Lara Morgan

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Lara Morgan is a British entrepreneur and the founder and former CEO of Pacific Direct. Having sold her share in Pacific Direct she is now involved in several UK startups.

Background[edit]

Born in Germany, Catherine Lara Morgan left school aged 18 when her father’s business went bankrupt. She lived and worked in Hong Kong, the Gulf and New Zealand before moving to the UK in 1991, where she started Pacific Direct as a sole trader. The first sale the company made was a miniature sewing kit to the Dorchester Hotel. Over the course of twenty years, the company grew to become a manufacturer and supplier of luxury branded toiletries and guest amenities to hotels, cruise lines and airlines. It has been at the forefront licensing leading toiletries and cosmetics brands for the hotel industry.[1] Pacific Direct now has manufacturing plants in the Czech Republic as well as in China It has eight offices around the world and has customers in more than 110 countries worldwide.[2]

In 2005 she took the entire company on an all expenses paid holiday to Barbados to celebrate achieving their first £1m in profit.

In 2008 Lara sold her 99% share in Pacific Direct for £20 million. [3]

She is a founder member of the Young Entrepreneurs Organisation, now EO, was a finalist in the Veuve Clicquot Businesswoman of the Year Award, and has also been a three times finalist in the Ernst and Young Entrepreneur of the Year.[4] In 1999, Lara completed Cranfield’s Business Growth and Development Programme, the UK’s leading programme for ambitious owner managers. She was named Cranfield Entrepreneur Alumnus of the Year in 2009.[5]

Having sold her company, Lara set up Company Shortcuts, an online platform for entrepreneurs to increase their effectiveness and accelerate growth. She is a judge with Robert Craven for the UK Startup Awards 2011.[6]

In October 2013, Lara Morgan joined the board of Manchester SME Clothes2Order, having met the company's Managing Director Michael Conway through a business networking organisation. She later agreed to join the board of the Trafford Park-based manufacturer.[7]

Lara now invests in several UK businesses, driving great British innovations. These businesses include: Gate 8 Luggage; dryrobe; Scentered; Kitbrix; Activbod; Global Amenities Direct and Well Heeled. She invests in companies she believes genuinely improve the lives of others.

She also regularly speaks at events and conferences about her experiences and achievements, giving no-nonsense advice to business owners and entrepreneurs. She is a regular commentator on current affairs and business issues with Sky News and BBC News. She has also appeared on the BBC2 show "The Apprentice: You're Fired."

She is also an elite triathlete, having competed in the 2011 World Triathlon Championships in Beijing, achieving 10th place.[8]

Works[edit]

  • More Balls Than Most: Juggle your way to success with proven company shortcuts (2011) ISBN 978-1-906821-73-9

Awards[edit]

  • Montgomery Burns Award for Outstanding Achievement in the Field of Excellence - 1994

References[edit]

External links[edit]

http://www.companyshortcuts.com/ http://www.gate8-luggage.co.uk/ http://www.dryrobe.com/ http://www.scentered.me/ http://www.kitbrix.co.uk/ http://www.activbod.com/ http://www.globalamenitiesdirect.com/ http://www.wellheeled.me/