Mentor Interview – Paul Griffiths
by Ines Marques De Sa
Toucan is pleased to introduce our newest mentors, Paul Griffiths, CEO and Co- Founder of Bloodstone Solutions. Bloodstone Solutions is working on building the world’s first commercially available Artificial Person. Discover Griffiths’ motivations to joining Toucan’s ecosystem as a mentor.
What are the main reasons why you wanted to become involved with Toucan?
When I first met the Toucan team and heard about their aims I was so pleased to see someone was recognising there are entrepreneurs out there that are not tech focused but who still have so much to offer. Working with startups is always exciting & rewarding, founders are always so passionate about their companies and their vision, it’s really inspiring and mentoring with Toucan gives me the opportunity to share some of my experience with great people. It really is win win as I get inspired and do my best to help where I can.
Which of our sectors (F&B, retail, lifestyle) do you think you can provide the most support?
My background is primarily in finance – particularly running a lean & cost effective business, this is sector agnostic – even when you’re in a luxury marketplace you need to make sure you’re getting value for every £, € & $ you spend for you, your customers and your shareholders. I do however have experience in hotels, restaurants and bars and food retail.
Which of the companies in our current portfolio are you most interested in working with?
I think anyone who knows me (especially my 3 daughters) will attest to my lack of understanding & knowledge in anything fashion related – therefore I think it’s fair to say I should not be getting involved with PASHION – or perhaps I really need to!!!
I was lucky enough to be invited to dinner at ‘The Frog’ and absolutely loved it, the food is heavenly and it’s great to see young chefs coming out of the kitchen and eye to eye with the customer to serve the food they have crafted and to see how rightfully proud they are.
Grill my Cheese on the other hand serve fabulous street food and what could be better than a cheese toastie, the original comfort food. Whilst fine dining has it place street food is full of heart and Grill my Cheese do it so well.
All this being said I love finding out about and working with new businesses and would be more than happy to get involved with any start up that felt they could benefit from my experience.
Paul has over 25 years of experience in business and finance, initially in large organizations such as Commercial Union & GAN before moving to smaller more entrepreneurial businesses and start-up’s. Currently Paul is CEO and Co-Founder at Bloodstone Solutions, having previously held numerous board positions in start ups. Prior to this he spent 6 years working with serial entrepreneur and easyJet founder Sir Stelios Haji-Ioannou on businesses including easyHotel (IPO in 2014), easyProperty (nominated for UK Proptech company of the year 2016), and easyCar where Paul was a non-exec director with lastminute.com co-founder Brent Hoberman who was also an investor in the business via PROfounders.