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Review of My Little Wrapper
Nigel Botterill, N5 Ltd

Home business opportunity selling wrapped chocolate

This is one of a few examples of Business Opportunity Watch Reviews which are freely available for everyone to read on the public section of the website. The reason for making a small sample of the reviews freely available is to help you to decide if you want to join, and also to communicate some matters of general interest arising in the case of some of the reviews. All the other reviews are available only to members.

A zero score or a low score means that in our opinion the business model or the investment model has flaws and/or that we have found inadequate evidence to back up claims about earnings, sales, profits etc. It doesn't mean this evidence does not exist and it doesn't mean that the opportunity is
a scam and it doesn't mean that the promoters are unprofessional or dishonest. Questions arising are normally contained within the body of the review, and readers who are interested should contact the company with these questions and/or questions of their own.

Review of My Little Wrapper
Nigel Botterill, N5 Ltd
Extract from Business Opportunity Watch Reviews
September 2008 Issue 19


Nigel Botterill, N5 Ltd
Unit 3, Olton Bridge,
Warwick Road

B92 7AH
Tel: 0121 765 3400

- Extract from sales copy
- Review
- Your feedback

Extract from sales copy:

Who else wants to make people happy, earn good money, do it all from home, with total flexibility? And it involves chocolate!

My Little Wrapper is a brilliant 'business in a box' that you can run, part-time, from your own kitchen table.

Here's how it works: pretty much everyone loves chocolate ... but there's one market that is virtually untapped in the UK. One area that the 'big boys' can't get into - but which you can:

Personalised chocolate bars.

I mean, really personalised. With wrappers that are designed with a real 'WOW factor'.

You print and wrap the chocolate bars, and also get to do a bit of sales and marketing to 'unwrap your customers'.

Your personalised wrappers are unique, personal and affordable - and the market for them is enormous. For starters just think of every family celebration; every birthday party, birth announcements, weddings, anniversary. Then there are occasions such as Easter, Halloween, Christmas, New Year, Prom nights (which are becoming more and more popular in the UK) and that's before you even consider the Corporate market or Charity fundraising which is huge as well.

We give you everything you need to build yourself a successful part-time business that you can run from home, in your spare time, and which is very profitable.

Hi my name is Sue Botterill. I'm a mum of four (thats me with my children opposite) you can read more about me and my business under Background but let me explain exactly how my little wrapper works:

There are three 'ingredients:

1. The Chocolate bars
You can get them from us (they taste delicious) or buy your own. It's up to you.

2. The Wrappers
We've got a range of over 50 designs, all commissioned by us. We've used some of the experts in the field - including designers who have worked for the likes of Cadbury. We provide you with these wrappers, all pre-printed with space for personalisation. You then 'over-print' the personalised message/s using your own colour printer. On most wrappers there is space on both the front and the back for personalisation. It takes seconds to do because of:

3. The My Little Wrapper Software
Here's the science bit! It's dead easy to use but what it does is make sure that the personalisation text is printed in exactly the right place of each wrapper.

By using your own colour printer to over-print the personalisation on the pre-printed wrappers you are able to provide real tip quality looking wrappers.

My Little Wrapper was only launched in March 2008 and its already making a big impact with well over 100 'wrappers' already on board and enjoying great success.

We give you all the training and marketing material you need as part of your Pack. There are no ongoing obligations or license fees - you have full flexibility and complete control, so you can do as much, or as little, as you like.

The Professional Pack normally costs £2,749 plus VAT & P&P.

The Mini-Business Pack costs £1,999 plus VAT & P&P.


Nigel Botterill is the MD of N5 Ltd, the company offering the My Little Wrapper business opportunity. Nigel Botterill has lots of ideas for business opportunities and franchises to sell to the public and he's also very good at marketing them.

However, on one previous occasion at least, it escaped Nigel Botterill that business ideas are worth very little unless they are proved to work in practice. This is what happened with one of his previous ventures - the Have A Quickie franchise - which I rated at 2 out of 10 in the December 2007 issue of BOW. The Quickie franchise involved siting coin-operated machines in public places such as hotels and pubs. The machines quickly recharged mobile phones, and the cost was £1 per recharge.

Whereas Nigel Botterill informed me in correspondence that his company had "run a pilot operation in Leicester since December 2006", he was unable to give me any further details of the figures or of how many machines were involved in the pilot operation (the company was asking franchisees to pay £29,995 for a franchise with 50 machines), and N5 Ltd had not sited machines anywhere other than Leicester.

Nigel Botterill then seemed to realise that potential franchisees asked to pay such a large sum for a franchise would require some hard evidence of the viability of the business, and in a subsequent letter the franchise director, Mike Giles, informed me that:

"We are also rolling out our own machines in Solihull during January 2008, and have many venues already signed up. The main aim of the Solihull set-up is so that potential franchisees will be able to visit the locations and see the machines on the same day that they visit us to discuss their application".

