Describe your business model and what makes your business unique
At tiney, we’re training up a new wave of fantastic early years educators to give more children a great start in life – and reinventing childcare in the process. We believe that great early years education can be life-changing.
Our goal is to make the highest quality childcare accessible to more families, and to empower a generation of micro-entrepreneurs to deliver amazing care from their own homes. And all of this – from the training to keeping in touch with parents – is underpinned by technology.
Prospective childminders train with us through a combination of online and in-person training. We support them with everything from first-aid training to background checks, helping them become registered childminders. Tiney then supports them to set up their home nurseries and connect with families looking for fantastic childcare. Through our app, we help our childminders handle all the payments, insurance, lesson plans, contact with parents, and everything in between!
What is your greatest business achievement?
It was incredible to see our first cohort of tiney childminders open their doors. We put so much hard work into designing a best-in-class training programme and seeing little ones start to benefit from these brilliant early years educators was incredible.
How did you fund your business?
We have brilliant investors, including Index Ventures, LocalGlobe and JamJar Ventures who provided the Seed funding we needed to scale and build out our technology, as well as a great group of angels including Ian Davis, the former Managing Director of McKinsey, Justin King and Kim Morrish from Ground Control.
What numbers do you look at every day in your business?
We look at how many people are starting their training with us, how many are being registered and licensed to open their businesses, and how many children are being supported. We’re also always looking at how satisfied our parents and childminders are and how engaged our childminding community is with our app and figuring out ways to make that better or easier for them.
To what extent does your business trade internationally?
We’re UK-based for now, but watch this space. My previous organisation, Teach for All, grew to 60 countries and I’m expecting the same for tiney. Great early years education and care is a global problem that needs a global solution.
Where would you like your business to be in five years?
We want a tiney home nursery on every UK street and in countries around the world! Access to affordable, high quality childcare should be a right, not a parental pipe dream. We’re very focused on attracting new people into the early years space and rehabilitating the concept of what it means to care for our youngest children.
Childminders are important educators and the work they do has a major impact on the fortunes of the next generation. In 5 years I hope that tiney has raised their status and, in doing so, ensured more children can benefit from incredible early years education that sets them up for a lifetime of success.
What software or technology has made the biggest difference to your business?
Building our business on a tech foundation has been critical. It’s enabled our community to stay connected, made starting a business as easy as possible for childminders, and allowed parents to stay involved. From day one, we were clear that tech would play a big role in creating tiney.