East Sussex business launched at start of pandemic shortlisted for national awards ceremony

A public relations business which launched at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic and faced major challenges has been shortlisted for a national awards ceremony.

Quick Brown Fox PR based near Beckley has been shortlisted in two categories of the SME National Business Awards 2021 due to be held at Wembley Stadium on December 3.

The company has been entered into the Growth Business of the Year and Business Innovation categories.

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It was founded by former journalist, Richard Stevenson who spent 15 years as a PR consultant working largely with big name audio brands.

Richard Stevenson

In 2019, after joining the NatWest Accelerator Programme, a six-month programme for entrepreneurs with high growth businesses who are looking to scale up, he decided to set up RSPR Media Solutions.

The company officially launched in the second week of March 2020 just at the start of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Richard had invested his savings into fitting out an old barn at the farm where he lives.

But by April 2020, the business had lost seven of its nine clients and Richard had to place himself and the other member of staff on furlough.

Staff at Quick Brown Fox PR

“They were really dark times and we lost clients,” he said. "But the pandemic gave us some headspace to look at what we were really good at.

“We stuck to our core principles.

“We put a strategy in place and we played to our strengths and we got one client back every month from July 2020.

“Most of our clients came back to us. Now we have 15 clients and I'm planning to take on a new member of staff every three months.”

The pandemic allowed Richard some time to look at the whole business operation.

One of the areas he wanted to improve was creating a more memorable and meaningful name.

During the summer of 2020, a chance meeting with a fox led to a re-branding of the business.

Richard was sitting in his conservatory at home when a fox entered the garden creating his 'eureka' moment.

He came up with the idea of using the pangram 'The quick brown fox jumps over the lazy dog' as the English language was at the heart of what the business does and it aims to be quick and cunning like a fox.

The business rebranded as Quick Brown Fox PR in September last year.

It will be the first award event for the company and Richard is really looking forward to going to Wembley Stadium on December 3.

“I am really stoked by being nominated,” he said. “Like many businesses over the last 18 months, it's been a rollercoaster of ups and downs.

“And to be among some big names in the final, that all just drives us on.

“It's a testimony to our adaptability and keeping the faith.”