About us

About us


Essential Business materials have been helping business owners and their advisers for years. Founded in 2002 by Julie Stanford, the aim was 
to create clear and straightforward information 
and content for busy business owners. Julie says:

Quote panel marks 2Julie roundMy business background is in designing books and workbooks and I wanted to bring that experience 
to creating better business content. The goal was simple really: clarify what’s involved in starting and running a business, ditch (or explain) any jargon, and make inviting and easy-to-follow learning materials that help people build essential 
business skills, step by step. Hence the name!

Over the years, customers asked for other 
learning materials, presented in the same clear and jargon-free style, so we created a series of practical workbooks, courses, and trainer support materials.

Why we do it

Failure hurts and business failure can cause damage to people’s finances, families and futures. Very often, it can be completely avoided if the business owner is properly supported.

We think that it’s unrealistic to say ‘business is easy’ when it isn’t. In our content, we’re more likely to say, “This can be hard but you can learn how to do it” 
than, “Anyone can run a business, just go for it!”


Fast forward twenty years 
and Essential Business content has been used by thousands of business owners and their advisers.

In March 2022, Phil Ashford and Benna McCartney, directors of Enterprise Exchange were pleased to acquire the Essential Business series content with Julie joining the team as publishing and content consultant. Together we’ll continue to make complicated business information easy to read 
and understand. Benna says:

Benna roundQuote panel marks 2We have used Essential Business materials for 
many years and when the opportunity arose to acquire the content, we jumped at the chance. We know first hand the value in these materials and our joint aim is to produce resources for business support professionals to help business owners gain the knowledge and skills they need to be successful.

Where we’re heading

We’ll continue to use our combined skills and experience to create high-quality learning and reference materials for small and micro business owners and the people who advise, teach and support them. If you help people who start 
and run businesses, then we want to provide 
you with resources that help make your job 
just that bit easier.