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SPRING 2018

INVESTIN

PERTH

INSIDE #7 PERTHSHIRE: DIVE IN FOR M.I.C.E. CASTLE WATER FINDS FAST LANE PRIME DEVELOPMENT OPPORTUNITIES


IN THIS ISSUE

WELCOME

Cover: Perthshire offers the perfect location for meetings, incentives, conferences and events.

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VIEWPOINT:

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FEATURE:

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Catriona Anderson, Project Manager for Meetings Perthshire, on business tourism

Kinross set to take centre stage in 2018

NEWS FROM THE REGION: 4-7

Bella & Duke collar raw pet food market

Perthshire companies making their mark

SPOTLIGHT:

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Castle Water tap into profits in England

KNOW-HOW:

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Jobs in the creative sector will be among the most resistant to automation

FAST TRACK: GOOD COMPANY:

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Perth sets a gold standard

Investment news

THE NUMBERS:

Follow Invest in Perth on Twitter. www.twitter.com/investinperth Invest in Perth is published by Invest in Perth. Written and designed by Resolve Creative. e. info@resolvecreative.co.uk | w. resolvecreative.co.uk

THIS MAGAZINE IS PRINTED ON ENVIRONMENTALLY RESPONSIBLE PAPER MANUFACTURED USING 100% RECYCLED WASTE.

Councillor Murray Lyle Leader of Perth and Kinross Council

INVEST IN PERTH CAN HELP

PROPERTY/INFRASTRUCTURE: 21

Regional statistics for MICE

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Perth City Region is one of Scotland’s fastest growing areas; delivering a supportive and collaborative environment that is perfect for starting, growing or relocating your business. Easy local and international connections, business opportunities and comparatively lower cost base offered in Perthshire helps explain why we are the place of choice for hundreds of independent entrepreneurs like those in the first Accelerator Programme currently in play at the Famous Grouse Ideas Centre. With our beautiful scenery and outstanding outdoor activities, the quality of life here has been wellknown for many years, and was recently celebrated in a national survey by the Bank of Scotland, which named Perthshire as the best location to live on the Scottish mainland. Why not connect your personal interests with your business interests. The area’s creative industries are fast developing, and our newly refurbished Perth Theatre is at the heart of plans to become a national centre for technical theatre skills (see p10). There is a demand for these technical experts from large and small events – locally and globally; from conference organisers, visitor attractions and performance venues, like our theatres in Perth and Pitlochry. Get inspired to join them by reading the stories in our Spring issue. Then come and join us!

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We offer a comprehensive investor support programme tailored to each individual business, including: • Help with identifying and accessing funding • A comprehensive search to find suitable land and property • Introductions to key contacts locally.

Invest in Perth Kirsty Easton, Pullar House, 35 Kinnoull Street, Perth, PH1 5GD t: 01738 475364 e: keaston@pkc.gov.uk w: investinperth.co.uk


VIEWPOINT

LEGENDARY VENUES OFFER A UNIQUE EXPERIENCE

PERTHSHIRE’S DISTINCTIVE OFFER IS BEING PROMOTED TO EVENT ORGANISERS, TO ENSURE THE AREA IS RECOGNISED AS A DESTINATION OF CHOICE FOR BUSINESS VISITORS, AS CATRIONA ANDERSON EXPLAINS.

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That diversity is now being promoted by Meetings Perthshire – a joint initiative that brings together venues, attractions and promotional bodies to raise awareness of the area’s strengths, particularly to target UK and European event organisers. With a longer season associated with business visitors, and roughly twice the value delivered per head by a business visitor, compared to a leisure visitor, everyone recognises they will share in the rewards brought about by a successful campaign. In six months last year, across just six venues tracked, Meetings Perthshire helped attract 375 confirmed enquiries, worth more than £2.65m. Tourism is already a key sector for Perthshire’s economy: overall visitor numbers in 2016 increased by 9.4%, bringing in £564m, up 7.7% year-on-year. But there is greater potential, and a willingness to work collaboratively to entice a larger slice of the market to discover what Perthshire can offer. This year, EventScotland and VisitScotland are working with convention bureaux across Scotland to promote local strengths under the national ‘Legends’ campaign, which spreads Scotland’s message to a global audience. Whether its sporting legends – Ryder Cup clashes at Gleneagles – or the flavour legend

that is Scotch whisky, Perthshire is playing its part. Five whisky distilleries are among the many highlights that business delegates can choose to explore here, including both the oldest and the smallest producers in Scotland. The tranquil landscape is also a perfect arena in which teams can bond while trying exciting outdoor activities, from walking to water sports: Crieff Hydro offers delegates no fewer than 40 activities onsite, while Scotland’s best salmon river – The River Tay – sits at the edge of the garden at Dunkeld House Hotel, where guests can enjoy the benefits of a £3m refurbishment. For blue sky thinking, BlueSky Experience can be very creative for any team challenge. Our joint task is to make Perthshire a destination of choice for business visitors. The website is the most public face of a busy, on-going campaign to educate organisers of Meetings, Incentives, Conferences and Exhibitions (MICE). When they discover the beautiful, historic heart of Scotland, and all that our world-class venues and facilities can offer, it will help us deliver a truly legendary experience to countless more business visitors.

Overall visitor numbers to Perthshire increased by 9.4% in 2016

Scotland is connected to more than 500 destinations around the world, through the international airports in Edinburgh and Glasgow. At a comfortable 60-minute drive from either hub, Perth sits at the heart of Scotland’s business events industry, which secured an estimated £295m in national income in 2016. The overall market for business tourism contributes around £2bn to Scotland’s economy annually, according to VisitScotland. Perthshire’s offering is distinct from other event destinations. Venues across the region offer an unsurpassed breadth of choice in style and capacity: from Blair Castle to Scone Palace; from the legendary greens of Gleneagles, to beautiful retreats such as Ballathie House Hotel, where Scott Scorer, Scotland’s Hotel Executive Chef of the Year, indulges delegates in the delights of our region’s outstanding larder for food and drink. Nearby, Andrew Fairlie’s 2 Michelin star restaurant at Gleneagles also celebrates the area’s outstanding natural produce. Whether its catering for the needs of a small group, or exploiting Perth Concert Hall’s award-winning capacity for 1200 delegates, there is something here to suit all needs and all budgets.

Catriona Anderson Project Manager, MeetingsPerthshire.co.uk

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GLENEAGLES HOTEL REMAINS IN A CLASS OF ITS OWN AN EXEMPLARY COUNTRY HOUSE HOTEL THAT DELIVERS OLD FASHIONED ELEGANCE, AS WELL AS IMPECCABLE SERVICE, QUALITY FOOD AND EXCELLENT FACILITIES.”

