Continuing our Business Bites series we spoke to Mark from The Paddy Box, a service that allows you to purchase and ship a piece of Ireland in a box to loved ones abroad. Mark explained the idea behind the business and how things have been since it’s launch.
How did you decide on the idea for the Paddy Box?
I run a few different businesses so I’m always on the look out for opportunities. The Paddy Box has been in my mind for a long time and I’ve really taken my time and been quite thorough in the planning of it. After the emigration rush, we watched our friends, family, colleagues and every Mary & John from down the road who would spend hours crafting the perfect care package for their loved one abroad.
Deciding what those loved ones miss most from Ireland and trying to condense it into one box was a serious task. People were tackling different shops, comparing prices and arranging the perfect care package, not to mention spending a fortune getting the package sent overseas. We knew there had to be an easier and cheaper way for people to send Irish care packages abroad, and after a lot of work and research, The Paddy Box was born.
How difficult was it to get up and running and what were the challenges?
Getting it up and running has taken quite some time. As I mentioned, I’ve been very thorough in terms of my research for the product. I spent a lot of time sending out surveys on the products to include, our branding, sourcing products and negotiating a competitive price for them.I also had to make sure we had a really robust , efficient and reliable postage service with again a really competitive price.
The brand personality itself has also taken quite some time. I want it to appeal to modern Irish people and make it something they can relate to. There have been some big challenges over the course of the start-up. Sourcing the correct boxes that are big and sturdy enough to hold our items, getting the website up and running was quite time consuming and getting the branding to where I wanted it has been a challenge. It’s been a really great experience throughout and I’m learning more and more everyday. I’m so excited about growing the product range and reaching a wider audience over the coming months.
How has business been since the launch and how has it been received?
Since the launch, it’s been crazy. We did a media drop to a lot of media outlets and they absolutely loved it. I’ve even been interviewed on National radio by Al Porter from Today FM, I’ll also be appearing on Ireland AM on TV3 on December 1st. Since the features and radio interview, orders have been flooding in from all over the world and we’re working around the clock to fulfil each one.
It’s been such an exciting couple of weeks and long may it continue. We’ve received lots of kind messages from people all over the world telling us how great the idea is and showing their support so it’s really great to see people connecting with it and getting behind us. We’ve had so many people ordering from Ireland, for loved ones abroad as well as people living abroad that miss their favourite Irish treats, ordering for themselves.
For more information on The Paddy Box you can visit the website here.
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