From humble beginnings on eBay to winning the coveted Queen’s Award for Enterprise, online retailer Rarewaves is conquering the world from The Light Box in Chiswick
While running music and video companies in the 1980s and 90s, Brad Aspess amassed a huge collection of vinyl. When he started putting his ‘doubles’ on eBay several industry contacts asked Brad if he could sell their products too. That was in 2005 and it was to prove the inspiration for his global online business, Rarewaves.
Today, Rarewaves works with over 150 supply partners and retails 650,000 entertainment products annually – music, DVDs, video games, electronics, gifts and gadgets – on marketplaces such as Amazon, eBay, GAME and Fnac. Last year, the company distributed to 175 countries worldwide.
Based at Workspace’s The Light Box building in Chiswick, Rarewaves employs 21 people and has a sister operation in the USA. In 2012 it was ranked the 19th fastest growing tech company in the UK by The Sunday Times Tech Track 100 and this year was named the SME with the 66th fastest growing international sales by the same paper’s Export Track 100.
Rarewaves’ most prestigious accolade came recently when it won The Queen’s Award for Enterprise: International Trade 2018. ‘It was a great honour,’ says Rob Evans, the Business Development Director. ‘It took us by surprise. We sent off the application last year and thought no more about it.’ Two months ago Brad and Rob proudly attended a reception at Buckingham Palace hosted by HRH Prince Charles and the Duke of Kent. ‘The award will definitely open doors and show potential partners
who we are and what we’re about.’