I don't know what the results of this "Solihull roll-out" were, but it seems to have been too late for the Quickie franchise so far as Nigel Botterill and Sue Botterill and N5 Ltd were concerned. The accounts of Quickie Products Ltd for the period ended 31st March 2008 show a trading loss of £411,157 and the balance sheet shows that liabilities exceeded assets by £411,057. Nigel and Sue Botterill each owned 25% of the shares in the company, and Nigel Botterill was a director and Sue Botterill was the company secretary. After the balance sheet date - on 23rd April 2008 - Nigel Botterill resigned as director and Sue Botterill resigned as secretary and they disposed of their shares.

Quickie Products Ltd is now under the control of two individuals unrelated to the Botterills or N5 Ltd - David Heath, a founding director along with Nigel Botterill, and a second director who joined in July 2008 and resigned a few months later. (Update: The affairs of Quickie Products Ltd appear to have gone from bad to worse, with David Heath - the sole remaining director - ditching his responsibilities by resigning on 31st March 2009, leaving the company with no officers at all. David Heath now lives in France. Two months after his departure, the company was put into compulsory liquidation on the petition of a creditor.)

It seems to me that the launch of the Quickie franchise by Nigel Botterill was a prime example of putting the cart before the horse i.e. of rushing the franchise to market before the company had the evidence to show that the business was a viable one.

Has Nigel Botterill learnt his lesson?

Apparently not, because Nigel Botterill gives no indication on either of his websites for his latest new venture ( and that it was tested before it was launched.

In his marketing material for My Little Wrapper Nigel Botterill says that what you are buying is a "brilliant business in a box".

If My Little Wrapper has not been adequately tested then this claim is just hot air, because you are not buying a business at all: instead, what you are buying is just a business IDEA (for marketing chocolate bars in personalised wrappers) which - like all business ideas - might work or might not. You also receive the tools and a small opening stock to operate the business idea (e.g. 100 chocolate bars, 500 wrappers, software to personalise the wrappers, marketing material, business stationery etc).

To give Nigel Botterill and N5 Ltd credit, they do give plenty of indications in their marketing material that My Little Wrapper is merely a punt. For example, in response to the question "How Much Money Can I Expect To Make?" the only definitive answer they give is to say that you should make between 60p and £1.10 per bar of chocolate.

The question of how many bars of chocolate you could expect to sell is expressly stated as being "entirely in your hands".

However, Nigel Botterill does give on his website an example based on doing wedding orders and children's birthday party orders, coffee mornings, nursery groups etc which result in sales of an average 1,000 bars per month. He says that this should deliver you between £600 and £1,100 profit depending on the price that you sell the bars for (£1 or £1.50 per bar).

A mistake in the calculations

Nigel Botterill goes on to say that a profit of £600 to £1,100 per month for around 16-18 hours spent designing, printing and wrapping the bars "equates to a very attractive hourly rate".

Nigel Botterill has made a mistake with his calculation, and it is the sort of mistake which would have been unlikely to have happened if his company had properly tested the business themselves.

The mistake is simply that Nigel and Sue Botterill have forgotten to take account of the time spent in marketing a My Little Wraopper business in order to obtain the orders, and the time and costs of delivering the orders, and the time spent running a coffee morning or manning a display table at a nursery group.

Also, you would need to allow a minimum of 5 hours a week to market your My Little Wrapper business, plus one hour for delivery. So that makes a minimum of an extra 26 hours a month. Added to, say, 17 hours a month for production, that makes a total monthly time commitment of 43 hours. The half-way point of the company's predicted monthly profit is £850, so that makes an effective hourly rate of about £20.

£20 an hour is nevertheless a decent rate of pay.

Could you regularly receive £20 an hour?

However, the question is: could you receive it regularly? This depends on whether you get repeat orders. Without repeat orders, it's very difficult for most businesses to survive.

With My Little Wrapper, if you don't get repeat orders then you'll continually have to be spending time marketing to potential new customers, and you'll need to be travelling further afield in search of them.

Repeat orders would be particularly important with My Little Wrapper because your unit profit is small.

At the moment, there isn't any evidence of the level of repeat orders for My Little Wrapper. Nigel Botterill and Sue Botterill would have needed to run the business themselves for at least six months to test this, but there is no indication on the website that they ran the business at all. The testimonials shown from people who've bought the My Little Wrapper business refer only to specific sales having been made.

Could you get your money back if you weren't happy?

Let us turn now to the question of whether you could get your money back if the My Little Wrapper business did not turn out in accordance with your expectations. At first sight, it seems that you could, because Nigel Botterill says on the home page on the website says, "Both Packs come with our full 100% Money Back Guarantee" and there is a link to this guarantee. However, this seems to be rather misleading, for several reasons:

1. Nigel Botterill says categorically on the Terms and Conditions page that "no refunds will be available".

2. In his "Guarantee" Nigel Botterill starts off by saying, "My Little Wrapper is tried, tested and proven" but - as already stated in this review - there are no details on the website of any testing at all having been carried out.

3. Under his heading "Our 100% Money Back Guarantee" it appears that Nigel Botterill makes you wait a full 12 months to get your money back from My Little Wrapper, and during that time you would need to have "followed the Programme fully". I have seen many similarly-worded misleading "100% Money Back Guarantees" on business opportunities over the years. In practice, nobody has much chance of ever getting a refund because of the requirement to operate the business for 12 months. After all, if the business is not working for you then you wouldn't want to be spending a whole year flogging a dead horse and incurring costs if you were not getting the sales, would you?

