Craig Sams: Capital deficiency – so we worked very hard, spent very little, did everything on a shoestring. It meant that each innovation cannibalised the previous success, which became a cash cow for as long as it could. It’s not the right way to build up a business, but we never had any money and didn’t trust anyone else to really stay on message about the principles of what we were doing.
Great bit of accidental business wisdom there and as at least one successful and respected venture capitalist / business angel will tell you it is often actually better to have less money when starting a business than more. Less money tends to ensure you spend it wisely.
Also Craig's (& Co) committment to their principles meant not bringing people in just for the money...in any ethical business it seems wiser to stick to your ethical guns rather than go for the quick cash and compromise what is essentially the ethical core of the operation.
In part three Craig tells us about the sale of Green & Blacks to Cadbury's and why he believes that without selling to Cadbury's Green & Blacks would have literally run out of organic chocolate. Heaven forbid!!!