Indoor plant retailer wins Legal & General’s Grow initiative
LGIM Real Assets (Legal & General) has announced that Leafy House has been confirmed as the latest winner of its Grow initiative – this time in Northampton.
The local social enterprise, which specialises in selling house plants instore and online, is expanding and has signed an initial 12-month lease at Grosvenor Shopping Northampton and will begin trading in spring 2020. The fit-out of its unit will begin in the new year.
Grow, the entrepreneurship initiative, which launched earlier this year and aims to provide small business owners and local entrepreneurs with the opportunity to secure retail space, free of charge, for 12 months, was initially implemented at The Grafton, in Cambridge, earlier this year. It attracted 76 applications from local businesses, and its winner and runner-up – Harry Specters and ItsSo Travel respectively – opened ahead of Christmas.
The scheme has since been put into practice across Legal & General’s portfolio – at The Royal Arcade, Norwich, Overgate Shopping Centre, Dundee, and Grosvenor Shopping Northampton. At the latter, the initiative attracted a further 26 applications, with Leafy House being confirmed as the centre’s inaugural winner following a presentation to Evan Ryan, asset manager at Legal & General – owner of Grosvenor Shopping Northampton – and James Roberts, centre manager at the shopping centre.
Linda Nowara, owner of Leafy House, scored highly across the board for her business’ social values, social media and web presence, customer base, business model and future potential.
James Whitehill, senior fund manager at LGIM Real Assets, said: “Grow is a unique initiative which demonstrates just one way we can continue to innovate within the retail sector, supporting local businesses and rejuvenating the shopping experience. We had a lot of excellent submissions during the application process in Northampton and were, once again, overwhelmed with the quality of the response.
“The outstanding quality of Leafy House’s application caught our attention immediately. Legal & General and Grosvenor Shopping Northampton are passionate and committed to supporting local businesses and entrepreneurs and to have the opportunity to work with a popular local business like Leafy House is brilliant news. There’s no question that it will bring something completely different to the shopping centre.”
Linda Nowara, owner of Leafy House, added: “It’s a great privilege for me to receive this opportunity. I am very thankful and excited about the future. I hope that this will also inspire other people and empower them to work hard to make their dreams come true. I’m thankful to Grosvenor Shopping Northampton and Legal & General for putting their trust in me. I am very grateful and proud to be part of the ‘Grow at Grosvenor’ initiative. I can’t wait to make this space green.”