Christian McAleenan started his business, Christian Benedict, in February 2017. Currently operating from his home in Manchester, he provides a subscription service for shirts, where customers can sign up to have a fresh, high-quality shirt delivered to their home address every 30, 60 or 90 days.
After studying Law at the University of Manchester, Christian worked for a law firm in Qatar. Although he enjoyed his work, he was missing home and looking for a fresh start, so he and his brother conceived the idea of a rolling supply of shirts. The name for the business, Christian Benedict, is a combination of the brothers’ names.
The initial output was a choice of just three colours: white, sky blue and pink. Christian sent out samples of a simple, clean-cut shirt to five prospective clothing manufacturing companies across the world, ultimately choosing one in China to carry out the work. The uptake of interest in the service was quick and the business now holds a solid base of customers. Christian works for his company on a full-time basis and, whilst every day brings with it a unique challenge, he is enjoying the experience and says life as a business owner is very rewarding.
Christian received a Start Up Loan of £15,000 in June 2017, which he will use to grow his business by expanding the range of shirts on offer to customers. He has received interest from mainland Europe and plans to eventually roll out the service internationally, although the business is not yet in a position to cover the postage costs. Christian found working with The Start Up Loans Company to be “smooth and hassle-free” and he says the mentoring is a great feature of the scheme.