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ISSUE 27 • SUMMER 2014

LOCAL BUSINESS NEWS: hear more success stories

FIFE BUSINESS MATTERS

www.fifebusinessmatters.co.uk


Are you looking for business property in Fife? Fife Council provides a variety of business space throughout Fife, ranging from Business Centres, Renewable Innovation Centres to Offices and Industrial Units.

Serviced office space; 3 person office (333sq.ft) from £99 per week Incubator Space; offices ranging from 210 – 342sq.ft (2-3 persons) stepped rental starting from £36 – £59 per week Industrial Space ranging from 300sq.ft – 8,212sq.ft To discuss your property needs further please contact Economic Development Team on 0345 600 1359 or e-mail Business.Property@fife.gov.uk to discuss your business needs.

Free Property Search available at www.InvestinFife.co.uk


WELCOME to Fife Business Matters WELCOME to the latest edition of Fife Business Matters. Each quarter, FBM brings its readers reports of local businesses which continue to create opportunities across the region as they embrace growth, invest in new products and services, diversify into new markets and give opportunities to the younger generation. This issue is no different. The optimism continues as we hear of the fantastic work in the region from young companies starting out, to long-established companies, for example, Avenue Scotland Group which is celebrating 20 years in business and continues to grow. We also hear from Greenfold Systems Ltd which in recent years, has transformed into a leading provider of outsource manufacturing services and was one of a number of companies to attend AllEnergy in Aberdeen in May, which once again proved fruitful and generated positive opportunities for the sector. Giving young people an opportunity, whether in employment or through training, is a priority for Fife. Programmes such as the Energy Enterprise Challenge, which gives primary pupils an insight into the energy sector, through to the launch of Apprentices in Enterprise, Scotland’s first formal Enterprise Apprenticeship scheme, show Fife’s willingness to embrace the younger generation whilst developing the local economy. Each of the companies featured, and the many hundreds succeeding and growing throughout Fife, can celebrate in the knowledge that they play an important role in keeping our economy secure and making Fife the best place to do business. I am also delighted to include FoCaL, a new publication from Fife Council Leisure & Cultural Services. FoCaL adds to our FBM offering and showcases the wide range of leisure and cultural facilities and services, which play an important role in making Fife the best place to live, work and do business. I hope you enjoy this issue of Fife Business Matters. Chris Parr, Chairman, Fife Economy Partnership

Contents P4

The rise of Greenfold

P7

Business Gateway Fife helps stationery business take off

P8

Business Services – how successful are you and your business?

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BertyB gets off to an award winning start

P11

MDP: an effective way for companies to take part in events

P12

Investment at Plastech Group

P13

Fife recognised as top tourist destination in Scotland

P15

Directoral appointments at Fife Chamber

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FBM meets Ian Campbell, Avenue Scotland Group

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Giving Fife’s young people opportunities for employment

P24-25

Culture of Enterprise update

P27

FSB survey shows positive outlook

P30

Events Diary

Publisher: DTech Publishing Ltd Fife Business Matters is published by DTech Publishing Limited on behalf of the Fife Economy Partnership. This publication is fully protected by copyright and nothing may be printed wholly or in part without the written permission of the publishers. The proprietors of this magazine are publishers and not agents or sub-agents of those who advertise therein. The publishers cannot be held liable for any loss suffered as a result of information gained from this publication. The views expressed by the authors or articles published in this magazine are solely those of the author and are not necessarily the views of or shared by the editor, nor the publisher or the directors, shareholders and/or employees of DTech Publishing Limited.

Fife Business Matters is published on behalf of the Fife Economy Partnership and is funded by Fife Council To send us your stories or request a copy email: editor@fifebusinessmatters.co.uk To advertise Telephone 01436 678808/671133 email: sales@dtechuk.com

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The rise of Greenfold:

Learning from the past to meet tomorrow’s challenges head-on

RISING like a phoenix out of the ashes of the failed component manufacturer Simclar International almost three years ago, Dunfermline-based Greenfold Systems has emerged as a leading provider of outsource manufacturing services, displaying the kind of resilient attitude in the face of adversity that can serve as an example to others across Fife. Created after the collapse of Simclar, Greenfold secured business with Alexander Dennis Ltd to manufacture and supply the sides and roofs of buses and coaches, providing the fledgling company with a core customer from which to develop and build the business. From this beginning, Greenfold is now pursing ambitious plans over the next three years to grow new business opportunities and increase its turnover by £4 million, which could result in its 90 strong

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workforce being increased by a further 50-55 jobs. This period of growth is being supported by a £400,000 Regional Selective Assistance (RSA) grant from Scottish Enterprise to invest in new equipment, expand its premises and create new jobs. Business Gateway Fife and Fife Council have also played a key role in taking the business forward through financial support for sales exhibitions, software investments, consultancy support and training through initiatives such as the Fife Youth Job Contract, which has helped it create three apprenticeships this year and going forward. Speaking about Greenfold’s recent success, Bob Waterson, Managing Director and investor in Greenfold, said: “Networking support, guidance and encouragement can’t be underestimated. We continue to engage closely with Fife

Council’s Economic Development Team and Business Gateway Fife, both of which offer terrific support. We’ve also been fortunate to meet Councillor Lesley Laird whose business guidance and input resulted in us successfully winning local business.” Adding to this growth, the company recently received a major boost after securing and completing a contract with English Heritage to provide 15 carriages for a transport system at Stonehenge. The carriages were designed to ferry tourists the two kilometres between Stonehenge’s new visitor centre and the historic stone circle on Salisbury Plain. The visitor transit system land trains can carry up to 60 passengers each and each land train has three carriages which, in high season, will travel to and from the visitor centre every four minutes. Visitor numbers are predicted to rise from around 1 million


to 1.25 million in the first year of the new visitor centre, in which the new transport system will play an integral role in providing a memorable tourist attraction while helping to ensure the orderly operation of the site. The contract, which was secured last year and delivered over the last 12 months, was a significant win for the company and has positioned it strongly for the future. Bob said: “We are exceptionally proud of our work on providing the transport solutions for such a major and significant site. “This was a full product build and was something very few other companies are set up to do. We’re really excited about the prospects for this type of opportunity locally, nationally and internationally. “The contract has also helped us to engage with the Scottish Government, Historic Scotland, Transport Scotland, Network Rail and Fife Council on potentially exciting local and national projects, as we seek to build and develop the business. “The dependency locally and nationally in Scotland on tourism means we have to enhance visitor experiences so that visitors come back again and again, so this is something we’re exploring as one of five key business development strategies.

“It’s crucial that we differentiate ourselves from other local and national outsource providers. Fife has some excellent contract manufacturers however we’re positioned and are capable of doing things others can’t. We provide different outsource options for customers to do high level assembly work that customers don’t want to or can’t do themselves.” Bob added: “We’re fortunate to have very supportive investors who share the ambition and drive of our team. Profitable growth is a key part of the board’s strategy and the support and encouragement from Fife Council, Business Gateway Fife and Scottish Enterprise is greatly appreciated as we strive to create jobs.” As an employee with Simclar International for 20 years before its collapse, Bob has achieved a measure of perspective

from where the company was to where it is today. Reflecting on this journey, he said: “From where the company was two years ago to where we are now, is extremely encouraging and shows what we are capable of doing. “The experience of the Simclar demise hit me and some of my colleagues very hard. It was a great company at one time and had great ideas. Having come through what we have is a very sobering experience and something that drives you to never let that happen to you again. It’s important therefore that we treat people fairly. “We have a fantastic team who are flexible, have the right attitude, are professional and possess a wide range of skills providing customers with greater outsource options from a single source.” It’s clear that Greenfold has a strong base from which to build for the future. Bob said: “We have a terrific future ahead of us and I’m excited about our prospects to build an excellent business that makes money, creates jobs and gives our staff the opportunity to do better for themselves. It would be great if we could have fun doing that. “As with everything in life, we just need a bit of luck, trust and endeavour.” www.greenfoldsystems.co.uk

Greenfold provided 15 carriages for a transport system at Stonehenge

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Green Business Fife to build on successful 2013 GREEN Business Fife (GBF) provides a unique forum for businesses and organisations throughout Fife to share ideas, information and best practice to achieve resource efficiency gains, boost competitiveness and minimise environmental impact. With some £350m already invested in the region, GBF reinforces the vital role Fife plays in the renewable energy sector. By the end of 2013, GBF had delivered more than 50 free events attended by more than 1,000 business participants. With 265 registered members and many more active organisations, GBF is one of the UK’s most successful environmental networks. 2014 sees Green Business Fife building on this momentum to develop the network further. You can read more about its achievements and objectives for the future in the latest GBF Review. To request a free copy, please email: yvonne@greenbusinessfife.co.uk. Paul Traynor from Energy Project Management at the Scottish Renewables Marine Energy event

Events update How to get involved MEMBERSHIP of Green Business Fife is free and open to all businesses and organisations based in Fife as well as those looking to get involved in the region. Members receive a listing in the online directory and there are other promotional opportunities available on the website. Members also receive regular newsletters keeping them up-to-date with both GBF and other relevant events, news articles, funding sources, changes to legislation and much more. Visit the website (www.greenbusinessfife.co.uk/register) to join or email yvonne@greenbusinessfife.co.uk to find out more.

