STUDENT Mike Dunn has set up a business which custom builds furniture using reclaimed and waste materials.
The Hull University Business School student started the firm, named Make Me One Too, four months ago. Having initially started out making pieces for family, the business idea spiralled out of friends asking if he could ‘make me one too’.
The business model has been designed to always break even and the aim is to donate 15 per cent of the company’s revenue to local social enterprises and charities.
Mr Dunn said: “My partner and I were looking at buying new furniture but found that we couldn’t necessarily afford what we wanted. My dad had trained as a cabinet maker and joiner, and I had been making bits and pieces for years, so I thought that I would have a go at making the furniture that we wanted – how hard could it be?
“We have a workshop in Ayton and an outlet at Betton Farm, outside Scarborough. Betton is run by Basics Plus, a registered charity and social enterprise which provides employment opportunities for people with learning difficulties.
“We work closely alongside their furniture shop SOFA, taking their broken items and turning them into beautiful new pieces. In return, we make sure that on sale, the charity receives double what they would have priced it for in the shop.”
Meanwhile, Mr Dunn is studying full-time, working as a musician in the evenings and is a parent of a one-year old. He said: “I know that if you want something to be a success, you have to work hard and do it yourself. I want to provide security for myself and my family, and hopefully to other people when we expand.”