ENTREPRENEUR OF THE YEAR - 2019
Mamunar Rashid Chowdhury
Mamun Chowdhury is a highly successful British businessman with over 25 years’ experience in the design and manufacturing of high-end outerwear. Having completed his education in Bangladesh, after a short period in the Middle East, Mamun arrived in Britain in December 1991. Being an innate entrepreneur, he immediately started setting up his own business. In 1994 he established London Clothing Limited, importing garments from abroad and selling to clients in the UK and rest of Europe, followed shortly after with his own factory to manufacture garments here in the UK.
Realising quickly how fierce the competition was and that the East End clothing manufacturing trade was on the decline, he decided to change his business model in 1996 and focus only on high-end outerwear, working with some of UK’s top designers. By 1998 his business was large enough to provide opportunities for fashion students to gain work experience. Mamun says that he learnt as much about designing from the top designers as he did from the fashion students.
Mamun used his freshly honed designing skills to design and develop his own range. Still hungry to grow, yet humble enough to recognise his skills gaps, he decided that he would explore taking on a partner to grow the business further. So, in 2001, Mamun asked his good friend Rob Huson, a top city fashion executive to join him and London Tradition Limited was born.
Mamun’s success has been honoured by her Majesty the Queen with the Queens Award for Enterprise 2014. London Tradition is regarded as a luxury outerwear brand that inspires and instils confidence in its customers, suppliers and staff because it excels at what it does.
Mamun envisions his Company to be the leading luxury heritage outerwear brand in the world with the mission of delivering exceptional quality outwear garments to inspire its customers. Quality, Service, Value, Innovation, Trust, Fairness and Social Responsibility are the values that guide and inspire Mamun and his company.
Shermeena is a Consultant Speech and Language Therapist who has been working in the industry for fifteen years. Prior to starting her own company, Unlocking Language, she worked for ten years as a Speech and Language Therapist in both the NHS and private sectors building an expertise in communication disorders (speech, language, communication and swallowing deficits).
Since its inception in 2013, the ompcany has grown into one of the largest and most successful practices in the UK, with the head office and 6-day a week clinic in Canary Wharf. Shermeena’s company has also developed fast-track clinics in East London, Essex and Harley Street.
Shermeena has pioneered new ways of delivering speech and language therapy and is regarded as an expert in her field. The company is commissioned to provide services into schools, rehabilitation units, hospitals, courts and prisons. Her innovative approach to therapy and her entrepreneurial flair has seen her team utilise bespoke and effective models of therapy, technology, and products to enhance client outcomes and success rates. Other advances include a fast track multidisciplinary Autism Assessment Service, specialist services incorporating mental health and communication and a voice and speech clarity service for corporate clients.
Shermeena was the first British Bangladeshi to graduate in Speech and Language Therapy in the UK. She champions the rights of people who cannot communicate, enabling them to have a voice. She has played a fundamental role in raising awareness of special educational needs and reducing the stigma of the disability in the inner-city communities. She has been involved in various efforts to make her profession more accessible and highlight the disproportionate impact that speech and language difficulties have on poorer inner-city communities, as highlighted by the Bercow Parliamentary Report. She is breaking negative perceptions around disability by empowering people to communicate
Shermeena is an inspirational leader, with 25 employees and regular interns and students - her current business plan aims to double this number in the next 18 months. She has won numerous accolades for her entrepreneurial endeavours, and clinical excellence and is passionate about sharing her knowledge and position to help those with speech and language difficulties.
She is particularly good at coaching and developing confidence of others and growing them both as clinicians and leaders. A successful internship programme for young women who want to enter the health profession is run by the company and Shermeena regularly mentors early stage female founders and is part of the Women of the Future Scheme in the UK. Shermeena has also designed a course which trains clinicians wanting to go into private practice and develop businesses in the UK.
The ability to successfully combine clinical services and business acumen has seen her grow a profitable company, with year on year increases in revenue and profits and an annual turnover in excess of £1m.