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Starting a business alongside one’s full-time job could reap huge financial rewards, and 25-year-old mum of two Keely Parsons is a glowing example. Keely took Sassy Shop Wax from her kitchen table and turned it into a multi-million-pound business.
At 18, Keely had been working in recruitment, but she realised being in a typical nine to five role was not the right fit for her.
Keely said: “Before Sassy Shop Wax, I was working a nine to five job in recruitment, but I knew this wasn’t what I wanted long term.
“I remember looking at some of my colleagues who had been working at the company for over 40 years and asking myself ‘Is this it?’
“For me, it wasn’t.”
Keely Parsons has grown her business into a success (Image: Chocolate PR)
Keely started a new hobby making wax melts after spotting a gap in the market.
She said: “I initially started making wax melts as a hobby after struggling to find the scents I was looking for.
“But I began to really enjoy it and it wasn’t long before I began to imagine how I could make it a career for me.
Keely continued: “Making the transition wasn’t easy, I started doing longer days at my job with the goal to save money, which could be invested into the start of my business.
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“That meant at one point I was doing 12-hour days at work, commuting two hours and then working on the wax melts when I got home.
“It wasn’t easy and colleagues at work would often ask me why I even bothered, but I knew there was potential for this to work.”
Finding the right marketing strategy took time, but Keely struck gold after coming across Facebook groups which had an instant audience of wax melts customers.
Demand grew quickly from there, and whilst on maternity leave with her first child Luca, Keely saw sales increase substantially.
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Keely said: “During my maternity leave, I concentrated all my energy into nurturing my baby and my business.
“I had to rope in family members to help fulfil my orders!
“This allowed me to quit my job in recruitment – but I continued to work 12-hour days – tirelessly into the evening, as I couldn’t keep up with the orders.”
The tipping point came in December 2018 when the Facebook shop sold out just moments after announcing new stock, and Sassy Shop Wax continued to grow from then on.
Sassy Shop Wax is now a multi-million-pound company (Image: Chocolate PR)
SassyShopWax.com is now heading for a turnover of £2.5m, with a loyal following, an ever-growing social media reach and items stocked in Boohoo, Pretty Little Thing and I Saw It First.
Keely’s partner Theo left his job in 2019 and joined the Sassy Shop Wax team as Operations Director, so that the pair could grow the company together.
As of 2021, less than a year after registering as a limited company, Sassy Shop Wax has grown from a kitchen start-up to now having a 5,000 square foot commercial space in Bristol.
The company now employs 20 members of staff, having turned over £2m.