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EVENTS play a key role in the Green Business Fife network. A cost effective way for members to obtain information and support that will make a real difference to their business, events are also a great way to network. GBF is developing a rolling programme of events in 2014 and has already supported members, in partnership with Fife Council Economic Development, with funded visits to Ecobuild and Sustainability Live and held a very successful event to explore the development of a Retrofit Fife network. The Fife Renewables Innovation Centre played host to a successful Marine Energy event on 23 April, attended by a GBF delegation. This event, organised in partnership with Scottish Renewables, tackled three of the key issues facing the marine energy sector - financing, insuring and developing wave and tidal technologies - with presentations from The Crown Estate, The Scottish Investment Bank, JLT and Energy Project Management. For more information on upcoming GBF events, please visit: www.greenbusinessfife.co.uk/events.


news in brief

/ NEW WHISKY FROM SPENCERFIELD West Fife’s Spencerfield Spirit Company has launched a new blended malt whisky, inspired by a famous story from 17th century Scotland where craftsmen created a compact ball made from hide and stuffed with feathers. The Feathery, which has been entirely matured in sherry wood and bottled at 40 per cent, is the latest offering from the Inverkeithing based company.

/ HAVELOCK EXPANSION Dalgety Bay’s Havelock Europa has announced ‘good progress’ has been made in widening its client base, with new customers being identified in the student accommodation sector and with a major supermarket chain.

Suzanne Hogan of Stationery by Suzanne

Business Gateway Fife helps stationery business take off SUZANNE Hogan recently made the bold move to leave her job as a retail store manager to set up her own stationery business, designing bespoke, handcrafted stationery for weddings and special occasions. Suzanne said: “It was when a friend was getting married and couldn’t find invitations she liked that I suggested making them for her as a wedding present. I designed both the invitation and the order of service and got very positive feedback from guests at the wedding. After that I got a lot of requests which made me wonder if I could do this full-time. “I wanted to do things correctly so I did a bit of research on the Business Gateway website then approached Business Gateway Fife for help. I went to ‘start-up’ and ‘selfemployment for you’ workshops which gave

me a lot of points to consider. The sessions were led by Graeme Allan, my adviser, whose knowledge is second to none.” Suzanne was advised to apply for funding from the Create in Fife Fund and her grant allowed her to purchase essential computer software and attend wedding fairs, to help build the business. Suzanne added: “I’ve had a lot of support and encouragement from Business Gateway Fife and wouldn’t be doing this without their help.” For more information visit www.facebook.com/stationerybysuzanne or to find out how Business Gateway Fife can help your business, call 01592 858333 or visit www.businessgatewayfife.com.

/ NORTH SOUTH COMMUNICATION EXPANDS A Fife rail services firm plans to double its annual turnover from £3.6 million to more than £7 million after being selected as a principal contractor for Scotrail to provide electrical and maintenance services across the Scottish network. The firm has moved to larger headquarters in Lochgelly after almost doubling its workforce to 117, with plans to take on a further 25 employees in the months ahead. The company has also created an apprenticeship programme.

/ FIFE BUSINESS AWARDS TO TAKE PLACE IN 2015 The Fife Business Awards, delivered by Fife Chamber of Commerce on behalf of Fife Economy Partnership, will take place in 2015. The awards are an opportunity for local businesses to demonstrate excellence and gain recognition for achievements. Entries are likely to open early next year - more information to follow.

For more news in brief see P14

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How successful are you and your business? How successful would you like to be?

Cliff Fleming, Condies

CONDIES Strategy partner, Cliff Fleming explores the need for business owners to have a clear strategy for themselves and their business. It is a harsh reality that the majority of business owners end up working for their business as opposed to their business working for them. They are busy caught up in the day-to-day running of their business and for many, they fail to understand why they are actually in business and what they want to achieve personally and professionally. Having a clear understanding of your goals and aspirations is crucial. Aspirations need not necessarily be financial. Client goals can range from owning their own 8

home to being able to walk the dog more often. Everybody’s conception of success is different and will likely evolve over time. Achieving success is determined by addressing business problems or issues which are rarely one dimensional and therefore solutions to them need to be multi-faceted. Many of our strategy clients come to us when they are in a stagnated stage in their lifecycle. Often is the case where the business owner has run out of steam getting the business to where it is today, they lack the energy and focus to drive it forward. Profitability, funding, people, succession are all issues that can affect a business and its owner’s ability to realise their aspirations. Condies Strategy is step-by-step facilitation to bridge the success gap in helping clients realise aspirations and goals by asking them to answer three fundamental questions: • Where are you now? • Where do you want to go? • How are you going to get there? The Strategy engagement process is not a quick fix or a one-off exercise, there’s a commitment to step-by-step improvement.

We assist them by breaking the apparently insurmountable challenges into bitesize pieces. Our involvement is as much or as little as required, whether this represents monthly or quarterly progress meetings or simply being available at the end of the phone. To achieve contentment in business we review four parameters with clients: • Success • Freedom of choice • Security • Lifestyle As a business owner - would you feel more fulfilled if you ticked these four boxes? If your business is not where you would like it to be or you’re suffering issues with planning, performance, people, succession/ exit - we can help. To arrange an initial ‘Find the Gap’ session or simply find out more about what we’re offering, email Cliff Fleming at cliff.fleming@condie.co.uk www.condie.co.uk/services/strategy


Amy Buchanan of BertyB

BertyB gets off to an award winning start LOCAL textile and surface pattern designer, Amy Buchanan, set-up BertyB last year. The dream was always to establish her own design company after graduation, but when it came to it, she had so many questions and needed support with funding. Amy said: “I approached The Princes’ Trust Youth Business Scotland (PTYBS) with a blank canvas. I knew I needed support, but didn’t know what. Marissa, my adviser, was great and talked me through how PTYBS could help. We started by drafting a business plan which really helped focus my mind and established a clear path for the business. “I then made a presentation to a board of business people which, although scary at the time, was an outstanding experience. It was very like Dragon’s Den and I got a huge amount out of the experience, in terms of reinforcing my knowledge and creativity, as well as outlining my aims and objectives.” Amy was awarded a £5,000 loan from The Princes’ Trust Youth Business Scotland at the end of January, which helped with the purchase of larger quantities of stock as well as enabling Amy to attend trade fairs to showcase her work. A recent trip to the British Trade Craft Fair saw Amy launch BertyB’s first collection and be the only designer to be awarded the 10

Attire Magazine Highly Commended Best Fashion Accessory Award, for her Berty Bows. Amy said: “Having the opportunity to attend the British Craft Trade Fair and to launch my first collection, to which I received an overwhelming response and even got my first orders, is down to the loan I received from PTYBS. Without it, I wouldn’t have been there.” Amy is now working towards exhibiting at New Designers, One Year On, a trade show which takes place in The Business Design Centre in London in July. Amy has big plans for BertyB, which creates bold, unique printed textiles. She hopes to expand her range to include some digitally printed work, outsource some of her manufacturing to allow more time to design and market the company, with more trade shows lined up. PTYBS works closely with Business Gateway Fife to support young people aged 18 – 30 to start-up and grow in business. It provides essential funding and professional mentoring support including, support to write a business plan, introductory finance training as well as offering loans of up to £5000 and grants of up to £1000. To find out more about PTYBS visit: www.princes-trust.org.uk or email: marissa.yassen@princes-trust.org.uk. www.bertyb.co.uk


