Gloucestershire businesswoman named south west's Young Entrepreneur of the Year

Capping a hugely successful first 12 months for her business, Gloucester's Ciara McGurk, owner of perfume-inspired laundry brand Tallow + Ash, has been named Young Entrepreneur of the Year for the south west in the 2024 UK StartUp Awards.

By Jake Chown  |  Published
Ciara McGurk, who was born and raised in Gloucester, is now in the running to be named the UK's Young Entrepreneur of the Year following her regional win.

The founder of innovative Gloucester-based laundry brand Tallow + Ash, Ciara McGurk, has been recognised for her drive to elevate the industry through inspiring new scents and sustainability with a prestigious regional business award this May 2024.

Ciara, who launched the brand in spring 2023, has been named Young Entrepreneur of the Year for the south west in the UK StartUp Awards for 2024, which celebrates and champions the 'best and brightest' start-ups from across the UK each year.

Winning the regional award means Ciara is now a finalist in the national awards — new for 2024 — alongside some of the most successful and innovative young business leaders in the UK. The winners will be announced in a ceremony at business networking festival Ideas Fest in Hertfordshire in September 2024.

Based out of its premises in Gloucester, known as The Laundry Lab, Tallow + Ash makes a range of planet-friendly laundry shampoos and conditioners with scents inspired by perfumes from the beauty and fragrance industry.

Ciara started the business without having a background in chemistry, assembling a close knit team of suppliers and perfumers to develop products that matched her passion for scents.

Its range includes Odyssey, a 'sophisticated, masculine fragrance' with grapefruit, chamomile and sandalwood; Celestial, a floral, oriental scent with plum, jasmine and rose; and Date Night, a 'romantic, opulent, cherry-based fragrance' with Turkish rose and patchouli.

Prior to its official launch to the public in June 2023, Ciara announced the brand via a Tallow + Ash Laundry Lab Facebook group, amassing a huge following which saw the company sell more than 15,000 bottles over its opening weekend.

In the same month, Ciara also secured a £250,000 investment from BrewDog CEO, James Watt through his Next Unicorn competition in Las Vegas.

Then in February 2024, Tallow + Ash was revealed as the most googled laundry brand in the UK, beating the likes of Persil and Ariel as well as more eco-friendly companies like Ecover.

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