goes into administration with up to 600 jobs lost as high street giant Next swoops in has gone into administration following the collapse of a last-minute effort to try and rescue the struggling furniture firm. But it wasn’t always so gloomy for the company, which began promisingly in 2010 with its ambitious founders once hoping to make the firm ‘the next Ikea’. Here, MailOnline looks at some of those behind the online furniture firm’s origins

Chloe Macintosh:  The French entrepreneur was among the first team to set up the company and was a key driving force behind the company’s creative team and stepped down as its creative director in 2015.

But since leaving, she has raised eyebrows with some of her other ventures, which last year included creating a ‘First Time Sex Starter Kit’ with her 16-year-old son to help teens lose their virginity. 

French entrepreneur Chloe Macintosh, who lives in London, has revealed how she created a 'First Time Sex Starter Kit' with her sixteen-year-old son to help teens losing their virginity (pictured with her sons Felix, 16, and Elliot, 14)

French entrepreneur Chloe Macintosh, who lives in London, has revealed how she created a ‘First Time Sex Starter Kit’ with her sixteen-year-old son to help teens losing their virginity (pictured with her sons Felix, 16, and Elliot, 14) 

Chloe, who lives in London and is the former creative officer at the private members’ club Soho House, came up with the idea for a sex education app during lockdown, launching Kama, which features guidance for all ages on a number of different topics, including foreplay and anal sex.

The ‘starter kit’ element came about organically when her eldest son, Felix, then 16, was chatting about sex with his 19-year-old cousin, Jules.

Once her son’s friends started to hear she was launching the guidance on the app, they began asking her to include different topics, including what position to start with, and what to do when things go wrong.

Chloe told HuffPost: ‘We never learn how to relate, to create intimacy, to listen, to touch.

‘So the content we wanted to put out there is more than some tips to put a condom on, but more relating to the experience and making is as relaxed and comfortable as possible.’

Chloe explained how sex was ‘never’ a topic in her own youth, and she wanted to encourage her sons to have healthy relationships in the future.

She began work on the app during the Covid-19 pandemic, while both of her sons, Felix and Elliot, 14, were at home.

She confessed the topic of sex is unavoidable in their home, where there are ‘sex books everywhere’ as well as ‘toys and gadgets’. 

Brent Hoberman: As a 29-year-old entrepreneur, Brent was among the pioneers leading the .com revolution.

Brent Hoberman (left), pictured with Martha Lane-Fox who helped found

Brent Hoberman (left), pictured with Martha Lane-Fox who helped found 

He set up online travel giant back in 1998 with business partner Martha Lane-Fox. The company helps travels find cheap holidays abroad.

Having built the business from scratch, it was sold to Sabre Holdings in July 2005 for £577 million – despite the company having recorded a £77 million loss in 2004.

Five years later and he was among the four people to found, which by 2021 when it joined the London Stock Exchange, was worth a whopping £775 million 

Ning Li: Born in China, Ning moved to France as a youngster to study there. But he always had ambitions of becoming an entrepreneur. 

Ning Li was the former chief executive officer of He remains as a director of the firm, according to Companies House

Ning Li was the former chief executive officer of He remains as a director of the firm, according to Companies House

The young businessman set up his first firm, e-commerce company called Myfab in 2007 before joining the founding team at in 2010. 

Speaking to the Guardian about his inspiration for, Ning said: ‘A friend in China who was a furniture manufacturer told me he would sell a sofa for £400 to agents, who would then re-sell it to a wholesaler in Europe, but when it eventually came to the store the price tag was outrageous. 

‘The same sofa was selling for £3,000. I saw the opportunity of using the internet to disrupt the supply chain.’

He was the furniture firm’s chief executive until 2016, when he stepped down from the role.  He is still listed as a director for 

Julien Callede: The final of the company’s four founders, Julien was’s chief operating officer.

The entrepreneur said the online retailer took off rapidly, gaining traction far sooner than he or his fellow co-founders could have anticipated. 

‘ gathered momentum very quickly, but because we didn’t anticipate such rapid growth, we made mistakes, mainly, we faced logistical challenges that came with growing the business so quickly,’ he told Bayes Business School in London in 2017. 

He added: ‘Yes, it as successful, but at times, it was difficult.’ 

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