MDP: an effective way for companies to take part in events FIFE Council’s Market Development Programme (MDP) continues to support local companies to attend UK events and trade shows, with delegations recently returning from Ecobuild and Sustainability Live. A group of eight architects and construction professionals attended Ecobuild, the UK’s largest exhibition for businesses involved in sustainable design, construction and the built environment. Funded by Fife Council’s Market Development Programme, in partnership with Green Business Fife, the delegation attended the three day event which gave them the opportunity to see what’s happening in the market, generate contacts and potential future business, go to a range of in-depth seminars and network with like-minded businesses. Gary Brogan, of McGill Electrical, attended Ecobuild and said: “I went to many inspiring events and made a number of valuable contacts

Success for Fife Companies at All-Energy 2014 UNDER the banner of Fife Council’s Market Development Programme (MDP) 13 Fife organisations visited Aberdeen in May to be part of the UK’s largest renewable energy event, All-Energy 2014. The two-day conference and exhibition brought together a range of Fife’s leading energy companies including: BAE Systems Maritime Services, Burntisland Fabrications Ltd, McDonald Engineers (UK) Ltd, Hydrosphere UK Ltd and Greenfold Systems Ltd. For Greenfold Systems Ltd, this was its first time attending All-Energy. Its managing director, Bob Waterson, spoke to FBM before the event. He said:

“All-Energy offers us an opportunity to showcase our manufacturing expertise to a new audience. We’re looking to identify new and exciting opportunities in the energy market and hope All-Energy will enable us to build new contacts within the sector.” Initial feedback from the event has been positive, with a number of new contacts made and enquiries high. Forthcoming MDP events include Global Offshore Wind, Renewables UK 2014, Southern Manufacturing 2015 and Offshore Europe 2015. To find out more, contact Alan McKay on 03451 55 55 55 (ext 492180) or alan.mckay@fife.gov.uk.

with exhibitors.”

Support for Manufacturing: Economic Recovery

Similarly, four companies attended Sustainability Live to seek ways to make their businesses more sustainable.

& Accessing Finance to Exploit Opportunities

Fife companies attend Ecobuild

FIFE’S manufacturing and engineering sectors continue to be an important contributor to GVA, with the sectors continuing to offer Fife a competitive advantage. Feedback from business is that access to finance and funding continues to be an issue. In May, Fife Council’s Economic Development Team hosted a session for Fife businesses who heard first-hand about the sectors’ performance from Tom Vosa, Chief Economist for Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banks in the UK, providing a view of how the economic landscape looks for growth.

Andrew McGeorge, Business Development Manager, Clydesdale Bank said: “While confidence is returning to the business sector in general, these remain ‘green shoots’, but the indicators are positive. Access to finance and funding continues to be a key issue for businesses as they build for growth. Events like this enable us to connect with businesses and provide both useful insight in to the business environment and to help them understand how best to access the right funding for their situation.” 11


Investment at Plastech Group to expand Product offering Members of Fife Council’s Economic Development Team accompanied Cllr Lesley Laird on a recent visit to Plastech.

THE Plastech Group is transforming its operations to enhance its existing range of products and to develop new products, as it seeks to be more competitive, improve efficiencies and increase its turnover by over £1 million in the next two years. The Group, operates three individual business units: Plastech Packaging which produces a range of clear plastic packaging for the retail and industrial sectors; Plastech Healthcare (specialist tubing, packaging and moulded products, manufactured within a cleanroom environment, as well a range of personal sharps containers); and Plastech Moulding which produces thermoset and thermoplastic cover discs for the screw terminal capacitor market as well as custom moulded products. Currently its plastic processes include: extrusion, die cutting, folding and gluing and injection moulding, but the firm, which has been headed up by Tom Stirling for the last 30 years, is looking to diversify and bring new opportunities for the business and has received a Regional Selective Assistance award of £200,000 to purchase new equipment which will transform the group’s offering.

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business. We have the potential to move up the supply chain and this investment is the first step towards achieving that. We also have plans to diversify further into new packaging and medical products as well as developing an e-commerce business, which will strengthen our position, particularly within the retail sector.” Plastech Healthcare and Plastech Moulding export the majority of its products around the world, while Plastech Packaging products are a common sight on the shelves of Harrods, John Lewis, Thorntons, Next and House of Frasers. Plastech Group is Account Managed by Scottish Enterprise and regularly engages with Fife Council’s Economic Development Team through which it took part in the Councillor visit programme. Councillor Lesley Laird visited Plastech in May to hear about its business growth plans. www.plastechgroup.com

Tom Stirling, Plastech Group’s Managing Director, explains: “We are in a strong position to invest in all three of our manufacturing facilities and grow our business. The RSA funding will support the Group to buy a range of machinery and equipment to enable the introduction of new packaging products including a ‘crash lock’ folded carton line, as well as a new packaging tube line.” Plastech, which has been based in Glenrothes since the 1960s, will also take on 15 staff over the next two years, nine of which will be in place this year, to tie in with the delivery of new equipment and to support new, high volume business contracts. Tom, who’s other passion is music and is a member of the popular soul funk and blues band, Lights out by Nine, added: “I’m excited about the future, and growing the Tom Stirling, Managing Director of Plastech Group


Fife scoops “Best Destination” award from Visit Scotland

Fife recognised as top tourist destination in Scotland FIFE recently picked up a “Best Destination” award from Visit Scotland for the second time and also featured as a desirable place to visit this summer in a survey conducted for Glasgow 2014 Commonwealth Games. John Parker, chair of the Fife Tourism Partnership, said of the double success: “These are very positive signals for tourism in Fife. Recognition from awards sends a confident message to tourism businesses here that we are getting it right and that visitors are enjoying what is on offer. The Commonwealth Games will also be a fantastic platform to showcase Fife to visitors.” The “Best Destination” award was presented in April at Scotland’s international tourism showcase, EXPO, in Glasgow by Visit Scotland. One reason for Fife’s tourism success has been its promotion of local golfing opportunities. Fife has 50 golf courses and the newly conceived Fife Golf Trails help golfers from Scotland and abroad match their style of play to a particular Trail.

Liam Barn, Fife Golf Partnership manager, said: “Although Fife already has a worldwide reputation for golf it is good business to keep reaching out to new visitors and exploring new markets. Fife has such a wide range of courses that we can offer something to all golfers.” The Fife Golf Partnership was established in December 2011 to help the golf tourism sector maintain and develop its share of a highly competitive international market. A local success story can be found at the Dunfermline Golf Club, which is celebrating its historical links with golf in America thanks to a new heritage wall, supported by the Heritage Lottery Fund. Dunfermline Club founder member Robert Lockhart is credited with taking the game of golf to America in the late 1800s and an ironwork installation has been erected at Dunfermline Golf Club with interactive displays inside the Club house for visitors to learn the story of how Lockhart

and a group of others brought golf across the Atlantic. Liam Barn said: “Dunfermline Golf Club is a fantastic example of how successful clubs need to offer more than just golf to attract members, visitors and young people. The club’s heritage attractions are great examples of how the sport and the business of golf can be run very successfully.” This progress shows Fife is ready to capitalise upon its tourism expertise in the years to come.

Dunfermline Golf Club celebrates historical links with golf in America

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news in brief

/ FREE WIFI FOR TWO LOCAL STATIONS Free wifi is now available at two ScotRail stations in Fife – Dunfermline Town and Kirkcaldy. Free mobile wifi has already been fitted to all 59 of ScotRail’s Class 170 express trains and has been added to its largest fleet of electric trains, Class 380s. The installation of free wifi at stations and on trains has benefited from £3million of Scottish Government funding.

/ AWARD FOR DIAGEO Diageo has been named Distiller of the Year in recognition of its £1 billion investment in its Scotch whisky business. The company picked up the award at Whisky Magazine’s annual Global Icons of Whisky awards, where it was recognised for its investment programme which includes the warehousing facility at Cluny, the first phase of which is now complete.

/ SECRET BUNKER RE-OPENS AFTER £30K INVESTMENT One of Fife’s major tourist attractions has re-opened its three-tonne blast-proof doors after undergoing a £30k investment. Scotland’s Secret Bunker, which is celebrating its 20th anniversary, attracts tens of thousands of visitors to the area each year.

/ BIFAB GIVES BRIGHT FUTURE TO APPRENTICES Burntisland Fabrications Ltd (BiFab) has given 16 new apprentices the opportunity of a bright future at its base at the Energy Park in Methil. All of the apprentices have been recruited locally and will undertake general fabrication training before specialising as welders or platers. During the past seven years, the company has recruited 84 apprentices who are in various stages of completion.

