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Bexley-born Jo Malone awarded a CBE

PUBLISHED: 07:00 09 June 2018

Jo Malone has been awarded a CBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours list. Picture: Victoria Jones/PA Wire

Jo Malone has been awarded a CBE in the Queen's Birthday Honours list. Picture: Victoria Jones/PA Wire

Archant

Entrepreneur Jo Malone has urged business people never to quit on a bad day at the office, revealing she cried when she received the news of her latest honour, having just lost a pitch.

The 54-year-old, who grew up on a council estate in Bexleyheath and left school at 15 without qualifications, said she was proud to be among the “amazing” recipients in this year’s Queen’s Birthday Honours.

Ms Malone, who had already been made an MBE, this year receives a CBE for services to the British economy and the GREAT Britain campaign.

Despite huge success with her eponymous fragrance brand, which she sold to Estee Lauder, she admitted starting up her latest business Jo Loves was “tough”.

“I wanted to quit, I have to say, nearly every day for a year,” she said.

Ms Malone, who successfully battled cancer, advised others struggling in business not to give up.

She said: “Never, ever quit on a bad day.

“There’s always moments in all our lives, especially in businesses, where you plan for something and it doesn’t quite work out your way and you have to rethink and re-strategise.

“And sometimes that can be emotionally very draining but you never, ever quit on a bad day because often the landscape can change as mine did, as I opened that letter and suddenly realised that the world was much bigger, and you would make a very different call when the landscape is slightly different.”

Ms Malone said she “sat with the dog and had a cry” after getting the news, adding that she did not win the pitch, the nature of which she declined to reveal.

Being honoured in the 100th anniversary year of suffrage is especially significant, she added.

“I’d love to think that all those women through history, that very first year from the suffragettes and fighting for the vote, would be really proud to see so many women on the honours list today.”

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