From midwife to online entrepreneur
A stay-at-home mum and former midwife didn’t let the coronavirus pandemic stop her from sharing her love for cloth nappies with the launch of her very own online business with the support of the Go For It Programme, in association with Ards and North Down Borough Council.
Laura Donaldson from Bangor, Co. Down, launched Baby of Mine in May 2020 as an online business offering high-quality reusable and eco-friendly cloth nappies to parents across the United Kingdom and Europe.
The stay-at-home mum of two spotted the business opportunity after using cloth nappies on her second child. She fell in love with the outstanding benefits the product provides to both parent and child.
Talking about her business idea, Laura explained “I started using cloth nappies with our second child, when he was around four months old, and quickly became a huge advocate.
“I would never go back to using disposable nappies as cloth helps protect my son’s skin from the chemicals that disposables are made from. There is also huge savings to be made with using cloth. Plus you can reduce your household waste by up to half.”
“My passion for caring for parents and babies had never left me after leaving my job as a midwife. That, combined with a love for cloth nappies, gave me the idea for a business that would allow me to introduce families to the benefits of reusable nappies.”
The leap from idea to launch
Laura turned her idea into a reality after taking part in the Go For It Programme. The programme is delivered free of charge by a team of experienced business mentors through Northern Ireland’s wide network of enterprise agencies.
Go For It provides expert advice and help with developing a robust business plan to help turn ideas into a commercial enterprise.
Laura said; “The Go For it Programme was fundamental in helping me get Baby of Mine up and running. My assigned business advisor provided me with so much specific help and guidance, which was amazing.
“She helped me to write my business plan, which included projected sales figures for the first two years and sales and marketing targets that would help with business growth. Without this help and support I don’t think the business would be where it is today. I can’t believe this service is free of charge as it was so helpful.”
Maeve Killingbeck, Business Advisor with North Down Development Organisation Limited on behalf of Ards and North Down Borough Council said: “We are delighted to see Laura’s business up and running and doing so well in the first few months of online trading, especially under these difficult circumstances.
“She came to us with a clear idea for a business, driven by a passion to share her love for cloth nappies with other parents. We worked with Laura virtually throughout the lockdown phase of the Coronavirus pandemic to help her develop a business plan. It focused on key elements such as e-commerce, product sourcing, sales and marketing and a two-year financial forecast that gave her a clear roadmap to successfully launching her online business.”
This project is part funded by Invest Northern Ireland and the European Regional Development Fund under the Investment for Growth & Jobs Northern Ireland (2014-2020) Programme.
If you have a business idea you’d like to develop or if you are thinking about starting a business contact the Go For It Programme on 0800 027 0639.