4. The conditions for getting your money back from My LIttle Wrapper are made even more onerous by the requirement of Nigel Botterill to produce "certified accounts", whereupon N5 Ltd will "pay you back the difference between what you did generate in sales and the cost of the Programme". This appears to be a mistake, because surely what Nigel Botterill should be repaying you is the difference between your net profit - if any (i.e. your sales less your costs in generating those sales) and the cost of My Little Wrapper. The requirement for certified accounts means that you would have to cough up several hundred pounds to get your accounts audited.

Anyway, Nigel Botterill has got a good point in implying that he won't believe your figures unless you have them audited. That is a very business-like approach, and it is precisely the approach you should take with him.

So you need to ask Nigel Botterill to produce certified accounts for the My Little Wrapper business. If he can't, then forget it - because it will mean that My Little Wrapper is just another one of his untested business ideas and - as seen with the Quickie franchise - they don't always work.

Will My Little Wrapper work as claimed?

In the meantime, though, let's try to get a bit of an idea for ourselves about whether this Nigel Botterill franchise will work , and if so how: let's consider the first two sources of orders for your My Little Wrapper business given under the heading "Income" on the page headed "How Much Money Can I Expect To Make".

The first one is a wedding order, and Nigel Botterill says that "a typical wedding order can be for 100 bars".

Do you think you'd get many wedding orders?

It seems unlikely. Most people tend to do the traditional thing at weddings, and the traditional thing is sugared almonds. There are good reasons for this - sugared almonds look pretty and dainty and ... they don't melt or make people's fingers sticky. By contrast, even the most beautifully-wrapped chocolate bars would probably look clunky and out-of-place ... and what sort of a state do you think they would be in after spending several hours on a wedding table in a room which would be likely to have become rather warm?

Orders for children's parties are much more likely, and indeed Nigel Botterill says,"Children's birthday parties tend to be the mainstay of the business". However, the company says that the average order is around 20 bars. That means a sale price of between £20 and £30, with a gross profit of between £12 and £22, depending on whether you charged £1 or £1.50 per bar. That's not very much when you consider that you would have spent time getting the order, printing and applying the wrappers and delivering the order.

Having said that, I think that a personalised chocolate business could work if it were run as an add-on to an existing children's party business. That way, you would have your own ready market for repeat sales.

Whilst it's true that on the Internet you can buy software to print chocolate wrappers for a small price (e.g., the results are not likely to be good as with My Little Wrapper, where you simply overprint the personalised details onto pre-printed wrappers.

Colour laser printer needed

It's important to note, though, that in either case you need to have a laser printer; otherwise, as soon as the wrappers come into contact with wet or sticky fingers (e.g. children's party, wedding party) the ink could run or smear. Furthermore, it's presumably not just a question of appearance but also a question of Health and Safety regulations, since the ink could then come into contact with food or go directly into children's mouths via their fingers.

Oddly, whereas the two adverts I found for My Little Wrapper on Google ( and both say that you need to have a colour laser printer, on his website for My Little Wrapper Nigel Botterill only refers to having a colour printer.

Here's what the two adverts say:

"By using your own colour laser printer to over-print the personalisation on the preprinted wrappers you are able to provide real tip quality looking wrappers."

And here's what Nigel Botterill's website at says:

"By using your own colour printer to over-print the personalisation on the preprinted wrappers you are able to provide real tip quality looking wrappers."

There appears to be an unfortunate error throughout, because presumably the word "tip" should read "top".

BOW wrote to Nigel Botterill to tell him about this error and also to ask him about what kind of printer do people operating a My Little Wrapper business need to have, together with a number of other questions. BOW's letter is reproduced below.

It's important that anyone considering buying this business opportunity (or any of the other business opportunities and franchises offered by Nigel Botterill) does not allow their decision to be influenced by the incredible number of prestigious awards which Nigel Botterill himself, and his company N5 Limited, have received.

The latest one is "Innovative Company of the Year 2008" which Nigel Botterill received at a ceremony chaired by Peter Jones of BBC's Dragons Den in March 2008. This award is part of The Fast Growth Business Awards from Crimson Business, publishers of Growing Business Magazine and the popular website at

Previous awards to NIgel Botterill and N5 Ltd include:

  • Sunday Times Tech Track 100 - September 2007
  • Best e-company of the year 2007 from Sharp Edge Awards, presented by Duncan Bannatyne from BBCs Dragons Den
  • BTs Essence of the Entrepreneur Award 2007

How come, you may ask, the great and the good on the Judges Panels - including not only Dragons Den gurus Peter Jones and Duncan Bannatyne, but also Sir David Arculus (responsible for the phenomenal success of Emap) and Rene Carayol MBE - rate Nigel Botterill and his company so highly when BOW does not?

The answer is that these judges are judging on the basis of different criteria. They are looking at questions such as whether Nigel Botterill's business is innovative and whether it is financially successful.

BOW, on the other hand, is not primarily concerned with whether Nigel Botterill makes a lot of money and comes up with new ideas; BOW is first and foremost concerned with looking for evidence that what he is offering will enable his customers (e.g. you if you bought a business opportunity or a franchise from him) to make money, regardless of whether the idea is new or old-hat revisited.

