Exclusive access to the minds of UK business owners who have started a business which is totally different from the norm.



In partnership with Vodafone, we have produced ‘Business Unusual’, an 8-part weekly podcast series aimed at the start-up and scale-up business community. The podcast will be presented by Strictly Come Dancing presenter and radio personality Claudia Winkleman.

Business Unusual will look to inspire start-up and scale-up businesses as the UK navigates through the changes caused by the Covid-19 pandemic.

The podcast will feature interviews with challenger brands – start-ups and scale-ups who are shaking up their industry and challenging the status quo. Each half hour episode will see presenter Claudia Winkleman speak with a business owner to discuss their approach to dealing with changes and challenges, before and during the Covid-19 crisis.

In the first episode, Claudia speaks to Freddie Blackett, CEO and Founder of Patch, an online plant shop, about his experience of the Covid outbreak.  The company has seen a 500% increase in sales as people flocked online to purchase plants to brighten up their indoor spaces and gardens during lockdown.

Anne Sheehan, Director, Vodafone UK said: “Our Business Unusual podcast sets out to support, inspire and  and champion the small business community who are so vital to the UK economy. We want to highlight those small businesses who have been able to use and adapt their digital capabilities to navigate themselves through the Covid-19 pandemic. Now more than ever, our customers are looking to us for solutions so that they can continue to do business. We hope this podcast serves as a valuable resource for insight and tips to inspire others.”

Business Unusual podcast presenter Claudia Winkleman said: “I have always been really interested in new and emerging businesses. These are worrying times for small businesses across the UK, so the Vodafone Business Unusual podcast is the perfect place to learn how entrepreneurs successfully grow their ideas. I look forward to speaking to some of the most exciting and disruptive business owners operating in the UK today”.

Freddie Blackett, CEO, Patch “When you’re starting a small business, it’s really helpful to hear from people who’ve been on the same journey you’re going through. When I started Patch, I listened to so many interviews to pick up tips on how to grow the business, and to feel reassured that everyone has their struggles. I was thrilled to be asked on to Business Unusual to tell the story of Patch. I hope it helps people in the way others helped me.”

Subscribe and listen to the podcast here.