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Entrepreneur fights for company's future

PUBLISHED: 12:47 24 April 2009 | UPDATED: 09:10 06 July 2010

A SOUTHWOLD entrepreneur has told of her determination to fight for the future of her skincare business despite the company being in liquidation.

Young and Pure, owned by Lianne Miller, was wound up in the High Court of Justice last week after problems with securing future investment.

A SOUTHWOLD entrepreneur has told of her determination to fight for the future of her skincare business despite the company being in liquidation.

Young and Pure, owned by Lianne Miller, was wound up in the High Court of Justice last week after problems with securing future investment.

But the mother of three, who developed the range of natural and chemical-free products for teenagers, said she was hopeful that the company could be sold or turned into a social enterprise run by young people.

Young and Pure, which operated from a unit at Reydon Industrial Estate, ran into difficulties after the company's main private investor lost a money during the banking crisis.

Ms Miller said she was ready for a range of new products to be mass manufactured, but was unable to proceed until the money became available.

In the meantime a creditor unwilling to wait for payment filed a winding-up petition, with a winding-up order made on April 1.

Despite the current troubled times, Ms Miller said her aim was to encourage young people to take responsibility and ownership for the products they use on their skin and she was not prepared to give up on something she believed so strongly in.

“People love the brand and what it stands for and they still want it. A lot of businesses are going through a major financial crisis where the bank has limited the lending and borrowing and I'm one of the businesses this has happened to,” she said.

“We were trading right up to the point the winding-up petition was put in. We've been waiting for investment for the past six months, but our chairman lost a lot of money due to the banking crisis. He completely believed in our brand and bought into our strategy.

“We had been in negotiation with some major retailers and I was saying to the creditors that we were waiting for the money.”

Ms Miller, who is an ambassador for the Make Your Mark Campaign and a leading entrepreneur for the Lowestoft YES project said she would continue to provide consultancy to help educate young entrepreneurs on the challenges and pitfalls of running a business.

“I know what it feels like, it's been very painful and very sad. No way did I want Young and Pure in this position at all, but I can help someone going through something similar.”

Young and Pure was set up in 2006 manufacturing products, which use aloe vera and coconut oil. It attracted interest from shops such as Harrods, Debenhams and Fenwicks and in 2007 the Samanda range was launched with Big Brother twins Sam and Amanda Marchant.

Last year Ms Miller found herself on the big screen in the BBC3 show The Last Millionaire, which saw her paired with another entrepreneur every week as they travelled round the world tasked with money-making projects.

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