Ignore any awards received by any business opportunity or franchise

Therefore, the best advice to anyone thinking of buying a business opportunity from a company which has received any awards or accolades is to totally ignore these in doing their research and arriving at their decision on whether to purchase the business.

Furthermore, with any award given by a publishing company, you might wonder whether the decisions were totally impartial or whether major advertisers were in with a running start. (Please note that BOW is making this comment purely as a general, common-sense observation, without any specific reference at all to either Nigel Botterill and his company or to any of the awarding companies.)

Another thing is that you would be unlikely ever to be able to find out what evidence the judges based their decision on.

For example, in the case of Nigel Botterill and his company N5 Ltd it does not seem to be based on the company's financial results as filed at Companies House, because for the year ended 30 April 2006 N5 Ltd had a deficit of £126,726 on its profit and loss account. For the year ended 30 April 2007 the deficit was nearly £70,000 and the company's creditors exceeded its current assets by nearly £30,000. Also, at one time during the year Nigel and Sue Botterill owed the company the incredible figure of nearly £2 million (the amount they owed at the end of the year had fallen to £325,885).

Regardless of the latest award from Fast Growth Business, according to Alexa ( the fall in the number of visits to the website of N5 Ltd's main franchise - thebestof - continues unchecked, as detailed in the following letter BOW sent to Nigel Botterill:

BOW Letter to Nigel Botterill

Dear Nigel,

Firstly, congratulations on your latest award -"Innovative Company of the Year 2008" - which I became aware of when I was asked by a reader to do a review of My Little Wrapper.

Secondly, I've got a couple of questions about My Little Wrapper:

When you say on the Guarantee page on your website, "My Little Wrapper is tried, tested and proven" - what precisely do you mean? Did you or your wife set up and run such a business, perhaps, and if so what period was it run for and is it still running?

Since you are requiring any of your customers who wish to call in the guarantee and receive a refund to provide you with certified accounts, can you provide certified accounts of this business?

This is obviously a very important point, because repeat orders from existing customers are a key feature of most healthy businesses, and with My Little Wrapper you say that "Children's birthday parties tend to be the mainstay of the business". That implies that a testing period of more than one year was required.

Also, I've got a question about how franchisees over-print the labels with the personalised text. The adverts you have on a number of franchise directory websites say that you over-print with a colour laser printer. However, your own website simply says that you over-print with a colour printer. Could you please specify whether a colour laser printer is required, or whether your view is that an inkjet printer could do the job? If the latter, then could you confirm that you have cleared this with Health and Safety officials, particularly bearing in mind the likelihood of contact from children's wet and/or sticky fingers?

You might also want to correct what appears to be an error in these adverts and also on your own site, in the reference to "real tip quality looking wrappers".

I turn now to your BestOf franchise, which we corresponded about earlier this year. It's good to see on the BestOf website ( that you have amended your bio regarding your short career at Card Protection Plan - which previously said that you "moved to Card Protection Plan as managing director" - where you were head of their telemarketing division, before you left to start up your own business.

By contrast, it is worrying to see that your bestof websites at and still carry false and misleading claims regarding their popularity with the public.

It can't be the case that these figures are a mistake or an oversight on the part of your company because I discussed them in detail in correspondence earlier this year with your Sales Director Mike Giles, in the course of my review of The Best Of franchise.

I had thought that Mike Giles was going to change these false figures because he replied to me on 24th December 2007 that " ... we are currently updating all our marketing material - something that we do as a matter of course every few months - to reflect the changes in the business".

However, the changes to the claims made on The Best Of website which I discussed with Mike Giles have not been made, as follows:

1. False claim

The "What We Do" page on the website at - which will be read by potential bestof advertisers - reads "With high exposure on the major search engines and thebestof consistently being ranked as one of the Top 100 most popular websites in the country (source" - whereas the truth is that by the end of December 2007 had slumped to number 273 in the UK, and now it has slumped further to number 541 in the UK.

As I pointed out in my correspondence to Mike Giles, it is doubtful that thebestof was ever in the top 100 UK websites so far as the public was concerned, because even in bestof's short days of glory in June 2006 when it was shown as being the UK's 48th most popular website, the Alexa statistics themselves showed that more than half of the traffic taken into account by Alexa in arriving at this statistic was not public traffic at all but was instead traffic from bestof franchisees visiting non-public pages on the site such as (28%), (13%) (8%), (1%) and (1%) - all of which add up to 51%.

2. Misleadingly out-of-date claim

The"About Us" link on the home page of the website at - which will be read by potential bestof franchisees - bears the heading "The 48th Most Popular Website in the UK (Source: June 2006)". Further down the page says "It is already the UKs 48th most popular website, as ranked by Alexa, the online ranking specialists (www.". Bizarrely, it appears that this page has not been updated for more than two years, since at the foot it carries the date July 2006.

Can you please explain these false and misleading figures?

