Founders Interview | Olly Hiscocks @ Olly's
“Mum & Dad, I don’t want to be a doctor, I want to sell olives for a living!”
That is what I said to my parents back in 2016 when I decided to turn down Medical School to start Olly’s Olives!
The brand started on Duck Pond Market in West London with an idea to rejuvenate the olive category with bold flavours and our handy pouches.
Once we saw the waves we created in the olive category, we wanted to take the Olly’s brand into other snacks – and that is where Olly’s Nuts and our brand new Pretzel Thins come in!
Now we are fully focussed on being a leading global snack crew that has Health at the Heart, and Flavour to the Full in everything we do!
Why did you become interested in the world of snacks & drinks?
Snacking is engrained into the UK (and World) culture! The opportunity to create something that everyone can enjoy and benefit from was a massive pull to entering the snacking category. It is of course incredibly competitive but with so much opportunity!
What inspired you to do what you do?
I have always had my little black book of ideas and have wanted to start my own business. As soon as that green olive lightbulb ignited, I was shying away from it!
What current & future trends does your product meet?
Healthy, under 100 calories, Vegan, Keto, Sourced of Protein & Fibre, Sweet & Savoury, Mediterranean diet AND outrageously tasty
What did you do before starting your company & what made you take the leap into entrepreneurship?
I was the guy who took your blood when you came into a GP surgery!
What has been the hardest part of starting your business?
At the beginning, taking the leap is always a really big challenge for every start-up. There is always the cross roads of choosing to take a risk and jump into the unknown.
What has been the BEST mistake you’ve made & why?
When we launched our chilled olives into Sainsbury’s, we MASSIVELY over produced. With a tonne of stock made and which had a short shelf life, Sam & I rented a van and went AWOL sampling everywhere and anywhere. This showed how incredibly effective sampling was and is for our products – really enjoyed that mistake.
What do you think are the key skills required to make yourself & your business a success in the world of snacks & drinks?
Determination, drive and a good eye for trends & something different in a very busy category.
What is your favourite meal?I was raised with a lot of Asian cuisine. The key to my heart is a Tom Yum soup and any Thai curry.
What do you do to make yourself relax?
Is it contradictory to say HIIT training haha? Not sure you can be sweating and relaxed!
What is your No.1 thing you want to achieve/do on your bucket list?
I love competitive sports and I would love to travel the world to watch to finals of tonnes of different sports!