Since opening its doors to the public for the first time in 1924, The Gleneagles Hotel, one of the world’s most renowned spa destinations and golf resorts, has scooped numerous international awards. After a hugely successful 2017, the resort is reflecting on several recent accolades, confirming the enduring appeal of one of Scotland’s most exclusive venues. Among the many prestigious awards received by the Perthshire-based business was the 2017 National Geographic Traveller Reader’s Award for Domestic Bliss UK Hotel; testament to Gleneagles’ distinctive service and Scottish-inspired design. The publication singled out the hotel’s “standalone comfort

and class” and for being “an exemplary country house hotel that delivers old fashioned elegance, as well as impeccable service, quality food and excellent facilities.” “It’s an accolade which reflects the significant investment we’ve made across the estate over the last 20 months, as well as our commitment to delivering an outstanding allround guest experience,” said Conor O’Leary, general manager. The hotel was also named in the top 20 hotels in the UK at the Conde Nast Traveller 2017 Readers’ travel awards. Last year, The Gleneagles hotel was also named the number one golf resort in Britain and Ireland by Golf World Magazine, an award which was reinforced by being

THE MARY BERRY EFFECT COMES TO SCONE PALACE Scone Palace is looking ahead to a busy 2018, building on the phenomenal success of last year’s April-October season in which more than 115,000 visitors came to visit the historic site, the crowning place of Scottish kings for more than 600 years. The five-star visitor attraction consistently ranks as the region’s top performing visitor destination, with people drawn from all over the world keen to see for themselves Moot 4

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Hill and the ancestral home of the Earls of Mansfield. Among the many highlights on offer, it’s clear the Palace’s own scones prove irresistible to hungry visitors, with more than 42,500 sold during the same six-month period. The Palace is not unaccustomed to welcoming members of the Royal Family, having famously hosted Queen Victoria in 1842, as well as Her Majesty The Queen in

named best golf resort in the world for the sixth consecutive year at the 2017 Ultratravel awards. A further hat-trick of awards was collected at the Scottish Golf Tourism Awards, when Gleneagles scooped prizes for the best golf experience, best pro shop and best large hotel. Widely recognised for the quality of its spa and fine dining offer, The Gleneagles Hotel was also named best UK spa at the 2017 Good Spa Guide Awards, while Restaurant Andrew Fairlie remains Scotland’s only two Michelin star restaurant.

> INFO gleneagles.com

2011. However, in 2017, it hosted TV royalty when the queen of home baking, Mary Berry, spent ten days filming at the Palace as part of BBC One’s Mary Berry’s Country Secrets, a four-part TV series broadcast in November. So popular was the show, that the Palace’s website traffic rose 800% immediately after it aired. Scone Palace has since seen a surge in weekend visitors following the programme’s broadcast, along with a jump in bookings for its luxury private accommodation. There is a packed programme lined up for 2018, including for the first time in the UK, the International Medieval Combat Federation’s World Championships on 10-13 May. Just two weeks later, the Palace will be the sole Scottish venue for BBC Music’s ‘The Biggest Weekend’, which takes place over May bank holiday. The weekend’s star lineup includes The BBC Symphonic Orchestra, Nigel Kennedy, Noel Gallagher’s High Flying Birds, country duo The Shires and legendary Scottish rockers Simple Minds.

> INFO scone-palace.co.uk


HOUSE OF EDGAR IS THE PRIDE OF SCOTLAND

PERTH RACECOURSE PROVES A FIRM FAVOURITE NEWS

© Fraser Band

Record low temperatures at the 2018 Winter Olympics gave way to the distinctly warmer climes of Queensland’s Gold Coast in April, as Australia welcomed athletes from across the world for the 21st Commonwealth Games. As the last hosts, Scotland was the first team to appear in the Opening Ceremony’s Parade of Nations and what an entrance they made, sporting traditional tartan with a modern twist, produced by Perth manufacturer House of Edgar. The eye-catching design is the result of collaboration between Team Scotland, House of Edgar and multi-award winning Scottish fashion designer Siobhan Mackenzie. “The kilt shape is still made in the same traditional way; however, the front of the kilt is cut on a diagonal angle.” Siobhan added: “It’s a fashion twist on the kilt, rejuvenating it, and representing a contemporary Scotland.” “The cloth has been woven at our factory in Keith in the Scottish Highlands,” explained

PERTH: PERFECT ‘CONCOURSE’ FOR CLASSIC CAR FESTIVAL

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James Dracup, managing director of House of Edgar. “We’re proud that the Scottish team wore an authentic Scottish tartan, produced in Scottish factories and very excited that our fabric was shown in both a traditional and, through the collaboration with Siobhan, a more contemporary format at the Opening Ceremony.” House of Edgar can trace its roots back to the late 18th Century. The business has been headquartered in Perth since 1999, attracted to the city thanks its central Scotland location. Today, the business operates a purpose-built factory in the city, which is home to the company’s head office function, a showroom, as well as new warehouse and distribution facilities. When it comes to shop windows, the Games are hard to beat for media coverage. An estimated 1.5bn people watched the opening ceremony for the 2014 Commonwealth Games.

> INFO

More than 50,000 spectators attended race meetings in Perth in 2017

© Alistair Devine / Team Scotland

Whether it’s the thrill of the highquality racing on offer, the buzz of picking a winner, the chance to enjoy fantastic food and drink or admire the latest fashions, there’s nothing quite like a day at the races at Perth Racecourse. And the Sport of Kings at the UK’s most northerly racecourse has never been more popular, helping to generate £11.8m for the Scottish economy annually – £9.9m of which benefits the regional economy directly. The figures, based on 2017 data, have been revealed in an economic impact report, commissioned by the racecourse and produced by 4-Consulting, using Scottish Government measurement models. A combination of spectator spend, hospitality, entry fees, retailer income, media rights, the betting levy and sponsorship, as well as wider spending by racegoers in the local area, helps to support 130 full-time jobs across the region. More than 50,000 spectators attended Perth’s 15 race days in 2017, but 2018 promises to surpass that performance thanks to a significant increase in the prize money on offer this summer. Perth’s total prize pot for the coming April-September season will be a record £1.25m, representing a 35% year-on-year increase overall.

> INFO perth-races.co.uk

houseofedgar.com

Perth City Centre and nearby Scone Palace reverberated with the sound of finely tuned engines and twin exhausts as the Perthshire Classic Car Festival 2018 came to town, in April. For the first time, the festival was held over two days, on 21-22 April, ensuring thousands of spectators got the chance to see motoring history come alive. More than 300 historic cars, drawn from car clubs all over the UK, gathered at Scone Palace. In addition to the chance to view the cars up close, spectators were treated to driving demonstrations from racing stable Ecurie Ecosse and Knockhill Racing Circuit. Approximately 150 classic examples then

departed for Perth City Centre, where they passed over the historic Old Perth Bridge. The cars were displayed at Tay Street from midmorning for two hours. On the Sunday – Drive It Day – HRH Prince Michael of Kent led a field of 80 cars on a route from Blairgowrie Golf Club through the stunning countryside of the Cairngorms National Park and Royal Deeside. All proceeds from the weekend went to Cancer Research UK, Alzheimer Scotland and the Rotary Foundation.

> INFO blairgowrieclassiccartour.co.uk

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CITY OF LIGHT This year’s dazzling city illuminations have surpassed the success of the inaugural event, attracting 53,518 people into the city centre after 6pm, a 5% uplift on 2017. The event ran every night from January 26 to February 14, with special themed attractions to celebrate Burns Night, Chinese New Year and St. Valentine’s Day.

Edinburgh-based 21CC again arranged the display. Councillor Angus Forbes, Convener of the Council’s Environment & Infrastructure Committee, said: “The Riverside Light Nights have been a great success once again, with tens of thousands of people coming to Perth over the period. I look forward to seeing the full economic impact from all of the events that have taken place over the last few months.”

