Well that was an eventful few days!
We have been preparing for CREATE, a business competition organised by the Highlands and Islands Centre for Enterprise and Innovation. We were asked to present to a panel of four judges (Simon Cowell wasn’t one of them) all about Beach Craft Spirits, to be in the running for a wad of cash.
And we did you and ourselves proud.
We competed against 15 other businesses and it was nerve wracking to say the least.
The pitch went really well, we engaged with the panel and the room was full of excitement about the Beach Craft Spirits project. After the presentation we had an important decision to make…
Burger King or KFC for lunch??? Burger King won and we had full bellies again. You see once we had pitched we had an excruciating wait until the evening – which was where we would find out whether we had been successful or not.
At the award ceremony which was also held at the UHI campus in Inverness we felt ever so slightly underdressed in our business hoodies and our unique style, but anything more we wouldn’t have been genuine to ourselves. It was also a great opportunity to continue to get our brand out there.
We heard from some fantastic speakers, Roz Thomas and Neil Stewart from the UHI. Anna Renouf, a previous finalist inspired the room with her talk on her innovation and how her business had grown.
The keynote speaker was Sam Faircliff from Cairngorm Brewery Co. and she gave a glorious insight into their expansion. Her honesty about how everything isn’t always a smooth ride and that there are ups and downs along the way was reassuring but she also illustrated how through hard work and dedication, things can succeed.
So on to the main reason why we all gathered in a lecture theatre on a cold and blustery Thursday evening. The Prize giving…
As part of the competition, 132 entries were narrowed down to just 15, and Beach Craft Spirits was one of them! An achievement in itself. Competition was strong, and there were entries from a number of worthy projects.
From an Aviemore tourist attraction of adventure, to an underwater experience bringing the whole underwater life of the world to the coast of Mull. Safety innovations for mountain bikers, social enterprise schemes, Chinese language projects as well as one helping the deaf, deafened and deafblind people better access to services.
All the competition winners were worthy of their awards and here is the EPIC news…
Beach Craft Spirits won a prize of £500 for the best presentation of the evening. We were so excited and humbled by achieving this. After putting in tireless hours, it was good to get recognition from some business experts.
Kudos to Rachel Parker who picked up the main prize of the evening with her business idea of high quality gluten free bakes. They were delicious.
After all the photos were taken and the smiles had relaxed, we had wonderful chats with guests and delegates attending, picking up some very useful contacts. Something that will be able to help the future growth of Beach Craft Spirits.
So what we going to do with our prize of the evening? It will go towards finalising the label concepts into production labels as well as extra fermentation capacity for keeping up with demand.
It’s good to see others getting behind us and realising that its #aShoreThing