“The impact on our business since working with Kriya has helped us to succeed and grow. What more can a business ask?!”
Scaling a business when held back by long payment terms
Kriya Lending - Invoice Finance
How Kriya’s Invoice Finance product helped female entrepreneur, Julie Waddell, grow her business
Moorish Dips Ltd is a UK-based food company that produces and sells a range of deliciously moreish humous dips. Founded by Julie Waddell in 2012, the company has come a long way since its early days of making humous in her kitchen.
Julie’s first innovation was smoked humous, which she invented for her family at her kitchen table. Six months later she had turned this into a retail product, created the Moorish brand, and was supplying nationally to Waitrose.
Today, Moorish Dips is a successful business that supplies some of the UK's largest supermarkets, including Sainsbury's, Asda, and Ocado. The company also exports to the UAE and Hong Kong.
It’s a remarkable story from humble beginnings. Having grown up in a catering family, she often worked in the family restaurant during the summer holidays. Julie loved food and cooking and put her passion to good use at home. She recalls an epiphany back in 2012 when her four year old son, like many of us when very young, wouldn’t eat a lot of the various mouthwatering recipes she created for her family.
“I decided to use my culinary creativity to make him something special. Something that was both healthy and incredibly delicious. He loved humous, and he also really enjoyed smoky BBQ flavours and foods with that taste profile. So I decided to make some smoked humous and see if it tasted good…it did!”
And she knew she was on to a good thing once her son ate it all up! “I knew there was nothing like my unique smoked humous in any shops, and so I emailed Waitrose to see if they would be interested in stocking it as a branded product. They were, and we launched nationally with them six months later!”
The early days…and then take-off
Like so many of the best entrepreneur stories, Julie bootstrapped every step of the way in the early days. She did not have money to invest, so instead ploughed all profits from every batch of humous sold (initially to her local deli), back into the business.
When Moorish started supplying Waitrose, Julie did not look back. As she said herself: “everything came together and the business took off.” Those exciting beginnings were, for Julie, exhilarating and exhausting.
Moorish soon supplied Fortnum & Mason and Julie fondly recalls hosting sampling sessions in-store. “It felt very glamorous and a far cry from my day to day life of making humous and raising a family.”
Things literally took off when she secured her second major customer, this time in the airline sector where she used to work. “It had been a long time since I’d left British Airways, but I knew the product would be great for passengers on a long flight, looking for something healthy to snack on. I contacted them and was lucky enough to supply them, until of course the pandemic hit and that all stopped.”
Cashflow was holding the business back - invoice finance was the answer
However, like many small businesses, Moorish Dips has had to carefully balance cashflow challenges. As many Food & Beverage companies find, the long payment terms from supermarkets puts pressure on cashflow and working capital. To address this challenge, Moorish Dips turned to invoice finance and partnered with Kriya.
Julie had explored invoice finance in the past, but the timing wasn't right. However, a couple of years ago, the company changed its business model to take control of its invoicing, which meant their trading terms would be challenging for cashflow. Julie knew invoice finance could help bridge the gap and, in 2021, she chose Kriya as the right partner for a business of Moorish's size and risk/reward profile.
Kriya's invoice finance product provided Moorish Dips with a £200,000 facility. This allowed Moorish to fund invoices from supermarkets with long payment terms. Since partnering with Kriya, Moorish Dips has doubled its turnover, secured new contracts, and extended existing contracts with the larger supermarkets. The impact of working with Kriya has helped Moorish Dips to succeed and grow.
Julie has been delighted with the service she's received from Kriya, commenting, “We have found the level of customer service provided by Kriya to be of a very high standard, our queries are always responded to quickly and helpfully. The team has shown a flexible attitude to our financial requirements and have often found solutions when we needed them. The impact on our business is that working with Kriya has helped us to succeed and grow. What more can a business ask?!”
What’s next for Moorish Dips?
Moorish Dips is now looking forward to a bright future. In 2023, the company has big plans to expand further by arriving in new retailers and hitting the skies once again. Despite the challenges of running a small business, Julie is excited about the future and can't wait to land her growth plans and keep building the success of the business onwards and upwards.
Moorish Dips' journey is a great example of how a small business can overcome cashflow challenges by partnering with the right invoice finance provider. Kriya's invoice finance product has provided Moorish Dips with the financial flexibility it needs to grow and succeed.
As a female entrepreneur, Julie’s story is an inspiration for everyone. And her passion shines through when talking about her journey: “I describe it as a roller coaster, with high highs and low lows. Getting stocked in Sainsbury’s was huge for us, and then subsequently in Asda. We also export to the UAE and Hong Kong. I always wanted our deliciously moreish humous to be available to everyone, and now it is!”
By funding invoices from supermarkets, Moorish Dips has been able to focus on what it does best: creating delicious and moreish humous dips that people love. With the continued support of Kriya, Moorish Dips is well-positioned to achieve even greater success in the future.
And with International Women’s Day coinciding with Julie’s Moorish Dips story being published, this final word is beautifully apt: “I’m extremely proud of what we have achieved at Moorish. We employ men and women but most of our team have family commitments and we make sure that working at Moorish comes with a lot of flexibility for our team. I’m always delighted to be asked to speak at networking events and to mentor exciting female founders - it’s a privilege to let them know that women can achieve brilliant things in business, it just takes a great idea and bags of determination.”