Everthine Events, the new wedding and events business based in Reston, is one of the 52 Business Gateway success stories over the past year.
Mother of four Carol McIntyre left her job as a website manage to relocate to the Borders at the start of this year, and she was helped by Business Gateway as she launched her new business in Reston.
Since the launchs Carol, who has previously owned her own bridal shop and worked in hospitality and IT, has ensured numerous brides have enjoyed a dream wedding; and with 24 weddings already booked for 2015 she is now looking to open her first showroom and the future is looking good.
Carol said: “I’d used Business Gateway services in my previous job so the courses were a great refresher and my adviser gave me a lot of encouragement and kept me on track.
“The networking opportunities have also been fantastic. I did find it a bit daunting starting a business at my age in such a young industry – my target market is 25 to 35 year old brides-to-be – but my experience has been a big selling point.
“I’m really passionate about what I do and with my diary quickly filling up for 2015 I am looking to open a showroom in the Borders to showcase the products I have that make a wedding day special.
“As Business Gateway doesn’t forget about you once you’ve started I am now looking to use their expertise to help me as I grow my business.”
Carol is one of 52 entrepreneurs who have set up thriving enterprises in the Scottish Borders in the last year thanks to help from Business Gateway.
Since November last year 29 men and 23 women, who were out of work but had a business idea, were given assistance to become their own boss after being referred to the business advisory service by the Job Centre, through the New Enterprise Allowance Scheme (NEA).
The majority (70%) of those referred to Business Gateway Scottish Borders were looking to set up an enterprise after redundancy. Oneof those helped by Business Gateway, Steven Shann, had been made redundant three times in four years and decided to set up by himself as a garden maintenance and general handyman.
The new businesses are across the spectrum of sectors and include: a gardener and handyman; event organiser; a cleaning company; a massage therapist; a mobile phone repair shop; a catering company; and an artist.
Bartje Magee, business adviser, Business Gateway said: “We are delighted that our assistance has helped a great number of local people facing unemployment realise they have the potential and skills necessary to set up their own business.
“Having access to one-to-one support, free workshops and networking opportunities, as well as potential financial support through the NEA, has provided a safety net and given them the confidence needed to become self-employed which many had never considered as a viable option before.”
Visit www.bgateway.com, or call your local office on 01835 818315.