THE RIVERSIDE LIGHT NIGHTS HAVE BEEN A GREAT SUCCESS ONCE AGAIN, WITH TENS OF THOUSANDS OF PEOPLE COMING TO PERTH OVER THE PERIOD.” The event highlights the potential to extend footfall and trading in the city, and the NorieMiller Trail is designed as a taster for the Riverside Light Nights project, which will see landmarks and buildings across the city centre lit up with colourful spotlights and animated projections. £5m has been earmarked to support the City of Light project.

HEALTHY BODY, HAPPY MIND The latest Happiness Index from Bank of Scotland shows those living in Perth and Kinross-Scotland are the happiest people in Scotland. The Happiness Index looks at how happy Scots are in the communities in which they live. People living in Perth and Kinross recorded an average ‘happiness score’ of 51.61 against a Scotland-wide average of 43.71.

PERTH IS THE PLACE TO BE Perth and Kinross has been named the best place to live in mainland Scotland, according to the Bank of Scotland’s latest Quality of Life Survey, published in December 2017. The survey, which provided quality of life scores for local authorities across the UK, has been compiled based on the cumulative score of 26 variables across eight broad groups. Specific criteria included topics as diverse as employment rates, average wages, population densities, average pupil/teacher ratios and overall life satisfaction scores. The results confirmed that Perth and Kinross was

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only topped by Orkney, Shetland and the Western Isles. The annual Bank of Scotland survey means Perth and Kinross has improved on 2016, when the region was named the 5th best place to live in Scotland. The 2017 results reflect the region’s recognised strengths in having an educated workforce, low crime rates, low levels of traffic congestion and excellent broadband provision, where 93% of premises can access speeds of 5Mbps or more. Another area where the region scored exceptionally well was in terms of health

and wellbeing. The results revealed that people living in Perth and Kinross enjoy the highest life expectancy of anywhere in Scotland – 79.5 years for men (against a Scottish average of 77.5) and 83 years for women (against a Scottish average of 81.4). Those results might relate to the fact that the region is the place to head to for health and fitness clubs, with 2.7 clubs per 10,000 people. The Scottish average is 1.2.

> I NFO investinperth.co.uk


NEWS

OUR APP SAVES SCHOOLS MONEY ON SENDING TEXTS AND PRINTING MATERIALS, AND CAN REDUCE THE NUMBER OF INCOMING CALLS THEY HAVE TO HANDLE.”

People living in Perth and Kinross enjoy the highest life expectancy of anywhere in Scotland

SCHOOLS LIKE BRAND APP-EAL APPS CENTRAL HAS BEEN SIGNING UP 30 NEW SCHOOLS A MONTH FOR ITS SCHOOL APP PROPOSITION. THAT GROWTH-RATE SECURED IT INCLUSION AT BETT 2018, STAGED IN LONDON, IN JANUARY. IT IS A MAJOR GLOBAL EDUCATIONAL TECHNOLOGY SHOWCASE AND 30 UK COMPANIES PARTICIPATED, WITH APP CENTRAL THE SOLE SCOTTISH TECH COMPANY INCLUDED.

The company already provides more than 300 schools and nurseries with their own-brand smartphone app, which is used to keep parents, carers and the local community informed, involved and engaged. “Our app saves schools money on sending texts and printing materials, and can reduce the number of incoming calls they have to handle,” says Mick Empson, who founded the firm in 2014. “Some schools report halving the number of incoming calls they have to handle within a few weeks.” Based at Inveralmond Business Centre in Perth, Apps Central employs seven people and is set to double its turnover this year. “Schools have no significant upfront cost, and no fixed term contact,” adds Mick. “The App allows parents to filter updates by school group, year group, or sport. “We develop the School’s Calendar and News, and offer an app for Apple or Android devices. “Bett 2018 provided a major boost to our ambitions,” continues Mick, a former marketing executive with Saatchi’s and Airmiles. “Attending allowed us to meet primary and secondary schools around the world, as well as across the UK.”

> INFO 01738 646760

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CASTLE WATER FINDS FAST LANE IN MARKET

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330,000

xxxx

BUSINESS CUSTOMERS SIGNED WITH CASTLE WATER

John Reynolds, chief executive officer of Castle Water, had a long-term plan for the company’s national growth.

From its indisputably beautiful rural location in Blairgowrie, Castle Water has gone from a start-up in 2014 – when it received its Scottish water supply and sewerage licence – to its position as the UK’s second largest business water company. “It’s been an incredible journey,” says John Reynolds, founder and chief executive officer of what is now the UK’s largest independent water retailer. It is also a feat that saw the company win the awards for ‘Beyond Scotland’ and ‘Business Growth’ in the Perthshire Chamber of Commerce Star Awards 2017. John, who had advised the English regional electricity companies on the deregulation of the electricity market, at the start of his career, had a long-term plan in mind for Castle Water from the beginning. “We recognised that deregulation would bring an opportunity to do things differently, to separate retail and wholesale operations, and we’ve worked hard to be able to support those customers.” Finance, account management and operations across the UK are all managed from Blairgowrie, where around 90% of the 300 employees work, with local teams in Ayr,


SPOTLIGHT

established the company in the grounds of his home at Craighall Castle. “Perthshire has access to an employment pool that meets the needs of existing FTSE 100 companies. Stagecoach has grown from its Perth-base to become an international operator, and SSE is also based in Perth, only fifteen miles away. There are a lot of highly skilled people in this area, with a background in customer service and utilities. “We’ve drawn on these highly-skilled people, and we’ve invested heavily in our own training and development. Half a million people live within a 30-minute drive of Blairgowrie, so we know we can continue to grow here. We see a mix of people and the skills we need, and the local authority support has also been very helpful. “When recruiting, we find the area’s quality of life and superb work/life balance sells itself. The Cairngorms is right on our doorstep and Blairgowrie is perfectly placed for golf, mountain-biking, hill-walking and a whole range of leisure activities.” Further growth is now the priority. Last year, the company acquired Ayr-based

Glasgow, Leeds, Portsmouth and London, to give clients local advice. “It’s been a non-stop sprint,” John adds. “Four furiously fast-paced years – which have seen us expand our client base to a point where we now supply more than 330,000 business customers. “We used Scotland to develop our business model, as the market here has been deregulated for ten years. We knew that deregulation in England was coming, but there are substantially bigger buyers there, bringing a different dynamic to that market.” Castle Water acquired its first business customers in England in January 2016, from Portsmouth Water, and then added the business portfolio for Thames Water later the same year. “That deal shocked the market,” says John. “We grew tenfold in an instant.” The deal with Thames Water worked well for both companies. “London is a complex market that responds well to the added service we offer as an independent retailer, providing advice and support, as well as a low-cost service. The change of use of premises in London is rapid, with shorter occupancy periods, so business customers WWW.INVESTINPERTH.CO.UK

AS WE GREW, WE DID REVIEW THE BEST LOCATION TO CENTRALISE OPERATIONS, BUT IT WAS CLEAR TO US THAT BLAIRGOWRIE HAD MANY ADVANTAGES.” need a more intensive service. That was off-putting to established retailers, but we saw the opportunity to add value. While we focus on the customer base, Thames can now focus on its wholesale network.” The rapid growth raised some natural questions. “As we grew, we did review the best location to centralise operations, but it was clear to us that Blairgowrie had many advantages,” adds John, who had initially

Perthshire is perfectly placed for a wide range of leisure activities.

