Who are you?
Simple answer: Nicolina Andall. I have been a Solicitor for thirteen years and I run my own commercial law firm, “Andall Legal”.
Complex answer: I am an independent soul with a passion for life, good company, great food and music. I love learning about people etc
What is your connection with the Croydon Chamber of Commerce?
I joined the Chamber last year when I set up the firm. Having worked in the City and in regional companies over the years, I was keen to develop a local presence near my home and provide a cost effective, practical and sensible commercial legal service within the Croydon Area. I have enjoyed every single Croydon Chamber event and am grateful for all the guidance, support and advice that I have received from Chamber members… particularly from my mentor – Fintan O’Toole.
What was your first job in Croydon?
Part time job at McDonalds (High Street). Although many may scoff – I had a great time, earned good money to finance my university years, learned lots of good management skills and had the opportunity to learn about the workings of a phenomenal company! They have a fantastic business model … did you know its actually a property investment business at its heart?
Which one business achievement over the last 12 months are you most proud of, and why?
Having the courage to set up the firm in the first place! We solicitors are heavily regulated and aren’t particularly liked in the marketplace. So, it took a lot to overcome the naysayers and the fear of failure! 8 months in … I’m convinced that I made the right decision.
If you could change one thing in your business/sector what would it be and why?
I’m happy with my business at this present time but do wish that other lawyers would “get out more” and be seen to be interacting with business people in the marketplace proving that we can “understand our clients” and “speak in English”! There are a few gems in Croydon… but they are few and far between….
If you were advising a young entrepreneur, which business person would you suggest as a model?
Richard Branson – friendly, focused, independent minded, smart risk taker, lover of life and an avid entrepreneur.
If you were Mayor of London for the day, which one thing would you change?
I would lower car parking charges to a fraction of where they currently stand. The lack of being able to park to pop into a local shop KILLS local business. Big thumbs up for those few areas where we can now get 30 mins free!
What is your favourite and least favourite thing about Croydon?
Favourite thing: Great Croydon people (Members of Croydon Chamber, Constructing Excellence Croydon and Croydon Tech City rank highly here!)
Least favourite: Car parking charges … grr….
What does the future hold for your business and how do you intend to capitalise on that?
I think the future is very bright for my business. In addition to being a commercial solicitor providing essential business legal advice to local SMEs (a service which I feel is lacking in this vicinity), I am also a construction lawyer adept at advising companies within the construction sector on this specialist area of law…. Roll on WESTFIELD!
Is there any question not asked that you would like to answer?
“What do I do in my spare time?”
What a great question! Aside from enjoying time with my husband and two children, I play gospel piano, sing with the brilliant “Soul Symphony” community gospel choir and dabble in a bit of property investment from time to time…