Tom Hutchinson Design

Tom Hutchinson has seen his business benefit from worldwide backing

Tom Hutchinson has seen his business benefit from worldwide backing

First published in Profiles

A YOUNG designer is growing his business after raising more than £10,000 from world wide backers to launch his venture.

After exhibiting one of his homeware designs in 2013, York St John University graduate Tom Hutchinson identified a market for his products.

Mr Hutchinson, who is entering Young Entrepreneur of the Year while submitting Tom Hutchinson Design for New Business of the Year, said: "Throughout my time at university I had often supported other creative projects on crowdsourcing websites, one of which was Kickstarter.

"After considering the start-up costs my business would need, I felt crowdsourcing would be a perfect opportunity for the business.

"I developed the Obtineo range to include a print, dish, vase and storage jars. This enabled different price points on the campaign, giving backers a variety of rewards to choose for their pledge amount."

Mr Hutchinson contacted craftsmen throughout the UK to see if they were interested in working on the project, and found a variety of artisans that were excited to produce Obtineo.

Mr Hutchinson said: "During research, it was disheartening to read about the decline of the thriving glass industry that used to exist in the northeast, and this renewed our determination to keep every aspect of production UK-based, to support the industries that do remain here.

"I’m so pleased to say I’m working with one of the few remaining felt factories in the UK and a glassworks that can trace its roots back to 1612."

The campaign was launch in March this year, and in 30 days generated £10,815 in pledges from 122 backers worldwide, with Mr Hutchinson currently fulfilling the backer rewards.

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