A Leighton mum who trained as a secretary has launched a novel new business – providing ‘pimps’ or charms for hearing aids and cochlear implants.
And Sarah Smith, 40, of Meadow Way is still reeling with excitement after catching the eye of entrepreneur Theo Paphitis for a second time on his Small Business Sunday initiative.
Each week the former Dragon chooses six Tweets using the hashtag #SBS and retweets them to his 500,000 followers.
Winners are invited to a special event in Birmingham and have access to an exclusive members’ selling platform.
Sarah – whose 16-year-old daughter Gabi is deaf – says: “My iPad went absolutely mad for about two days after Theo retweeted Tubetastic Pimps.
“Not many people know about hearing aids and it’s a very specific audience. I’ve been contacting various place including audiology departments and we’re finding out how we can help kids and adults be proud of their aids and implants.” The pimps not only brighten up boring beige hearing aids but also ensure people know the wearer is deaf.
At the moment the company doesn’t have a very high turnover but awareness is growing. Sarah was the first to market the products in the UK and is now exporting to Australia and Germany.
She says meeting Dragon Deborah Meaden on a Q&A panel at Theo’s event was a real eye-opener.
“They were all brilliant but Deborah was really honest,” she says. “She was really nice – blunt but firm.”
Gabi, who was diagnosed with moderate hearing loss when she was seven, loves modelling Sarah’s latest designs.
“She’s just the right age,” Sarah says. “She loves showing them off.”
The tubular charms fit snugly and are made of rubber with flower and football designs the most popular.