The Light Yard offers tailor-made, high-end lighting from its showroom close to the Bridgwater Canal in Wigan. Working with an international client base, the business was set up by designer Jeff Fuller.
Having previously worked with GC Business Growth Hub’s mentoring team, receiving support that was focussed on the financial aspects of the business, Jeff turned to the Hub again, this time working with innovation advisor Steph Stafford for help identifying new market opportunities and creating a high-end service for business customers.
“We’d been established for four years, and have built some strong foundations for growth, including an excellent system for processing orders and client management,” explains Jeff.
“So the time seemed right to look at how we can use innovation to develop new products and service.”
The innovation team initially began working with Jeff to review the design of products, with a new emphasis on sustainability. His own research showed that there was a demand for high-end bathroom lightning, but the company couldn’t find the right products to sell to their B2B customers. So with the Hub’s support, Jeff began working with a partner supplier to create and design a new pendant lamp.
Further meetings built on Jeff’s ambitious growth plans and the need to adapt the current business model. “Working with the Hub helped bring more focus to what we were doing on a day-to-day basis, and how we should go about targeting new areas of business,” he explains.
The company was intent on making customer experience its USP, and something that would set it aside from competitors. An analysis of their customer groups led to a new value proposition for selected target segment, including architects, interior designers and property developers.
Discussions also covered R&D tax credits and intellectual property work, as well as looking at the company’s approach to the market, identifying any gaps and future opportunities.
Jeff is now set on increasing turnover by 30% this year, and has started to work with the Hub’s growth team to help scale up the business.
In order to position the business for ongoing growth, Jeff and master craftsman Gwyn Carless re-envisioned The Light Yard’s brand identity, underlining its artisanal offering and business model.