So tell me a bit about eporta and how it came about ?

It began when I bought a flat in Brixton and set about furnishing it. I really struggled to find great items to decorate with. I believe that good design makes life easier and happier, whether it be at home or in the workplace. I was asking myself, why is it so hard to find great pieces? Is it that no-one is making them? When I did more digging, it became clear that there were amazing makers out there! Their issue was how expensive it was to get their work seen. Which meant interior designers, property developers, builders, architects and other industry members were finding it hard too. It was clear that sourcing needed to be simplified. eporta combines my love of efficiency with my love of design, the cherry on top, is making people’s every day a little easier.

What are the big goals in 2018 for eporta?

Lots of things! We’re moving office and doubling the size of our team. We have a great range of suppliers of furniture, lighting and accessories, but we want to broaden our offering into finishes; such as fabrics and tiling. Beyond expanding our product categories, we are driving the business forwards internationally. Our trade buyers already come from 80 different countries worldwide, but we don’t have an office anywhere besides London, so we’re looking at where a second office could be.

Aneeqa Khan - Alison Cork's Inspirations
Aneeqa Khan - eporta
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How did you and Alison Cork become acquainted?

Alison found us, some of the products she has designed are on eporta. As the CEO, she reached out to invite me for coffee, we’ve been friends since!

And her scheme, Make it Your Business, how did you come to be involved with it?

I have taken part in several events that ‘Make it Your Business’ have put on; both as a member of a panel and as a speaker. I love what she’s doing, so I’m always happy to support the initiative.

As someone who founded their own business, what was a hurdle that you had to overcome?

It takes a lot of courage to start your own business. You start with nothing, and you’ve got to be very comfortable with having nothing for a while. It can be a psychological roller coaster, one day can be the best day in the world, then the next can be terrible - in fact, it can be up and down in the same day! This can be especially hard when you start out and don’t have a team around you.

eporta - Alison Cork's Inspirations
eporta
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Focusing on design, would you say that you or your home has a style that you could define?

I’m not sure that I can label it, but it’s quite eclectic! I love using colour, beige isn’t my thing, so it’s about finding a balance between colourful and fun yet calming. An all-white space is just too jarring for me, but there is such a thing as too much colour when it almost becomes chaotic. So, happy colourful zen?

Finally - Are you more Victorian Elegance, Boutique Chic or Scandi Retro?

That's a hard one, probably a combination of Scandi Retro and Victorian Elegance.

BIO:

eporta is an interiors sourcing platform solely dedicated to trade professionals. Their mission is to make sourcing simple, enabling people and products to meet and bring great design to life.

Make It Your Business is a nationwide initiative to encourage and support women to start their own business. It is free to join and a not-for-profit organisation.

Make It Your Business - Alison Cork's Inspirations
Make It Your Business aims to encourage and support UK women in business
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The initiative runs events all over the country, where women can meet established local female entrepreneurs and network with other local aspiring female entrepreneurs, in a relaxed and enabling environment.

Make It your Business is part of the The National Women’s Enterprise Network, a not-for-profit organisation founded by entrepreneur, writer and broadcaster Alison Cork

You can join here: http://www.makeityourbusiness.co.uk/join-us-free