Paul Smith talks business

Here’s a fascinating interview with fashion design guru Paul Smith, who talks about many aspects of growing a business in the creative industries, including:

  • How he succeeds as a creative entrepreneur by saying no to many potential clients, choosing only those projects which fit his brand and excite his creativity. He has (politely) rejected the opportunity to design 3 hotels, 5 mobile phones and 2 cars – and that’s just in the last year!
  • How he manages his company’s finances and business growth in such a way that he can be selective. He avoids the pressure to constantly grow his creative business. Crucially, he manages cash flow carefully so that he has never needed to borrow money from a bank.
  • How he became ‘big in Japan’ by being respectful of Japanese people and culture (when others were being brash), and took his time to build solid business relationships.


Designer fashion icon Paul Smith was interviewed on the London Eye by Francine Lacqua for Bloomsberg TV’s ‘Eye to Eye‘ programme.


Discuss the points made by Paul Smith with other creative entrepreneurs on the T-Shirts and Suits Creative Enterprise Network.


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