Richard Reed is the former co-founder of Innocent Drinks, an international company producing fresh fruit smoothies and vegetable pots, which he created alongside his two University friends. Richard is a remarkable keynote speaker and ideal for events with a focus on business, entrepreneurial spirit, marketing, leadership and Corporate and Social Responsibility.
Richard began his career as an entrepreneur at a young age when he set up a local gardening company one summer called ‘Two Men Went to Mow’, he employed his school friends to work for the company. He attended Cambridge University where he met his future business partners Adam Balon and Jown Wright.
After graduating the trio decided to set up a fresh fruit company and spent six months in their kitchen improving their recipes. When they decided the time had come to test their smoothies on a wider audience, the boys decided to take a stall at a music festival and sold their smoothies. Beside the stall they had a sign that said 'Should we give up our jobs to make these smoothies?', next to the sign there was a YES bin and a NO bin. When the festival was over the YES bin was full and they resigned from their current jobs the next day in order to commit to their fresh fruit company, which would later be known as Innocent. Richard and his business partners had trouble finding investors to begin with; eventually Maurice Pinto, an American Businessman decided to invest a significant amount into the company.
"Richard was a great addition to the conference. His style was relaxed, inspirational and extremely engaging. The feedback from the audience was very positive indeed."
In 2006 Innocent hired 89 people and their smoothies were selling in over 6000 stores around the UK. The company now makes vegetable pots in addition to their various flavours of smoothies and children’s drinks. The brand continued to expand across Europe and in 2009 Coca Cola invested in Innocent with Richard, Adam and Jon remaining in operational control. In 2013, Coca Cola increased their stake in Innocent and the three founders sold their remaining stakes in the company.
In his speeches, Richard tells the ‘Innocent Story’ and how the trio developed a multi-million pound company. While under their control, Innocent won numerous awards including ‘Innovative Company of the Year’ at the Growing Business Awards, The Orange ‘Innovative Company of the Year’ and Richard won the Ernst and Young ‘Young Entrepreneur of the Year’ award.
Since leaving Innocent, Richard has written a flim script, which he hopes will be made in to a Hollywood movie. He has also launched a fund called Jam Jar, which is about funding the new wave of entrepreneurs coming through. Richard is a charming and charismatic speaker with a wealth of knowledge on how to grow a successful business and an inspiring story to tell.
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