Soup-er: Sheffield SOUP, TDR, Russell Short, Steel City, LtR & more

And we’re back! After a break for a (working) trip to China and Tibet, my radio show, Business Live, returned to the airwaves this week (Friday 10th July) with a stellar line-up of guests in the programme – you can listen to the podcast below.

Interviewees: James Biggin, the managing director of Steel City Marketing, a promotional gifts company which this year celebrates 35 years in business. We heard from James about his experiences of stepping into – and turning around when it had been struggling – a family business, with advice about how he’d gone about business recovery to make the business thrive once more.

Pennie Raven of Sheffield SOUP. A lovely project, Sheffield SOUP combines pitching and real-time crowdfunding and will take place on 29th July. The deadline for applications to apply for funding from Sheffield SOUP is Friday 17th July so act quickly! Listen to the podcast to learn more – and then apply here.

Also in the studio with Pennie: musician Chris Damms whose band The Clear will perform at Sheffield SOUP, and Ian Anderson, founder of The Designers Republic™ who gave his perspective on how Sheffield SOUP is giving power to people to make positive things happen and acting as a catalyst to enable ideas to come to fruition. Ian discussed “tickbox” business culture and a reinvigoration of locally driven projects – and talked about values in businesses of all sizes from tiny to global.

This week’s show also included two recently pre-recorded interviews:

Russell Short is a Sheffield entrepreneur and landlord, and a graduate of Sheffield Hallam University in regeneration. I spoke with Russell on 3rd July to record this interview. In his own words, Russell “was rubbish with money at Uni and left in debt,” he began building his £6.5m property portfolio when he sold his car and used credit cards to purchase a house to rent. Russell also runs Property Partners sales and lettings agency and Home Team boiler installation and heating business. Is he a good landlord; what are his views on exploitative landlords and affordable housing; how did he develop his businesses and what lessons has Russell learned in his career? Hear Russell’s answers below.

Our final interview in this week’s show was with Olusola McKenzie, founder and creative director of Sheffield social enterprise Learn to Re-create Ltd. I interviewed Olusola and a number of trainees who have participated in the courses that her business runs – and they shared their experiences of how working with Learn to Re-create has helped them.

Listen to the podcast of the programme (timings below):


Timings (nb – music removed from podcast):

  • 0 – 3:40: introduction
  • 3:40 – 12:51: James Biggin
  • 12:51 – 17:10: Pennie Raven
  • 17:10 – 20:30: Chris Damms
  • 20:30 – 27:11: Ian Anderson
  • 27:11 – 30:00: Pennie Raven and Sheffield SOUP wrap-up
  • 30:00 – 39:38: interview with Russell Short (a longer version of the interview with Russell is available here).
  • 39:38 – 47:58: Olusola McKenzie (a longer version of the interview with Olusola is available here).

Business Live is broadcast most Friday mornings from 9am to 10am on Sheffield Live – 93.2FM in Sheffield and from worldwide. More about the programme here.

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