Julian Richer is one of the UK’s most successful high-street retailers. After buying and selling his first piece of hi-fi equipment for a profit at the age of 14, he opened his first Richer Sounds store in London just five years later. Four decades on that store has grown into a nationwide chain of more than 50 shops, 400 staff and an annual turnover of almost £190m. Alongside his retail career he’s also an author (his latest book, The Ethical Capitalist, was published earlier this year) and industry consultant, famously advising both Asda and Marks and Spencer, and he’s the drummer in funk and soul band Ten Millennia. In this hugely entertaining interview, hear Julian explain what drove him to start buying and selling at such a young age, how his band went from playing in front of six people to 6,000 almost overnight, and why he’s glad he used his own name on the shop, even though he thinks becoming a celebrity is a curse.
Julian very kindly agreed to ahead with this interview despite being full of a cold and he’s asked me apologise on his behalf and correct a couple of mistakes he made:
57:43 – he meant to say “depend on the ROADS to drive my lorries”
1:02:11- he meant to say “running a retail business is a hell of a lot HARDER”