A little bit about Raymond..

Here at Salons Direct, we are VERY VERY excited to announce we will be working with an up and coming entrepreneur and hair styling expert, Raymond Bottone. Raymond will be sharing his expertise on a range of subjects over the coming months, we hope you enjoy and learn a lot from his work. If you ever want to speak to Raymond directly, you can tweet him on @raymondbottone.

Who is Raymond?

Born and raised in Brentwood, I always wanted to be a hairdresser. My first job out of school was at Associates salon, Brentwood. At 21, and with a Barclay’s organised EFG loan, I bought, upgraded and re-branded that salon.

Aged 18, I saved £2,000 to train at the prestigious Vidal Sassoon Academy and then worked as a hair stylist at some of London’s top salons, including Murdock’s, London, where I was made manager after 3 months.

I soon realised being an employee was never going to contain my ambitions so decided to start my own salon and develop a salon brand.

When I first approached Barclays for a loan, I was told that with no tangible assets it was “near impossible” to get one. I returned 5 days later with a business plan and was told by the loans manager that it was one of the best he had seen and was granted the full amount I requested.

This wasn’t enough to buy the business outright so I negotiated with the former owner (my old boss) that he could stay working a salon chair and keep 100% of his personal turnover for 6 months.

I am growing my business through re-branding, offering top customer service, sponsorship, community outreach, online social networking and local press.

It has now been 4 years since I first opened my salons doors, since that time I¬†have¬†won Destination Fame, worked with some of the¬†industries¬†finest¬†including Paul Falltricks and Ammon Carver and toured with hair care brand Matrix. Ive also been¬†recognised on numerous occasions of one of Essex’s leading young¬†business¬†men by reaching the finals of Young Entrepeneur of the Year and Best Marketing.