The Bottom Drawer was an online wedding gift list service. Ian acquired The Bottom Drawer in 2006 when total turnover to date was just under £30,000. Ian grew The Bottom Drawer single handedly into a business that had generated over £5m of wedding list transactions at the time of sale to Park Group Plc, a company with over £375m of annual billings. Park Group have since relaunched The Bottom Drawer as Gift2Us, with Ian consulting for Park Group to help with the handover and launch of the new business.
Customer service was paramount during Ian’s time at The Bottom Drawer, with the company ranked on independent review sites as the best gift list service in the UK and consistently achieving over 95% positive customer satisfaction ratings. The Bottom Drawer had tens of thousands of wedding guests and hundreds of couples use the service each year. Ian was solely responsible for the day-to-day operation of The Bottom Drawer after acquiring it, liaising with customers, suppliers, marketing consultants, IT specialists and others. The website and functionality was designed by Ian (the development was outsourced) to make the whole gift list process far less time consuming. Ian was awarded with a place on the 2009 Observer Newspaper/Courvoisier Future 500 list of innovative business brains and creative talent for his role at The Bottom Drawer: signifying passion and determination to succeed in the future. The CVTF500 network, founded in 2007, is one of the UK’s leading and most dynamic professional networks, recognising and rewarding the country’s most innovative business brains and creative talent. Ian was hand-picked by a high profile judging panel of leading entrepreneurs. The judges screened hundreds of applications from a variety of business and creative sectors. Judge Reed Paget, CEO of Belu Water, said, “We were looking for extraordinarily smart and passionate people, with ideas both clever and well thought through.”
The Bottom Drawer was nominated for the prestigious Spring Fair awards in 2009 and won a Silver Flora medal for it’s showgarden at the RHS Royal Hampton Court Palace Flower Show in 2007, a project overseen by Ian. The garden was sponsored by The Bottom Drawer to promote getting a garden makeover as a wedding gift list – where each plant, each square metre of patio etc could be a wedding gift on your list. You can see photos of this garden below, including ones of the garden during construction, the finished garden, the designers, and ones of Ian dressed as “the groom” and the World’s leading Marilyn Monroe lookalike dressed as “the bride”!