Botanica founders offer fresh advice – Breakfast with an Entrepreneur

Botanica’s Richard Magney and Nadia Watson speaking at a recent Breakfast with an Entrepreneur event

Global companies like Qantas and the major grocery chains are becoming more attracted to the nimbleness and versatility of small business, according to Co-founder of Botanica cold pressed juice company, Nadia Watson.

Speaking at our recent Breakfast with an Entrepreneur event, Nadia and her partner Richard Magney believe that companies such as Coles, Woolworths and Costco are “more than willing to work with small business offering quality products” because of their flexibility.

“Big food companies can’t change their manufacturing processes – they are so set and regimented. They can’t try new technology or a new recipe because they are just too large. I would say to any small business, don’t be afraid to call the big players. If they say ‘no’ now, they will be calling you later,” Nadia said.

Around 60 small businesses gathered at the breakfast in September to network and hear the pair discuss how they started their cold pressed juice business in 2013 after quitting their jobs in commercial banking and law.

They told the attentive audience that the huge drive in today’s society towards healthier foods without additives or preservatives and manufactured using high pressure processing was also opening opportunities for smaller players.

“This is the fastest growing technology. Major players including Coke, Pepsi, Unilever and Starbuck are all moving from heat pasteurisation of juice to high pressure processing. All the major players are looking for fresh, natural food and beverage products. I think we are going to see a huge growth in this country,” Richard said.

Botanica is taking advantage of this trend investing in high pressure machinery and expanding into food products.

According to Nadia, as they only use Australian fruit and vegetables, they have decided to move their operations to regional NSW to cut transport costs and to work more closely with local farmers to ensure they “grow what we need”.

In order to attract government funding and private investors, they are also exploring ways of working with other food manufacturers and export opportunities for the US and Asian market.

In just three years, they secured major suppliers including Qantas and Harris Farm Markets and established a company with a predicted turnover of over $4 million this year.

Other interesting insights from Nadia and Richard included:

  • Don’t expect to get your product right first go and be bold in asking for advice if someone has information that will help your business grow.

“When we first started, we didn’t have the product that we have now. It was originally an unpasteurised juice in a glass jar with a four-day shelf life. We changed formulations and switched to plastic packaging. We went through six months of real pain to tweak our product,” Nadia said.

  • Because of limited finances, they focused on ‘marketing through being accessible’ rather than on campaigns and materials.

“In the first two to three years we invested time, effort and money into making sure that when a customer walked into a café, our products were always visible and well-stocked,” Richard said.

  • Resilience and a love for your product are the top necessities for an entrepreneur.

“It is actually not skills that are the key – you can rent the skills you need at the right time. It all comes down to how much you desire to win. You may not always love your business but if you love your product you will have that will to win,” Richard said.

  • When working in a partnership don’t make decisions quickly or lightly. As both personal and professional partners, Richard and Nadia say they don’t always agree and ‘interrogate” each other’s business decisions to ensure the best result.

“If we always agreed with each other we would fail,” Richard said.

Share the Post:

Find the Right Digital Solution for Your Business

Related Posts

Martin Rogers
Chief Executive Officer

Martin holds an extensive background and certification in Business, Marketing, and Strategy with over 20 years’ experience specialising in Strategic Thinking, Business Growth, Leadership and Team Development, across a number of industries. Martin utilises a collaborative leadership style and has a thirst for problem solving, understanding the latest trends and identifying the uniqueness that gives businesses their edge.

Mark McCrea
Chief Operations Officer

Mark McCrae stands out as a highly efficient Operations professional, known for his strategic oversight and management prowess within the corporate landscape. With years of experience under his belt, Mark has become synonymous with operational excellence, streamlining processes to enhance productivity and drive sustainable growth. Mark's forward-thinking approach and unwavering commitment to excellence have solidified his reputation as a cornerstone of operational success.

Razz Khan
Chief Marketing Officer

With over a decade of experience, Razz has a proven track record of driving growth and enhancing the digital footprint of various brands across multiple industries. His expertise spans across SEO, PPC, content marketing, social media strategies, and analytics. Razz is known for his innovative approaches to solving complex marketing challenges. Razz's passion for digital marketing, combined with his commitment to client success, makes him a valuable asset to any team looking to elevate their digital presence..

Greg Kay
Chief Commercial Officer

Greg has more than 25 years success in working with many for the development and implementation of growth strategies for businesses by building strong relationships through effective partnerships. Greg constantly strives for opportunities to have a positive influence in the personal and business lives of the people he works with.

Chris Wilborn
Contracts Manager And Advisor

Chris is a results-driven leader with a wealth of knowledge derived from his more than two decades in the NGO, corporate and government sectors. As a current business owner, from his prior work as a growth-minded CEO and a background working with disability organisations, Chris is deeply passionate about the NDIS, small business community and the central role they play in the fabric of our society.

Lindsay Munns

As a long term member of the Realise Business Board, Lindsay has temporarily stepped into this key role to facilitate the changeover of Chief Executive as part of our CEO succession strategy. Additionally he is busy leading the roll out of a major new Government contract that will take Realise Business up to the next level of its vital place in the NSW Small Business Advisory scene.

Marisa Barresi
Office / Client Coordinator
- Business Connect

Shanice Bangar
Events / Client Coordinator - Digital Solutions

Mona Bucog
Event Coordinator

Over the past 12 years, Mona has honed her skills in customer service, specializing in managing and addressing a wide range of customer needs. She’s dedicated to providing exceptional service and ensuring customer satisfaction. Her experiences have helped her develop skills that assist organizations in achieving their goals. Her ultimate aim is to help them focus on what they love, and she will take care of the rest!