Latest News | 20 July 2021

Matthew rises to the challenge after securing top baker nomination

Share this post:

One of the co-founders of doughnut-maker Project D has been shortlisted for a prestigious national award.

Matthew Bond, who co-founded the Derby-based bakery with friends Jacob Watts and Max Poynton, is in the running for the Baker of the Year title at the Baking Industry Awards (BIA) 2021.

Matthew Bond

Matthew, who grew up in America, always dreamed of one day owning his own doughnut store.

But up until three years ago, he was working as a landscape gardener – and had not even cooked a meal, let alone bake a cake.

However, he taught himself how to bake – and launched Project D, which has quickly grown into a successful company, supplying its sugary treats to customers across the country.

The 27-year-old said: “Despite never having even baked a cake, I was brought up in America where doughnuts were a huge trend and I knew that would happen in the UK.

“I taught myself to make doughnuts and I’m proud of that. There are three directors of Project D but I am the only one who bakes and I’m entirely responsible for our products.

“We still flip our doughnuts by hand, hand dip them and hand decorate each one.

Young Matthew

“The range is changed every four weeks at least and I still bake almost every day. I am responsible for product innovation and standards – we pride ourselves on ensuring every single doughnut tastes as good as it looks.”

“I’m over the moon to have been shortlisted for this award. I look back at the photograph of me as a boy with my chef’s hat and doughnut box and think that my younger self would be pretty pleased with how things have turned out.”

As well as the Baker of the Year category, Project D has also been shortlisted for the Craft Bakery of the Year in the BIA, which is sponsored by British Baker.

The company is also in the running for a raft of other awards. Project D has been shortlisted as Food and Drink Entrepreneurs of the Year and Scale-Up Entrepreneurs of the Year, in the Great British Entrepreneurs Awards, in association with Starling Bank.

More locally, Project D has been shortlisted for the Breakthrough Award and Entrepreneur of the Year, in the Generation Next Awards, which are delivered in partnership with the University of Derby and form part of East Midlands Chamber’s new network for professionals and business owners aged under 35.

Matthew Bond

And in the chamber’s own business awards the company has been shortlisted for the Outstanding Growth Award and the Small Business of the Year Award.

Jacob Watts, Project D’s strategy director, said: “We are really excited to be shortlisted for these awards.

“Being recognised locally is amazing because Derby is our home and always will be. But equally, seeing the company get national recognition, especially by baking professionals, is beyond our wildest dreams.”

Related Articles...

This will close in 0 seconds