James Middleton: 28, founder of the Cake Kit Company and BoomfIf you think the name looks familiar, you’re correct. He is the little brother of Kate Middleton, the duchess of Cambridge. Whilst the pair share the same family, their working lives could not be more different. Kate remains permanently in the public spotlight but James reportedly often spends weeks without showing his face to friends and family, choosing to instead to develop and distribute cake kits from the back of a van. Raised in Berkshire alongside Kate, James attended Marlborough College and then studied at Edinburgh university for a year before dropping out to pursue his business idea. “Within a few weeks I knew it wasn’t where I wanted to be,” he said of his time at university. “I said to myself that I would see out a year in case it turned good, but I was always looking for business ideas.” In 2007, Middleton launched the Cake Kit Company, partly to encourage kids to get cooking and partly make it easier for people to bake their own celebration cakes. The “kit” comes with ingredients, instructions and decorations to enable customers to make novelty cakes of different shapes and sizes. Since then, Middleton has added marshmallow company Boomf to his list of ventures. The service allows customers to include images and messages on marshmallows to send as gifts to friends and family. He did receive a helping hand from his parents but said that the biggest boost to getting things up and running was a bank loan. “They weren’t going to take me on just because I was their son,” Middleton once said of his parents’ input into his startup.
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