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We have recently changed our monthly business person award and split it into male and female. Mainly because we wanted to celebrate twice as many successful people in Torbay as we were doing. There is a lot of great hard-working talent out there, so the more people we can award, the better!

Our first official business woman of the month goes to the incredible Hannah Kernick. Hannah owns H&Co hair salon who have been in the news recently for winning a number of industry awards (more of that later). Hannah can now add the Torquay Online business woman of the month to her growing list of accolades.

I recently asked Hannah a few questions about her business (and awards), so here are her own words of wisdom that can hopefully inspire more local people to start their own business and become a huge success.

Give a brief explanation of your business and what you do…

H&Co is a multi-award winning hair salon in Babbacombe, Torquay.  We provide a full range of hairdressing services including hair extensions and keratin smoothing. The business was set up last June so we’ve been running for 17 months.

How did you get into starting the business?

I’ve been Working in the hair industry since I was 14. I’ve always wanted to run my own salon and when the location in Babbacombe came up I felt it was the right time and place to give it a go.

What’s the most rewarding part of running the business?

For ladies, their hair is very important, so getting to make people feel good about themselves on a daily basis is definitely the most rewarding part of the job. Because we employ several amazing hairdressers, I can have that effect on a larger scale than I could do on my own.

What has been the most difficult part of it?

Staffing in terms of recruiting the right people and motivating them to have the same vision as myself. Employment as a whole have been by far the most difficult part of my business so far.

Any plans to expand in the future?

Yes, eventually I would like to have a beauty salon and dedicated gents salon too.

Any advice to young people in the area looking to start a business?

My advice is to make sure you do your research in to the marketplace and create a good business plan with a realistic cash flow forecast. Understand who you are targeting in terms of clients and demographics and ensure everything you do is geared towards your target market.  

Also, read to find out how others have been successful in business and be prepared to work very very hard for not alot of reward for the first 12 months.

H&Co’s Recent Award Wins

This is a recent exerpt detailing H&Co’s fantastic performance at the HJ’s British Hairdressing Business Awards 2018. 

H&Co Hair Salon from Babbacombe, Torquay has been named as one of the country’s brightest hairdressing stars having won three awards at the HJ’s British Hairdressing Business Awards 2018 regarded as the most prestigious awards in the UK.

H&Co Hair Salon collected the Customer Care Award, Salon Design Award and Independent Salon – Business Newcomer Award.  In the past 20 years of the Awards history, only one other salon in the UK has won 3 awards in the same year and in 2018 H&Co were the only salon in the UK who had been nominated as finalists in 4 categories

The ecstatic team collected their hat-trick of prizes during a star-studded ceremony, hosted by TV presenter Vernon Kay. Held at the Park Plaza Hotel in London, the event was attended by over 800 hairdressers, VIPs and household names.

The salon, which is less than two years old, impressed the judges’ thanks to their ability to create the perfect customer journey; their innovative eye for salon design as well as their business plan and overall growth during the past year.

Jayne Lewis-Orr, executive director of the British Hairdressing Business Awards said;

“Huge congratulations to the team at H&Co Hair Salon on winning the hat-trick at this year’s awards! They are fantastic ambassadors for the industry with skills and vision that make them the perfect winners. Through these awards, we champion and celebrate the very best within British hairdressing – everyone from the Front of House Team to the Business Director. Hairdressing is often undervalued as a career choice despite the opportunities it affords people including worldwide travel as a session stylist, flexible working as well as a creative and business outlet for driven individuals.

“There are over 40,000 hairdressing, barbering and beauty businesses in the UK, with the number growing daily. The industry employs nearly 300,000** individuals with over half being self-employed and it is a hugely innovative industry and one we are all incredibly proud to work within.”

Launched in 1998, HJ’s British Hairdressing Business Awards promote professionalism, innovation and excellence, while recognising those individuals and teams who work tirelessly to raise the profile of the hairdressing industry, with previous winners including Toni&Guy, Rush, Electric and Lee Stafford.

Commenting on winning the award, Hannah Harry of H&Co Hair Salon, said,

“I am literally speechless, it’s amazing to have won not one, but three awards! We are new salon, only 18 months old and completely unrecognisable from the 1970’s little salon in Torquay we once were. I wanted to create an award-winning salon and I have – I am so proud! I have to thank my husband, business coach, Penny Etheridge, the salon team and my clients – they’re all amazing!”


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