HealthSpark is a Jersey-based health supplements business, which was founded in 2009 by internet entrepreneur, Phil Balderson.
The business has consistently enjoyed greater than 50% year on year growth. In May 2011, Healthspark, and sports supplement superstore Superfit, merged to form the Better Health Group - a company comparable in size and scope to the most significant in the sector.
Since the merger, the rate of growth has accelerated, with economies of scale improving gross margin and providing a multi-million pound annual turnover. The company employs 12 people.
Phil Balderson: Chief Executive of Healthspark
What's the main challenge you'll face in 2012?
"We're fortunate in that online retail is proving to be one of the few rays of sunshine in the current economic malaise. Consumers are driving hard for bargains, and finding them online in abundance. HealthSpark and Superfit, face the challenge of managing significant growth, whilst fighting the uncertainties surrounding LVCR - the tax exemption that allows us to send goods under £15 to the UK VAT free. Also the EU's food laws have become more and more draconian. This is a fact which is widely recognised by British parliamentarians, and yet Jersey seems intent on complying with every iota of detail."
What are you looking forward to?
"We're hopeful that something can be done to preserve Jersey's nascent internet industry. Hopefully, 2012 will bring some clear indication of what's going to happen. Either way, we would welcome certainty so that we can plan for and sustain the business's growth."
What more could be done by government to help your business?
"We've received considerable help and counsel from Economic Development in regard to LVCR. In hindsight, perhaps, a more vigorous and public defence may have helped, but we are very supportive of the present legal challenge.
"In addition, the population office has been very helpful in facilitating the growth of the company. Health, meanwhile, has been reluctant to engage with the supplements industry on legislation and we think this is retrograde. There is a real opportunity for Jersey if it can maintain a commitment to low taxes and light touch regulation, it will have a long future in e-commerce that stretches well beyond LVCR."