BELANCĒ Stories | Theodore English Posted on 15 Aug 07:00
"I’ve been travelling a bit more this year which has been great. I love discovering new places and seeing what’s out there in the world. Getting inspired and motivated!"
When I proposed to Theo the idea of writing an article about him, there was a sense of hesitation, and then he replied "Sure, but as long as we can do it by the beach", so I visited him at his house in Coogee, which is a minutes walk from the beach. Convenient, I know. See, the hesitation from Theo didn't come from an unwillingness to participate, rather, he had doubts if people would be interested in his story. This is precisely the reason why he finds success in business and his personal life; as the co-founder of a dynamic, young brand (BELANCĒ), and with a wealth of experience in other industries such as banking, wholesaling and marketing, Theo reserves his humility, with his eye focused on the next project in the pipeline.
Theo grew up in Switzerland until the age of 18, he moved around the country initially living in the countries capital Berne, and subsequently moving to the French speaking part of Switzerland on lake Geneva; here he became fluent in French and English, and developed his love for cheese. With roots in Australia from his fathers side, Theo returned to Australia frequently, and was always attracted to the lifestyle, the opportunities, and the weather; he always knew Sydney would be the place he called home.
Can you describe you first contact with business and retail?
Having my own business has been something I’ve always dreamed of. From as young as I can remember, I always had multiple ventures - from buying and selling mobile phones, importing jewellery and accessories, to wholesaling - I’ve always been involved in trying to start a business. I’ve been lucky to work in different industries, including the banking industry in Switzerland, and sales and marketing projects for companies such as Procter & Gamble, Nokia, Telstra and Woolworth's in Australia.
Funnily, I never really worked in retail. My first exposure was a company I started that imported fashion accessories into Australia. I used to import various brands from Colombia, Switzerland and Italy and supplied stores all around Australia. This helped me learn about the industry and what stores wanted. By doing so I met Oscar, co-founder of BELANCĒ, and business partner, who was working at the time as a buyer for a retail store in Sydney. He had experience in retail and I had experience in the supply and operational side of running a business. We then came up with the idea of starting an exciting new project called BELANCĒ. The rest is history.
How have you been spending 2018?
I’ve been travelling a bit more this year which has been great. I love discovering new places and seeing what’s out there in the world. Getting inspired and motivated. Also, I’ll be turning 30 this year in October. I’m still debating hard on what to do but my mind is going towards one word - party!
What does a normal work-week look like for you?
Every week is different, which is what I love! We have our team meetings every Monday morning to catch up on the week and see what’s been going on in the stores, and work on our new projects. On a personal level, I live close to the beach in Coogee so I love getting up early and going for a run, and then coffee by the water. It’s so relaxing and helps me focus and get ready for the day.
I then jump around between both stores but work mainly out of our Paddington store where our office is located and get most of my work done there. It’s a great place to have meetings with so many amazing coffee shops and restaurants close by.
In the evenings, I try to keep to a fairly strict schedule during the week but enjoy going out around Surry Hills or Coogee for dinner and drinks with friends.
Items Theo can’t live without:
Being Swiss, I’m a big watch person. At the moment I’m wearing DuFa Van Der Rohe Barcelona DF-9021-06 - it’s a beautiful classic silver watch with black strap. It’s so versatile you can wear it everywhere.
View Van Der Rohe Barcelona Online
When going for a run or walk, I love listening to music which helps me focus and clear my mind. I’ve been using the new Bang & Olufsen Beoplay H4 in the morning and on my trips overseas.
I love keeping things simple. You need to be comfortable in what you wear, yet look good and ready for any occasion. I love pairing black sneakers with a suit and with casual-wear, it’s such a simple look and perfect for Sydney. Something you can wear at a pub, fancy restaurant or even a meeting. I’m completely in love with the Oliver Cabell Low 1 sneaker in Jet Black.
Theo’s quotes to live by:
“I have not failed. I’ve just found 10’000 ways that won’t work” - Thomas Edison
"Opportunities don't happen. You create them." - Chris Grosser