IT’S JUST 12 MONTHS SINCE THE MARKET FOR RETAIL WATER SERVICES OPENED TO COMPETITION FOR BUSINESS CUSTOMERS IN ENGLAND. IT MAY SURPRISE MANY TO LEARN THAT, FROM DAY ONE, THE BASE FOR THE SECOND LARGEST OPERATOR IN THIS NEW MARKETPLACE IS PERTHSHIRE. Cobalt Water, “which gives us the ability to accelerate our growth in Scotland.” Organic growth has also come through early procurement wins in England: provision of water and sewerage services to United Learning Trust – and a contract for the provision of water and wastewater services under the Crown Commercial Service (CCS) framework, worth an estimated £28.9m, and services for various high street and out of town chains. To drive its growth, the company has attracted a team of highly experienced managers, enticed by the joint appeal of the ambitious business strategy, and the unsurpassed quality of life in Perthshire. “We’ve spent the last year actively growing, and now we’re looking to add volume to our customer base,” says John. “We’ll continue to recruit locally as we expand, and attract top talent selectively. “The features in this area that make us successful apply equally to other businesses. Communications here are good, there is an excellent local talent pool, the cost base is very attractive, and Perthshire delivers a very desirable work-life balance.”

> INFO castlewater.co.uk SPRING 2018_INVEST IN PERTH

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“Involvement in drama, dance, or any creative activity brings benefits, and we see this through the community classes we run for children and adults, and through Perth Youth Theatre and Perth Youth Dance,” says Noelle Cobden, head of creative learning at Horsecross Arts, which operates Perth Theatre and Concert Hall. Developing the Young Workforce, and similar organisations such as Skills Development Scotland, highlight the importance of good inter-personal skills in the workplace. As well as enhancing these social skills, which supports the entire cultural economy across the Tay Cities Deal region, Perth Theatre now plans to enhance specific technical skills and deliver work experience as a member of a creative

team, helping to enhance skill sets for local employers across all sectors. Employment across the creative sector is growing; in fact, in 2016, it accounted for 5% of all jobs across the EU. Beyond a nucleus of jobs in performing or visual arts, events, gaming, publishing or music, one popular estimate – quoted by the World Economic Forum – predicts that 65% of children entering primary school today will end up working in jobs that don’t yet exist. Whatever they are, most will be ‘creative’. What’s more, creative jobs will be among the most resistant to automation. Perthshire offers a superb range of theatre, music, visual arts and events throughout the year, helping attract more than two million

visitors and supporting a quality of life for residents that saw Perth named as the top mainland location for quality of life, in a Bank of Scotland survey in 2017. Tourism accounts for 11% of jobs in the area, supporting an estimated 1,580 businesses in the Tay Cities economic region (12% of Scotland’s total) and 22,000 employees, The ambition of the Tay Cities Deal is to deliver a world class visitor experience that targets growth by enhancing the attractiveness of the area, increasing the length of stay and repeat visits, and appealing to higher value markets. That will drive an increasing market for people with the appropriate technical skills. The performance arts, and events, are fundamental to the success of that ambition.

WE HAVE THE RESOURCES TO SUPPORT THE FULL RANGE OF STAGE CRAFT PRODUCTION.”

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PERTH THEATRE IS EMBARKING ON AN AMBITIOUS PLAN TO BECOME A LEADING CENTRE FOR TECHNICAL THEATRE SKILLS TRAINING IN SCOTLAND, WHICH INCLUDES SUPPORT FOR SET DESIGN, COSTUME DESIGN, LIGHTING AND SOUND SYSTEMS, STAGE MANAGEMENT AND SET CONSTRUCTION.

KNOW-HOW:

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KNOW-HOW

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The new National 5 in Drama has technical modules in lighting, sound and costume design

STAGE SET FOR CREATIVE SKILLS

At Horsecross Arts, Noelle is working with the Scottish Drama Training Network to integrate Perth Theatre into the training of tomorrow’s technical experts. “We have a range of placement opportunities available across the organisation including in our wardrobe department and as assistant director on main stage productions. We are currently working with Perth College UHI to develop a programme to support students on the HND and HNC Technical Theatre and Production Arts courses, as well as the audio engineer degree students. In fact, many of the technical team at Horsecross today are previous graduates from those courses.” Furthermore, Horsecross Arts is bringing in 16-21 year olds in to work with tutors in a creative assistant programme for the Youth Theatre, Glee and Youth Dance programmes. Trainee directors – graduates of performing arts courses in Perth College or Dundee and Angus College – will also be given the opportunity to work with the Youth Theatre. There are also to be formal placements working with the production professionals at Horsecross. “We are also working with The Royal Conservatoire in Glasgow, for example students on the traditional music course take on Musical Director Apprenticeships for our youth Celtic Big Band. “Our aim is to get as many people involved as possible. We’re doing live video vox pops with schools, inviting visiting cast members and directors to be interviewed by pupils online. Our new website will host recordings as digital assets for everyone to watch and get inspired.” In December, P6 and P7 pupils across 16 local schools, were invited to take up a set design challenge. As well as building their own model box, they had a chance to work with award-winning professional set designer, Becky Minto (pictured), and to see the design process and final set for Aladdin, the pantomime that reopened Perth Theatre, on 9 December. “These opportunities let them see the possibilities, before they have taken subject choices at Secondary. The new National 5 in Drama has technical modules in lighting, sound and costume design.” Perth is growing “and young people are also the next chapter in our story, as an audience,” adds Noelle. “But we want to promote and market transferable skills.” For the Year of Young People, Perth Theatre will host a signature event, allowing young people to take over the Theatre for a day, with business students managing the programme, and opportunities for people to get involved on the acoustic stage, and a wide range of activities. “It’s about exploiting the resource we now have,” adds Noelle. “Young people today are digital-savvy, and digital technologies can enhance what we do in live performances. It is exciting to see how they integrate. In our restored and redeveloped theatre, we can now do amazing things, and we have the resources to support the full range of stage craft production.” 11


LOCH LEVEN CASTLE IS FAMOUS FOR ITS ASSOCIATION WITH MARY QUEEN OF SCOTS, WHO WAS IMPRISONED THERE IN 1567. IT REMAINS ACCESSIBLE ONLY BY A BOAT TRIP FROM KINROSS, YET ATTRACTED 16,500 VISITORS IN 2016. IN 2019, IT’S A SAFE BET THAT NUMBER WILL ROCKET...

KINROSS IS SET TO MOVE CENTRE STAGE 12

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This November sees the release of Mary Queen of Scots, starring Saoirse Ronan as Mary, and Margot Robbie as Queen Elizabeth, undoubtedly bringing benefits for the local economy, as well as thousands of additional visitors – given the on-going appeal of set-jetting. One Kinross start-up has already acted on the potential: Loch Leven Brewery. “We launched in September last year,” explains Thomas Moffat, who organised a festival last year to mark the 450th anniversary of Mary’s imprisonment at Loch Leven Castle. “I had approached Perth & Kinross Council for


FEATURE 36% of households in Kinross rely on a professional or managerial income

Unorthodox Roasters on Kinross High Street.

