Shaper: Dessi Bell

Show aired on 2nd December 2017


Dessi Bell

Dessi Bell studied Economics and Financial History at LSE, where she founded the university’s Women in Business Society.

Following this, she was employed in Fashion Development at the Ministry of Sound; in the Debt Capital Markets department at JP Morgan; and was Chief Opportunity Giver at Bijoux Place, a jewellery brand which also supports women in the developing world, before founding Zaggora in 2011.

Follow Dessi on Twitter @dessinka.

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“Zaggora was founded on the simple premise of helping women get healthy in an easier way.”

“I was lucky that my husband wanted to start to Zaggora with me because I don’t know whether I would have done it on my own. He is a very entrepreneurial man and it has been a really fun journey.”

“I was working in banking and had one hour a day to go to the gym, if I was lucky. That meant that within an hour I had to go there, get changed, workout, then get back at my desk. I had a very limited amount of time but I still wanted to look good.”

“I think London is a fantastic place to create a business because it’s just such a melting pot of talent and cultures.”

“I guess we are quite unusual in the sense that we took an international view very early on. In fact, the largest market for us right now is the United States – 8% of our sales go to the US even though we are very much a UK based business.”

“We are by no means an exclusive brand, we are very much a brand that tries to make it as accessible as possible for women to make small changes and to be healthier.”

“We have learnt that you see the same people on the way up as you see on the way down so certainly maintaining integrity in business is probably the most important thing that you can do.”

“We give every month to help women in the developing world start a small business because we are great believers in helping people, but helping them to help themselves in a sustainable way.”

“How do you grow a brand in a world where the consumer becomes less and less interested in learning about brands? For us it’s about focusing on excellent experience, great products and really providing a safe place for women to get healthier, to discuss their problems, to get in shape.”