After a tough year, there was no better reward for Monica Porracin than winning WatchPro’s ‘Rising Star of the Year 2015’ award. “It was brilliant finishing the year on such a high!” she enthuses.

As the award attests, Monica’s hard work is more than paying off. She has been able to grow the company beyond the confines of her home, and now has a team to support her as well as a new office in Battersea.

“Having my Hot 100 photo taken at our new office sums up the amazing year of development The Blue Company has enjoyed. After successfully outgrowing its humble beginnings, the company has stepped into its new skin,” she says.

Seeing the brands her company represents placed into some of the UK’s most esteemed stores has been another highlight of the year. Market growth for Junghans, for which the Blue Company is the UK’s distributor, has also been “phenomenal”, she says. “It’s great to have played a part in making that happen.

“Above all I’ve learned just how vital it is to have the right products placed in the right stores, and featured in the best publications. Taking the time to strategically choose vendors has led to establishing some brilliant relationships.”

Hard-working, honest and reliable, Porracin has also been able to include ‘passionate’ on her list of qualities since starting The Blue Company. “I found that when I added passion to the mix everything was a lot more enjoyable – and dare I say easier!” she laughs.