LEADER funding for the event. Although it wasn’t applicable, they were very supportive, and that fund then did help us to convert our premises, which the Council identified, into our craft brewery and shop! “We launched with four great products, and our beer is already going down a treat.” Loch Leven Brewery is now well-placed for a further boost to sales. Loch Leven Castle dates from the time of Robert The Bruce, who is also featuring on the big screen in 2018, with a new film produced by Netflix, and starring Chris Pine: Outlaw King. To tie in with the November release, the

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team has managed to secure the rights to market an official Pale Ale. “We have met with Lord Charles Bruce, and plan to malt barley from his estate to use in our own Outlaw King,” explains Thomas. “I’d got permission to include our beer at a Holyrood reception we organised to mark Carnegie Day last November. Susan Wilson, US Consul General was there, and the event showed we were serious in our ambitions. The tie-in has now been officially approved. “We’re working hard to deliver at every level,” adds Thomas. “Local venues like The Green Hotel, opposite the brewery, have been

A LOT OF LOVE, CARE AND ATTENTION GOES INTO EVERY BATCH.”

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supporters and stockists from day one. Our tap room lets people sample the beers, and take growlers away, and we already employ two people in our shop and a trade sales manager. Now we’re planning to add a second fermentation vessel, as we plan to keep all production in-house as we expand. “Kinross is our usp: many craft breweries are remote, making logistics a costly challenge, but we don’t have to worry. Social media is spreading our message, and as we grow, the town is in a very strategic location.” Just two-minutes off the M90, Kinross offers a strategic hub for any business, and the town itself is expanding. Kinross High School, part of the £136m Loch Leven Community Campus that opened in 2010, has over 1,000 pupils and performs highly in exam results. Kinross represents 9% of the total population of the local authority area, and with 36% of households relying on a professional or managerial income (compared to the average of 26% for the local authority area), Kinross is attracting visitors, new residents and start-ups. One is Unorthodox Roasters, the tangible touchpoint for two friends’ taste for lightly roasted coffee. “We wanted to put down roots,” explains Neil Buchan about the decision to open their shop last year. Having both quit jobs to travel throughout South America, the pair turned that expedition into an odyssey, learning all they could about coffee from farmers and processors in every country they visited. “We were sitting in Pergamino, in Medellin Colombia, when we decided that we’d open the business on our return. Our first 60kg bag of coffee beans reached my parent’s home before we did.” Unorthodox Roasters lives up to its name: roasting all their own coffee, with the range fluctuating to reflect where the best green beans that can be sourced at a given time. “If we’ve got 140kg of one origin, say Nicaraguan, then it’s one producer’s harvest and one roast by us, and when it’s gone, it’s gone. “Local conditions affect bean density and moisture, which influence the flavour, so that drives the choice of farm and how we roast the beans. So even our regular roasts, such as the Brazilian Wee Stoater, will come from different plantations at different times of year, so that we can achieve consistency in flavour.” The business roasts all the coffee it sells, with retail sales in-store, regular pitches at local farmers’ markets, trade sales and stockists such as Balgedie House Lodge, a local luxury hotel that includes the coffee in guests’ gift bags. There is also a growing on-line business, which has seen coffee sent across the EU, to New York and Hong Kong. “A lot of love, attention and care goes into every batch,” says Neil. “The market is super fierce, but we’re working hard. “Many coffees are over-roasted, which affects the flavour. Our mantra is to unlock the natural sweetness in the bean with zero bitterness. Each terroir is different: Brazilian coffees have a chocolately creaminess, while Ethiopian coffees can be floral and orangey. “Wherever it’s from, great coffee has to be freshly roasted. That is why we put a roast date 14

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on every bag.” One family who enjoyed a regular cup of coffee (roast undeclared) were the Crawley’s, of Downton Abbey. Fans might be surprised to learn that several of Downton’s interiors also had a direct connection with Kinross. John Moncrieff Ltd manufacture bespoke and period lighting, and their services are regularly in demand from internationallyrenowned interior designers in London’s Pimlico. Direct clients include music industry

Kinross is the USP. Top: Loch Leven Brewery offers a range of beers from its tap room in Kinross, including Shining Knight, brewed in honour of Andrew Carnegie, and Outlaw King, which is to be the official beer for the movie to be released in November 2018. Above and opposite:Specialist lighting designed and produced by John Moncrieff Limited can be seen at Google HQ, and on the set of Downton Abbey.


FEATURE

M90

businesses access superfast broadband, using cutting edge wireless technology. “We launched just before Christmas last year and have two access points that connect anyone within our line of sight to the fibre network built by OpenReach. “My priority is the Cleish Hills area, as that’s the only exchange without any planned solution. Our target is 250-500 connections this year, as these properties have no access to a government support plan within the next three years. Then we’ll spread further. We can support 100 properties per access point,

offering a minimum 30Mbps service. We plan to add many more access points this year, giving access to everyone in the area who wants it. Andrew continues: “The next step will be to use TV White Space, which doesn’t need line of sight. Then, over the next five years, the big change will be 5G mobile, on which we’re collaborating with the University of Strathclyde. For now, we’re doing a complementary step in that direction. We’re dramatically cheaper than any solution by an incumbent provider, and this service is a real game changer for rural businesses.” One early adopter is David Archer of Sephra Europe: “The high speeds have made connecting to cloud-based systems and office VPN workable and efficient, which has allowed me to work across international time zones more easily, contributing to growth in export sales.” In 1567, Mary Queen of Scots may have felt that Loch Leven Castle was a prison, but Classlochie Digital, and other service providers, are ensuring every business can be ready to benefit from the boom in visitors that Mary is about to bestow.

> INFO lochleven.beer unorthodoxroasters.co.uk jmoncrieff.co.uk classlochie.co.uk SPRING 2018_INVEST IN PERTH 15

This year, 90.5% of Perth & Kinross will have access to data speeds of 24 - 80MBps

WWW.INVESTINPERTH.CO.UK

KINROSS OFFERS A STRATEGIC HUB FOR ANY BUSINESS

A-listers, Google’s HQ – and movie prop masters. “We do a lot of work for TV and film,” says managing director, Scott Gilmore. “We’re known for complexity in glass, or period bases, and providing custom items. Downton, Selfridges and Outlander on TV, as well as movies like Paddington 2 and Harry Potter have all featured our lighting.” Scott moved the business into Kinross in August 2016, when it needed more storage space, with help from Perth & Kinross Council. “Scotland has a great name for heritage and quality craftsmanship. We don’t compete on price, but offer something exclusive, with long-term value. We’re known internationally for our specialism, and demand is strong. We’re looking to add two apprentices this year. “Kinross now offers us great connectivity for meetings and deliveries, and a low cost base,” adds Scott. Connectivity is the focus for another local start-up, Classlochie Digital, a community investment company (CIC) that is determined to extend the benefits of superfast digital connectivity to businesses in rural areas. The existing £410m Digital Scotland programme has already made superfast broadband networks available to nearly 90% of premises in Scotland. “But this falls to 46% in rural areas,” says managing director Andrew Mitchell. “When I moved to Classlochie from Edinburgh, I went from 50 Mbps to 0.5 Mbps.” Andrew set up the CIC to help rural


FAST TRACK:

BELLA & DUKE COLLAR RAW PET FOOD MARKET A FUNDING BOOST THROUGH SCOTTISH EDGE 11 IS PAVING THE WAY FOR EXPANSION AT PERTH-BASED RAW DOG FOOD PRODUCER, BELLA & DUKE.

