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Brownie and the Bean

Brownie and the Bean Logo
Founders of Brownie and the Bean, Charlotte and Luke Giddings, standing in their kitchen smiling at the camera.
Founders of Brownie and the Bean, Charlotte and Luke Giddings

In 2017 husband and wife duo Charlotte and Luke Giddings retreated from the hustle and bustle of city life in London towards rural Suffolk with the help of BBC One’s Escape to the Country. Here, they decided to convert an old horse trailer into a mobile coffee bar. To take this further, they had the romantic idea to combine their pop up operation with the festival lifestyle, having met at a festival themselves. The one thing they needed was a product that hadn’t been done for festival foods before. It just had to be brownies. Luke’s family had passed down an incredible top secret recipe from their little black book and Brownie and the Bean was born. With the scene set, they ventured out and began making appearances at events and festivals in their pop up box.

When lockdown hit in 2020, the couple changed their business model from festival pop ups to a doorstep delivery service. They were able to work from home around their young family and within weeks Charlotte was out hand delivering bakes across Suffolk and Norfolk. This has since scaled country wide – “Nothing like a global pandemic to bring you out of the woodwork!” Charlotte says as she adjusted from 4 years of back to back maternity leave to working 20 hour days.

A selection of specially crafted brownies displayed on a branded piece of paper
A selection of specially crafted brownies from Brownie and the Bean

With Luke front of house and baking full time, Charlotte heads up the business strategy and they are enjoying every moment of evolving their business since coming out of lockdown. Brownie and the Bean now has a corporate offering and wholesale baked products alongside selling directly to consumers through their website, events, and markets in the UK. The current dream is to expand their wholesale customer base further and grow their corporate gifting service.

Throughout their business journey, what has remained constant is their commitment to sustainability, use of local produce and creating only high quality products. These include brownies, blondies, fudge, and cakes all with vegan and gluten free options. With hampers, assortment boxes, seasonal goods and more, their product range has grown as rich as the bakes themselves. Want to see for yourself? Charlotte and Luke are offering all readers an exclusive 20% discount using code ‘NW20’ on online products!

Brownie and the Bean joined the NatWest Accelerator Hub in 2020, at a time of economic uncertainty, as they felt it important to access support to help them learn more about growing their business.

Being part of the NatWest Accelerator has helped to accelerate growth within 6 months of being on the Accelerator, sales revenue was up by 82% in 2021 and set to be up another 22% in 2022.

Charlotte Giddings, co-founder Brownie and the Bean

Charlotte thanks her Enterprise Acceleration Managers at NatWest for being able to understand her complex character and getting the best out of her. She says they provided perfect clarity and are very thankful for all the help and connections through the Hub’s resources.