Press release

Norwich natural cosmetics start-up gets mentoring from B Corp Bird and Blend Tea co-founder

Norwich natural cosmetics start-up gets mentoring from B Corp Bird and Blend Tea co-founder
Enterprise Nation
Enterprise Nation
Enterprise Nation

Posted: Fri 20th Oct 2023

A Norwich-based PhD biologist, who is on a mission to help people use more natural products to improve hair and skin, is set to be mentored by the founder of one the UK's most successful independent tea companies after winning a national enterprise competition.

Dr Evanthia Kaimaklioti Samota, founder of Piotis Naturals, creates natural cosmetics with sustainable ingredients and eco-friendly packaging will be mentored by certified B Corp Bird & Blend Tea co, which now has 17 shops nationwide and a healthy online business -- including one in Norwich.

Mike Turner, co-founder of Bird & Blend Tea Co, said:

"I was really impressed with what Evanthia has done so far with Piotis Naturals, especially the craft and eco elements of her brand. I see parallels with how we started up Bird & Blend and feel I have a lot to offer by way of experience on both the sustainability and commercial side of the business. Hopefully a lot more too! I'm looking forward to being part of Evanthia's startup founder journey."

The company was chosen as one of three winners of the Enterprise Nation Fund with TikTok, which seeks to recognise businesses that go above and beyond to embody their mission of community, trust and entrepreneurship.

Evanthia was the overwhelming winner in the trusted category for her approach to providing natural and sustainable skincare and haircare options, as well as being totally transparent about processes and ingredients.

Evanthia said:

"I feel honoured and grateful to have been awarded this life-changing opportunity. I have been working extremely hard to provide excellent natural cosmetics to help others reach their skin and hair goals and help them better understand the ingredients in their cosmetics. With this award and all the benefits included, I cannot wait to see how it can help propel Piotis Naturals to the next level and continue to improve and excel.

"The mentorship from Mike, who operates in a complementary field to my natural cosmetics business, will be a game-changing opportunity. It will allow me to continue improving how I help people achieve healthy and radiant skin and hair."

The business was awarded £5,000 as overall winner of the Trusted category, as well as 12 months of one-to-one mentoring from Mike, plus guidance from a TikTok expert.

Emma Jones CBE, founder of small business support platform and membership community Enterprise Nation, said:

"Evanthia is striving to create something unique and sustainable and for that she needs to have the complete trust of her community.

"Piotis Naturals is the embodiment of trust and I am really looking forward to watching this business as it grows to leverage the power of its trusted community, something Mike Turner has in spades. I'm excited to see where this happy union might lead."


About the Enterprise Nation Fund

The Enterprise Nation Fund is an annual bursary from Enterprise Nation, partnering with TikTok which includes a £5,000 grant and 12 months of mentoring and support packages from its partners awarded to three value-driven small businesses. Criteria for the awards are for businesses that are guided by entrepreneurial spirit, prioritise being trusted by customers and are community-led.

The Enterprise Nation Fund with TikTok, champions the businesses that reflect Enterprise Nation's own values, the ones that understand the deep advantages of aligning with their own community, the incredible power of trust, and those that demonstrate an inspiringly entrepreneurial spirit.

  • Entrepreneurial - for businesses driven by a creative and innovative spirit: Oliver Tyler, founder of greetings card and plant firm Shroot, is the winner of this category. He is being mentored by Timothy Armoo, co-founder of social and influencer agency Fanbytes, who was only 27 when his business was acquired in a landmark eight-figure deal.

  • Trusted - for businesses trusted by customers and the people who hold a stake in it: This category's winner is biologist Dr Evanthia Kaimaklioti Samota, founder of organic and scientifically proven cosmetics firm Piotis Naturals. She is being mentored by Mike Turner, co-founder of Bird & Blend Tea Co., the UK's most loved indie tea company. The award-winning brand offers eco-friendly tea and is B-Corp certified.

  • Community-led - for businesses centred around their community: This winner is Niamh Tallon and Mohammed Mahomed co-founders of Her Sport. They will be mentored by Emma Jones CBE, founder of Enterprise Nation. Enterprise Nation is an 800,000-strong community of small businesses and advisers offering trusted business support.

About TikTok

TikTok is the leading destination for short-form mobile video. Our mission is to inspire creativity and bring joy. TikTok has global offices including Los Angeles, New York, London, Paris, Berlin, Dubai, Singapore, Jakarta, Seoul and Tokyo.

Emma Jones bio

Emma Jones CBE, founder and CEO, Enterprise Nation

Emma Jones sold her first company successfully when she was 27. The experience of starting, growing and selling a business from a home base gave Emma the idea for Enterprise Nation which was launched in 2005 to support the flourishing number of start-ups and SMEs.

The company has since expanded to become an active small business membership community, reaching more than 800,000 businesses each year with its powerful digital business support platform. Enterprise Nation also presents a positive campaigning voice to governments on behalf of its partners and members.

With Emma at the helm, Enterprise Nation now works with multiple global and government partners to deliver tailored business support programmes for a growing number of micro and small business owners. It also delivers regular data-led research to highlight and understand the important contribution SMEs make to the economy and to establish 'what works' when it comes to funded support programmes.

In 2021, Emma was awarded a CBE for services to small businesses and entrepreneurs and has held several key advisory roles at the heart of the UK government, making the case for small businesses in the corridors of power.

Enterprise Nation
Enterprise Nation
Enterprise Nation
Enterprise Nation has helped thousands of people start and grow their businesses. Led by founder, Emma Jones CBE, Enterprise Nation connects you to the resources and expertise to help you succeed.

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