Also, can you also please explain how the consistent downward trend shown by Alexa since June 2006 can be reconciled with your own figures of the fantastic growth in usage of the bestof site as per your website for potential franchisees at, as follows:

January 2006
140 bestof franchisees and "more than 750,000 hits per month (independently audited)"

June 2006
210 bestof franchisees and "more than 750,00 hits per month (independently audited)"

9th February 2007
210 bestof franchisees and "more than 750,00 hits per month (independently audited)"

4th March 2007
in the space of less than one month, an amazing 43% jump in the number of bestof franchisees to "more than 300 franchisees" and a mind-boggling 53-fold increase in the number of hits to "more than 40 million hits (independently audited)".

How can you be unaware that, whereas the bestof site was ranked as number 48 in the UK by Alexa in June 2006, it has fallen consistently since then?

The bestof site is now ranked as number 541 in the UK, and in the last three months it has fallen a further 10% in Reach (the percentage of global Internet users visiting the site), fallen by 2,458 in Traffic Rank (a combined measure of page views and Reach) and fallen by 32% in Page Views per user.

You persist in publicising false and misleading figures. For example, in the Guide which you currently send out called the "Guide to buying an Online Directory Franchise - 12 Questions you should ask the Franchisor" - you claim that "The is also ranked by as one of the top 200 most popular website in the UK (Dec 2007)". The truth is that on 7th December 2007 the bestof site was number 246 in the UK and by 20th December 2007 it had fallen to number 273, reflecting a continuing downward trend of a decline of 30% in reach, and a decline of 22% in page views for the previous 3 months.

Also, as pointed out in my previous correspondence, nearly half of the visits to the bestof site used by Alexa in arriving at the site's popularity rating do not relate to public usage at all but to usage by the bestof franchisees: 44% of the visits were to non-public pages such as, and

Please advise what you mean by the phrase "independently audited". For example, please advise who is the person or the body who carries out the audit and how often is this carried out?

Could you also please advise what information your bestof franchisees give to potential business advertisers about the popularity of your site?

On the basis of the Alexa figures, it would appear that the bestof advertisers have been getting an increasingly poor deal, because you have been recruiting more and more franchisees, which implies that more and more adverts are being sold ... but the visits to your site keep on going down.

I look forward to your reply.

Yours sincerely
Marian Owen

Reply from Nigel Botterill (in italics with BOW's comments inserted)

Dear Marian,

I am in receipt of your 3 page letter which I received late this morning, shortly followed, just 30 minutes later, by a fax asking for an urgent reply because you are publishing tomorrow.

In answer to your points:

My Little Wrapper

We have over 200 people doing this now across the UK ( our 200th Wrapper came on board last week) and have sold over 85,000 chocolate bars since March 08. It is going well with many success stories amongst our purchasers.

BOW comment:
That's 200 people recruited in 5 months. Let's discount the people recruited in the last 2 months because they might not have really got started with their business yet. So, on a straight-line basis, that's 120 people who have been running their My Little Wrapper business for more than 2 months. (This fits with a figure given on the Start Ups Live website at at the beginning of June, when Nigel Botterill said that My Little Wrapper "already has over 100 people on board".)

On an average basis, that means each person has sold in total 708 bars (i.e. 85,000 divided by 120). Over the life of their My Little Wrapper business of between two and five months to date this would give each person on average a total profit ranging from £424.80 to £778.80, depending on whether they have been selling the bars for £1 or £1.50.

That's rather a long way from the example Nigel Botterill gives on the My Little Wrapper website of the sale of 1,000 bars PER MONTH, giving a MONTHLY profit of between £600 and £1,100.

Prior to launch we ran a pilot to trial the whole thing both here in Solihull and with some of our franchisees from our other businesses.

BOW comment:
It's a shame that Nigel Botterill has not given any details about the period these pilot/s were run for, or the names of these businesses, or whether they are still running ... and has not made any comment about whether certified accounts are available.

Our chocolate bars are provided ready wrapped in foil and we took appropriate Health & Safety advice about all aspects of the business prior to launch.

BOW comment:
So Nigel Botterill hasn't replied to the important question about whether My Little Wrapper franchisees need a colour laser printer (which many people don't already have) or whether an inkjet (which many people do already have) will do.

I still reckon you'd need a colour laser printer to ensure that the outer packaging did not get messy, even if not required by Health and Safety regulations.

I find your questions about thebestof totally perplexing.

Firstly, thebestof is a franchise, not a business opportunity.

BOW comment:
I disagree with Nigel Botterill. To me, a"business opportunity" is an opportunity to do business. A franchise is simply one business model you might use to do business. Examples of other business models often used for business opportunities which are offered to the public include network marketing (or "multi-level marketing"), agency arrangements, distributorships etc.

Anyone wanting to get involved with it has to go through a rigorous selection process which includes vetting, interviews and meetings here at our Solihull offices before they can become a franchisee. As part of that process we share with them detailed information about the workings of the business including all the latest statistics, right down to individual area level.

We turn down a lot of people that want to become thebestof franchisees. We certainly don't just sell a franchise to anyone.

thebestof is one of the most successful UK franchises ever. It has developed enormously since its launch and now has many offline elements to the proposition as well as the online presence.

