Queen's Award success for alumnus

Nick Crook

Boardies Apparel, a swimwear brand founded by alumnus Nick Crook has been honoured with a prestigious Queen’s award for Enterprise in International Trade 2021.

The privately owned, London-based business designs, manufactures and sells distinctive swimwear products around the world.

The company has successfully negotiated the challenges of Covid-19 by pivoting its business.  Historically selling through retail outlets, the company switched to selling direct to customers online and has seen a six-fold increase in online sales.  The company’s products have continued to sell around the world despite the pandemic and its restrictions on travel and holidays. This success in developing international earned the company the Queen’s Award.

The increased focus on digital has put Boardies in a strong position coming out of lockdown.  Online sales in 2021 are double the same period in 2020 and six times great than 2019, with overall 2021 sales forecast to increase by 30%.

Nick studied Retail Management at Loughborough and graduated in 2001. Following a career with Levi’s, K-Swiss, Reebok and Pentland, he launched the Boardies brand in 2014.

Commenting on his time at Loughborough and Queen’s award Nick said:

“My Retail Management degree really equipped me with the academic foundations to launch my own business. My placement year in industry working for Reebok set the course for my entire career, landing a job at Umbro after graduation. 20 years later my own business has been recognised with the Queen’s Award for Enterprise which is a great honour.”

You can read more about Boardies online

Boardies Queen’s Award success follows that of Select Offshore who won a similar award in 2020.