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FEATURE James and James


James Hyde


CEO and Co-founder, James and James Fulfilment


Fulfilment company celebrates £11million investment and second Queen’s Award


You are celebrating 10 years in business, congratulations, but how did it start and why? James Strachan and I met studying Manufacturing Engineering at the University of Cambridge. After we graduated, we tried a few entre- preneurial ventures together, which didn’t take off, and we ended up working for an online honey seller to pay the bills. Tey used an outsourced fulfilment provider to store the stock and


send it to customers, but the service was entirely paper-based and consequently unreliable – they once sent every order out twice! We looked around for alternatives, but were surprised that every oth-


er provider was similarly dated. Nobody was using web-based technol- ogy to connect with eCommerce platforms like Shopify and process the orders automatically. We saw an opportunity to create that technology.


8 ALL THINGS BUSINESS


We originally planned to sell it as software. But


the clients we spoke to really wanted a service. So we hired the corner of someone else’s warehouse and started offering the service, powered by the software we’d developed.


In 2016 you moved from Cambridge to Brackmills, Northampton. What attracted you to Northampton and which other locations were you considering? We’d ended up working out of two small indus- trial parks around Cambridge, but we’d outgrown our latest building again and needed something bigger. Most larger properties in Cambridge are part of science parks and the rents are similarly expensive, plus we wanted to be closer to major transport routes and courier hubs. So Northampton was an obvious choice. Te move meant we could get more frequent and later collections from


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