You seem to be picking an issue with some of our traffic claims. The claims are clearly dated on the Site so I don't believe that we are misleading anybody and, as I explained above, anyone who gets anywhere near purchasing a thebestof franchisee has access to far more detailed and very current statistics. For instance, in August 2008 the site received over 1.2m unique visitors. In June 2006 this figure was less than 400,000. We had over 85 million hits in August but, as I'm sure you are aware, unique visitors is a much more meaningful statistics nowadays, particularly when comparing Sites. It means that over 1.2 million different people visited thebestof website in August. These figures are provided by Google Analytics - the industry standard for such measurement. To be clear, our traffic continues to rise month on month (not fall, as you suggest) and is now at almost treble the level it was in June 2006.

BOW comment:
It's a bit of a mystery, then, why on his website at Nigel Botterill continues to quote figures which are more than two years out of date and, moreover, from a source - - where the current figures show that usage of his site has slumped.

This traffic comes from a number of sources but one of the main ones is the fact that we have over 450,000 pages indexed on Google and 363,000 Top 10 search rankings across the six major search engines. These are industry leading figures. We have a very strong presence on the search engines - way better than any of our competitors.

All our franchisees get detailed stats each month for traffic to their individual sites, including detailed figures for each business that they feature.

Incidentally, I had a representative from Hitwise the global authority on web site traffic in my office only a few weeks ago and he was telling me that, based on their data, we were the 4th biggest directory site on the web. But this is all statistics and data. When measuring the success of thebestof I believe there are better ways to do it:

For instance, we have more than 50,000 UK businesses paying to be part of the Site. Retention and renewals are very high - as result of the great return on investment that our franchisees are able to provide for them. There are over 100 testimonials from businesses right across the country on the website and we have hundreds more available. How many of the Opportunities that you review have 50,000 current paying customers?

We also have several franchisees now earning in excess of £10,000 per month (net) and many more moving rapidly towards that figure. There are very few, if any, UK franchises that have this level of financial success amongst its franchisees. Incidentally, so far this year, 12 of our established franchisees have bought a second franchise area - again a good indicator of the success of this business.

As I mentioned above, the web element is only a part of thebestof's offering to our customers. There are lots of offline things that our franchisees provide as well.

Marian, I have invited you several times to visit us in Solihull and see our operation for yourself but you have repeatedly declined these invitations.

BOW comment:
I had already told thebestof's Franchise Director, Mike Giles, the reasons why I don't go to visit companies.

For one thing, it shouldn't be necessary for me to visit companies to obtain information about the opportunity they are offering: it should be all there in black and white, either on their website and/or in their brochure. That way, the claims made and the information given can be relied upon by the purchaser. If, instead, the purchaser has to rely on verbal assurances and verbal information, then it's going to be difficult for him to prove what was said if things go wrong.

For another thing, it's only the more well-heeled companies with nice offices and plenty of staff who want me to come and visit them. This doesn't necessarily have any bearing on whether the opportunity they are offering is valid. As a particularly unhappy example, about a year ago Robin Barton of UK Land Investments Group was very keen for me to visit him at his company's offices. I declined for the above reasons, gave his company a rating of Zero out of Ten, and on 4th June 2008 the High Court granted a petition from the Financial Services Authority to wind the company up on the basis that it was operating illegally.

I understand that you want to expose scam ...

BOW comment:
(in fact, I also search hard for good business opportunities, and these are highlighted on the members' web site)

... and I applaud that but we have a staff of 38 here in Solihull, including the largest Franchisee Development team in the country (whose role is to help our franchisees to succeed); our own bespoke Training Suite, which is in use most days with franchisees from one of our brands receiving training. We have over 1500 purchasers of our products - and hundreds and hundreds of testimonials from them. We have been recognised by 9 separate prestigious awards, some of them amongst the top awards in the country. We have been independently vetted by Price Waterhouse Coopers before being included in the Sunday Times Tech Track 100 last year, we have been trading for over 5 years now...I'm just not sure what more I can do to convince you.

We are about to launch a brand new version of thebestof website in October, one that has cost us over £400,000 to develop (not something that scam companies do I believe!). All the content about the business is being reviewed ahead of that launch so I will ensure that we take that opportunity to remove any reference to the Alexa stats.

Here at N5 we have a very progressive agenda to continue the development of all our products (we have just undertaken a survey of all our My Little Wrapper purchasers for example asking them how we can make the product better for them going forward and we have received some brilliant ideas and suggestions that we will be implementing in the weeks ahead). My focus, and that of my team, has to be on looking after our customers and focusing on the development of our products and I cannot promise that any future letters from you - especially those sent with less than 24 hours to respond - will receive such a full and open response.

BOW comment:
Nigel Botterill is incorrect in stating that I gave him less than 24 hours to respond: the letter to which he replied was faxed to his office at 9.30 am on Monday 8th September. Because I had heard nothing - not even an acknowledgement - I sent Nigel Botterill a second fax at 11.30 am on Tuesday 9th September saying that I would be publishing my review with my letter on Wedneday 10th September and asking him to let me know urgently if he wanted to submit a reply to be published with it. Had Nigel Botterill then told me that he wanted to reply but needed more time, then he would have got it. I received his reply by email late on the evening of Tuesday 9th September.

