Award-winning flavours and positive social change, that’s us at Harry Specters. Mona, Shaz and their son Ash, who has autism, are behind this social enterprise.
While visiting a chocolate shop on a holiday in Scotland in 2011, Mona discovered a perfect way of combining her passion for creating positive change for people with autism with her love for chocolate.
Ash came up with the name and a year later, Harry Specters was born - dedicated to crafting the most delicious chocolates that create employment for young people with autism. They are involved in every aspect of the business – from making and packaging the products to administration, design and photography. The chocolates have won numerous awards for their taste and hundreds of young people with autism have a brighter future. Every lovingly handcrafted bar and chocolate helps improve the lives of people with autism.
Ash packaging chocolates
For every £1 of profit made at Harry Specters, Mona and Shaz decided that 60p would be set aside for furthering the social aims of the business, providing social activities for their invaluable employees as well as opportunities for their personal development.
Dedicated to crafting the most delicious chocolates that create employment for young people with autism.
Create 100s of jobs for young people with autism in the UK by providing them with employment and training to produce award-winning chocolates. In doing so, be a role model of “great product, great cause” for others social businesses and entrepreneurs.
Mona Shah, Founder, Chocolatier and Managing Director
Mona has been working with chocolate as a hobby for the past 17 years and has undertaken professional chocolate making courses at the Callebaut Chocolate Academy. As a chocolatier, she has won nine awards, including the coveted 3 star Gold Great Taste Award. She has a degree in Business and has worked in the NHS mental health service in corporate governance. She is passionate about making a positive change in the lives of people with autism.
Shaz Shah, Co-Founder and Director of Business Development
Shaz has 18 years' experience in the technology sector having worked with multinationals and medium sized companies. He was a founder of a technology company which he built up through partnerships. He later sold his company and stayed as adviser to develop business in the Middle East, Pakistan and USA. He has an MBA degree from Cranfield School of Management and his professional interests include value co-creation through partnerships and collaboration. He likes to mentor people from disadvantaged backgrounds in order to make a positive change in their lives.
Osama Shah, Director of Finance
Osama is a Chartered Accountant and strategy professional with over 6 years of experience. He qualified with PwC in London advising clients in the FTSE100 sector and currently works in strategy consulting providing advice to large businesses He is passionate about Harry Specters and has been involved with the business for over 2 years as a mentor and advisor previously.
David Taylor, Non-Executive Director
David is one of the world's 50 leading marketing thinkers according to the CIM, and a Fellow of the Marketing Society. He has written 5 brandgym books: "the brandgym", "brand stretch", "brand vision", "Grow the core" and "Where's the Sausage?". He also leads the writing of the brandgym blog, one of the top 60 branding blogs in the world.
He's worked a wide range of sectors, covering everything from beer to banking, in both B2C and B2B. His expertise is in brand vision to action, brand architecture and turbo charging marketing plans.
Prior to founding the brandgym in 2002, David worked in brand management for P&G, got an MBA from INSEAD and then started and ran Added Value's Paris office.
David is a highly rated speaker on branding, in addition to teaching at London Business School and delivering action learning programs for brandgym clients: more about this here.
Julie Jordan, Non-Executive Director
Julie is a retired solicitor with more than 30 years’ experience as a corporate and commercial lawyer, most recently in the law firm Mills & Reeve. In this role Julie advised NHS bodies and independent sector organisations contracting with the NHS on a wide range of commercial law matters. She had national recognition as an expert in all aspects of NHS Continuing Healthcare and served as independent Chair of NHS East of England’s Independent Review Panel. Julie lives in Cambridgeshire with her partner and a son who has Aspergers Syndrome.
Mina Shah, Consultant Graphic Designer and Brand Developer
Mina has a degree in Product Design and works at the creative design company Cowan. She has previously worked on projects with companies like Pearl Fisher, Designers Anonymous, Turner Duckworth, Midday and DewGibbons. She has a passion for branding and packaging and is currently working on our new line of packaging.