For more news in brief see P20

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John Smith Business Park

John Smith Business Park providing business opportunities SITUATED in a high-profile location on the northern edge of Kirkcaldy, the John Smith Business Park is one of Fife’s premier business parks. The first two phases of office development were sold to leading customer service company, Paywizard, and the third phase, JSBP3, is now complete and available for lease. The Business Park is situated adjacent to Fife Central Retail Park and boasts a purpose built, fully serviced business centre, offering executive office space within a first class working environment. The centre, developed by Evans Easyspace in partnership with Fife Council, opened in 2009 and is home to a range of professional services companies. JSBP3 is a new three storey office pavilion, which can provide suites from 7,838 sq. ft. up to 23,611 sq. ft. of Grade A quality office accommodation. The accommodation is available for lease but consideration would be given to a sale of the entire building. There are other excellent opportunities in the Park for potential occupiers including mixed use, hotel, leisure and office development opportunities. This progress demonstrates Fife’s commitment to meeting the needs of business. For more information, please email: Ronnie.Hair@fife.gov.uk.

Support for SMEs from Scottish universities SMALL businesses face many challenges in establishing and growing, and can often overlook specialist support that is available. A small business can gain access to specialist knowledge and expertise found in the university sector. There are a variety of ways to get in contact with a university: • direct contact with an individual university’s Knowledge Transfer department • through liaison with a Business Gateway Fife adviser • through a specialist partner-finding body like Interface Once a match has been established between a small business (fewer than 250 employees and/or £35M annual turnover) and a university academic there are grants available which can be used to fund collaborative projects, projects which allow the company to benefit from specialist knowledge not readily obtainable otherwise. Grants of up to £5000 can be used to hire an academic as a consultant for an initial project. The value of this grant must be matched in kind by the company, but this simply means the company agreeing to provide access to its premises, equipment and staff time. This kind of short project lets the business focus on a particular problem that it may be having and uses the academic’s specialist skills to solve it. This may encourage a longer-term relationship to develop, and if so, there are other funding pots which can then be accessed. To find out more, please visit: www. interface-online.org.uk/how-we-canhelp/funding/innovation-vouchers or call Business Gateway Fife on 01592 858333.


Fife Chamber Annual Dinner: the countdown has begun

Directoral appointments at Fife Chamber FIFE Chamber of Commerce has announced the appointment of three new directors to its board. Steven Wexelstein, chief operating officer of Dunfermline-based Planys Digital and Michael Longstaffe, chief executive of Smith Anderson Ltd, based in Kirkcaldy are being joined on the board by Alistair Booth, Managing Director at The HR Booth Limited.

THE plans are in place for this year’s Fife Chamber Annual Dinner with the date, venue and speakers all confirmed. The dinner takes place on Friday 12th September at The Fairmont Hotel, St Andrews and the Chamber is delighted to have confirmed Justin Urquhart Stewart, one of the most recognisable and trusted market commentators on television, radio and in the press, as the keynote speaker.

After dinner entertainment will be provided by Eric Davidson, while Bill Copeland, who entertained Chamber guests after dinner last year, will be Master of Ceremonies. The black tie event starts at 7pm and tickets can be purchased individually at £80 (plus VAT) or in tables of 10. For more information, please contact kellylister@ fifechamber.co.uk or to book online visit: www.fifechamber.co.uk/events.

The Chamber’s newly appointed chief executive, Eric Byiers, welcomed the new directors. He said: “I’m sure all of the directors will make a great contribution to the work of Fife Chamber, both in terms of their personal input and their Fife business links. “It’s important that the board continues to represent the strengths of the Fife economy.”

Fife Chamber launches Business Mentoring FIFE Chamber’s 2014 Business Mentoring project has been launched and the Chamber is seeking businesses with growth aspirations that would benefit from working with a mentor. Jacqui Curley will project manage Business Mentoring for Fife Chamber. She said: “Whether you are a new business, or have ambitious plans to grow your existing business, working with a mentor can kickstart the process, giving you immediate access to impartial advice, relevant experience and great network of contacts.” The Chamber will match its customers carefully to Mentors who are established

business people with their own unique blend of businesses and life experience. For more information on this free service, contact Jacqui Curley (jacquicurley@fifechamber.co.uk or by phone, 01592 647740) or visit: www.businessmentoringscotland.co.uk. Business Mentoring Scotland is a Partnership between Scottish Enterprise and Scottish Chambers of Commerce and is supported by European Funding.

Jacqui Curley will oversee Business Mentoring

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Our clients think we are different. Our clients like that our advice goes beyond traditional black letter law. Many of them have experienced that difference for years. We think that you too will appreciate the difference. “We have worked with CCW over a number of years and have come to value the sound, no nonsense legal advice and direction provided...CCW take the time to understand the business and the impact particular issues could have on it.” Bitwise Ltd

“A very friendly and professional service, with good communication at all stages. We are given the feeling we are the most important client, regardless of how large or small the project is.” Key-Tech Electronic Systems Ltd

“A first-class service, on time, within budget and always meeting the clients’ requirements.” Selbrae House Ltd

* business planning and structures * employment and HR * property transactions and disputes * contracts and problem solving Crescent House • Carnegie Campus • Enterprise Way • Dunfermline • KY11 8GR T: 0845 22 33 001 • F: 01383 626111 • info@ccwlegal.co.uk • www.ccwlegal.co.uk


FBM Meets Ian Campbell, Avenue Scotland Group

Ian M Campbell, Managing Director, Avenue Scotland Group

THIS year sees Ian Campbell and the Avenue Scotland Group celebrate 20 years in business and as it continues to grow, FBM was keen to hear what Ian’s secret to success is. A former professional footballer, Ian’s motivation comes from his love of sport, his active lifestyle and serious commitment to building relationships with clients. A regular cyclist, runner and golfer, Ian is also assistant manager of Forfar Athletic. Ian said: “I have a competitive streak and I’ve applied that to business. Sport certainly keeps my mind active and complements the continual focus needed to drive business.” Ian has recently developed and implemented a Business Boot Room session, in partnership with RBS, for business leaders, which takes a slightly different approach to business. He explains: “Our presentation is based on football and we strip business thinking right back to the basics. We discuss and identify who are the company’s best players; what style of play are they are adopting; what was the secret behind last month’s result; and how do we keep ahead of the game? I found this to be an engaging workshop which managing directors can easily relate to.” Avenue Scotland is made up of Avenue Recruitment, which services a client list of 3,500 companies, has an active database of 18,500 candidates and recruits for over 100 new roles at any one time in the Permanent and Contract Engineering, Oil & Gas, Industrial, Water and

Manufacturing Industries across Scotland. Avenue Care Services which employs over 200 staff and provides a high standard of care to clients across Central Scotland; Avenue Logistics, providing contract HGV Drivers and Logistical staff to major clients and Avenue Consultancy Services which concentrates on people productivity. Throughout the interview, Ian’s pioneering spirit shone through as well as his passion and determination to provide the best possible service to clients whether large multi-national companies or those needing personal care at home. He said: “Our basic philosophy is to develop and look after our long term relationships with all clients and to add value and equally, to treat all our clients and staff with complete respect. That’s the recipe for our business success.” Ian joined CR Smith after his playing career and before he established Avenue Scotland. It was there, while working through the ranks at Senior Management/ Director level, that he learnt his trade and developed his ‘can do’ attitude, which is so important. Talking about his goals for the future, Ian said: “As long as I remain active and focussed, and add value to our service proposition, there are sizeable and demanding opportunities for the group to continue as we look to grow and develop further. “I hope to continue balancing family, work and sport whilst still maintaining a competitive instinct.” www.avenuescotland.co.uk 17


The UK’s first 100% green data centre is coming to Fife FIFE could soon be home to the UK’s first 100 per cent green data centre if plans by AOC Group for a 75,000 sq. ft. facility at Queensway Business Park get the go-ahead. The development, which is expected to take 13 months to complete, will create 50 full-time skilled technology and engineering jobs once complete and form a strategic part of Scotland’s IT infrastructure. Cllr Lesley Laird, Depute Leader and Executive Spokesperson for Business, Enterprise, Economy and Planning, said:

“News of this development for Glenrothes is particularly welcome not only in terms of the employment opportunities it will bring but in enhancing the Council’s plans to regenerate the entire estate. “Officers in the Invest in Fife team and Scottish Development International have worked closely with the company over the past 12 months or so to help identify the best location.” The facility will be the first of its kind in the UK drawing its energy from

Advance Construction Scotland expands into Fife ADVANCE Construction Scotland has announced it is establishing a business base in Fife. The expansion is central to the company’s growth strategy to meet increasing business demand in the East of Scotland and anticipates that 30 people will soon be working out of its new offices in Inverkeithing. Currently based in Blantyre, the professional ground works and civil engineering services company has grown rapidly since its inception in 1993, and now employs over 800 staff throughout Scotland, 40 per cent of which are based in the East Coast of Scotland. Boasting an annual turnover of £75 million, the company’s main clients include many of the leading construction companies, Private House Developers and social Housing contractors. In 2013, the company won the Growth Strategy of The Year category at the 2013 Scottish Business Awards. www.acscotland.com Advance Construction Scotland sets up new base in Inverkeithing

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Green data centre to come to Fife

neighbouring RWE Innogy’s biomass CHP plant. Queensway Data Centre will accommodate up to 1500 high performance computer racks and have the capacity to handle massive data sets for the financial services, oil and gas and renewables industries among others.

