Now, you might be thinking – aren’t you The Women’s Organisation? Don’t you only work with women?

BUT that isn’t the case! As part of our work in Manchester under our Excelerate Labs project we can support women AND men running businesses in the B2B (business to business) sector which enables organisations in the Greater Manchester area to innovate, diversify and grow creating new jobs.

Paul Sheerin and his business Defiance are one of the businesses that we’ve had the pleasure of working with this year, and this is their story…

Paul told us; ‘Defiance is a premium, distilled, small batch gin. Foraged across Lancashire, Yorkshire and Scotland…Our professional forager Alysia of Yorkshire Foragers, who works with the top restaurants across the country, sources and collects our wild botanicals. We use these fresh botanicals to give Defiance it’s truly unique flavour and characteristics.’

Paul started receiving support from ourselves after his wife Jo, who works at accountancy firm; KPMG, met CEO of The Women’s Organisation; Maggie O’Carroll and explained about the idea for a business that Paul had. Paul was then partnered up with one of our Manchester Business Advisers; Mike Marsden, and that’s where it all began!

‘I started working with Mike at the beginning of this year, when Defiance Gin was just in the concept stages. Since then we have been having regular meetings and it has been an absolutely brilliant process.’

Mike and Paul worked together on a number of different things, looking at laying down objectives and a timescale for the product and a business plan specific to Defiance Gin, as Paul owns another business wholesaling other gins. Paul says; ‘Mike made me say that it was important to have a business plan that was bespoke for Defiance Gin.’  

And, he had some great words to say about Mike; ‘I’ve really enjoyed working with Mike, it’s been terrific. I don’t say this about many people, but I actually looking forward to meeting up with Mike and having our meetings! He’s enthusiastic and knowledgeable and it’s been great to have a sounding board to bounce ideas off of.’

Defiance Gin launched last month and so far, things are going great for Paul, having already sold over 400 bottles! And it’s no wonder people love it so much, it sounds incredible!
Paul told us that; ’14 botanicals create Defiance Gin. We distil all of these ingredients separately to extract the best characteristics from each botanical.’ ­­– Their steep and boil method of distilling means that Defiance is an absolute treat for the taste buds!

‘It gives Defiance its wonderful and unique depth of flavour. An earthy backbone gives way to fresh citrus and wonderful notes of anise.’

And what are Paul’s plans for the future of Defiance Gin?

‘We’ve got big expectations for the future. I’m looking to export in Summer 2018 and continue expanding our national strategy here in the UK. Defiance can already be found in Michelin and 5 star restaurants and hotels across the country, so I’d like to continue working on that.’

To find out more about Defiance, and the incredible story behind their name, you can check out their website here! And check out their social media too

If you are in Greater Manchester and would like to find out if The Women’s Organisation can support you and your business, then get in touch with us today! Email us on ring us on 0151 706 8111
You can find out more information about our Excelerate Labs programme here.