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International Women’s Day: Wendy Morgan Interview

Ahead of International Women's Day on 8 March, we interview Wendy Morgan (formerly Merricks), the founder and CEO of the Technology Solutions Company Jumar on her journey to entrepreneurship.
Wendy Morgan

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International Women’s Day: Wendy Morgan Interview

Ahead of International Women's Day on 8 March, we interview Wendy Morgan (formerly Merricks), the founder and CEO of the Technology Solutions Company Jumar on her journey to entrepreneurship.
Wendy Morgan

Why did you set up your own business?

At the company I worked at I was told that after having my second child that they didn’t consider women with children for management and leadership roles therefore I wouldn’t progress any further up the career ladder. That infuriated me, so at the age of 35 I left and set up Jumar in 2000.  

Where did you get the idea?

Up until the point I got pregnant I’d had a highly successful career in IT. I have always been interested in technology and could see that the market was changing rapidly and there was space for an innovative technology solutions company. 

Did you always think of yourself as an entrepreneur?

No! At the beginning I definitely didn’t see myself in that way. But I knew that I wanted to create a company with a very different culture and ethos to the one I worked at, a company which worked with everyone to fulfil their potential and feel valued. 

What help did you get when starting out?

I developed the idea and saved up enough money to keep the business going for two years. I had a lot of help from both the Greater Birmingham Chamber of Commerce and my bank, HSBC.  When the business started to grow, I knew it had to develop beyond me, so I built a strong senior leadership team – it was the best thing I did. 

What are you proudest of achieving at Jumar?

It was incredible when in the first year we did £1.2m in sales but what I’m proudest of is that in September 2023 Jumar was recognised as one of the top 100 UK’s Best Workplaces in Tech™ by Great Place To Work® UK, in its small & medium size category.

What needs to be done to encourage more women to go into tech?

What really inspires me is that in the West Midlands last year over 13,700 businesses were set up by women and 40% of those women were aged 16-25. That shows what incredible potential there is within our region! That said it is still hard to get women to set up in tech and of those that do, half drop out within 5 years. More government support is needed but so is encouraging more girls to take up tech at school. 

What does the future hold?

I’m 59 now and am looking to transition the company. So, I’ve taken on a new investor and am working with them. I now work 3 days a week which suits me at this stage in life. However, I’ve just set up a new AI Cyber organisation, CyberNestLabs, so alongside Jumar, my Non-exec Director roles in several companies I guess I’ve finally realised I must be an entrepreneur! 

What advice would you give other women thinking of setting up a business?

Do your market research and then find out where you can get the right support and advice for your business. Be prepared to bank roll your business idea for up to two years. Getting help during the first year is critical, a good place to start is the Business Services provided by Birmingham City University.

Discover the benefits of Help To Grow management courses

Birmingham City University offers a variety of support to help female entrepreneurs grow and develop their business. Find out how our Help To Grow Management course can offer you comprehensive training in managing your business.

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