Startup tips from StartUp Britain mentor Jemma Cooper (Founder & MD of Hi Therapies & JemmaCo Beautycare)


At a lavish awards ceremony at Manchester’s stunning The Monastery, HI Therapies, a Bournemouth-based beauty salon beat hundreds of salons to the title of Beauty Salon of the Year South West at the Professional Beauty Regional Awards.

The Professional Beauty Awards are the most prestigious and established awards scheme for the beauty, spa, nails and aesthetics markets, recognising those who make a real difference to the industry. They recognise the salons that stand out from the crowd and deserve recognition as a world-class player in the beauty and spa industry.

HI Therapies was founded just five years ago by multi-winning female entrepreneur and StartUp Britain volunteer mentor, Jemma Cooper at the age 23 after completing a BSc Hons degree in Complementary Therapies at Cardiff Metropolitan University.

beauty-salon-of-the-year-south-west_hi-therapiesAfter being new to the industry and self-employed for just a few months, Jemma jumped at the chance to own her own salon. She immediately brought a loss-making business in 2011 and rebranded it turning it into a success and a profitable business in her first year.

Since then, Jemma hasn’t looked back and the salon now boasts seven treatment rooms that are beautifully decorated with the latest equipment. It is here where her team of twelve deliver outstanding treatments from tailored anti-aging facials to their own Signature Mix and Match Massage. Using some of the biggest brands in the industry from CACI to Environ, Jane Iredale, CND, St Tropez and their own newly launched brand JemmaCo.

To further differentiate HI Therapies, Jemma has recently designed and launched her own handmade massage oil using 100% organic products and pure essential oils called JemmaCo Healing Harmony Beeswax for professional massage therapists made by professionals for professionals.

Reflecting on her recent success, we asked Jemma to give her top tips for those looking to embark on a similar journey to entrepreneurialism:

Developing Your Business Idea(s)

  • Share your business ideas with others to try to get as much constructive feedback as possible to refine them
  • Give your business idea time to develop and avoid rushing as baby steps turn into big steps
  • Be open to ideas, don’t just have your heart set on one as the next one might be the best one
  • Put together a good business plan which helps you get your ideas out of your head and onto paper in a structured form

Having the Right Attitude

  • Remain determined, patient and positive because there will be hard times when you will have setback and will have to move forward
  • Always remember the reasons you want to have your own business and remember to keep your passion which will always see you through the hard times
  • Always trust your guy instinct which will help you make tough decisions when running a business
  • Keep an open mind by always looking for what support there is available to you to start a business like I did such as The Princes Trust to The Venus Awards who were both very helpful and even  family members who have their own businesses who can give you some advice

Following on from her achievement at the Beauty Salon of the Year South West, Jemma and her team will now look forward to the the National Professional Beauty Awards, taking place in London in February 2017.  

About Jemma

Jemma Cooper is a 4 time award winning business women in Dorset, A expert in Complementary Therapy Treatments offering reflexology, massage and more. She is the founder and Managing Director of Hi Therapies beauty salon in Bournemouth and JemmaCo Beautycare. Her awards included National Young Entrepreneur for Venus Womens Awards 2013 where she is now its National Ambassador. She set up her business at the age of 23 and turned the business making a loss of -£16,000 and turned it into a profit within its first year. Jemma’s moto is “Passion, choice, commitment and self belief are the key to success and leave the rest to chance and fate.”