I agree that giving only a couple of days to reply is a bit pushy, but the reason why I adopted this approach is because I had previously been given the run-around in getting any reply from Nigel Botterill's company regarding his franchise Have A Quickie. In that case, obtaining a reply required an initial fax containing my letter, a further fax 4 days later asking for an acknowledgement, a phone call to his secretary a further 3 days later to confirm the fax number (which was correct), a further fax which the secretary confirmed she had received and would pass to Nigel Botterill, and a final fax after a further 5 days - all of which took a total of 12 days - to get any reply. It was only the final fax (headed"Urgent" in very large text) which succeeded in obtaining a reply, and this fax stated that I would be publishing my letter to Nigel Botterill without any reply from his company if I did not have a reply by the end of the following day.

So that's why I decided to wade in quickly this time with "publishing tomorrow".

In the interests of balance and openness I trust that you will publish this reply in full.

Your sincerely,


Nigel Botterill
Chief Executive

P.S Mike Giles left N5 in April this year after more than three years with us. He has gone to live abroad.

BOW had also emailed its letter of 8th September 2008 to Mike Giles, in view of correspondence with him earlier this year regarding the Quickie franchise. It is surprising to hear from Nigel Botterill that he left the company five months ago, since he's still shown as a member of their team on the Biographies page at

With 38 members of staff, it's a pity that N5 can't keep their websites more up to date.

BOW's rating for My Little Wrapper is 2 out of 10

See also:

  • Review of Sue Botterill's MyMag
    BOW June 2007
  • Review of BestOf franchise
    August 2007
  • Review of Have A Quickie franchise
    BOW December 2007



BOW Notice: A zero score or a low score means that in our opinion the business model or the investment model has flaws and/or that we have found inadequate evidence to back up claims about earnings, sales, profits etc. It doesn't mean this evidence does not exist and it doesn't mean that the opportunity is a scam and it doesn't mean that the promoters are unprofessional or dishonest. Questions arising are normally contained within the body of the review, and readers who are interested should contact the company with these questions and/or questions of their own.


Enquiry about a refund

BOW subsequently had an enquiry from a reader about whether she could get her money back from My Little Wrapper, and the following summarises BOW's advice to her.

In view of Nigel Botterill's statement in My Little Wrapper's Terms and Conditions that "no refunds will be available" and N5 Ltd's "full 100% Money Back Guarantee" which requires you to operate the business for a full year and produce certified accounts, it seemed like a good idea to clarify the position regarding refunds for other readers, too.

The true position is that anyone who bought this business within the last three months and 7 working days and regrets doing so has a statutory right to get a refund from Nigel Botterill , without having to give any reason at all.

And Nigel Botterill - or, rather N5 Ltd - has to pay for the return of the goods.

The reason for this is because the purchase of My Little Wrapper falls under the Distance Selling Regulations and so N5 Ltd should have notified you that you had a right to cancel your order (without giving any reason) and receive a full refund at any time up to the end of the seventh working day after the day you received your order. This notification should have been given before you placed your order and should have been given again when the company confirmed your order to you.

Because Nigel Botterill did not give this information it means that you have an extended right to get a refund under the Distance Selling Regulations, without having to give any reason, and this refund right lasts for three months and 7 working days from the day after the day on which the goods were delivered to you.

This refund right only applies to contracts concluded at a distance (by internet, by email, by telephone etc) and so it would not apply if you had visited the company or otherwise had face-to-face contact with them before placing your order.

Normally, you can't get a refund for videos or software if they have inner packaging (typically a sealed cellophane wrapper) which has been unsealed. But you should be able to in this case because the company did not inform you of your right to cancel at the time you made the contract, when the videos/software were of course sealed and when you therefore did have the right to cancel.

Of course, you could not get a refund for items which have been consumed (e.g. some chocolate and some of the wrappers).

Neither could you get a refund for any further purchases (e.g more chocolate or more wrappers) which you had made after your initial purchase of the My Little Wrapper business. Obviously, if you had made further purchases it would be unlikely that you were dissatisfied overall. But if you were dissatisfied, then the only refund you could claim under the Distance Selling Regulations would be for your original business purchase. The reason is because your subsequent purchases of chocolate and wrappers would have been made as a business i.e. you would have been purchasing supplies for your business. The Distance Selling Regulations only apply to purchases made as a consumer.

This contrasts with the position for your original purchase of My Little Wrapper, where you were a consumer purchasing a business. It's obvious from Nigel Botterill's marketing material for My Little Wrapper that it's aimed squarely at people who are not currently operating a business and who have no business experience. For example, the first thing on the list of "Whats (ungrammatically) Included" is the Set Up Manual which:

"... takes you through the simple things you need to do to establish your business effectively ... Setting up your home office ...Setting up your e-mail account ... Opening a Bank Account ... Accountants - do you need one, if so, what to look for and how much to pay ... Why you need to keep adequate business records ... How to take your customers (ungrammatical) orders ... How to keep track of your customers" etc.

If, on the contrary, you purchased the My Little Wrapper business as an extension to an existing business (e.g. if you bought it in the name of an existing business with a business cheque or a business credit card) then you don't have any rights under the Distance Selling Regulations.

In conclusion, you should be able to get a refund from Nigel Botterill for your original purchase of the My Little Wrapper Business, less whatever you have consumed, provided you have taken reasonable care of the goods. It is not a requirement of the legislation that the goods should be in a condition fit for resale.