Certification for Green Energy Advice Centre THE Green Energy Advice Centre, which is based at the Fife Renewables Innovation Centre, has been awarded Green Deal Assessor Certification. It is the only East coast organisation accredited to undertake management and monitoring to ensure high-quality and complaint delivery of Green Deal advice.


East of Scotland Investment Fund

Investing in Business

Are you looking for Business Finance? If you’re a Fife start up with growth plans or established business with a commercially viable proposal, we could help provide the finance to meet your needs. We offer Loans of up to £50,000 • • •

Security may be required Fixed interest rates at 6% The loan may not account for more than 50% of the funding package

Loans can be used for: • • • •

The purchase of plant and equipment Provision of working capital Purchase, expansion or refurbishment of commercial property Purchase of a business

Who can apply? • All types of businesses – sole traders, partnerships, limited companies and co-operatives

All types of enquiries are welcome Call Business Gateway Fife on 01592 858333 or visit www.eastscotinvest.co.uk for more information.

Eclipse IP SECURE £50,000 FROM ESIF Fife based security systems company, Eclipse IP, has secured a £50,000 loan from the East of Scotland Investment Fund as part of an overall investment programme to build a New Service and Monitoring Centre. Established as a leading Scottish provider of advanced security systems such as day/night, vandal-resistant and weatherproof Internet-Protocol cameras. Eclipse plan to build a highly advanced facility enabling remote and secure operation and management of customer security devices. With up to 5 years repayment period and fixed interest rates of 6%, the East of Scotland Investment Fund was the ideal solution for Eclipse. Managing Director, Neil Alexander, commented “ESIF has been the perfect solution to get this project off the ground and will be instrumental in positioning us as one of Europe’s advanced providers of security systems”


news in brief

/ DPS UPDATE DPS Group has been awarded the British Safety Council International Safety Award with Merit for demonstrating its commitment to the health, safety and well-being of their workforce during 2013/14. The Group has also announced plans to expand into Aberdeen, to give more in-depth support in all aspects of the industrial and process control solutions, to the oil and gas markets.

/ £30K REFURBISHMENT FOR KK ELECTRICS A St Andrews shop which has been a Fife institution for 40 years has undergone an extensive five-figure refurbishment after bucking the trend and continuing to thrive. Independent retailer KK Electrics, which has diversified from selling basic electrical goods to supplying complete home solutions, such as bespoke fitted kitchens, has invested around £30,000 in revamping its South Street store and is set to reveal a new bathroom showroom and customer-friendly design studio.

/ FIFAB AIMS TO BOOST PRODUCTIVITY Glenrothes-based Fife Fabrications, has recently installed its first SafanDarley technology in the shape of four E-Brakes (Electronic Press Brakes). Installed during the Christmas shutdown at the end of 2013, the E-Brakes are expected to generate a 30 per cent increase in productivity over the previous machines, and a minimum 50 per cent saving in energy consumption.

New opportunities as Oil & Gas services business expands into Dalgety Bay FIFE’S businesses are being urged to take advantage of the support on offer to help them thrive. Aberdeen based company Glacier Energy Services is the latest to do so. As well as helping businesses choose to base their business in Fife, the Council provides a variety of business development support to ensure sustainability and growth opportunities through Business Gateway Fife. Cllr Lesley Laird, Depute Leader and Executive Spokesperson for Business, Enterprise, Economy and Planning, visited the new premises of Glacier Energy Services in Dalgety Bay recently to find out how Council support has helped them. The new premises facilitate the strategic expansion and continued growth of the Ross Offshore business, which was acquired by the Glacier Energy group in August 2013. With over thirty years heat exchanger experience in the oil and gas industry, Ross Offshore is a leading expert in the supply of heat exchanger services to the Oil, Gas and Power Generation sectors. Glacier Energy Services formed in 2011 with 20 employees and has continued to invest and grow within the energy sector, now employing around 200 people at its facilities in the UK and Singapore. The business recently acquired `Professional Testing Services` (PTS) in Methil. With the help of Fife Council’s Invest in Fife team the company found a suitable site

in Dalgety Bay which recently opened for business. Dave Sturrock, Strategic Director of Glacier Energy Services, said: “Expanding the existing businesses into Fife is part of our strategic growth plan and affords us benefits in terms of availability of skilled labour, suitable premises and also excellent positioning within the central Scotland transport corridor and logistical network. The additional capacity in Dalgety Bay allows us to better serve our existing clients and also to develop more opportunities in the central belt.” The company has also benefited directly from the Fife Investment Fund by support from Fife Council through Business Gateway Fife. The Fund offers financial support in the form of loans or grants to businesses employing up to 50 people for business growth and development and taking on new staff. Councillor Laird said: “It was a pleasure to visit Glacier Energy’s new premises which represents significant investment in Fife. Glacier’s investment will lead to the creation of quality local employment and skills development opportunities as the company grows. “This is a great example of how the Council’s partnership working approach is helping businesses, big or small, arrive and thrive in Fife.”

/ COURIER LAUNCHES BUSINESS AWARDS The Courier Business Awards are back for 2014 and with 14 categories, its set to be bigger, better and bolder than before. For more information, visit: www. thecourierbusinessawards.com.

For more news in brief see P23

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Cllr Lesley Laird visited Glacier Energy Services’ new premises in Dalgety Bay


Low Carbon Support Programme: lowering costs and helping the environment SINCE its launch in July 2013, Business Gateway Fife’s low carbon advisory service has guided 54 businesses on ways to reduce energy consumption and save money. The service, supported by Fife Council Economic Development European funding, was set-up so a low carbon adviser could review opportunities for improvements in energy, waste and water consumption for a range of companies, many of which have already realised significant savings. Brand-Rex, a leading global supplier of structured cabling systems for data networks, has been working with Business Gateway Fife to evaluate options for introducing renewable energy on site. Kennedy Miller, Development Manager at Brand-Rex, said: “We are committed to reducing our impact on the environment by utilising sustainable energy sources

and materials, so undertaking this exercise has been extremely useful in identifying the potential for solar thermal panels and a wind turbine, to generate heat and electricity respectively, and what Government schemes are available to support that.” Another company to benefit from the service is A G Brown Fabrications Limited, a steel fabrication, specialist welding & laser cutting service in Glenrothes. The company was keen to look at opportunities for saving money, and undertook a low carbon review, which identified cost savings of £626 and a carbon dioxide reduction of 2462kg, through recommending a new energy efficient combi-boiler and the replacement of existing lighting with more energy efficient equivalents. For more information, visit www.businessgatewayfife.com or call 01592 858333.

