Spa de Sal is a London-based spa that specialises in salt therapy for the treatment of respiratory and skin conditions, as well as improving fitness. Salt therapy helped founder Matilda Goes ease her own chronic health conditions after years of searching for effective treatments, so in 2017 she set up the business to help share the benefits with others.
After a successful 30-year career in the travel industry, Matilda Goes’s health forced her to take a step back. Two bouts of bronchitis and issues associated with chronic asthma had started to impact her ability to work and she was seeking other options to help manage her condition. However, it was not until she discovered salt therapy treatment that she was finally able to clear her lungs and control her symptoms. The incredible impact that the treatment had on Matilda inspired her to launch Spa de Sal.
Today, Spa de Sal is one of only three salt therapy centres in Greater London, and one of only five in South-East England. Since the spa launched in 2017, Matilda has built a client base of over 650 people with many positive testimonials from her customers.
Spa de Sal had a strong start to 2020, with March set to be one of the business’ busiest months due to a surge in new clients wanting treatments to help protect them against the new respiratory disease circulating.
However, progress was halted when Spa de Sal was forced to close through three national lockdowns and stop all treatments. As Spa de Sal is purely a bricks-and-mortar operation, this resulted in a loss of 60% in revenue in 2020.
As with many businesses during this time, cash flow started to become an issue and Matilda became concerned about her more significant costs, like rent.
London Business Hub support
Matilda learned about the resources at the London Business Hub from the Hounslow Council, which outlined the services on offer such as grant support, training, and webinars.
She took part in the London Business Property Advice Programme and registered for a free, 1-2-1 session with a highly experienced property lawyer to discuss her concerns around her rent.
During their session, Richard, her adviser, worked with Matilda to fully understand her situation and her business. He helped her draft a message to her landlord requesting concessions, including a rent reduction.
Richard was my knight in shining armour! He understood my situation and sent me a draft text to adapt and send to my landlord to ask for concessions including a rent reduction. That reduction allowed me to focus my cash flow on other areas of the business. It was great to have someone guiding and supporting me through a very difficult, uncertain time.Matilda Goes, Spa de Sal
Impact on Spa de Sal
With the help of the London Business Hub, Matilda was able to agree a rent reduction with her landlord, meaning she could cover her monthly outgoings with her existing cashflow and support from government grants. The webinars and 1-2-1 meetings with the advisers helped Matilda to think strategically and objectively about how to support her business during a time of uncertainty. It helped her to map out her priorities and provided her with the knowledge and guidance needed to protect her business.
Matilda’s advice to other small businesses
Matilda has since signed up to many other webinars with the London Business Hub and recommends other businesses take advantage of the great resources that the London Business Hub offers.
“Owning your own business can feel isolating but there is always support available and people out there who want to help you, no matter what.”
“Before I attended the workshops and met Richard, I didn’t think it would be possible to get a rent reduction – now I know, all I can do is ask. I’m so grateful for the help I received during this time.”
Looking ahead, Matilda hopes to boost sales as much as possible during what continues to be an uncertain time. She also plans to invest her time in advertising Spa de Sal more widely, as well as increase her social media presence on Instagram and Facebook.
London Business Hub’s team of Property Advisers are here to support London businesses through COVID-19 and beyond. Advisers can help you work out your next steps, create a plan of action and provide a gateway into the vital resources, support and initiatives needed to sustain your business.
To book your free one-hour appointment with an expert London Business Hub business adviser, please click here.
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