30% UK HOUSEHOLDS OWNING EITHER A CAT OR DOG 16

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Perth has a lot to offer by way of visitor attractions and leisure activities

Bella & Duke is now looking to expand operations with a newly-opened distribution centre in Perth. Taste testing of a new feline product range is underway, with a range of healthy pet treats and even homeopathic oils for pets set to follow. “The Scottish EDGE Awards were a useful tool for keeping us focused on targets, ensuring we delivered on what we said at each stage of our growth,” explains Mark. “As well as getting used to the pitch process, it has opened all sorts of doors for future investment and the additional profile has been reflected in our sales.” Bella & Duke’s meals are produced with 85% high-quality meat and bones, 15% vegetables, oils and berries, no colours or additives. All ingredients are sourced through trusted suppliers, with customers purchasing tailored menus based on their pet’s weight and activity levels. The food is then delivered freshly frozen; all owners need to do is defrost and serve. Strong teeth, a glossy coat and bags of vitality might be the obvious signs of a healthy dog, but a happier digestive system and less weight mean dogs fed on a carefully researched raw food diet are likely to enjoy life, visit the vets less and live for longer. Certainly paws for thought.

KNOW-HOW

You are what you eat according to nutritionists. There’s no doubt, a healthy balanced diet helps us stay active and in most cases, live longer. But as Perthshire-based business Bella & Duke has demonstrated it’s not only humans that benefit from a healthy diet – the same applies to our four-legged friends. Since launching the business in June 2017, Mark Scott and Tony Ottley, have embarked on a mission to wean dogs away from processed tinned food onto quality, fresh, breed-specific meals that may help

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our canine friends stay fitter, stronger and healthier for longer. With a UK-wide customer base, business growth has been meteoric. Sales have already grown to more than £125,000 per month with projected growth expected to increase that to £250,000 per month by summer 2018. With 30% of UK households owning either a cat or dog, you’d have to be barking mad to bet against them hitting that target. Having been awarded £50,000 of Scottish EDGE funding in December 2017,

LOCAL DISCOUNT Perthshire-based pet owners can try Bella & Duke for themselves. The company is offering 50% off a trial box with any Perthshire postcode.

> INFO bellaandduke.com

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“BEING HAILED THE UK CHARTERED PLANNERS OF THE YEAR OFFERED RECOGNITION OF THE QUALITY AND HIGH STANDARDS SET BY EVERYONE INVOLVED IN THE BUSINESS.”

CARBON FINANCIAL GIVE PERTH THE GOLD STANDARD Carbon Financial Partners has developed into an award-winning player in the UK financial advice and investment industry with offices in Edinburgh, Aberdeen, Glasgow and London. But it continues to be headquartered in Perth’s Atholl Crescent, overlooking the North Inch, where managing director Gordon Wilson established a fledgling business 18 years ago.   For five successive years Carbon has secured the Gold Standard Award for Independent Financial Advice and, in addition to local and Scottish recognition, the company has been awarded the “Personal Finance Sector’s Chartered Financial Planners of the Year” and “UK Advisor Firm of the Year” accolades. “Firms who have managed to achieve Chartered status represent the pinnacle of the emerging financial planning profession,” said Mr Wilson, who is a long-time resident of Scone. Fellow director Mark Christie also lives in Perth. “These awards have reinforced our position as one of the UK’s leading financial advice businesses and we’d like to think Carbon has enhanced Perth’s long-standing profile on the country’s personal finance map,” said Gordon Wilson, who is also director of the Personal Finance Society. “Being hailed the UK Chartered Planners of the Year offered recognition of the quality and high standards set by everyone involved in the business. “It is an exciting time for the business, with the decision to open a London office prompted largely by interest from the ex-pat community and the success of our expansion in Scotland in recent years.”  Carbon Financial’s commitment to the local community is reflected in backing for Blairgowrie Golf Club, the Perthshire Chamber of Commerce, various charitable causes and sponsorship of the Strathallan 1st XV, winners of rugby’s Scottish U18 Schools Cup. “When we were starting out in business there might have been a temptation to base ourselves in Edinburgh, given its historic and influential role in the Scottish and UK financial industry, but Perth is my adopted home and it has much to offer in terms of business potential, location, staff and lifestyle choices,” reflected Mr Wilson. “Naturally, you have to walk before you run but, having established ourselves in Perth, client driven demand has paved the way to expansion and we now employ 40plus staff across our five offices. But Perth is where it all began and it continues to play a crucial role in the business.”

> INFO carbonfinancial.co.uk

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Carbon Financial Partner managing director Gordon Wilson backs Perth as a place to do business

RUN OF SUCCESS FOR ATTRACTION Perthshire’s Dewar’s Aberfeldy Distillery has been given three industry awards in the last few months. The run of success kicked-off with the Scottish Thistle Awards’ regional final for Central East and Tayside, held on 23 November in Edinburgh, where Dewar’s Aberfeldy Distillery emerged victorious in the Best Visitor Attraction category. The team also received the the Excellence in Tourism & Leisure Award from the Perthshire Chamber of Commerce Business Star Awards on 24 November. The distillery also won the Visitor Attraction of the Year at the Icons of Whisky Scotland 2018 Awards, on 1 December. Charlotte Brown, UK brand homes general manager at the distillery said: “We’re thrilled to have picked up these three important awards in such quick succession. The awards recognise our continued investment in the experience over recent years, which we’ve done to establish Dewar’s Aberfeldy Distillery as a must-see visitor attraction. “They are also a reflection of the hard work put in by the whole team, and I’d like to thank them for the hard work in making every visitor to Dewar’s Aberfeldy Distillery feel welcome.”


PERTH AIRPORT OWNERS WEIGH POSITIVE OPTIONS FOR FUTURE A new study, jointly commissioned by the Morris Leslie Group and Perth & Kinross Council’s investment arm Invest in Perth has set out a range of positive alternative futures for Perth Airport, with the best case scenario showing £106m of gross value added to the surrounding economy over 20 years. Consultants Ekos prepared the 40-page report for Morris Leslie and Invest in Perth in anticipation of the forthcoming £1.84bn Tay Cities Deal and the projected £113m Cross Tay Link Road. The proposed 6km Perth bypass will connect the A9 to the A94 close to the airport. Due for completion in 2023 the new road and new Tay crossing will allow traffic to bypass Perth’s Bridgend district and transform connectivity north of the City, opening up new economic opportunities for the area.

AVIVA EXPANDS TEAM IN COE through to when that claim is settled. Aviva provides full training for the roles, which require excellent customer service skills, great communication skills and a cando attitude. David Skinn, Distribution Director said: “This reinforces the importance of Perth as one of our strategic UK locations. These are key front-line roles, which are very much at the heart of what we do – helping our customers when they need us the most. “Aviva has a great heritage here in Perth and we’re really pleased to be able to build on that with these roles.”

The Scottish Microfinance Fund (SMF) has provided more than £2m in its first year in operation. The Fund provides small and medium-sized enterprises (SMEs) with loans of up to £25,000 and more than 130 new and existing companies were supported in 2017. Supported by the Scottish Government, Start-up Loans Company (SULCo) and the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF), it is managed and delivered by DSL Business Finance. The fund offers an interest rate of six per cent and has no arrangement or early repayment fees. All applicants receive face-to-face pre loan and aftercare support from a dedicated DSL loan officer who works closely with Business Gateway and other support agencies.

