10 Robin McGowan and James Wakefield
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Since launching InStitchu five years ago, Robin McGowan and business partner James Wakefield have grown it into a multimillion-dollar clothing company with plans for international expansion next year.
The pair started the online retail business with no money, bootstrapping it by selling suits and shirts to their friends.
It was an industry neither founder had any experience in.
“Today our business is valued at more than $10 million,” says McGowan.
Institchu is looking to expand its team to 30 people across Australia, New Zealand and overseas with the goal to double the number of showrooms and increase revenue by 100%.
But when they started, McGowan says many of their closest friends didn’t think InStitchu would last.
“When we started, people told us that Australians would never buy suits online, let alone tailored suits online,” he says.
But the customers were there and today, he says, InStitchu is the leading choice for the 125,000 weddings that take place in Australia each year.
“Go where your customers are, not where you think they’ll be [and] always remember that ‘revenue is vanity, profit is sanity’,” he says.