Redwells Joinery gets helping hand from BGF BUSINESS Gateway Fife has been supporting Redwells Joinery Ltd, a bespoke manufacturing joinery business based in Glenrothes, to maximise its potential through targeted business, finance and low carbon advice. Redwells Joinery, a family run business, is keen to expand its operations in line with an uptake in market conditions but, before doing that, it is keen to limit its outgoings by reducing its fuel, waste and landfill costs. A low carbon review, carried out through BGF’s Low Carbon Support Programme, identified that a wood burning heater would achieve all of those aims.

an excellent opportunity to reduce our outgoings with a proportionate yet cost effective investment in capital equipment. A wood burning heater unit will be able to consume all of our wood and cardboard waste and provide essential heating at the same time.” To help purchase the wood burning heater, Redwells Joinery received Fife Investment Fund funding as well as support from the Carbon Trust. For more information visit: www.businessgatewayfife.com www.redwellsjoinery.co.uk

Sandra Paterson of Redwells said: “Through an energy audit carried out by Business Gateway Fife, we have identified

Redwells has installed a wood burning heater

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Westport Business Centre officially opened by Cllr Laird

Westport Business Centre opens A Cupar business centre is open for business and is already attracting success. Westport Business Centre in Cupar was officially opened by Cllr Lesley Laird, Depute Leader and Executive Spokesperson for Business, Enterprise, Economy and Planning. The Centre has been created through the transformation of a listed building in Cupar and is made up of five offices for businesses as well as affordable housing within the overall development. Three out of the five offices are let to local businesses including Circles Network, a registered charitable organisation in Scotland

providing a range of advocacy support within Fife; and Kingdom Wellness Hub which provides health active lifestyle coaching and support. Business Gateway Fife is also a tenant having opened a hub office at Westport Business Centre, which is an additional office to support its operations across Fife, with Beechfield Consultants co-locating. Councillor Lesley Laird said: “It was great to officially open the Centre and meet the businesses who are already getting the benefit of this fantastic facility. “The amount of office space available to let in this part of Fife was historically

Finding the right property is key FIFE has a wide range of commercial premises and business property, and Fife Council’s portfolio has more than 300 industrial and office premises, at locations throughout Fife, with some units / offices available at this time. It has recently secured four new tenancies: Vetshare and Vetisco have moved to the Business Incubator, Kirkcaldy; People Growth Ltd, has leased premises at the Fife Renewables Innovation Centre; while Scot Range Ltd has moved to the Fife Food & Business Centre; and Ozone Laundry Services has a new base at Banbeath Industrial Estate. To talk to Fife Council’s Property Team about your property needs, call 0845 600 1359 or try its land & property search at: www.investinfife.co.uk/content/properties.

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very low so Fife Council’s investment here is really making the difference to the local business community and helping give the local economy a boost too.” Westport Business Centre comprises of five units, of which two are available for lease, following a recent refurbishment by Fife Council. For more information on Westport Business Centre, please contact: Derek Bayne, Fife Council Business Property on 03451 555555 (ext 492183) or email: derek.bayne@fife.gov.uk.


AS Scotland continues its steady recovery from economic recession, measures are being taken to combat youth unemployment and give young people a chance to succeed. It is more important than ever to lend a helping hand and give this group the opportunity to make their first step onto the career ladder. In Fife, assistance is in place to ensure that the region’s youth have an opportunity to gain the skills required to fully realise their potential. Opportunities Fife is the region’s employability partnership and has taken a lead in this area, as it aims to tackle unemployment by offering youth training, apprenticeships and work placements amongst other initiatives. One such programme is the Fife Engineering Consortium, which has been successful in bringing together a number of local engineering firms to create apprenticeship opportunities and help meet workforce needs. Fife Council also offers the Fife Youth Jobs Contract to deliver support to unemployed 16-24 year olds and to help sustain their employment. In addition, the Council also recently announced 18 new Modern Apprenticeships in a wide breadth of areas. These stemmed from the Council’s Workforce Youth Investment which commits £1 million annually towards programmes to combat youth unemployment.

news in brief

Giving Fife’s young people opportunities for employment

Another unique jobs programme has been the Hand Picked initiative, which was developed by CR Smith chairman Gerard Eadie CBE. Hand Picked is backed by a network of employers across Scotland which provide 16 to 24-year-olds with a threemonth paid job, a reference – known as the ‘Hand Picked Passport’ – and support to find their next opportunity. The programme has placed young people at a number of Fife-based businesses, including the web design firm Intrafusion and home builder Taylor Wimpey East Scotland. Sam Rennie, who accepted a full time offer of work at Taylor Wimpey after her Hand Picked placement, said: “Hand Picked opened up a great opportunity for me. Initially I was offered a three month Hand Picked job and was delighted to secure a permanent position as a Customer Services Administrator.” Councillor Tony Martin, Chair of Opportunities Fife and Fife Council Youth Ambassador, said: “As unemployment amongst 16-24 year olds remains stubbornly high, there is still a pressing need to be proactive in creating employment opportunities. Unemployed young people are in a vulnerable position and initiatives to give our youth a brighter future should be welcomed.”

/ FIBRE BROADBAND ARRIVES IN THREE FIFE COMMUNITIES BT’s commercial fibre optic broadband rollout has brought superfast connectivity to the Fife communities of Cowdenbeath, Kelty and central Glenrothes. More than 15,000 homes and businesses in the three locations will be able to access the technology. The internet service provider’s commercial deployment has already brought fibre broadband within reach of over 61,000 properties across the Kingdom of Fife, with this figure expected to rise to more than 114,000 when the project is completed.

/ T.R.E.E CENTRE UNVEILED The T.R.E.E. Centre project, funded by Tullis Russell’s charitable trust, The Russell Trust, has launched a state-of-the-art £1 million ecocentre to help local communities secure a more sustainable future through providing a valuable educational and community resource. The Centre, located outside the grounds of Tullis Russell’s mill in Markinch, will host visits from primary and secondary school children while also offering a unique meeting and exhibition space. At the heart of the facility are a series of interactive environmental displays to capture the imagination of visitors by bringing environmental education to life.

/ BRIGGS LAUNCHES NEW DIVING DIVISION Briggs, the Burntisland marine contractor, has continued its expansion of specialist services by launching a new in-house commercial diving division. The service will enable Briggs to offer a “holistic” package to clients in the oil and gas, renewables and port services sectors throughout the UK. Hand Picked recruit, Jason Penman, is presented with his Passport from Angela Constance MSP and Gerard Eadie CBE

For more news in brief see P26

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Scotland’s first Apprenticeship in Enterprise Award SHANNEN Scott (21) from Anstruther has received Scotland’s first ever Apprenticeship in Enterprise Award and was presented with her accolade by Catherine Stihler MEP at the European Parliament in Brussels. Shannen showcased her apprenticeship journey along with the importance of social enterprise to the European Apprenticeships Alliance during her visit to Brussels. As well as running her own social enterprise, Apprenticeships in Scotland; Shannen hopes to open up more opportunities for young Scots to work in Europe and vice versa. Shannen took part in the pilot Apprenticeship in Enterprise programme, which was delivered by Fife Council’s Culture of Enterprise Framework. With that preparatory work undertaken, the new Apprenticeship in Enterprise programme has been launched offering 19 young people the opportunity to become Apprentices in Enterprise. This programme, a first for Fife and for Scotland, will establish Scotland’s first formal Enterprise Apprenticeship Scheme.

The apprentices will gain a high quality, recognised vocational qualification and develop enterprise skills whilst employed in a Fife business. Interest has been exceptional from businesses – including Havelock Europa, Qinetiq, Wildpacks, Tree of Knowledge and K2 Marketing - all keen to recruit one of the 19 apprentices and give them the opportunity to work on a range of enterprising projects. Pamela Stevenson, Lead Officer, Fife Council Economic Development, said: “This is a unique programme in which young people are supported to develop their enterprise skills in roles that develop new products or services and to help grow a supportive business environment. We’ve been inundated with companies keen to be involved in this programme which reflects the importance of the role our young people play in the local economy.” Email: Sandra.robb@fife.gov.uk for more information.

Shannen Scott received Scotland’s first ever Apprenticeship in Enterprise Award

Pittenweem Primary School crowned champions of Fife Energy Enterprise Challenge

The winning teams from Pittenweem, Strathkinness and Markinch primary schools

PITTENWEEM Primary School won this year’s Energy Enterprise Challenge final after beating off stiff competition from 14 other Fife primary schools. Fife Council’s Economic Development Team, supported by Bright Green Hydrogen, organised the Challenge, under the Culture of Enterprise Framework. Young people took part in workshops to find out more about different energy sources and got an insight into future career prospects in Fife’s energy sector. The workshops finished with the 24

pupils designing a jacket for a wind turbine which they built in the final. Cllr Lesley Laird, Depute Leader and Executive Spokesperson for Business, Enterprise, Economy and Planning, said: “The Fife Enterprise Energy Challenge, now in its second year, has once again proved a huge success. “In line with the Curriculum for Excellence it brings learning to life and introduces our young people to the potential opportunities within Fife’s energies sector.”


