Jamie Murray Wells
Jamie Murray Wells started Glasses Direct from the living room of his parents' home in Wiltshire while studying for his University finals. Six years later - without any formal business training - the 26 year-old has seen the company grow to become the largest direct retailer of custom made prescription glasses in the world.
His success is based on challenging an industry where high street opticians charge £150 per pair of glasses and offering the same products for £15 on the web.
Despite early threats of legal action and pressure on suppliers from high street brands, Glasses Direct is now fully established in the optical market place, and is quickly becoming a household name.
The company is projecting an £8 million pound turnover by the end of 2008 and so far this year, with hundreds and hundreds of glasses being shipped every day. The company estimates it ships a pair every few minutes round the clock, and has saved the UK public in excess of £20 million pounds on their glasses.
Jamie has established himself as a national expert on emerging small enterprise in the UK, and is often asked to comment on current affairs matters for national newspapers and broadcasters.
Subjects he has spoken about include the postal strike, pre-budget reports from the Government, and capital gains tax. He has appeared on BBC News 24, Radio 5 Live, Tonight, GMTV, and is regularly quoted in a variety of Fleet Street newspapers including the Financial Times and the Daily Telegraph.
Jamie takes an active interest in his role as an entrepreneur, acting as an ambassador for UK Enterprise, providing advice and support to other young entrepreneurs as well as being a National Judge for Enterprising Britain 2007 and also in 2008.
According to startups.co.uk, Jamie was rated the top entrepreneur of 2005, beating Sir Richard Branson, Sir Alan Sugar, and Stelios Haji-Ioannou.
Other awards to his name include the UK Shell Livewire Young Entrepreneur of the Year, Wales and West Country Entrepreneur of the Year Award, NatWest Entrepreneur of the Year Award and Daily Mail Enterprising Young Brit.