Here at Cadbury Cars; we wanted to introduce you to our founding partners, Mark and Katie Shaw, who’s friendly faces you’ll also find are those that will greet you when you travel with us, as they are very much part of our chauffeur team too.
Q&A Interview – July 2020:
When did you start the business?
We started the business over ten years ago in September 2008.
What made you choose your type of business?
Mark was an experienced employed chauffeur back in 2008, and we were asked to go into business with the employer he was working for at that time. At the last minute, our planned partner, pulled out. However; we decided to carry on with the business and Cadbury Cars was launched with the two of us at the helm; and we’ve been partners ever since
What’s your company’s goals?
Our aim has always been to build the business up to be the No 1, ‘go-to’ executive luxury car chauffeur service in the South West; known for its reliability and exceptional customer service, and we hope that we continue to meet and strive for that goal every day.
What was your mission at the outset?
Our mission was, and remains, to be the South West’s No 1 luxury car chauffeur service for both personal and business travel.
What services to you offer?
A whole range of executive chauffeur services for Managing Directors, CEO’s, Financial Directors and Celebrities. Our cars are used for film and TV work. We offer private school transfers (for children off to boarding school) and of course weddings, sporting events and airport trips.
What’s it like working together?
We really enjoy working together. Sometimes, it can be hard as Katie is office-based part time, whilst Mark is out on the road – so, sometimes we are “ships that pass in the night”! We make sure we keep in regular contact with one another and keep each other motivated and work together as a team to develop and run the business.
What keeps you motivated?
Our main motivation is meeting and helping our clients; – we’re both “people persons” so we enjoy meeting our clients and learning about them and helping them with their transport needs.
What’s been some highlights of your years in business?
There’s been many highlights over the years including:
Being able to drive into the courtyard at Buckingham Palace to collect two of our clients (Nick Taplin, CEO of Black and White Hospitality and his operations director Shezan Aslam.)
Being asked to support 50+ riders in the Black and White Charity bike ride. We had to drive from Bristol to Mallorca, round Mallorca with the bikers for 3 days and drive back home (nearly 3,000 miles).
Having a good reputation and thereby being entrusted to undertake celebrity weddings.
Being asked to take a Canadian tourist around a tour of the UK’s National Trust properties and gardens for 5 weeks – we found some very interesting and beautiful places!
Having built a good reputation; being asked to be well-known actor’s personal drivers whilst filming and our cars with Mark driving having been used in a production.
What are you most proud of about your business?
How we’ve developed the business over the last decade or so to now. When we started, we knew very little about the industry. We have built the business up since 2008 to one that has a great reputation and the chosen “go to” luxury car chauffeur company in the Bristol, North Somerset, and South West area.
What aspect of running the business do you most enjoy?
For both Katie and Mark, it’s definitely meeting, talking with, and helping our clients.
To what do you attribute your success?
We both possess a very strong work ethic and (learning from Katie’s previous career in the legal industry), don’t be late to collect clients! We are also 100% professional. We care about our clients and put their needs and comfort first. We take pride in each and every job we do whether it’s a trip to business journey Heathrow or a hen party to a local spa.
If you had one piece of advice to someone just starting out, what would it be?
Make sure you do the research for your industry – your prices, ideal clients, marketing and where to market etc. Take time to invest in a good business development and marketing plan from the outset..
Tell us about some of the journeys you take…
On a daily basis, we go to Manchester, Birmingham, East Midlands, Burgess Hill, Heathrow, Gatwick, London, Southampton as well as local airports such as Bristol, Cardiff and Exeter. We go to sporting events such as Silverstone, Cheltenham, Twickenham and Cardiff. We have done film work including for Sky TV.
What do you like to do when you are not working?
Looking after our grandchildren. Katie enjoys needlework and Mark enjoys DIY.
What can customers expect as they start travelling again with Cadbury Cars after Lockdown?
We’ve “upped” our car hygiene protocols (see our blog and video) and we’ve also undertaken online courses for both Virtual College (Prevent COVID-19) and Safe Sets International COVID-19 (Level A) for the Film and Video Production Industry.
We’re also following Government guidelines in relation to wearing of masks etc.
So, as soon as our clients are ready – we’re ready too! Please contact us to make your booking.