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Wayne Spriggs was born and bred in a council house in Middlesbrough and left school aged 16 with no qualifications. Today, he owns a multiple award-winning luxury bathroom products company worth in excess of £150million, with clients including some of the most prestigious brands in the UK.
“I had no interest in school,” he said. “But I was always into business from a young age. I was 12-years-old and I’d valet neighbours’ cars and do small DIY jobs, as well as having paper and milk rounds at 5am.”
After leaving school, Mr Spriggs became a joinery apprentice before moving into property renovation in his mid-20s, buying homes on Teesside for as little as £10,000 during the housing market crash.
He went on to develop around 50 properties and it was whilst doing this that he noticed the struggle to find luxurious, design-led bathroom products at affordable prices.
And so Lusso Stone was born, the company which led Mr Spriggs to make a million pounds by the time he was 44 years old.
On the company’s journey so far, Mr Spriggs said: “I started with a £10k overdraft and a strong belief that there was a genuine demand for bespoke, high-end bathroom products.
“Before Lusso, I was a property developer and I really struggled to find deluxe bathroom products that didn’t break the bank, so I started doing my own designs.
Wayne Spriggs made a million pounds by the time he was 44 years old (Image: PR Superstar)
“I visited various trade shows, learning about products and building relationships. I set up a website and when my initial designs started selling, I took my biggest risk.”
Mr Spriggs added: “I ordered a container of 38 baths using the £10k overdraft as a deposit towards the order. At that point, everything was on the line.”
Lusso Stone designs and manufactures its own high-end, hand-finished products and now sells around 2,500 products per week.
The company turned over £21million last year and is expected to reach £31million in 2021. This has been achieved with a small team of just 17 employees.
Mr Spriggs explained: “We manufacture and we retail, so you can only come to us to purchase our products – we don’t use any third-party showrooms or re-sellers.
“We can achieve market control and we don’t dilute any of our profits by wholesaling.
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“We must get asked five times a day by boutique bathroom stores or larger ones ‘can we stock your products?’ and the answer is always ‘no’.”
Many of the products, which are sold mainly in the UK but also in 35 countries worldwide, were designed by Mr Spriggs himself.
Mr Spriggs, now aged 47, is targeting a turnover of £70million by 2024.
He plans to open a UK flagship showroom in Central London and The Lusso Group also aims to branch out into the home furnishings sector.
The team will move into a new 10,000 square foot head office, with the aim that the business will be the number one company to work for in North East England.
“The company’s mission is to be the number one leading supplier of luxury homeware and accessories,” Mr Spriggs said.
Richest people in the UK (Image: Express)
He is able to keep prices down by manufacturing the products in-house that would ordinarily be more expensive to consumers.
“For me, it was about allowing people to create luxury living at a competitive price, cutting absolutely no corners on the quality and design of the products,” he said.
Growth has already been very impressive, with a 400 percent increase in sales over the last three years and a customer base of over 50,000.
Lusso Stone enjoyed a record-breaking month in February of this year with sales of more than £3million.
The brand’s bathrooms have even featured on TV, including Channel 4’s Grand Designs and George Clarke’s Amazing Spaces.
To this day, Mr Spriggs retains a 100 percent shareholding in his business and has had no help from loans or investors.
Lusso Stone turned over £21million in 2020 (Image: PR Superstar)
His secret for success?
Mr Spriggs said: “In our first year of trading, we achieved sales of £51,000. Times were tough, I faced huge challenges financially and the hours I worked were relentless.
“I remember thinking at one point that I might need to admit defeat.
“However, despite the obstacles I faced, I stayed focused on what I truly believed and still believe now – that one day, Lusso would be a successful international brand.
“If I’ve learnt anything along the way, it’s that dedication and a genuine commitment to achieving what you want pays dividends.
“For anyone starting out in business, my advice is that the easy path to success doesn’t exist, it’s the route with the most resistance that gives the best rewards.”