How I Made It: Sally Preston, founder, Kids Food Company

Last Wednesday did not start well for Sally Preston. The founder of Kids Food Company arrived at her office expecting a normal day, only to be told that migrants trying to cross the Channel at Calais had sneaked into a lorry carrying five tons of fruit snacks from a Belgian supplier to her packing plant in Britain.

“They had been lying on top of the load and, well, there are no toilets on a lorry,” said Preston. “But they did have marker pens — who knew? — so they had graffitied funny little faces on the boxes.

“The order has been contaminated so we are sending it all back and talking to the haulier about different ports and different transport. We have great quality control so it was picked up immediately, but in the meantime we have no product to sell.”

Read more at The Sunday Times

And now for something completely different

Emilie-Kate Kidd wants to disrupt as many classrooms as she can — more than 500 schools by 2017, if all goes to plan. The 35-year-old co-founder of Earwig Academic Reporting has created a software package that lets schools do away with the scrapbooks in which they laboriously record lessons and achievements — necessary preparation for school inspections. In their place will be a smartphone app that allows teachers to take photographs and videos of children in lessons, which can be automatically uploaded to a secure site and immediately deleted from the teacher’s phone, as required by child protection regulations. The images can then be used to create a record for inspectors.

Read more about Emilie-Kate and what makes a business disruptive in The Sunday Times

When to ignore the advice of experts

Richard Parris’s first bank manager back– ed his ambitious growth plans for Intercede, the digital identity and security company he set up in the 1990s. But soon that manager was replaced, and Parris faced a very different response when he paid the newcomer a visit.

“We had just got our first really big contract so I went in and explained what we were doing,” said Parris, 58. “He asked to look at the books and then said, ‘My best advice is to call in a liquidator. Based on this balance sheet, you cannot support this contract.’ ”

Rather than follow this advice, Parris decided to go with his gut instinct. After checking with his solicitor that he was not in danger of trading while insolvent, he set about looking for a new source of investment for Leicestershire-based Intercede.

Read more in The Sunday Times

Freelance journalist and writer