Aston University Masters graduate Omran Al Habbal is the founder of Gladington and sister company Bloomup.
Omran, tell us about yourself…
“I came to the UK for the first time in 2016 to do my MSc at Aston Business School in Strategic Marketing Management. I always wanted to start my own business, but, after I finished my MSc I worked as a monitoring and evaluation consultant for a market research company based in the Middle East. However, after a couple of months, I made my decision and did what I always wanted, I started my own marketing business in Birmingham and since then I am enjoying every little bit of my entrepreneurial journey.”
Tell us more about Gladington and Bloomup…
“Gladington is a platform that matches marketing students with SMEs to work together on short and mid-term marketing projects in a value exchange manner. On one hand, the students will get the work experience they need, receiving a taster of different marketing experiences and thus getting a clearer idea of what marketing sector they will go for after they graduate. On the other hand, the businesses will get an extra hand of young talented students that saves them time and money.
Bloomup is a creative agency that provides marketing and business support for entrepreneurs and startups to grow and expand their businesses. Furthermore, we collaborate and support enterprise communities and contribute by delivering marketing and entrepreneurial skills workshops for students and entrepreneurs at Birmingham universities.”
What made you jump at the chance of coming on BSEEN?
“While I was studying at Aston, I was introduced to BSEEN through the PDP module (Professional Development Programme) and discovered how BSEEN can help entrepreneurs kick off with their ideas. So I joined BSEEN and I am amazed by BSEEN’s great team and happy with the wonderful support they have offered me so far. They are always there to help and provide entrepreneurs with the entrepreneurial guidance they need. Sometimes, when I introduce students to BSEEN and tell them that they must join they reply with “it’s too good to be true” but it is true and all entrepreneurial students should go for it.”
What do you think you have learned the most from your BSEEN journey?
“BSEEN was the transition phase between having an idea and turning it into a business. BSEEN provided me with the logistic support and professional opportunities such as networking events to get the needed exposure. This in turn has positively impacted my business. In my journey as an entrepreneur, I learned that a great idea is not enough, therefore, entrepreneurs have to put a huge effort to make their ideas succeed. Furthermore, leadership is everything, the better the leadership skills an entrepreneur has, the higher the possibility of success.”
What has been your business stand out moment since being on BSEEN?
“Right now Gladington is fully functional and accessible by both students and businesses. We started delivering marketing and branding workshops and I have joined BSEEN as a mentor to provide support to fellow entrepreneurs. While working closely with entrepreneurial students, I noticed that the majority would like to start and turn their ideas into real businesses but the marketing and branding agencies’ costs are pretty high for students so we expanded Gladington and started Bloomup. Bloomup is a sister company that provides marketing, branding and business support to entrepreneurs and small businesses at affordable prices and through a friendly like-minded team.”
Any advice for entrepreneurial students or graduates thinking about starting their own business?
“A lot of people might tell you that it won’t work and it’s a huge risk to start a business but those who are crazy enough to go for it and enjoy the hustle, change the world. There is a lot of support out there designed to help you throughout your journey. Understand your target market, create value and get closer to your customers, and whatever happens always fail forward, learn from your mistakes and never stop until you win.”
What are your next steps for your business?
“Right now, we are all setup and we are building a community of marketing students, entrepreneurs and startups to work collaboratively together. At Gladington and Bloomup we aim to support entrepreneurs so we can grow together above and beyond, side by side.”