A passion for business and a love of a particular savoury snack became the secret ingredients in the Snaffling Pig success story.
Nick Coleman felt his beloved snack, the humble pork scratching, wasn’t getting the recognition it deserved. He decided to do something about it, and in 2015 his big idea—to corner the pork scratching market, came to life with a decidedly small budget—just £500.
Finance is always a consideration for a startup. Reinvesting as the business grew, networking like crazy, and a bold pitch on Dragon’s Den has seen this weaner of a company scale up to a £3million enterprise in just three years.
Dragon’s Den brought Nick into contact with Nick Jenkins, the Dragon behind Moonpig cards and Boomph printed marshmallows, and a much-needed growth investment of £70,000 (£35,000 of which he’s repaid in the first year).
Having outgrown their current premises, Jenkins introduced Nick to a space in the beautiful Berkshire countryside, ironically on an old pig farm. It felt like fate—Nick had to have it.
Being in Berkshire has brought many advantages. Besides the beautiful views, Nick and his team now enjoy excellent transport links to London—just over an hour away, they’re close to Reading and Slough—where many of their clients have headquarters, and Newbury—home to most of their staff.
Nick was attracted to the wealth of talent in the area, commenting that “Staff are the vital element for any small business.”
Snaffling Pig’s workforce is older than the average startup’s, being mostly in their forties.
Nick explained, “Some had ‘done their time’ in London, or commuting up to town, and wanted a better work-life balance. Others had run their own businesses and were looking for a fresh challenge. All have great skills and a thirst for work.”
Nick says he’d encourage anybody to ‘give it a go’ and start a business, “You may make mistakes, and learn as you go, but by doing it in the right location and entrepreneurial environment really helps.”
A veteran of networking, Nick has taken full advantage of the many networking opportunities available in the Thames Valley area, highlighting events run by the Berkshire Growth Hub as great sources of information, Startup Grind and Glug for meeting like-minded entrepreneurs, and Fuckup Nights for a fun evening learning from other’s mistakes.
Today, Snaffling Pig pork scratchings can be found in over 2,500 pubs across the country, gift destinations including John Lewis, grocery outlets including Tesco, and online.
Nick’s hunger for growth means they’re not stopping there. He wants to take on the big boys and is snapping at the heels of Walkers and Lay’s (the world’s largest crisp brand), both owned by PepsiCo. He says his location definitely helps, their UK headquarters are in… Berkshire!