Byron Dixon OBE CEO & FOUNDER
Byron has always been an entrepreneur at heart. When he was unable to afford a place at university at the age of 18, he chose to enter the retail industry and later secured a degree in chemistry from The Open University.
Byron went on to graduate from the Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses scheme at Aston University, which gave him invaluable lessons and new opportunities to grow Micro-Fresh®, while sharing his experience with other young and upcoming entrepreneurs. He later graduated from UK High Growth Programme at Oxford University (Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses Alumni programme). He was selected to join the Aspiring Entrepreneurs Programme at The Peter Jones Academy and was also chosen to join one of six companies on the Accenture Mentoring Programme.
His accolades include:
Awarded ‘Visiting Industrial Fellowship’ by Aston University.
Awarded ‘Entrepreneur of the Year’ by inclusive procurement body, MSDUK, sponsored by Ernst & Young.
Listed in Top 100 Rising Stars and future leaders of Leicestershire.
Listed in Top 200 Influential People of Leicestershire.
In 2018 his entrepreneurship was recognised formally with the award of an OBE for services to Industry and Innovation.
Byron is an inspiring public speaker and commentator on diverse issues including business growth, entrepreneurship, diversity, the growth of the UK economy, support for SMEs, and standards of social housing. He continues to be the main force behind the growth of Micro-Fresh® as it enters into new countries and diversifies into different product sectors.
Jigna Varu CHIEF COMMERCIAL OFFICER
Jigna began studying Biomedical Sciences to fulfil her passion for science. Due to unfortunate circumstances, Jigna was unable to finish her degree and was left in the unenviable position of seeking employment without any experience and joined Micro-Fresh in a temporary role as a part-time Client Services Assistant in Oct 2013.
This involved a crash course in Gantt Charts, Deliverables, Milestones and several other terms new to Jigna and she delivered the project three months early! This dedication, perseverance and forward thinking led to Jigna becoming Micro-Fresh’s Commercial Director within five years of joining at the tender age of just 28 years old.
Since then Jigna has driven sales and the Micro-Fresh® brand to all corners of the globe and early in 2019 she was promoted to Chief Commercial Officer shortly before her 29th birthday – another astounding achievement!
She now drives all commercial aspects of the business on a global level, heading up the ten Micro-Fresh® offices around the world, as well as ensuring the company's growth goals are met whilst nurturing the firm's outstanding reputation for innovation and delivery.
Jigna’s drive has led to the Micro-Fresh® brand levied in contracts such as pillows and blankets in Emirates Airlines 1st and business class, Baby & Nursery Bedding in John Lewis and Emirates. Her driving force has led her to set KPIs for all Micro-Fresh international offices, including the US, China, Vietnam, Pakistan and India.
In 2019 Jigna’s efforts were recognised by being awarded the Rising Star of Leicestershire and Rutland 2019. Jigna was also featured in the Sunday Times Fasttrack 100 Awards dinner video of which Micro-Fresh was named as one of the Ones To Watch held at Richard Branson family mansion in Oxfordshire.
Jigna is a champion of young people in business, recently featuring in the East Midlands Chamber of Commerce ‘NextGen’ group for entrepreneurs under 30 and also women in business as a shining example in both categories.
Thanks to Jigna’s continuous success, the company is now tapping into the vast American market, where there is a huge demand for antibacterial products – particularly since the Ebola outbreaks in West Africa and the coronavirus originating in China.
Specialisms: STEM, relationship-building, global business development, coaching.
Accolades/achievements: Leicestershire & Rutland 2019 Rising Star Award Winner. Jigna is an active participant in the Micro-Fresh 1000 Children campaign where she delivers talks to students helping to inspire them and encourage them to go into STEM careers, as well as taking on work experience students and coaching them during this time.