(L-R) Steve Lyon & Chris Dye

Member Article

New leash of life for natural dog treat company following lockdown

Lincolnshire Deli Dog Box Company gears up for growth six months after launch

A natural dog treats company which was established in May 2021 is already gearing up for growth, having established a loyal national client base and completed over 200 shipments in its first six months of business.

The Deli Dog Box Company, based in Gainsborough, Lincolnshire, was founded by entrepreneur Chris Dye and his partner Tracey who also runs a doggie day-care and home boarding business.

Passionate about providing healthy snacks and treats to the dogs in their care, the duo were inspired to launch the product range – which consists of entirely organic, natural ingredients – after noticing that much of what was on the market had a negative impact on the animals’ gut health.

Having gone through the product development process, they then applied for a Kickstart grant from UKSE - a business that invests in start-ups and SMEs in steel towns across the UK, to help businesses expand and create job opportunities - which they invested in advertising and marketing.

Sales got off to a great start, fuelled in part by the surge in pet ownership following the pandemic, with figures from the Pet Food Manufacturer’s Association suggesting that around 3.2 million households welcomed a new dog or other furry friend over the last two years.

While founder Chris said customers quickly turned to Deli Dog Box for their pet food orders as they were impressed with the high protein, gluten-free and allergen-free treats, a number of customers were also attracted to the range thanks to its natural, organic, and eco conscious status.

The business is now on track to make £10,000 profit by the end of its first year.

Commenting on the success of the business to date, Chris said: “There is always a lot of talk about food products that are healthy and environmentally friendly for humans, but many of our customers care just as much about what their pets are eating.

“The Deli Dog Box products come in 100% eco-friendly packaging and are also sourced from ethical suppliers in the European Union.

“When we first launched the business we marketed our product range locally, and that is where most of our customers are. But word of mouth has really worked wonders for us and as we are an online business, we are now shipping all over the UK.”

Now that the restrictions imposed as a result of the pandemic have lifted, the team are also regularly attending events to further bolster sales, using part of the UKSE Kickstart grant to pay for a presence at local markets and to produce marketing banners.

Going forwards The Deli Dog Box is looking to expand into new premises and hire a number of staff in order to progress its ambitions to launch a subscription service for new and repeat customers.

Founder Chris said: “We’re excited to expand and grow over the coming years, and see how the business can flourish, it’s proved really popular so far especially amongst the younger generations.”

“We’re really thankful to UKSE for the funding they have provided towards our business. It has helped us with costs of marketing materials, as well as helping to get back into going to local markets and being able to promote our products. We’re really excited to see where Deli Dog Box takes us now we’ve got ourselves up and running.”

Steve Lyon, UKSE’s Regional Executive for Yorkshire, Humberside and the Midlands commented: “It’s fantastic to see The Deli Dog Box Company continue to build on its customer base not only in the four counties that surround the company’s head office in Gringley on the Hill, but also much further afield.

“Founding a start-up is hard at the best of times, but starting a new business in the height of the pandemic will no doubt have been particularly challenging so the company’s success to date is really testament to the hard work that both Chris and Tracey have put in.

“We are delighted to have been able to provide some funding to allow them to drive awareness of the product range, and we are very much looking forward to keeping in touch and seeing how the business continues to grow over the coming months and years.”

This was posted in Bdaily's Members' News section by Isabella Storey .

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