Business tips

The important information to beginning a enterprise in Glasgow

Ever puzzled tips on how to begin a enterprise in Glasgow?

With its rising artistic and funding alternatives, Scotland’s second metropolis is turning into ever-more interesting to entrepreneurs.

Right here we glance into funding choices, native competitors, the price of residing and extra.


Regardless of having a progress price of below zero.5 per cent, under the nationwide UK common of 5 per cent, town is rising sooner than predicted. Figures from 2017 present a inhabitants of 621,000 and that quantity is rising.

Home costs

In response to Rightmove, the general common home value in Glasgow is £174,531. Up to now 12 months, costs have gone up by 5 per cent however are down 35 per cent on 2006 when costs had been £267,430 on common.


Final 12 months, the Workplace for Nationwide Statistics (ONS) reported a document rise in worldwide tourism to Glasgow by 17 per cent to three.2 million whereas spending went up 2.three per cent to £2.three billion.

Progress outperformed the Scottish common, with most guests coming from Europe and north America.

Crime price

The whole variety of crimes has dropped. In 2007/08 the whole variety of crimes was recorded at just under 70,000, falling to a little bit below 44,000 by 2016/17.

High quality of life

Glasgow is doing effectively on Numbeo’s High quality of Life Index, scoring ‘very excessive’ on buying energy, well being care and local weather. It scores reasonably on security, value of residing and site visitors commute time. Sadly, it scores a lot decrease on air pollution ranges.

To present you an thought of day-to-day residing prices, a daily cappuccino prices £2.54 whereas a 330ml bottle of water prices 67p. Lots of people make their means across the metropolis on foot however a one-way ticket on native transport prices £2.30.

Transport hyperlinks

Connections are robust inside Glasgow in addition to different elements of the UK and the world.

Prepare-wise, you’ve obtained Glasgow Central which can take you to Edinburgh and different locations round Scotland in addition to common companies to London Euston, travelling by way of Lancaster and Preston.

As for airports, you’ve obtained Glasgow Airport close to Paisley and the smaller Glasgow Prestwick, positioned round 32 miles from town centre.

There are additionally loads of metropolis bus service and the subway to get across the metropolis itself.

How the entrepreneurs see it

After all, statistics don’t mirror the precise day-to-day of working a small enterprise in Glasgow. We communicate to a few entrepreneurs to search out out their experiences.

Andrew Vincent is co-founder of Nu Blvck alongside Becca Flory. The style label is captivated with discovering native expertise and giving impartial designers a platform.

Andrew talks about his experiences of starting a business in Glasgow

Once we first got here up with the concept for Nu Blvck we had been truly based mostly in Boston (Becca and I met on a programme referred to as the Saltire Basis Fellowship, which sees individuals spend 4 months at Babson Faculty in Boston, US).

We’ve at all times had the purpose of making a model with a worldwide buyer base and this may by no means change. Glasgow is house for me and there’s a artistic and entrepreneurial buzz in regards to the metropolis, so it made good sense to begin right here.

Vogue manufacturers usually gravitate to the commerce centres of London, Paris and the like. We actually favored the concept of making a enterprise in Scotland that stands for one thing. This in flip will create alternatives for artistic individuals right here in our personal cities versus individuals graduating and heading right down to London.

What grants can be found for start-up companies?

There are various grants out there for small companies throughout Scotland, that are primarily administered by means of Enterprise Gateway and Scottish Enterprise. Some can be found for start-up stage companies and others for these a little bit additional alongside of their journey, nevertheless it’s at all times price protecting your eyes open for what’s on the market.

We’ve been lucky to obtain funding by means of the Scottish EDGE, a Dragons’ Den fashion pitching competitors. Apart from monetary help there are nice entrepreneurial networks and organisations in Glasgow which have helped.

