A Brief History of Phoenix Trading

Phoenix Trading was founded in 1995 by three mothers in South London; Robin, Susie and Vanessa. The women shared a vision of starting a home-based business selling a product that they loved - greeting cards! The British are known for their passion and innovation when it comes to greeting cards, they hold the distinction of publishing the first commercial Christmas card, back in 1846.

The three partners worked part time for a year selling the cards direct to friends, family and at fundraising events for schools and charities. By September 1995, they had amassed enough profit to print their first 13 designs as publishers in their own right. They launched themselves enthusiastically into finding venues, agents, artists and suppliers. When Robin's house buckled under the strain, Vanessa offered bijou office accommodation; 8ft x 6ft of combined office and working room which was shared with various domestic appliances. They had one desk, one chair and one under-powered computer, which they had to take turns to sit at. As the business grew, they ended up packing orders in the kitchen from stock which was kept under the children's beds. It was a challenge!

Sheila replaced Susie in 1998 and by the end of 2000 the business was twenty times bigger than in its first trading year. In 2001, Phoenix Trading became a limited company rather than a partnership and has since gone from strength to strength under the guidance of an expanded executive team. The company is now ensconced in 30,000 sq ft of dedicated office and warehousing in Wandsworth, SW London, just walking distance from where the original business was conceived.

The business has grown exponentially and is now listed as one of the top 10 greeting card publishers in the UK. Internationally Phoenix operates in four countries with over 10,000 Traders worldwide - expanding into Australia (2006), New Zealand (2007) and France (2007).

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