Founder and CEO of numerous companies Karen Darby is a highly successful entrepreneur, a leading figurehead in business. An expert in turning a business from a small start-up to a million-pound empire, Karen is an expert at imparting invaluable business tips on the corporate circuit. Having vast experience in business marketing, sales and customer service, Karen can deliver an excellent keynote speech.
Karen Darby is a popular keynote speaker and the founder of Decisions Group, SimplySwitch and CrowdMission. Listed as one of the top female entrepreneurs in the UK, Karen has built a hugely successful career over the past 25 years and is still adding her to business portfolio with her fourth and biggest venture: Call Britannia.
At the age of just 22, Karen became a young entrepreneur. She set up one of the country’s first telemarketing companies, the Decisions Group, now part of Sitel. Within seven years the company had more than 200 staff and sales in excess of £4m. By 1990, she had decided it was time for a new challenge. She sold her share of the company and set up her second business, a firm providing training for call-centre staff; Karen Darby Direct. With two young sons and working from home, Karen became a "mumtreneur". She personally trained hundreds of people in the call centre industry and for many it was a life changing experience. In fact, many champions were raised in ‘Karen’s Stable’, several of whom have gone on to set up their own highly successful businesses.
In 2003, Karen launched her third and most successful venture, SimplySwitch, a price comparison service. She secured venture capital funding from Bridges Community Ventures, which was subject to the business meeting certain social criteria such as being based in one of the most deprived areas of the UK. Initially launched as Simply Energy Ltd offering consumers a free and impartial switching service for gas and electricity, it quickly extended its portfolio of products to include home phone, mobile, broadband and a range of financial products and was re-branded SimplySwitch. The company created over 100 jobs and helped thousands of consumers save over £20m on their household bills.
In August 2006 Karen sold SimplySwitch to the Daily Mail for £22m.
In 2012 Karen set up CrowdMission a venture which supports other budding entrepreneurs like Karen once was. Helping to fun social and environmentally friendly businesses, Karen has brought Dragons Den online and allows anyone to be an investor.
Karen has decades of experience in delivering dynamic, high energy talks and presentations to thousands of conference delegates both in the UK and overseas. She also has extensive broadcast experience including live and pre-recorded TV and radio interviews and has participated in various business-based podcasts. Her presentations are upbeat and motivational, delivered with the passion and focus which only comes from someone who has really been there and done it. She talks of the highs and inevitable lows of running your own business, how to deal with the setbacks and how to turn them to your advantage. Karen always tailors her presentations to the client and the brief.
Able to discuss raising finance, the entrepreneurs journey, women in business, marketing and branding and much more, Karen will deliver a unique business presentation to all kinds of delegates.
For further information or to book Karen Darby, call us at Speakers Corner on +44 (0)20 7607 7070 or email firstname.lastname@example.org