My name is Anna Oldbury and I am the founder of LioBites fruit crisps and smoothie bites.
I run a small, start-up business and a I am a mum to 2 school age girls. What makes me different? My perseverance, hard work and drive. I run LioBites in between school runs, gymnastic drop offs and grocery shopping. I am not different to millions other women all over the world. I have always worked and thrive on being busy and I make no excuses.
I am originally from Poland and I moved to the UK 19 years ago. Growing up in communism we were always told that men and women and equal and strong work ethics are embodied to you form the young age. After passing the A levels I have worked in hospitality- on the cruise ships, then in London in sales and logistics. I studied Fashion Management at 30 years old and wrote my dissertation while working full time and heavily pregnant with my first daughter. It all sounds very busy, almost crazy. As a woman with ambitions I didn’t want to give up my career and stay at home, but I also didn’t want my kids only to see me after work at bedtime. LioBites idea was born out of the need to create something that will leave a legacy for my daughters.
Livia -my youngest used to pick freeze-dried strawberries out of my cereal and this gave me an idea to replace the crisps she was snacking on with the healthy option made from fruits. 2 years later and 9 months into launching LioBites I am busy- but happy. I am proud to be a woman, as no men will ever understand the strength, we get from having to juggle things all our lives. Being a mum makes me a better businesswoman. I have much softer approach to a crisis situation, and I am trying to find solution rather than dwell on the negatives. I am more productive during school time so I can spend more time with the girls afterword’s. We are lucky to have technology that enables us to work flexible hours and have a better family-work balance. Most importantly I have created a product I am proud of – I am on a mission to change the perception on snacking. LioBites are healthy and made from raw fruit and nothing else. Kids love LioBites and so do the parents. We recently exhibited at the local Christmas Fair supporting homeless charity. It felt good, being able to speak to people in your community, help the charity and to feel as you are making something special. This sparkle of hope and excitement keeps me going on the grey days when I get rejections from retailers and tons of bills to pay. Hard work and positivity have to prevail and if anything, I need to prove to my daughters that women can have it all and to never give up their hope!
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