Scale up feature

If we talk about my business as a whole. then we would include the various facets of all companies that fall under the Functionality Group – an umbrella company that is more of an investment group or perhaps better described as a family office.

Investments include;

Scentered – Our portable mindful wellbeing aromatherapy balms, blended to help you STOP INHALE RESET during each part of the day, depending on the mood you want to create or feel.

Yogi Bare – The very best grip yoga mats and accessories on the market.  Backed up with a very eco conscious approach, using natural rubber and a tree planted for every mat ordered

Global Amenities Direct – Hotel amenities, and although hospitality has been hit beyond our belief this passed year.  We concentrate on latest on trend items, reducing plastic and replacing all those little freebies with products that are as eco friendly, sustainable, recyclable and reusable where we can. 

KitBrix – Made from military grade materials this is the ultimate organizational modular kit bag.  Completely waterproof and sturdy, ideal for any outdoor sports that requires kit to be organised, dry and easily accessible

All of my businesses are founded in the health wellbeing or fitness arenas.  It is something close to my heart.  Goods, services or products have to be functional, practical, make a true difference and create a benefit to all of those using them. 



I believe the trick to scaling is having a product that solves a pain point for the consumer and then sticking to the knitting whilst trying to find the best outlets, most profitable methods and relentless focus on learning when the customer is best served.

Once identified focus all your efforts on those requirements.  During the last year, it has perhaps been easier to pinpoint where the scaling in the businesses needs to happen, for instance our focus has not been wholly GAD ( hotel business) that has been hit for six.  The rising awareness and value placed on health is terrific. Hence greater emphasis to Scentered and Yogi Bare, two of my brands that are making a massive difference to individual’s mental health and wellbeing.

Yes, of course there have been barriers.  Start with a great team and set a solid culture with a genuine mission, and I have found most things can be overcome. Getting the ideas right, the right staff, the products right, needing to talk to the right people, having the money to grow, everything is a step in the game of enterprise success.  When I started trying to convince people I was totally serious, a certain high street bank would not even entertain my business plan, so that really was lesson number one, never take no for an answer. 

Then, when, perhaps you just start to think “I’ve got this” something comes along to knock you off your feet.  In a previous life, my company survived SARS, Foot and Mouth and 9/11.  This took some serious re scaling, I had to make people redundant, re strategise, re budget, re plan.

So, like this past year, some of the biggest challenges I have faced, are things that have been totally out of my control….everyone has been in the same boat , so it really is a matter of survival of the fittest, and you cut your cloth accordingly, agility, adaptation, innovation, and those that have approached all with positivity, these are the companies that will thrive. 

When I have come across barriers, things that I can control, I have always done my best to get around them.  There is always another bank to listen, an expert to employ for the things you cannot master, a different path to take if something is not working, and tech systems to help you be more efficient and effective.  Of course, along with all of this, the team you have within your business, are so, so important, the people who share your passion and goals.

When I started out, and still in some spheres now, it was mainly men in my business world.  I like to think I can compete on my own terms. I love to encourage women (especially our younger generation of female entrepreneurs to take the lead.  Be bold, brave, where possible get the big girl knickers on and just be prepared to take on the world.

All in all, I think I have had a positive experience, I have been lucky to be surrounded my many people who share my visions and passions, who have been on my mad lorry and taken the rough roads with the smooth.   


Lewis Carroll said, “In the end, we only regret the chances we didn’t take, relationships we were afraid to have and the decisions we waited too long to make.” 

I honestly believe I really do not have any regrets.  I am very privileged and lucky to have the life I have, all down to hard work and perseverance.  Playing the business game where required and working hard to make the right scaling decisions to make my businesses successful.


Author Lara

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