Hair Anywhere: Maintaining Merseyside’s locks…
Hair: Anywhere is a hairdressing salon with a difference… The converted ambulance is designed purposely to meet everyone’s requirements; from a ramp for customers that may need it, to their social mission in providing haircuts for the homeless, asylum seekers and refugees, Hair: Anywhere sees and acknowledges people struggling, aiming to make people feel good and help them on their way to success.
With an early passion for hair, Frankii Panchoo completed her training at Sassoon Academy in London. After graduating in 2007, she found herself hairdressing on the side with other commitments taking priority. Frankii’s further studies had her frequently traveling around; tied in with the fact she was also working as a Deliveroo rider made her unknowingly start to build a business idea in her own head:
‘Wouldn’t it be great if I had a workspace that I could take with me wherever I go?’And so, Hair: Anywhere was born!
In 2020 Frankii moved back to Liverpool and decided to reach out to The Women’s Organisation:
‘They were so encouraging and helped me get my vision out of my head and into a coherent business plan. That was the first really important step.’
Whilst researching the best funding options and vehicle choices, Frankii saw an email from Deliveroo. They were inviting riders to apply for their Big Pitch competition for a chance to win some start-up money for a potential business. Frankii entered and received news that she was in the top 5.
‘It was such a thrill, especially as I was the only female in the cohort.’
She pitched for £10K but ended up winning £25K to start her business!
Hair: Anywhere isn’t satisfied with creating beautiful dos, but also wants to give back to the Merseyside community. This has always been Frankii’s goal:
‘I want my business to add value to the community by bringing choices to people whose circumstances usually limit them.’ By creating an environment for all, Hair: Anywhere is dedicated to reaching all clientele, wherever they are.
‘That’s why it was important to me that the space is fully accessible and why a percentage of the business operating times will provide haircuts to people who can’t afford them.’
Starting a business during a global pandemic comes with even more challenges, but Hair: Anywhere used these to their own advantages.
‘Being able to design the salon space while COVID has unfolded, has meant I can address the need for the highest hygiene practices in line with industry standards, without it dominating the experience.’
With starting a business there can be a lot of research that goes hand in hand, but it’s making sure you know where to research.
‘I was very fortunate to find a pitching coach via a TedEx Talk on YouTube, David Beckett of BestThreeMinutes.com, who helped me prepare for my pitch competition, along with Deliveroo’s mentoring team as part of the competition coaching process. When I look back at where I started from where I am now, one of the consistent feelings/thoughts I have is: ‘Where do I start?!’ But what’s always key is that I just started ‘something’ and that something has always led me to the next step.’
For Frankii, the process has been positive, the build and completion of the van is the priority now. As soon as checks are done and signed off, Frankii hopes to launch in the autumn. With the pandemic lasting for just over a year, many would feel disheartened, but Frankii says, ‘I guess that’s one of the things COVID taught us, is that you never know when thinking out of the box becomes a natural solution.’
Hair: Anywhere is a story that proves you can turn the negative into the positive. If you have been inspired by Frankii’s story and are interested in starting or growing a business of your own, then Enterprise Hub could help!
If you would like to get in touch with Hair: Anywhere here is a list of their Facebook page and Instagram page:
Get in touch if you are thinking of starting a business in the Liverpool City Region or have a new business under 42 months old. You can speak to our team via firstname.lastname@example.org or 0151 706 8113.