Our buying trends have been ever changing since the inception of the internet and now even more so as our technology gets stronger and stronger. Innovations in fashion e-commerce have been relatively scarce, that was until entrepreneur Simon Cobb created the Stock Exchange concept from his award winning online store Menswear Exchange. Since then Cobb’s stock has risen dramatically in the fashion world and we take the opportunity to find out more about him and his latest project; clothing label Three Dreams.
Tell us more about yourself and what you do
Obviously I’m best known for the Stock Exchange concept I launched on my store Menswear Exchange but recently I’ve been not only working hard on launching my clothing label Three Dreams but also taking a more philanthropic approach to life in general.
I’m a great advocate of Fathers 4 Justice due to my own personal experiences as well as Children In Need, I think they are great causes and I’m currently looking at ways to help increase funding and awareness to these causes through my businesses. I’m actually in talks at the moment about the possibility of doing a F4J (Fathers 4 Justice) collaboration t-shirt with Three Dreams. Aside from my recent humanitarian work I have of course been working hard on the full launch of Three Dreams which is around 6-7 weeks away I hope. I’m currently perfecting certain designs, being a perfectionist I won’t allow my product to launch until it’s perfect, which is the same approach I took to launching the Stock Exchange.
For now you can buy the Limited Edition Pre Release collection by my label Three Dreams exclusively at Menswear Exchange (www.menswearexchange.com).
Who has inspired you in your life and why?
I think in terms of my business trajectory apart from being able to drive myself forward and chase my vision my biggest influence would have to be Kanye West, from the outside world. His passion and work ethic are very inspiring and his unwillingness to give up his artistic integrity is great, very few artists are like that nowadays, particularly ones as big and successful as Kanye so it’s very inspiring to see that you can still make it whilst keeping true to your values. My mother is another person that has inspired me, she basically raised me and my sister on her own which I will always respect her for particularly now I’m a father myself, I owe a lot to my mum so I’m working hard to make her proud. I think now though, my biggest inspiration and motivation is my beautiful son Arlo, he means everything to me and I will forever work as hard as I can to make sure he has the best life possible and I can provide him whatever he wants and needs.
What is your greatest achievement so far?
A lot of people say graduating university is their biggest achievement but for me that was easy, I was already given all the information, all I needed to do was put that information back down in my own words, most people can and will graduate what they study as long as they actually put in some effort.
I hope my greatest achievement will always be raising my son well but for now it would definitely have to be creating the Stock Exchange concept to market where fashionistas can buy, trade and part exchange their unwanted collectible designer goods for what we have on offer. I’m 24 now and I was 23 when Menswear Exchange launched and it was actually very tough to save and earn the amount of money I needed to launch my store and then also develop the Stock Exchange on top of that, and now I find myself in a similar situation this year investing heavily in the launch of Three Dreams. It doesn’t phase me though as I’m moving in the right direction and all of this investment is beginning to pay dividends.
Do you have any tips for any of our readers trying to break into the industry?
There’s no substitute for hard work and determination, if you have a clear goal set out in your mind then don’t give up on it or compromise it, just keep working hard and eventually you will realize your dreams. It took me a few years to really break through, since I was about 18/19 I had been running an eBay store called ‘uniquemenswearstore’ which was slowly getting bigger and bigger and that allowed me over the years to not only put aside the cash I needed to eventually launch Menswear Exchange but also to build a customer base. So I was only making small steps for a good 3 or 4 years which built me this platform now where I’m now making much bigger steps with Menswear Exchange, the Stock Exchange and Three Dreams. I’m hoping these bigger steps will builld an even larger platform for me in the future as I make a foray into the luxury market with a project named ARLO after my son but I know this is still at least a year off, most likely even more but I’m committed to doing right when I have the opportunity to do so.
I think another tip would be to look at what everyone else is doing but don’t concentrate on it, if anything use it as an opportunity to see exactly what you can offer that nobody else currently can. With both Menswear Exchange and Three Dreams I made sure I was bringing something totally unique to the market. Of course with Menswear Exchange the Stock Exchange set us totally apart and then with Three Dreams I’m taking the step to represent my home city of Portsmouth, I’m working on some very interesting designs that embrace my city’s culture in a way that no one else has even come close to.
How can our readers stay up to date with you and your latest projects?
You can find both Menswear Exchange and Three Dreams on both Twitter and Facebook to stay up to date with the latest offers, promotions and latest arrivals. I’m also on Twitter (@simoncobb) and Instagram (@simon.cobb).