Maura Beishon set up House of Bath at the age of 32, after raising £500,000 from friends and business angels in three months. The company now has three mail-order catalogues, House of Bath, Shires of Bath, and The Gift Box, which it distributes as inserts in national and regional newspapers, such as The Mail on Sunday and the Yorkshire Post. The items featured range from bed and bath products to wind-up radios and even personalised waxed jackets for pets. Expanding the number of catalogues and rigorously monitoring product performance has helped sales grow by more than 117% a year from an annualised £1.6m in 1999 to £16.4m in 2002.
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