Working together brings benefits BUSINESSES and schools across Fife continue to reap the benefits of working together. Employers of all types, sizes and sectors are taking the opportunity to support young people in their education, through Fife Council’s Culture of Enterprise Framework, to create a dynamic, innovative and enterprising culture that values and supports entrepreneurship and employability opportunities. From a pupil’s perspective, business insight can be invaluable. Kyle Bain, a S3 pupil from

Lochgelly High School, recently took part in the Micro-Tyco Challenge. He said: “We found having a business adviser for the Micro-Tyco Challenge extremely helpful. They gave us lots of ideas, kept us motivated, and made us think about setting fundraising targets. They also provided us with a signed Dunfermline AFC football top which was very generous.” Business representatives echoing the same or similar messages as parents and teachers, makes it more real, more joined up and more hard-hitting for a young person to

understand. It also enriches and enhances the curriculum, whilst raising the aspirations and self-belief of the young people as well as attainment with the school. Dougie Clark of Tree of Knowledge, which bridges the gap between the business and education sectors, said: “In our experience, the business people getting involved do so, to give something back. The fact that business’ reputations are considered greater or that boxes could be ticked for tender applications are merely bolt-on benefits.”

One pound, one month and four schools YOUNG people from four Fife secondary schools (Lochgelly, Woodmill, St Columba’s and Bell Baxter) recently took part in an enterprising challenge, Micro Tyco. They had one month to generate as much money as they could from £1 seed money and raised a superb total of £1017.33, which was returned to the event organiser Scottish charity WildHearts who reinvest the money raised in microloans across the world. The aim was to encourage and inspire young people to develop their enterprise and business skills, with support from local companies - Fairmont Hotels, Optos PLC, CR Smith, Royal Bank of Scotland and Fife College; their teachers and Fife Council’s Economic Development Team – who mentored the young people.

Your Future’s Unlimited brochure

Money raising initiatives included a car wash, Spring Fayre, sponsored swim and FIFA competition.

Primary Engineer pilot announced PRIMARY Engineer, a new initiative aimed at encouraging primary pupils to become the engineers of the future, is to be launched in September by Fife Council’s Culture of Enterprise Framework. A school wide pilot with Bell Baxter High School’s 19 cluster primary schools will support teacher development and track practical maths, science and design technology, with the project having a positive impact on the literacy and communication skills of the pupils demonstrating the cross-curricular nature of engineering. Primary Engineer is a not for profit organisation and the programme is supported by Education Scotland and extensively mapped to the Curriculum for Excellence.

Your Future’s Unlimited ramps up roadshow AS pupils seek information to help make choices on future subjects and careers, the ‘Your Future’s Unlimited’ roadshow, has been attending school career conventions with information on opportunities for young people, from modern apprentices to self-employment and training opportunities, including college and university. The roadshow is an enterprise and employability partnership working alongside education, aimed at promoting the range of career options and training programmes available to school pupils and leavers. www.opportunitiesfife.org

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news in brief

/ CONDIES APPOINTS 3 PARTNERS Condies, one of Scotland’s leading firms of chartered accountants and business advisors, has appointed three new partners. Sharon Collins, Linda Nelson and Jason Condie, who is the fourth generation member of the Condie family to practice within the firm that his great grandfather started in the 1920’s, have been elected partners.

/ 2 AA ROSETTES FOR THE ADAMSON The Adamson, a family-run restaurant and cocktail bar in St Andrews, has been awarded two AA Rosettes, testament to its superb offering. The restaurant is no stranger to success – its head chef, Scott Davies was runner-up in the last series of Masterchef: The Professionals and it also has a Fife Business Award for the most enterprising start-up company, under its belt.

/ GORDON BROWN MP VISITS BLUEBIRD CARE Kirkcaldy based home care provider, Bluebird Care, recently welcomed Gordon Brown MP to mark the start of Self-directed Support, which gives people in Fife eligible for Council funded social care, a greater amount of choice and control over how they receive those services including the right to use a care provider of their choice.

12 Fife companies benefit from RSA awards THE Regional Selective Assistance (RSA) scheme continues to attract investment and jobs into Fife. The most recent figures (up to Q3 of 2013), reveal that 12 Fife companies benefited from awards totalling £2.6 million, with 142.5 jobs created and a further 260 safeguarded. The current RSA scheme, which has attracted nearly £40 million of funding into Fife since 2007, is changing in July and Fife Council is keen to ensure more businesses benefit from the scheme, the main investment grant scheme for businesses which assists projects that create or safeguard jobs in Scotland. The draft map for Assisted Areas which has retained much of Fife’s existing coverage

Lindores helps build case for Fife’s whisky heritage PLANS to transform Lindores Abbey are underway to help re-establish Fife as the birth place of whisky in Scotland. Drew McKenzie, owner of Lindores Abbey has carried out research to prove the historical significance of the site as the birth place of whisky, demonstrating that the first record of whisky distillation in Scotland was recorded at the Abbey in Newburgh in 1494. Cllr Lesley Laird, Depute Leader and Executive Spokesperson for Business, Enterprise, Economy and Planning, was part of a Fife Council delegation which recently visited Lindores Abbey to find out about the proposal to bring the historic site back to life and transform it into a distillery and visitor centre.

/ FISHERS’ £4.4M FLEET INVESTMENT Cupar based Fishers Services has made a significant investment in its fleet of vehicles, replacing 57 delivery vehicles and leasing vehicles from commercial vehicle specialist, Ryder. Its contract with Ryder includes hire and maintenance on vehicle contracts spanning five and six years for trucks, tractor units, vans and trailors.

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along with new areas in Crosshill, Lochgelly, Cowdenbeath, Leven and Markinch, will benefit the local economy. Cllr Lesley Laird, Depute Leader and Executive Spokesperson for Business, Enterprise, Economy and Planning, said: “With even more areas in Fife now eligible for the grant we want to make sure that businesses in Fife are aware of what is on offer and that they take advantage of the support available to them. This grant helps enhance the work being done by Invest in Fife, in partnership with other key organisations like Business Gateway Fife.” To find out more, visit: www.scottish-enterprise.com/rsa.

Cllr Lesley Laird with Drew McKenzie at Lindores Abbey

Fife Council’s Economic Development Team and Business Gateway Fife continue to work with the owners of the site to help identify investment to progress plans to the next stage. Councillor Laird said: “It was fascinating to be able to visit the site and hear about the plans to build a distillery on this site which has so much historical significance and links to the whisky industry. “Promoting Fife as the birth place of whisky in Scotland would bring great benefits for the local economy and other distilleries in the Kingdom as well as attract visitors from all over the world.”


FSB survey shows positive outlook

62%of members say growth is a key business objective in next 12 months BUSINESS confidence is up, unemployment is down, and local businesses are reporting plans to grow, according to research by the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB). The FSB’s quarterly confidence index together with a larger survey of its 8,700 members (900 of which are based in Scotland), shows that both new and established Scottish businesses have plans to expand. Gordon Henderson, Senior Development Manager, Federation of Small Businesses, said: “Businesses have undertaken a lot of hard work through the economic downturn and things are starting to look up. “It’s really encouraging that the consensus of Scottish businesses is to grow, which in turn will be great news for the economy, especially if they plan to recruit. We have been engaging locally with FSB

members about their growth plans and there are a number, including Intrafusion, Eventcore Event Management and Morton of Pitmilly.” Gordon added: “We’re often asked what sectors our members operate in. Our figures show that 25 per cent of Scottish members operate in the tourism sector so key to the Scottish economy (13 per cent in England) which is why we are currently conducting a more indepth study to look at what support these businesses get and what they need to grow.” The findings also revealed, as a consequence of growth ambitions, that more than a quarter of FSB members are planning to increase capital investment, on new plant, digital technologies, and staff. This spending not only leads to business expansion and prepares them for growth; it leads to new orders for their suppliers who in turn can then create new jobs and spending with their

suppliers to meet this demand. All of this business to business spending will lead to workforces more confident of their futures who can now spend a bit more rather than saving for an uncertain future. Good news for the local economy. The Federation of Small Businesses in Scotland represents 19,000 members, 60 per cent of whom are employers with an average staff that has increased to ten in the last year. Its membership also reflects fair employers looking to create long term careers for their staff. 74 per cent of members have increased staff wages over the last 12 months, and of those 39 per cent increased the wages of all staff. If you’d like to learn more about FSB membership, visit: www.fsb.org.uk/benefits or call Gordon Henderson on 0131 654 9548.

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Coming to a roadside near you FIFE Council has launched a new type of road marker thanks to a pitch from Dalgety Bay company, Sign Plus. Sign Plus has unveiled new innovative, Flexstake markers which are high-impact, traffic resistant posts, signs and markers which can take up to 100 traffic impacts at 55 miles per hour without damage. It’s expected the trial, which came about following a proactive pitch on the

back of Sign Plus’ attendance at a Fife Council Economic Development Supplier Development Programme workshop on procurement in the public sector, will show these markers to be a more durable and practical alternative to existing markers. Jennifer Breingan of Sign Plus said: “I doubt we would have approached the Council to pitch our products without the knowledge we gained at the SDP events.

