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25th Oct 2019

Entrepreneur Cassandra Stavrou on how to make it as a woman in business


Brought to you by Open Money

“That just makes me even more determined”

This week’s guest on Pioneers with John Amaechi is Cassandra Stavrou, the founder of healthy gourmet popcorn brand, Proper. She founded Proper – then known as Propercorn – in 2011, and it is now available in eleven countries around the world. In 2017, the Financial Times called the brand the fifth fastest-growing company in Europe. 

On the episode, Stavrou speaks candidly about difficult in the beginning as a novice, especially working with the male-dominated manufacturing industry. 

“I think being a girl, there was probably a bit of ‘the big boys are coming,’ that kind of chat,” says Stavrou. “And that just makes me even more determined.” 

“I think you have to be resilient,” she continues. “That’s number one.” 

“And develop a thick skin, all the clichés, I guess. The world of manufacturing particularly tends to be a very male-dominated industry. And so going up and down the country on my own, with no proven track record [was difficult].” 

“Understandably, to a certain extent, they didn’t take me seriously, because it is a bit of a punt.” 

“[But] you just have to find creative ways around those kinds of hurdles.” 

She allso tells John Amaechi why creativity is so important in business, and why she was always confident her brand would be a success.

Catch the full episode now on YouTube and on your podcast provider.