James Hyde is one half of James & James, a fulfilment company making better use of technology to create a fulfilment service suited to the needs of a fast-moving ecommerce era. With his business partner James Strachan, James Hyde has built up James & James from a background in manufacturing engineering, first as part of an international health food business, and then as part of Six Fulfilment which was established out of a need for a modern fulfilment company. James & James now have clients of all sizes from all parts of the UK, and Europe.
James Hyde studied Manufacturing Engineering and Management at the University of Cambridge, graduating in 2007. A spell working with a Cambridge-based entrepreneur was followed by a role in a small international health foods business, bringing in friend and former colleague James Strachan to help push the company forward by improving its online offering.
It was during his time at this company that James realised that fulfilment companies were not really geared towards the needs of merchants and customers in the new internet age. With his background in engineering management, James could see better ways of doing things, embracing technology to create a more integrated fulfilment service which could grow with changes in internet technology.
James set up Six Fulfilment with James Strachan in 2010 and he has overseen a period of rapid growth. They rebranded the company to James & James in 2013 to reflect the company’s ethos that despite the high level of technology used, human thought is behind the entire operation.
The new company, James & James, was self-funded. It’s rare that a company is able to start without outside help, but James Hyde, being able to show the efficiency of his operation right from the very beginning, was able to convince customers to move to James & James. His understanding of technology and human processes is so great that he was able to build, with the other James, a system which integrates with third-party ecommerce sites and apps, uses efficient pick and pack methods to reduce costs, and is able to feed back in real time information to enable the client to concentrate on running their business.
James is not resting on his laurels. He is a major part of James & James, and spends his days overseeing the day-to-day operations. He is often out and about on his electric scooter whizzing around the vast warehouse, spotting areas for improvement. His drive to be the very best in fulfilment is keeping him busy, spurred on by memory of the outdated fulfilment houses he came across during his health food business days.
James wants James & James to stay ahead during the ecommerce boom which saw the company reach the £5 million-per-year benchmark by the end of 2014. James continues to work with the University of Cambridge on projects investigating intelligent product technology.
James never started out with the intention of building up one of the UK’s biggest-growing fulfilment companies, but a chain of events which led him to seeing how his understanding of technology and of the growing ecommerce landscape meant it was hard to resist trying to do something better. Fulfilment is ever-changing, so is the perfect sector for James Hyde to practise his management and systems improvement skills. One day he may do something different, maybe even take a holiday or two, but for now you will find him on his electric scooter somewhere in a cavernous warehouse in the East of England, though you will have to be quick to catch him.