159 – Tips for Trading With the EU as a Small Business – Rachel Bowditch

How Rachel Bowditch discovered a gap in the market and turned it into a thriving business with loyal fans.

Alice Bow became an overnight sensation when it was reported that the Duchess of Cambridge was a big fan.

Rachel discusses how she rapidly grew her business overnight by bringing her manufacturing in house. 

She also has some great tips about how to protect your brand’s IP, as well as how small businesses can trade with the EU post-Brexit.


  • How Rachel spotted a gap in the market for comfortable insoles 01:53
  • Why you should make a decision from the start to not treat your business like a hobby 05:39
  • How to get manufacturers to take you seriously when you are a start-up 06:20
  • Sourcing raw materials from trade shows 08:43
  • Becoming an overnight sensation when it was announced that the Duchess of Cambridge was a fan of the brand 10:50
  • How to deal with spikes in demand when you are a small brand 15:10
  • How they get their leathergoods made in London 19:30
  • Rachel explains how the UK-EU trade agreement works for businesses that make in the UK but sell to the EU 20:54
  • Why you need to keep an audit trail 26:06
  • How to get your paperwork right 27:42
  • Why it’s important to communicate with your EU customers 28:43
  • How to protect your design IP from competitors 32:37
  • What the new EU VAT changes mean for small businesses 49:10

More about Rachel Bowditch and Alice Bow

Alice Bow Website

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