The local economic contribution from financial and professional services is £135m

Leading insurer, Aviva, has been recruiting additional staff at its Perth Centre of Excellence, in Pitheavlis, to fulfil 150 roles as either customer advisors or a claims handler. The customer advisor roles are in the Strategic Partner Operations Centre of Excellence and will help customers looking for home or travel insurance or looking to make changes to their policy. The property claims roles are based in Aviva’s Claims Centre of Excellence and will help customers in their time of need, from the moment they make an insurance claim

START-UP FUND OFFERS SUPPORT TO 130 IN YEAR 1

PERTHSHIRE ENTREPRENEUR CATCHES THE EYE OF GOLDMAN SACHS Tricia Fox, founder and CEO of Volpa, the Perthshire-based independent marketing agency, has been selected to participate in the prestigious Goldman Sachs 10,000 Small Businesses programme. Serial entrepreneur Tricia, who founded Volpa in 2002, was selected for the course following a UK wide search for applicants. The four month programme is designed to provide leaders of high

GOOD COMPANY

growth small businesses with high quality, practical education and business support through specialist workshops, one to one business advice and business coaching. The programme will help Tricia, who harbours ambitious expansion plans for the Perth-based agency, create a customised plan for the next phase of the agency’s growth. Volpa is an awardwinning, full service agency, boasting dedicated publicity, creative and digital departments. “I have a target annual turnover of £1m within the next eighteen months,” says Tricia, who founded the agency in her spare bedroom. “Our client list now includes Scone Palace; The Famous Grouse Experience in Crieff; and Perth Museum and Art Gallery.” Through the programme, which Goldman Sachs launched in 2010 to tackle the support gap for small enterprises, Tricia will gain exclusive access to professional experts, networking opportunities and a network of 10,000 Small Business graduates. Tricia added: “I am delighted to have been given this opportunity. The content has been designed by world class experts in entrepreneurial learning, and I’m looking forward to learning all I can from meeting some exceptionally successful business people, and developing my entrepreneurial expertise.” Specialising in tourism, hospitality and food and drink, Volpa has received a range of awards over the years, including three times winner of the Scottish Event Award for Best Marketing Strategy for its work on The Enchanted Forest, near Pitlochry – now established as Scotland’s premier sound and light event.

> INFO Cunninglygood.com

WWW.INVESTINPERTH.CO.UK

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MAKING IT HAPPEN:

FIRST COHORT ENTER ACCELERATOR AT FGIC

Last year, whisky giant Edrington pledged £500,000 to support fledgling creative talent in Perth over 10 years: founding the Famous Grouse Ideas Centre. Its permanent home will be within the new Creative Exchange, currently taking shape at the old St John’s primary school. It will open in 2019, after completion of a £4.5m refurbishment, but the pilot programme for support through Famous Grouse launched this February, and the first group of companies is already benefiting under the 12-week Creative Accelerator programme. Participants receive specialist training, delivered by Elevator, which is designed to encourage them to grow and flourish in one of Scotland’s fastest growing sectors. They also benefit from business advice and guidance from mentors. “We had 50 initial notes of interest and 30 applications from creative companies,” explains Finlay Kerr, Project Manager at Perth and Kinross Council. “There will be two intakes to the Creative Accelerator each year – with up to 14 companies in each group.” A recent report found that there are around 480 arts and creative companies in Perth and Kinross, employing approximately 1,200 people. It is hoped the Creative Exchange will raise awareness of the employment options in creative industries – covering everything from photography and publishing to computer gaming or architecture. The Famous Grouse Ideas Centre will offer support to creative individuals and enterprises at three levels. The Accelerator – is targeted at established creative and innovative businesses and start-ups with high growth potential, and aims to move the selected businesses to the next stage of their growth. Incubation – Delivered by Cultural Enterprise Office – aims to support creative businesses in the early stages, or prior to business formation. It can also help established businesses who have plateaued, to re-position or refresh. The Creative Pipeline – delivered by Culture Perth and Kinross – will engage young people not in education, training or employment and raise their awareness of the creative industries, inspire them to consider employment or self-employment in this sector, and provide support in establishing a creative business, when required. It aims to reach more than 400 people each year. The Creative Exchange itself. Once it opens next year, it will be operated by WASPS (the UK’s largest non-profit studio provider). It will comprise of 26 artists’ studios; 13 offices for creative industries; hot-desking; workshop space; a project space; and a café. The Famous Grouse Ideas Centre, nested within the Creative Exchange, will have 150m2 of dedicated open plan work space, business incubation, meeting and seminar space. 20

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“THERE WILL BE TWO INTAKES TO THE ACCELERATOR EACH YEAR – WITH UP TO 14 COMPANIES IN EACH GROUP.”

> INFO To enquire about incubator space and The Famous Grouse Ideas Centre, please contact Finlay Kerr: finlaykerr@pkc.gov.uk Pipeline information: HOBrien@culturepk.org.uk Creative Accelerator programmes: Caryn@elevatoruk.com WASPS: info@waspsstudios.org.uk


Scottish Eco Innovation Business Park Capital expenditure: £50m | GDV: > £100m | Peak borrowing: £20m This exciting opportunity at Perth West offers investors the chance to be at the very heart of our journey, by developing a zoned development area covering 130 hectares with 1,600 units of mixed tenure housing, a distribution centre, business park for commercial space, industrial, hotel, leisure, district heat and power system; and an academic centre. This investment opportunity is included in the DIT Scottish portfolio which was launched at MIPIM, on 15 March. The Scottish Eco Innovation Business Park, centred around a distribution consolidation centre, will host technologies, systems and processes to decarbonise urban growth – including electrically enabled highways, mobility as a service, automation, La Milo (Last mile logistics) and renewable district power generation. This is a strategic opportunity for a debt or equity investor, with investment returns generated from infrastructure, finance revenue, property rental and heat/power streams; and revenue through design, build, finance and management of the facilities. Recent investors in Perth include Porsche, Green King and Bellway Homes PLC.

> INFO

A few development plots remain to be released on this popular site, where several plots have already sold. It includes a private electricity supply from the on-site private Solar Array, which is available for companies with a strong green ethos. In addition, plots earmarked for inclusion as part of Perth’s Food & Drink Park are also available, by way of long ground-leases. Businesses which qualify as appropriate uses may benefit from a range of initiatives, such as assisted marketing and promotional events. The sites are strategically situated close to the A9 trunk road, with good links into Perth city centre and the mainline train station and only a 45-minute drive from Edinburgh International Airport. Doug Smart of selling agents Smart & Co, said: “We have seen interest from both existing expanding businesses as well as new entrants to the local market – all of which is good for Perth.”

Perth’s Transport Future Project has the potential to unlock up to 5,000 jobs

It’s official: Perth is the Place. In the Bank of Scotland Quality of Life Rankings 2017, Perthshire was named the most desirable place to live on the Scottish mainland. The city’s strategic position, at the very heart of Scotland’s road, rail and air transport networks, delivers a superb proposition for investment and business relocation, which also makes Perth itself the ideal location to connect with business and life. Businesses here enjoy easy access to Scotland’s key population centres without having to bear the high land and property prices of major cities. The ambition, set out in the Perth City Plan, is to offer unrivalled business, cultural, educational and leisure opportunities. To achieve this, more than £140m of investment in transport infrastructure is planned, helping to unlock more than £500m of current investment opportunities, so that – by 2035 – Perth city will be recognised as one of Europe’s leading small cities. Significant recent investment, in the provision of improved educational facilities and new housing, will support the city’s expansion; running alongside further major investment in the city’s cultural offering and digital connectivity.

