Welcome to Challenger Chats, a behind the scenes podcast hosted by our very own Adam Spencer. Challenger Chats is a series of no holds barred conversations with the business leaders and Founders of some of the UK’s hottest, consumer facing, Challenger Brands.

Adam will pop the hood and look under the bonnet of these businesses to see what makes them tick, what drives its people and what life is like behind the wheel of a Challenger Brand.

Subscribe through any of your favoured podcast platforms below to listen to episodes on the move, and to be notified of the latest releases. 

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Or listen to the episodes below, and sign up to our mailing list for updates here.

Episode #7 with Nisha Katona MBE, Founder and CEO of Mowgli Street Food

A conversation with Nisha Katona MBE, Founder and CEO of Mowgli Street Food and bestselling recipe book author. Nisha has built one of the UK’s most exciting restaurant brands in Mowgli. It has blossomed into a business of scale with a loyal and cult following. It’s focus on staff welfare, community and job creation makes it one of the sector’s leading ESG operators; whilst also smashing it commercially in the fast casual sector.

Episode #6 with Joanne Mathews, Founder and CEO of Ten Health & Fitness

A conversation with Joanne Mathews, Founder and CEO of Ten Health & Fitness, a leading wellness business that bridges the gap between the medical community and fitness markets. We talk through the origins of Ten as a result of an unfortunate but ultimately happy accident, Jo’s fundraising journey, and how it’s made her a more effective leader, and take a deep dive into the current state of the fitness and wellness sector.

Episode #5 with Noam Bar, Co-Founder of Ottolenghi

A conversation with Noam Bar, co-founder of Ottolenghi, one of the UK’s most well-known food brands. A brand inspired and influenced by the shared Israeli and Palestinian roots of its co-founders, Noam Bar, Yotam Ottolenghi and Sami Tamimi. We talk through Noam’s 20 year journey with Ottolenghi, from its origins as a cosy neighbourhood deli in Notting Hill and its evolution into a global lifestyle brand and pioneer of plant based cooking.

Episode #4 with Robin Rowland OBE

A conversation with hospitality sector legend Robin Rowland OBE. Robin boasts a long and varied career in hospitality, as operator (perhaps best known for taking Yo! Sushi from 2 to over 100 units) and more recently as investor with global private equity fund TriSpan. In a wide ranging conversation he shares amongst other things his insights into the future of hospitality in a post-Covid world, and how he approaches the sensitive topic of valuations in such a volatile climate. This is one not to miss!

Episode #3 with Matt Grech-Smith, Co-Founder of Swingers

A conversation with Matt Grech-Smith, co-founder of Swingers, one of the movers and shakers in the world of Competitive Socialising. We talk about the meteoric rise of the Swingers brand, why they think they’ll succeed in the US where others have failed, Matt’s experience of raising capital from Cain International, and why a big plate of pasta just before an investor pitch should always be followed by a double espresso…


A conversation with Joan Murphy, co-founder of fitness and lifestyle brand Frame. We talk about Joan’s whirlwind experience of raising capital from Piper, the perils of social media, the need for authenticity when building a brand and regular old chit chat about babies, boardrooms and pole vaulting (as you do)!


A conversation with Charlie Gilkes, co-founder of Inception Group, London’s leading experiential hospitality business. We talk about Charlie’s entrepreneurial journey, starting off at the age of 3 selling hand drawn pictures to his neighbours all the way through to establishing a collection of some of the finest hospitality brands in London.


This trailer touches on who we are, the kind of leaders you’ll be hearing from in this series and what we’ll be discussing on Challenger Chats.