Finally, please note that the editor of Business Opportunity Watch is a qualified accountant rather than a lawyer and please see the Terms and Conditions which apply to use of this website. The Distance Selling Regulations are a complex piece of legislation and the best advice is normally to seek the opinion of a solicitor. However, the Distance Selling Regulations are a special case because they are overseen by the Office of Fair Trading, who are given the statutory responsibility of receiving any complaints.

Therefore, if you are unable to resolve this matter directly with Nigel Botterill and you are still unsatisfied then you should contact the local Trading Standards Office at:

Solihull Metropolitan Borough Council
Trading Standards and Licensing
PO Box 1833
Council House
West Midlands
B91 3DZ

In fact, in view of Nigel Botterill's confusing and incorrect references to "No refunds" and having to wait a year to ask for a refund, you may find that the Office of Fair Trading is sympathetic to the view that refunds should be given even after the period of three months and 7 working days.


Update 9th March 2010 re Nigel Botterill's bio re Card Protection Plan,

Nigel Botterill's mysterious short-lived managing directorship of Card Protection Plan seems to be an error that just won't go away! It has appeared again on the "About Me" page on his new site at promoting his new mentoring business Entrepreneur's Circle.

Here's what he says on his new site:

"In late 2001, I'd moved to Card Protection Plan as Managing Director, working closely with self-made multi-millionaire Hamish Ogston. In less than 2 years I transformed the business, sending turnover soaring from £3m to £35m."

We wrote to Nigel Botterill in 2007 about a similar claim on his website for the BestOf franchise, (as also referred to above).

Nigel Botterill replied to say that:

At no time was I, or have I ever claimed to have been, a Board Director - which is why there is no record of company directorships at Companies House.

You will be aware that it is common practice for senior executives in large companies across the UK to have job titles like Marketing Director, Operations Director, Managing Director etc., these people are not necessarily Statutory Directors under the Companies Act.  Typically, such senior roles will report in to the Board of the company where the Statutory Directors reside.

Card Protection Plan told me that they hired Nigel Botterill to set up a new call centre in the Midlands - which is why he moved his family from Yorkshire to the Midlands - and that he was certainly not Managing Director of the whole company and that - if he had "run" CPP as he claimed - he would surely have known that the turnover at the time he joined was more like £30 million than £3 million. 

I also came across a Press Report dated 7th June 2001 in the Evening Press on the website at in which Nigel Botterill gave an interview about job opportunities available at CPP and he is described as "managing director of the telemarketing division of CPP".

Now why couldn't he just have said that in the first place?


Your feedback:

Have you tried this opportunity?

Or would you like to comment on the opportunity or on our review, even if you haven't tried it?

If so, please send us an email. Your feedback will then be posted here anonymously unless you tell us that you want your contact details included.

Feedback received July 2011 from LostMoney:

I just read your review on the my little wrapper franchise. It has to be the biggest scam ever and I wish I had never paid for it. I am a single mum and thought it would bring extra income in for me however it didnt and if there was a way to get money back I would.

I paid for it out of my savings. I bought it in April 2009 and fell for the sales pitch. I later discovered the amount of franchisees that were here in N Ireland it was flooded with them. There would be no chance of selling uniquely in an area. There is no back up and no marketing being done by the company. I find the chocolate overpriced and the wrappers looked cheap. The ink doesnt dry properly at times on the wrappers and they do look like a child has done them. Great concept but poor follow up from Sue.


Editorial reply to LostMoney:

Regarding getting your money back, ignore Nigel Botterill's company statement that there will be "No refunds", because the law overrides this.

As with any business opportunity which does not live up to its promises, you could take a case to the Small Claims Court.

Your case against Nigel Botterill could be on the grounds that you bought My Little Wrapper because the company said it was "fully tried, tested and proven", but you now believe that this was not the case. Nigel Botterill will then need to show evidence of the testing they carried out. As stated in my review, in my opinion Nigel Botterill should have tested this business for at least six months before it was launched.

Your case could also include the other complaints that you mention e.g. that Nigel Botterill was accepting so many purchasers in Northern Ireland that the market was flooded and there was too much competition to be able to run a successful business. You can also mention the poor quality of the wrappers themselves.

You could also include the fact that Nigel Botterill claimed that they had 200 My Little Wrapper businesses in September 2008 and you would like the company to give evidence of how many people are still in business.

You could also challenge the claims made by Nigel Botterill about the earnings from the business, stating that you believe they were misleading. N5 Ltd states on its website that "You can see from this example how you could be producing an average of 1,000+ bars per month – on a very part-time basis. You could aim to do more than this – or a lot less. It’s entirely up to you. Every 1,000 bars you sell should deliver you between around £500 and £1,000 profit, depending on the price that you sell them for." Nigel Botterill will then have to produce evidence to show how many My Little Wrapper businesses make between "£500 and £1,000 profit ... on a very part-time basis".

Don't be put off by the idea of going to court. The Small Claims procedure is specifically designed for the man (or woman) in the street to use. Ed.


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End of review of My Little Wrapper, Nigel Botterill, N5 Ltd

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