Hello, I’m Richard Sargeant….

I’m a family man, with 5 wonderful children and a beautiful partner. I’m the co-founder of three separate hospitality businesses with 33 company owned locations, a team of over 1000 and a combined turnover of over £30 million. I’ve received various awards and recognition for everything that I have achieved, but I have also experienced failure, so I genuinely understand what it takes to run your own hospitality business. With the desire to share my experiences I’m now the founder of HEFON, allowing me to help other ambitious hospitality owners achieve more with their own businesses. 
Here’s my journey and story so far……

Growing Up

There definitely wasn’t much money around when I was growing up! My parents divorced when I was young, and my mum remarried some years later. My two brothers and I suddenly had three more brothers, and over the following years a family of six became nine! I learnt very quickly that to get anything in life, YOU must make it happen! No one is going to do it for you!

Being Employed

I had various jobs within the hospitality industry during my time at College and University, which I loved. After I graduated, I started a new career in estate agency with Dixon’s estate agents as a trainee estate agent. I found out quite quickly that I loved helping people and was good at being an estate agent too. Over the following seven years I was promoted several times, finally becoming a senior manager.

My Leap of Faith…

From an early age I think I had always wanted to do something for myself. I’m pretty sure my upbringing had somehow led me to believe that working for myself and doing my own thing was the best way for me to get to where I wanted to be.

The Estate Agents

Along with a friend from work, I set up my own estate agency business. It was a great experience, learning very quickly that running my own business was much harder than I thought, but I absolutely loved it. We soon had more outlets; more team and we had joined forces with a financial services business as well. By the time I sold my share of that business we had six offices, a lettings business, and a financial services business as well.

Handmade Burger Co

I’d started my working life in hospitality and always wanted to work with my brother on something. So, when I saw an opportunity in Birmingham city centre I jumped at the chance! We opened our first Handmade Burger Co restaurant in Brindley Place right on the canal side in Birmingham in 2006.  I can tell you within those first three months of opening I learned so much! After the success of the first restaurant and over the following decade I built the business into an independent restaurant company, with a team of over 850, turnover close to £30 million and 29 company owned locations throughout the U.K.

Urban Pie

I also co-founded Urban Pie which was both a sit in and take out pie and mash restaurant. It proved popular as customers loved the choice of freshly made pies along with mash and gravy with the option to eat in or eat on the go. The business grew quickly and achieved well over £1.25million in sales, on the back of this strong performance we expanded into several other locations in the UK before I decided to sell it.


Chilacas was a Mexican restaurant that I co-founded, selling wonderful freshly prepared Mexican food along with beers, wines, and cocktails.  The restaurant built up a strong loyal following and turnover quickly exceeded over £1million within its first twelve months. I received an offer for the business that was too good to turn down, so I sold it shortly after.


I decided to spend some time working with various hospitality businesses both in the UK and further afield helping on various projects.  Whether that was developing new concepts, turning around existing businesses, improving profits, work on processes and product development, marketing strategy, team development and business culture, or looking at ways to increase revenue and get more customers. It was a great experience for me and opened my eyes to the fact that I wanted to help even more hospitality owners.

Hospitality Entrepreneurs, Founders and Owners Nationwide

I founded HEFON because I wanted to find a way to share all my real-life learnings and experiences not to just a few hospitality owners, but to ALL ambitious hospitality owners that might feel they need some help, support, or inspiration when on their own hospitality journeys. I want hospitality owners to achieve far more with their businesses than they ever thought was possible and HEFON is here to help do just that!

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