Meet the Buyer event a success LOCAL businesses took full advantage of a Supplier Development Programme event highlighting opportunities on Fife Council’s Building Fife’s Future projects. Fife Council’s Economic Development Team and BAM Construction Ltd hosted a successful Meet the Buyer session to showcase supply chain opportunities related to the building of two new schools – Levenmouth and Viewforth, Kirkcaldy. Over 100 businesses attended to find out how to get involved in one or more of the projects by being added to the sub-contract or supplier tender lists.

Martin Cooper, Construction Director at BAM said: “We were delighted to participate in this event and it was particularly rewarding to see the strength and depth of the local supply chain and their level of interest in these prestigious school projects with Fife Council, Hub East Central and BAM. “We have already started the next step of assessing all of the expressions of interest received with a view to involving as many local suppliers as possible in our procurement process on these projects.”

It was really useful to learn how a tender process works and how to add value to bids. And it was all free of charge!” For more information and to register for Fife Council Economic Development Supplier Development Programme, log onto www.sdpscotland.co.uk/fife or email Kieran.Hunter@fife.gov.uk.

Building on success Mar Scaffolding, has built on the benefits of being involved with the Supplier Development Programme (SDP) organised by Fife Council’s Economic Development Team. The Cowdenbeath-based company, which currently employs 40 people, joined SDP in 2012 and has attended a number of training workshops to build and enhance its skills. This support, combined with strategic changes to the business, has made a difference to the company. From investment in software and staff and an Investors in People award, to new premises and an impressive client list; Mar has a lot to talk about. Nat Wilson, MD at Mar Scaffolding said: “Fife Council’s Supplier Development Programme has really helped add value to our organisation and has generated tangible results too, adding one to two per cent to our already high tender score. “That performance, along with our plans for controlled growth and continued investment in the skills of our workforce, means we’re looking forward to further successes in the future.” www.marscaffolding.co.uk

Businesses participated in Meet the Buyer

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Leading the way to success.

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www.businessmentoringscotland.co.uk www.businessmentoringscotland.co.uk

Business Mentoring Scotland is a partnership between Scottish Enterprise and Scottish Chambers of Commerceand supported by the European Regional Development Fund Business Mentoring Scotland is a partnership between Scottish Enterprise and Scottish Chambers of Commerceand supported by the European Regional Development Fund


Events Diary Title

Date & Time

Venue

Cost

Contact

Finance Book-keeping

9 June 2014 9.30 – 12.30pm

Saltire House, Pentland Park, Glenrothes KY6 2AL

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Newly Self-Employed – The Basics

2 July 2014 10.00 – 1.00pm

Saltire House, Pentland Park, Glenrothes KY6 2AL

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Business Expenses & Capital Allowances

9 July 2014 10.00 – 1.00pm

Saltire House, Pentland Park, Glenrothes KY6 2AL

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Book-keeping

15 July 2014 10.00 – 1.00pm

Dunfermline Business Centre, Izatt Avenue, KY11 3BZ

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Book-keeping

11 August 2014 9.30 – 12.30pm

Saltire House, Pentland Park, Glenrothes KY6 2AL

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Social Media Basic

11 June 2014 10.00 – 1.00pm

Dunfermline Business Centre, Izatt Avenue, KY11 3BZ

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Social Media Advanced

25 June 2014 10.00 – 1.00pm

Dunfermline Business Centre, Izatt Avenue, KY11 3BZ

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Get Real Results from Your Website

3 July 2014 10.00 – 1.00pm

Dunfermline Business Centre, Izatt Avenue, KY11 3BZ

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Improve Your Search Engine Ranking

10 July 2014 10.00 – 1.00pm

Dunfermline Business Centre, Izatt Avenue, KY11 3BZ

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Trading Online

17 July 2014 10.00 – 1.00pm

Dunfermline Business Centre, Izatt Avenue, KY11 3BZ

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Wordpress

24 July 2014 10.00 – 1.00pm

Dunfermline Business Centre, Izatt Avenue, KY11 3BZ

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Social Media Basic

30 July 2014 9.30 – 12.30pm

Saltire House, Pentland Park, Glenrothes KY6 2AL

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Social Media Advanced

13 Aug 2014 9.30 – 12.30pm

Saltire House, Pentland Park, Glenrothes KY6 2AL

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

24 July 2014 9.30 – 12.30pm

Saltire House, Pentland Park, Glenrothes KY6 2AL

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

22 July 2014 9.30 – 12.30pm

Saltire House, Pentland Park, Glenrothes KY6 2AL

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Marketing Your Business

30 June 2014 10.00 – 1.00pm

Dunfermline Business Centre Izatt Avenue Dunfermline KY11 3BZ

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Advertising & Promotion

7 July 2014 10.00 – 1.00pm

Dunfermline Business Centre Izatt Avenue Dunfermline KY11 3BZ

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Mastering Selling Skills

14 July 2014 10.00 – 1.00pm

Dunfermline Business Centre Izatt Avenue Dunfermline KY11 3BZ

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

PR on a Shoestring

31 July 2014 10.00 – 1.00pm

Dunfermline Business Centre Izatt Avenue Dunfermline KY11 3BZ

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Marketing Your Business

25 Aug 2014 9.30 – 12.30pm

Saltire House, Pentland Park, Glenrothes KY6 2AL

Free

www.bgateway.com/events or call 01592 858333

Curriculum for Excellence - Improving Learning, Skills and Links

18 June 2014 12.00 – 2.00pm

Carnegie Conference Centre Halbeath Road Dunfermline KY11 8DY

Member -£20pp Non-Member £40pp

Kelly Lister 01592 647740 kellylister@fifechamber.co.uk or www.fifechamber.co.uk/events

Getting the Most from Your People – Discipline and Grievance

19 June 2014 7.45am – 10.00am

Rothes Halls, Glenrothes KY7 5NX

Member £15pp Non Member £30pp

Kelly Lister 01592 647740 kellylister@fifechamber.co.uk or www.fifechamber.co.uk/events

Rothes Halls, Glenrothes KY7 5NX

Free

Online registration at: http://www. sdpscotland.co.uk/events/eventscalendar/2014/august/is-the-public-sectorfor-you-(fife)

Ecommerce Courses

Intellectual Property IP – The Essentials for Business Success

HR Getting the Most Out of Your People

Sales & Marketing

Fife Chamber Events

Supplier Development Programme Events Is The Public Sector For You?

30

28 August 2014 10.00 – 12.30pm


In January 2014 Mr Andrew Flinn, The Director, opened a new prestigious Business Centre in the heart of the Dunfermline old town. It differs from others as it offers a level of prestige and professionalism that is difficult to find in more modern, clinical offices. Comely Park Business Centre has serviced offices ranging from 2 desk to 6 desk as well as a 3 Roomed Suite of offices at Comely Park Business Centre Kirkgate Annexe, only 5 minutes from the main office. Comely Park Business Centre offers: • • • • • • •

Virtual Offices Video Conferencing Meeting Rooms Serviced Offices Hot Desk IT Services Telecom

Comely Park Business Centre provides a bespoke service tailored to meet our customer’s exact requirements; no more having to choose from limited, standard options. Gathered from years of hospitality experience, the resulting transformations to this prestigious Victorian building meet the highest demands, helping local businesses seeking the very best in Business Centres.

Comely Park Business Centre • 16 Comely Park • Dunfermline • Fife KY12 7HU Tel: 01383 629899 • Fax: 01383 629898 • Email: info@comelypark.com


You will be surprised how much we can help YOU

SKILLS TRAINING SUPPORT

SPECIALIST SUPPORT

> Finance > Book Keeping > Marketing Your Business > Social Media > PR > Becoming an Employer > Intellectual Property > Trading Online

> > > > > > >

Growth Advice HR Advisor Low Carbon Advisor Business Mentoring Export Surgeries Legal Surgeries Marketing Surgeries

FUNDING SUPPORT > Fife Investment Fund > Create in Fife Fund > East of Scotland Investment Fund > Town Centre Business Support Fund

> Market Development Programme > Expert Help > Fife Fisheries Fund > DSL Business Assistance

To discuss any of the above, call or email us now

01592 858333 or success@bgfife.co.uk www.businessgatewayfife.com Business Gateway services are delivered by Local Authorities, Scottish Enterprise and Scottish Government with the support of associated partner organisations. Maximum call charge from BT landline is 3p a minute.

Fife Business Matters Issue 27  

Business to business magazine for the Fife area

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