Design whizzkids

Tue, 07 Aug 2012 11:40:00 BST

Creativity is just the business for graduate partners

THEY are whizzkids at all aspects of design.  But the ambitious members of the new consultancy named THAT Creative are quick to admit that they needed business advice and know-how to make sure that their venture hit the ground running when it was launched.

The good news was that because the partners were recent graduates of the University of Huddersfield they could call on its business support team, which offers free mentoring to new ventures.  Grants are available too, although THAT Creative has yet to explore that option.

“So far it is advice and support that we have sought,” says one of the partners, James Whitfield (pictured below on the right).  “We are designers and we know that area quite well, but we didn’t know that much about business!”

[Below: The design team at THAT Creative]

THAT Creative design team Graduates of design courses – both BA and BSc pathways – at the University of Huddersfield, they bring a wide range of individual specialisations to the business and as a team they aim to fulfil any design need.  Mechanical design engineering, technical detailing, advanced CAD, photography, high-quality product and technical drawings are among the skills on offer.

James, for example studied product design – he graduated in 2011 – and his skill set includes packaging, project management and devising concepts.  One of his most interesting recent projects has been to design a home gym on behalf of an American company.

THAT Creative is based in Huddersfield, but while still in its early stages, the company operates in ‘virtual office space’ spells out the services on offer.

Like all start-ups, the business has had its ups and downs, but the future is looking good.  “We hit a rough patch around Christmas,” says James, “but things are fine now.”

Evidence of the business’s potential is that the partners were selected to attend the New Designers 2012 exhibition, which took place in London on 4-7 July.  It is described as the UK’s most important graduate exhibition and the THAT Creative team showcased in the One Year On category for recent graduates.


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