NORTH MUIRTON INDUSTRIAL ESTATE

PROPERTY

SUSTAINABLE CITY EXPANSION CREATES A £100M MIXED USE OPPORTUNITY

DEVELOP IN KINROSS

investinperth.co.uk

Kinross West occupies an excellent strategic location on the edge of town and immediately adjacent to the M90 motorway and Junction 6. It sits approximately 18 miles from Perth, 27 miles from Edinburgh and 35 miles from Dundee. Two Development Plots remain, located on the west side of Kinross, bounded to the north and east by residential land and to the south and west by the recently completed Kinross Western Edge Link Road. Plot 4 – 0.87 acres (0.35 hectares) Plot 5 – 2.94 acres (1.19 hectares) In the Local Development Plan the land is allocated for employment uses (Policy ED1A). Further information is available from Invest in Perth, Pullar House, 35 Kinnoull Street, Perth PH1 5GD.

> INFO investinperth.co.uk

WWW.INVESTINPERTH.CO.UK

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28K

THE SCOTTISH GOVERNMENT ANNOUNCED AT LEAST 28,000 NEW APPRENTICES WILL BE TRAINED NEXT YEAR

YOUTH EMPLOYMENT IS A SUCCESS STORY IN PERTH AND KINROSS...

PROJECTING LOCAL OPPORTUNITIES Youth employment is a success story in Perth and Kinross. The most recent figures, reflecting 2016, show that the unemployment rate among 16-24 year olds was 1.5%, against the national picture of 1.9%. Across Scotland, Developing the Young Workforce (DYW) is a policy priority, with a seven-year programme launched by the Scottish Government in 2014, which aims to better prepare young people for the world of work. The headline aim is to reduce youth unemployment by 40% by 2021. “We work closely with employers to reflect the needs and emerging patterns of the local employment market,” says Fiona Reith, Developing the Young Workforce manager for Perth and Kinross. The local DYW Regional Employer Group Board is chaired by Steve Stewart, director of communications at Stagecoach Group, and features other local employers including Aviva, House of Bruar, SSE, Crieff Hydro and Fairways Recruitment.

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“Our programme is focusing on encouraging more of the region’s 6,000 employers to offer work experience opportunities, promoting apprenticeships and helping ensure young people from all backgrounds can build the right skills to enter the workplace,” says Fiona. In February, the Scottish Government announced at least 28,000 new apprentices will be trained next year, with increased support for rural areas and key sectors. One recent event at Perth College UHI promoted the benefits of careers in STEM. EDF Energy sponsored an event by charitable organisation, SmartSTEMs to inspire more girls from across Perthshire to study science, technology, engineering and maths (STEM). More than 150 S1 and S2 girls attended. “Research shows that that science and tech jobs will grow twice as fast as other occupations between now and 2031,” says Fiona, “but the number of women currently working in core STEM industries in Scotland is just one in four.” The girls heard from two young women working in STEM, before they had the chance to get hands-on and take part in a


> INFO getinvolved@dywpk.org.uk

WWW.INVESTINPERTH.CO.UK

Research shows that science and technology jobs will grow twice as fast as other occupations, before 2031.

number of workshops. Catherine Etri, Sector Development Director at Perth College UHI said: “Females are enthusiastic users of technology, but they are considerably underrepresented in its creation. From high school onwards, there is a real lack of female participation in this significant and rapidly expanding area.” DYW also supports other key sectors in the local economy. In March, students studying languages at four schools across Perth were given a first-hand insight into job opportunities in the hospitality and tourism sector. Around 80 pupils took part, and the event was supported by VisitScotland, Willowgate Activity Centre, Historic Environment Scotland, Costa, Salutation Hotel, The Blackwatch Museum, Crieff Hydro and Perth College UHI, as well as Scotland’s National Centre for Languages. Each organisation hosted interactive workshops that highlighted real career opportunities available for young people when they leave school. “Following that event, 57% of pupils said they would now consider a career in the tourism and hospitality sector,” adds Fiona.

Running throughout May, the Perth and Kinross Business & Enterprise Month is aiming to encourage the growth of businesses across the local economy. This area is already home to more than 6,500 businesses; from large employers like Aviva, SSE and Stagecoach, to highgrowth champions like Castle Water (see p8), as well as thousands of individual entrepreneurs in employment-generating sectors such as creative industries, tourism and food and drink. This year’s programme provides the opportunity for everyone to increase their knowledge, network and gain a better understanding of locally available support initiatives – whether you want to start, expand or relocate to take advantage of this region’s strategic position. (More than half of Scotland’s population live within a one-hour drive of Perth city centre!) Tourism accounts for around 12% of local employment, and is set to increase; not least with a new direct flight from Beijing to Edinburgh Airport, launching on 12 June. 40% of all visitors to the UK now come here after being inspired to visit by seeing a particular destination on film, TV or web – or even experiencing it through a game – a phenomenon known to marketers as ‘set-jetting’. Screen production and screen tourism go hand in hand and this region plays host to at least 100 productions every year, in feature films, TV drama, commercials and fashion shoots: from Victoria to Outlander, Whisky Galore to Tommy’s Honour, and Vogue to Volvo. All this activity brings production spending, promotion and benefits for the visitor economy. Want to know more? Then the Tourism Briefing on 3 May, at Birnam Arts Centre, is for you! Scottish Enterprise is also highlighting

LIVING

Inspiration and advice

the latest insights for businesses in tourism, suggesting how to gear up for the requirements of the future on 24 May. Whatever sector your business falls within, there’s a Digital Boost session on 9 May to get you into top gear. Perth City Region is home to almost 1,000 food and drink businesses – the largest concentration for any city region in Scotland – and a showcase in Perth, on 29 May, for Tay Cities Region food & drink network, will introduce buyers to the breadth of quality food and drink products each region has to offer. The full programme of events, seminars and workshops – delivered by a wide range of organisations, all with a common interest in supporting the growth of the local economy – is detailed at https://pkbem.co.uk Organisers include Perth College UHI, Perth and Kinross Council, Scottish Enterprise, Perthshire Chamber of Commerce, the Federation of Small Businesses and Elevator/Business Gateway; and on 9 May, the Famous Grouse Accelerator Showcase gives you the chance to hear first-hand from the first cohort of entrepreneurs to be supported by the Accelerator programme delivered through the new Famous Grouse Ideas Centre, which will open fully in 2019. It could be you next!

> INFO https://pkbem.co.uk

15% PERTHSHIRE BUSINESSES IN FOOD OR DRINK

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MEETINGSPERTHSHIRE.CO.UK MEETINGS / CONFERENCES

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2 TO 1200+

ACTIVITIES INDOORS AND OUT

VENUES WITH ACCOMMODATION EVENTS

5

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ARENA FOR + INDOORS OR WORLD-CLASS OUTDOOR

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Invest in Perth Spring 2018  
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