These Best Friends Prove You Can Start a Successful Business Together

Lauren Powell

Some say you shouldn’t mix business with pleasure, but in Bree Johnson and Jess Hatzis’ case, it was a combination for success. The co-founders of the cult, coffee-based skincare brand, frank body, had shared a friendship for over five years before taking the plunge into business together with three other long-time friends. Thanks to a mutual love of coffee and the internet, the five entrepreneurs co-founded the company back in 2013 and have since evolved the brand into one of the country’s most coveted beauty brands. Now with 12 additional full-time staff, a manufacturing team in Melbourne, and distribution facilities in Melbourne, Los Angeles, Vacouver, and Dubai, it seems friendship and business are a winning combo for these BFF’s.

In celebration of International Friendship Day, we caught up with the clever duo who have divulged on the good and the bad of becoming unexpected colleagues. Thinking of starting an empire with your BBF? Read and weigh up the pros and the cons according these best friends-come-business partners.

1. Spending all day with your best babe.
2. Learning from one another and sharing the wins together
over a bottle of good champagne.
3. Having someone who can read your mind—with a confused...

1. Spending all day with your best babe.

2. Learning from one another and sharing the wins together

over a bottle of good champagne.

3. Having someone who can read your mind—with a confused look they know how you feel or what you are trying to say.

4. You can be frank—there’s no ego, judgment, or need for unnecessary formalities, so conversations flow with ease.

5. Someone to share the highs and lows—the person who’ll listen to you rant and cry and understands exactly what you’re going through, because they’re going through it too.

6. Trust and support—knowing you can call them at any time of the day or night and they’ll be there to help.

7. Countless cheese and wine fuelled brainstorming sessions.

8. You can have your business planning days wherever you like. Paris anyone? Then dinner at Hotel Costes?

9. Having someone who will play devil’s advocate and challenges the other—with only the best intentions.

10. Work and play are never dull.

1. Remembering to spend time together as friends not business partners—it’s easy for a casual catch up to slip into conversations about work and dinner ends up a business meeting....

1. Remembering to spend time together as friends not business partners—it’s easy for a casual catch up to slip into conversations about work and dinner ends up a business meeting. (FYI: the best meetings always involve wine).

2. Difficult conversations become more difficult—it’s hard to separate emotion from business and that can lead to emotionally driven (read: heated) discussions.

3. Decisions take longer—weeks can be spent debating “important” details. As friends nothing gets held back. This is ultimately worthwhile as it means the best result is achieved.

4. Holidays are usually taken separately because someone needs to be at the office—so while one friend is manning the office, the other is manning the pool bar.

5. You have more to lose.

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