The annual BT Scotland Young E-ntrepreneurs Awards, which are organised by PSYBT, seek to recognise visionary PSYBT entrepreneurs who have benefitted from BT Scotland funding and gone on to grow their businesses with the help of e-commerce.
Inspired to set up their own business by the continuing lack of career prospects for graduates, Michael Brown (24) and his business partner Daniel Jones (24), established their online take-away service, http://www.scoffable.com in 2010 during their final year at Heriot Watt University.
Daniel Jones, who also lives in Livingston, used his software engineering expertise to develop a programme which enables customers to place their order online and sends it directly to a customised printer given to the takeaway vendor. Demand for the new technology grew quickly and Scoffable currently caters for over 60 outlets throughout Livingston and West Lothian. They were awarded Most Visionary Business at the awards ceremony.
Ashley Bryant, founder of Bryant Residential Services, a property lettings business in Edinburgh, received the award for Best Website www.brs-edinburgh.co.uk. Bryant Residential Services was established to provide clients with a bespoke property service offering a full range of management services. As well as taking care of landlord checks, credit checks, safety and appliance checks, Ms Bryant provides tenants and landlords with a free 24/7 contact service. Byrant also offers working professionals and students with a match making service – matching tenants with suitable properties in and around Edinburgh.
The Best E-commerce business award was Leonie Woolf (21), founder of Art & Sea www.artandsea.co.uk based in Taynuilt on the West coast. A keen kayaker and qualified coach, Ms Woolf searched everywhere to find a business that specialised in custom design boat graphics and when she couldn’t locate one, she decided to start a business doing exactly that. The former fine arts graduate now offers a wide range of graphics and vinyls for kayaks, paddlers, and she has even provided vinyls for cars.
The winners of the Most Environmentally Responsible Business award went to young Aberdeen–based entrepreneurs, Janet Shek (28) and Mitchell Liddell (27), founders of I Heart Art www.i-heartart.co.uk. Ms Shek, who is a former RGIT retail management graduate, opened the premises in Langstane Place in November 2010, providing an arts and crafts hub catering for all ages and abilities. Initially she specialised in ‘paint your own ceramics’ but has since expanded the offering to include knitting, soap making, crocheting and upcycling classes. Upcycling involves giving old pieces of furniture a new lease of life; using old fabrics to make hanging decorations; and jam jars to make tea-lights.
Liz Turner, head of corporate responsibility at BT Scotland, presented the award winners with cash prizes to further develop their business.
In the last eleven years, BT Scotland has invested more than £535,000 in the Young E-ntrepreneurs programme, helping more than 160 young people to start-up in businesses.
Contact on Michael brown on 07738 248 451
Contact Ashley Bryant on t. 07786000460
Contact Leonie Woolf on 01866 822422/07818861517
Contact: Janet Shek on t. 01224 905 909
Top row, Leonie Woolf (Art & Sea), Michael Brown (Scoffable), Daniel Jones (Scoffable). Middle row L to R, Mitchell Liddell (I Heart Art), Ashley Bryant (Bryant Residential Services). Bottom row, Janet Shek (I Heart Art). <?xml:namespace prefix = o />