March 2024


LoudLocal's growth built on NEET foundations

A Kenilworth business is harnessing the “fantastic” input of Warwickshire Skills Hub to continue its growth and also continue to offer support for the town’s business community.

LoudLocal, a digital marketing agency created by Priya Pandit and Leon Hidderley in 2020, has an expanding client-base thanks to the resounding reputation built by its eight-strong team.

What is unusual about that team is that the majority of its members are NEET. Priya and Leon have spotted that among people who are NEET is an array of skills just waiting to be tapped into and honed.

“Most of our staff are NEET,” said Leon. “They are so talented and are fantastic with digital marketing and really understand its concepts. There is so much potential in them.

“Sometimes they don’t come across well at interview but you have to see beyond that. One of our applicants was a bag of nerves at interview and looked like he didn’t care, so he didn’t get the job because, above all, we want people who care about our customers.

“But when we readvertised the job he came back and accepted what we said and explained that it had just been nerves. He was interviewed again and we appointed him and he has been brilliant. He now manages a colleague.

“People who are NEET often might lack confidence but the talent is there and if you give that talent an outlet, then the confidence comes. All of our team are really eager to learn and very quick to pick things up.

“We have worked closely with Warwickshire Skills Hub and they have been brilliant in telling us what support is available and specifically in terms of our plans to take on an apprentice. We are very passionate about apprenticeships because we want our staff to be looked after and get the right qualifications. That makes so much sense both for the business and our employees. We have worked very hard to get where we are so now want to train our staff as well as we can to take the business forward.”

LoudLocal, a Fair Chance Employer with Warwickshire Skills Hub and a Cornerstone Employer with Warwickshire Careers Hub, plans to move into larger premises soon, from their current base in The Brickyard, Kenilworth, to offices at Spencer Yard in Leamington’s redeveloped Creative Quarter.

But they will remain closely connected to Kenilworth where their business began and has fledged. Priya is currently working with the town’s Chamber of Trade towards delivering free advice sessions later this year on how the town’s restaurants can raise their profile and attract customers.

“Kenilworth is fantastic and we will be sorry to leave it, but we desperately need more space,” said Priya. “In the last two years, our client-base has grown significantly across the UK and beyond - we have clients in Canada, Norway, Switzerland and Dubai. But we will still live in Kenilworth and be very much involved and do all we can to help our fellow businesses.

“We want to give something back because we are very grateful for the support we have received. The County Council and Skills Hub have been great and we have spoken to Laura Delahunty at Coventry & Warwickshire Growth Hub when it became clear that we needed to scale up and move to the next level. Laura was brilliant and really took time to listen to what we are all about.”

Loud Local is on the rise…not bad for a business that started in Priya and Leon’s kitchen. And that expanding client list includes one member which means that an illustrious name drops into the Loud Local accounts book every month.

“One of our clients is Marnie Swindells, winner of the 2023 series of The Apprentice,” said Priya. “It was quite a week when she reached the final. It took us 36 hours to prepare for the volume of traffic.

“She is lovely to work with – but it is a little bit strange to see the name ‘Lord Alan Sugar’ appear on the bank statement every month!”


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