Belfast Telegraph

Avon lady opens door to a career worth millions

By Rod Minchin

A woman swapped unemployment and a council house for a million-pound lifestyle by becoming an Avon lady.

Debbie Davis has become Avon's first ever millionaire after starting to sell the popular cosmetics door-to-door six years ago.

Thirtysomething Ms Davis is the cosmetics company's most successful saleswoman in the UK and heads an 8,000-strong nationwide team.

Her dedication has seen her richly rewarded and she now drives a top-of-the-range sports car and lives in a renovated house having earned £1.4m selling cosmetics.

Yet, despite a millionaire's lifestyle, Ms Davis continues to sell Avon door-to-door.

Her rags-to-riches story began in 2004 when she was made redundant from her job at a local printing factory, where she had worked since leaving school.

After being unemployed for six months, Ms Davis paid £15 to sign up as an Avon representative to help pay the bills.

She was amazed when she sold £18,800 worth of products during her first three weeks.

Realising she was onto a winner, Ms Davis decided to recruit her partner Dave Carter to help.

She now has nearly 8,000 people working for her in a network stretching across England and has achieved an impressive turnover of £9.3m since 2004.

Last year the couple were crowned Avon's top earners for the fourth year running, having earned £300,000.

Miss Davis was given a Mercedes SLK and Mr Carter a BMW X3. They also won a holiday to Majorca. Again this year they have won another string of awards for their work, including having the fastest growing team of sales representatives and highest earnings.

Last week the company announced that football boss Karren Brady - who was guest speaker at the Business Telegraph Awards in March - is to mentor and inspire Avon ladies.

Ms Davis said: "I never thought that at the age of 31, I would be able to say I am running a lucrative business with my partner."