Album company aims for Far Eastern sales

Stewart Randall: Response to his new business has been 'phenomenal'.
Stewart Randall: Response to his new business has been 'phenomenal'.
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Export markets are opening up for a Barnsley company with a new take on the traditional wedding album.

Folio Albums is the brainchild of Stewart and Julie Randall and is sparking interest from professional photographers in the United States and Europe as well as across the UK.

The husband and wife team used to run a wedding photography business in Surrey until they decided to relocate to Barnsley, where Julie grew up.

“We started Folio because I found albums available were uninspiring and lacked attention to detail,” says Stewart.

“Couples want something really beautiful and tactile and presentation is everything to us, including the box the album is presented in.”

Folio Albums produces hand-made albums, which look more like a fine art book and have covers made from leather, silk or cotton in a range of colours. Although weddings account for the vast majority of its business, there have been more requests for albums capturing other special occasions.

Stewart says the response has been “phenomenal,” since he and his wife launched the business two years ago and puts part of its rapid expansion down to coaching from business support organisation Enterprising Barnsley and help from Barnsley Business and Innovation Centre (BBIC).

The firm has recruited three staff and three freelances to keep up with demand and increased the size of its premises at BBIC. It expects to more than double the number of albums it produces this year, hopes to create more jobs by taking bookbinding in house and is starting to target new export markets in Asia.