Newcastle businesswoman named one of the UK’s brightest young entrepreneurs

A businesswoman from Newcastle has been named one of the UK’s brightest young talents

Rachel Conroy, 35, CEO of Gateshead-based HLF, a furniture provider for vacation parks, hotels, student groups, rental apartments, condos and retirement homes, was featured in the Management Today business magazine in the list of 35 women under 35 by 2022.

The list features emerging role models, highlighting young female entrepreneurs who have achieved extraordinary results in a short amount of time, to celebrate the next generation of business leaders at a time of change and difficult social and economic challenges.

Conroy said she was delighted to make the list, which is a testament to the workforce as a whole.

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​​She decided to start the HLF Group whilst on maternity leave after coming to the conclusion that working as a lawyer was not sustainable for a young family.

She and her management aim to expand the service into the entertainment industry and beyond, with a goal of generating £ 3 million in revenue over the next 12 months.

​​To meet its ambitious plans, the company invested in a 7,500-square-foot headquarters and design centre in Brideon to help The HLF Group expand its presence in the social housing and rental construction market.

“I’m so pleased for everyone at HLF to feature in the list – it’s testament also to their hard work and effort”, she said.

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“In just over four years, we have grown the business to become the market leader. In a short period of time, we have won contracts with some of the biggest holiday operators in Britain, including Parkdean Resorts, Hoseasons and Skyes. We are now seeing huge advances into other sectors particularly co-living and build-to-rent.”

The 2022 list of 35 women under 35 also highlights Conroy’s ambitions for the future, including plans to open a new warehouse later this year and move current logistics operations from Washington to a location in Blaydon where they will be closer to the office and the design centres.

The move will help support growth by allowing more inventory to be held on the site and increasing distribution to customers. They have also added new ranges of UK made products to their brochures which can be accessed via their website.

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She further shared:

“We are making the investments as our customers look to change furniture more often while requiring better quality products at trade prices. Particularly in the holiday sector, they expect the accommodation they pay to stay in to be aesthetically pleasing and the owners need hard-wearing furniture at a very competitive price.”

Conroy is part of the growing number of Newcastle entrepreneur society which aim to revitalise the community and provide more jobs for local talents in the area and support the booming entrepreneurship economy and community in the region.