Most lately, we’ve been accepted on to the an accelerator programme which supplies us six months of mentorship, workplace area on St Vincent Avenue and entry to an unlimited community of individuals and alternatives. We’re presently elevating £100,000 in funding to scale our model, so this has come at a good time.

Discovering staff

Expertise is one thing we’re captivated with.

With regard to style expertise, there are over 800 design graduates leaving style programs throughout Scotland every year, a lot of whom transfer to London or additional afield. We see as a option to give rising designers and makers a platform to search out new clients and make a reputation for themselves. This 12 months we plan to increase our networks and work with designers from all over the world too.

Nevertheless, given the wealth of world class artwork and design universities in Scotland, we wished to begin right here.

For our artistic content material and advertising and marketing campaigns, we additionally work with a group of wonderful artistic freelancers on images, styling, hair and make-up. We’ve labored with some nice individuals on our journey to date and there definitely isn’t a scarcity of expertise on this entrance.

As we develop our enterprise, we stay up for making a vibrant, thrilling international model with its roots firmly planted right here in Glasgow. The one drawback could also be attracting the world’s greatest who historically have gone to London or New York.

Like all main cities, there are various types and prices of workplace area. We spent our early days within the artist collective referred to as Many Studios – simply to the east of town – which was inexpensive(ish) within the early days.

“The one drawback could also be attracting the world’s greatest who historically have gone to London or New York”

This a part of town is slowly turning into one in every of Glasgow’s extra gentrified artistic hubs which is nice. Having since moved into town centre, we’re having fun with workplace area proper within the coronary heart of town which is wonderful.

That being stated, there are many co-working areas in Glasgow so when you simply want a desk, there are many inexpensive choices. The ever-growing espresso tradition within the metropolis additionally provides a plethora of good spots to work.


There are many nice manufacturers throughout all segments of the market working within the metropolis. We don’t actually consider any of them as rivals as our clients are based mostly everywhere in the world. In a $three trillion international style trade, there’s definitely room for us all.

As a model that put collaborations with different thrilling designers and types on the coronary heart of our month-to-month collections, we’re at all times fascinated with working with manufacturers who share our ethos. Fortuitously, there are a lot of like-minded manufacturers in Glasgow.

What about the remainder of the native entrepreneur group?

There’s tons occurring. Glasgow has so many various networks who usually host occasions and meet-ups.

As somebody who’s lived right here all of my life, I feel that is one thing that’s actually modified for the higher over the previous 5 years, with new locations popping up in all places. From my expertise to date, it’s a terrific metropolis to begin and run an organization, and hopefully develop a worldwide model.

Sidharth Dugar runs fintech start-up, Accountables. He praises his college’s entrepreneurial community for a way they’ve supported his enterprise because it began.  

Sidharth talks about starting a business in Glasgow

I got here to Glasgow to pursue my Masters in enterprise administration from the Strathclyde Enterprise Faculty. The College of Strathclyde is understood for nurturing entrepreneurial expertise and fairly rightfully so; I discovered huge help in Strathclyde’s Entrepreneurial Community.

I realised Glasgow is a hub for lot of start-ups, and Scotland particularly may be very supportive of fintech – simply the precise platform that I used to be searching for.

A number of grants like By-design, SMART and R&D Grants are fairly standard amongst start-ups usually.

There are additionally lot of competitions to advertise innovation in varied classes which may act as huge validation for early stage start-ups.

Enterprise progress

Our enterprise mannequin depends on hiring expertise everywhere in the globe and connecting them with companies requiring monetary companies. Till now now we have had good help from native individuals and imagine native expertise and staff will turn out to be an integral a part of our group.

There may be lot of help for brand new companies in relation to workplace area. There are a number of incubators and accelerators that present fully-funded workplace area with devoted workstations.

I’ve been given an workplace area within the metropolis centre of Glasgow, and will I require at any stage to search for a much bigger workplace, I’m constructive that I’ll get such area and essential help at a nominal value.

