An exciting initiative by Renfrewshire Council provides new and growing businesses with high quality workspaces at low cost and ongoing support.

Aspiring entrepreneurs and business owners in Renfrewshire considering their first retail space could find the answer in Start-Up Street – with new centers being developed across the region.

The project is already enjoying great success in Paisley where 30 small businesses benefit from the city’s first-class George Street facilities and now two more Start-Up Street centers are being built in close neighbors Johnstone and Renfrew.

Subsidized premises costs cover office space, wifi and utility bills with access to meeting space, with rental costs increasing gradually until the business owner is ready to move in another commercial space in Renfrewshire.

Both the Paisley and Renfrew centers include a business manager on site to provide support and advice, while all centers have access to free Business Gateway advice, mentoring, workshops and masterclasses as part of the package. The initiative provides additional specialist support through a partnership between Renfrewshire Council and start-up charity, Launch It.

Launch It runs Start-Up Street Paisley on a day-to-day basis while providing a program to help young people overcome barriers and develop their business and entrepreneurial skills.

JOHNSTONE AND RENFREW

Start-Up Street Centers in Johnstone and Renfrew are progressing well and are each actively seeking their first batch of businesses.

In Renfrew, major renovations and upgrades are transforming vacant retail units on the town’s Dunlop Crescent. External storefront improvements and interior implementation work are now complete, with internal fit-out commencing next month.

In Johnstone, the Start-Up Street facilities will focus on supporting health and wellness businesses and will be part of new Station Seven premises run by Active Communities, with businesses able to work with community groups and organizations. people using its facilities.

Start-Up Street is part of a series of initiatives supporting businesses and entrepreneurs in Renfrewshire. Another highlight, the popular InCube business incubator program, supports a thriving community of creative entrepreneurs and a one store unit retail academy in downtown Paisley.

Alasdair Morrison, Head of Economy and Regeneration for Renfrewshire Council, said: ‘The initial idea came from a survey of local businesses which showed that many Renfrewshire business owners wanted to switch to the next step and open their first commercial space, but were put off by high costs and a lack of know-how.

“Start-Up Street provides the answer and since each center is based in a city centre, it also gives a significant boost to the local economy. Start-Up Street Paisley has been a huge success and it is hugely encouraging that many local entrepreneurs have taken up the offer and have been able to grow their business with the support on offer.

“With new Start-Up Street Centers opening very soon in Johnstone and Renfrew, we are creating the conditions for entrepreneurship to thrive in our region and we will see the full benefits in our local economy.”

A GROWING BUSINESS MEANS LIFE IS SWEET FOR AN ENTREPRENEUR

“If I hadn’t launched SweetPunkz, I would have always wondered what if?”

Grant Fraser has always had a sweet tooth and, more importantly, an eye for business and when the second lockdown came last December, the 28-year-old business management grad took the opportunity to roll up his sleeves and dive in in the world of confectionery.

A self-confessed “chocolate fiend,” it’s a perfect match, online candy store, SweetPunkz, has proven to be a smash hit in just a few short months.

The home of his burgeoning business is Start-Up Street Paisley, and Grant is grateful for the opportunity and support that the Enterprise Center and its advisors have provided.

Grant said: “I’ve never taken this leap into a retail space before, but at Start-Up Street it’s a ready-to-go package in a great environment, which means you don’t have to need to focus on invoices, it’s a security blanket that lets you focus your full attention on growing your business. When you become self employed you can feel lonely and you can start to feel lost so it’s great to be here alongside other business owners and I’ve had great support from James [Edmonds – Grant’s Council Business Gateway adviser]he has been my trusted man from the start and has helped me at every turn.

“I’ve been blown away by how quickly things have taken off, it’s been a whirlwind. I’ve managed to build a fantastic product line and I’m still focused on growing the business.

Grant’s company now offers a range of picks and mixes of over 85 options, including candy to meet many dietary needs, importing stock from as far away as the US, Dubai and India. Australia.

There are Friday night deliveries in Renfrewshire, his customers attracted by his quirky social media videos, including the Super Sour Challenge, which has gone viral on TikTok and raised a fantastic sum for the Scottish Health Association mental SAMH.

WANT TO KNOW MORE?

Visit Start-Up Street, call 0141 530 2406 or email [email protected] to find out more about Start-Up Street opportunities.

You can also find out more online at www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/Start-Up-Street