Marc Burton – this beard means business

Posted on

May 5, 2014



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Marc Burton – entrepreneur and now author – is a bearded inspiration with many strings to his beardow. With a business portfolio expanding at the rate of knots, this is one gentleman we’re keeping our eye on. Move over Alan Sugar.

Owner of the hugely successful Mexican hot spot, Tonteria, on Sloane Square and fashion label, DecorumLYD, Marc splits his time between running his business empire and writing books. His book on business and entrepreneurship (written with Steve Forbes) launched just a few weeks ago.

Here’s what he had to say about business, life and of course, facial hair:

Thank-you for taking the time to talk business and beards. How and when did you set up your first business? And how easy was it?

My first business was quite easy to set up. I used to undercut the tuck shop at my school when I was 12.  I would sell a box of 600 penny sweets for £5 so my classmates would get 100 free penny sweets. A great deal compared to the tuck shop!

Tell us about your latest venture, Tonteria, and your fashion label, DecorumLYD

I teamed up with Guy Pelly and Alain Donabedian and together we created Tonteria.  With Tonteria we wanted to create a fun venue that was different and slightly mad.  We loved the Mexican culture and had seen how popular tequila was becoming around the world.  Tonteria offers Mexican tapas and tequila cocktails after work and then it turns into a really mad nightspot.

Upon entering Tonteria, you feel like you have been transported to an old hacienda in the heart of Jalisco, Mexico.  We have a toy train on the ceiling that delivers shots of tequila to guests at their tables.  We have giant masks in the shape of Mexican characters that the waiters wear when serving our signature sharing drinks. On Monday nights we have live wrestlers and on Thursday night we have our naughty DND performers.  This year we are doing a world tour with Tonteria.  The first was at Matignon for Paris fashion week and we did an event at the Bahrain Formula One Grand Prix.  You can catch us in Las Vegas for the opening of Drais. (

DecorumLYD, specialises in making avant garde leather jackets for men.  Each jacket is designed in London and then hand made in an atelier in Italy by skilled artisans.  The belief of the brand is to, ‘live your dream.’  DecorumLYD makes products for men who are living their dream.  These men are pushing the boundaries in the worlds of music, art, design and business.  They want their clothes to reflect themselves.  Each leather jacket is versatile as the man living his dream is continually travelling.  One minute he can be in the cold and rain of London and the next in the sun of LA.  The leather jackets can be adapted for the differing weather conditions.  Each jacket is unique – on the inside there is a differing inspirational quote that is hand written.  Each jacket is one of one.  (Twitter/Instagram:  DecorumLYD)

We are really excited to hear about the release of your new book, SuccessOnomics, with Steve Forbes. How did this come about?

Successonomics was released on and I am grateful as it has made it onto several bestseller lists which is great news.  The book was written as a group of us realised how success means such different things to different people.  Steve Forbes, myself and a group of incredible entrepreneurs decided to collate what we had learnt about success and share it with people.  We have all been helped massively by our own mentors and authors of great books. We felt the need to also help and share what we had learnt.   It was Marc Alfred and Dominic Knight who I met at the Entrepreneurs Institute who introduced me to Steve Forbes and the other authors.

What was your plan B?

What I’m doing now is my plan B!  Plan A was to play football or tennis professionally.  I spent too much time in nightclubs for that to become a reality.

Living and working in the London club scene must be invigorating but also exhausting. Where are your favourite places to relax in the city?

Yes it is really invigorating.  I am extremely lucky as I get to meet so many amazing people from all walks of life and backgrounds through the club.  However, it is good to relax.  Shoreditch House and Electric I absolutely love. They are like a home away from home. I often catch up with friends at Colbert brasserie on Sloane Square.  I can relax there with friends before going into the madness of Tonteria. I also like to go to Sumosan with my girlfriend Ellie.



How long have you been growing your impressive beard?

Two years.

How do you look after it? Is a self-maintenance job or do you have a favourite barber or hairdresser?

It is part self-maintenance, part hairdresser and part barber!  I’ve learnt as it’s grown!  My hairdresser, Larry King, trims it when I see him.  Every few months I see Matthew at Murdock Covent Garden who helps reshape it.  The rest of the time I trim it myself.

Do you use any specific products?

I use the Murdock beard moisturiser to keep the beard soft for my girlfriend, Ellie. I use a wax called Clay by L’Oreal Professional to shape my moustache.

What are your views on the celebrity beard and the mass media attention the likes of Jeremy Paxman, Gareth Malone and Prince Harry have been receiving?

The celebrity beards are always short lived and I don’t consider them to be proper beards.  They grow them for a few weeks and then shave them off.  To have a proper beard you need to stick with it and keep growing it.  A real beard isn’t a fashion accessory for a season, it’s for life.

Who is your ultimate bearded hero and why?

Ricki Hall.  He’s rock n roll.



Buy Successonomics on Amazon


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