Competitors within the native fintech sector

There’s a lot occurring within the fintech sector, significantly in Edinburgh and Glasgow. I’ve met with lot of fintech start-ups and I might not take into account any of them as my competitor.

“I’ve met with lot of fintech start-ups and I might not take into account any of them as my competitor”

Fairly, I discover there’s a lot potential synergy as most of those start-ups are working in a distinct segment of their very own, and plenty of instances complement one another, particularly for a enterprise like mine.

I’ve interacted with entrepreneurs in networking occasions like S100. It is a trademark biannual occasion organised by Strathclyde Entrepreneurial Community the place they invite 100 entrepreneurs from completely different industries to return collectively below one roof and community with one another whereas they put a number of shortlisted start-ups on showcase and permit them to pitch.

In all, it’s for the help and the group which made me incorporate my firm right here in Glasgow and I stay up for profiting from it.

Fergus Moore is the co-founder of Revive, a start-up which makes use of espresso grounds from eating places and cafés to make merchandise like plant meals. He tells us how Glasgow is for an environmentally pleasant start-up.

Fergus talks to about starting a business in Glasgow

I by no means particularly made the choice to begin a enterprise in Glasgow. It was extra that I wished to begin a enterprise and occurred to reside right here. Nevertheless, in hindsight I’m glad that I do reside right here as there’s a improbable community of entrepreneurs, help and funding on this metropolis.

Getting maintain of funding for an eco enterprise

There’s a enormous quantity of funding and grant help out there to start-ups in Scotland normally. Enterprise Gateway and Scottish Enterprise have been pivotal in getting Revive off the bottom by means of small pots of funding. Revive have simply obtained a big grant from Zero Waste Scotland to get our operations off the bottom right here.

If somebody has an thought that will assist Scotland scale back its waste or carbon emissions, Zero Waste Scotland have grant funds out there that might assist. There are then funding competitions which provide the prospect to win no-strings-attached funding.

Lastly, there’s a robust and ever-growing community of buyers in Scotland searching for new and thrilling enterprise alternatives. All in all, Scotland has an enormous quantity of funding out there.

“There’s a robust and ever-growing community of buyers in Scotland searching for new and thrilling enterprise alternatives”

Beginning off

We’re presently based mostly within the Enterprise Hub on the College of Strathclyde. They provide early stage start-ups, free scorching desking area and collaborative workspaces in addition to a couple of paid places of work.

Then there are a variety of shared workspaces that are a terrific and inexpensive possibility for one-person groups who simply want a desk and Wi-Fi. In addition they are nice for fostering collaboration between start-ups to assist overcome issues. There are additionally a lot of serviced workplace choices in Glasgow.

For a start-up nevertheless, I feel that it’s higher to keep away from the expense of an workplace till it turns into important. I might advocate working from house or in a free area for so long as you probably can.

The expansion of the eco sector

There appear to be increasingly more start-ups with some type of environmental impression facet to them. By way of competitiveness although, I’d say that the majority of those new corporations are showing to resolve particular environmental issues.

With Revive, now we have centered simply on espresso floor waste quite than the broader concern of meals waste or waste normally. This implies there’s loads of area for brand new start-ups to search out their very own little area of interest to arrange and attempt to make an impression. So, whereas the variety of eco start-ups is exploding, I’d say there’s loads of room for extra.

Scottish innovation

In my expertise, there’s a nice group of entrepreneurs in Glasgow. Scotland usually has an unbelievable historical past of innovation and entrepreneurship.

For such a small nation to have had such a big impact all through historical past is really inspiring. The variety of individuals with entrepreneurial spirit in Glasgow I might say is akin to that of Silicon Valley, Berlin, London and any of the opposite prime communities of apply on the earth.

In Glasgow, the College of Strathclyde performs a pivotal position within the entrepreneurial group. They maintain frequent networking occasions; they shout as loud as they will about their spinouts and graduate start-ups.

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