It’s been less than two years since we launched Penfolds. That said, the idea to do so was born a long time ago.
We arrived at the decision to launch our own company at an incredibly exciting time in real estate. The estate agency industry is (quite rightly) facing change and disruption. We knew we could stand out as independent estate agents. In a changing world we recognised the importance of offering a service that was flexible and highly personalised, focussed on the needs of our clients. Our aim was to step away from the limitations and restrictions that traditional office hours imposed and be available at times that suited our clients.
We knew we could bring the same values that small independent retailers hold dear to the real estate industry. We wanted to be out in our community, giving more time to the people entrusting us with the sale of their homes. It was vital that we listen to their stories and with the benefit of the experience we both have, interpret them to provide the most appropriate advice and guidance, so they could move on to their next chapters.
We knew the service we wanted to be known for. It is based on integral character traits that Helen and I both have. Our service was to be a reflection of the values we hold close, but the rest was more difficult!
The Birth of a Brand:
It all started with conversations around the kitchen table. We soon discovered that we had an unremarkably similar vision of how we wanted our brand to look.
Neither of us had marketing or IT backgrounds, so, we started by writing a list of the words we felt described our vision. These were some we chose; timeless, classic, edgy, feminine but not girly, boutique, lifestyle, luxury, interior design, friendly, approachable and straight-talking.
After a lot of research, we handed our baby over to a design agency to create the Penfolds brand! Many, many conversations followed in which every area of the business was covered. Looking back, the most challenging part of setting things up were decisions we had to make regarding the IT and digital platforms to support our business. The rest was immense fun. While we waited for our agency to build our brand, we had more time to think about working together, how we would build our business and the unknowns surrounding that.
We’ve always got along well together; and love spending time with one another. We laugh a lot, so we wanted to make sure that our personal relationship was protected. We needn’t have given this a second thought! It quickly became evident that our individual skills made it obvious which areas of the business we would take day-to-day responsibility for. Quite early on we were interviewed by a journalist and asked to describe what it was like to work with each other.
Working with each other:
Helen on working with Becky;
“We had talked about working together for such a long time so for that to become a reality is a dream come true. We have been the best of friends forever and I couldn’t have wished to have a more committed and driven business partner who not only puts the clients first every step of the way but makes every working day full of laughter.” – Helen, Co-Founder
Becky on working with Helen;
“Working with Helen has shown me the extensive knowledge she has of our industry and her strong sense of purpose and determination for our business to succeed. I couldn’t think of a more perfect business partner, but of course, we’ve been partners since the day she was born!” – Becky, Co-founder.