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A Brief Introduction to Starting a Business In Glasgow
30 May 2019
It’s no secret that here at Stelmain we think Glasgow is a fantastic place to run a business – we’re doing it, after all! And our raison d'être is offering other businesses the outstanding spaces they need to flourish here just as we have. Glasgow is the Scottish city that has the most new start-ups yearly – so if you’ve recognised the excellent business potential this location has, you’re far from alone.
Where to begin on your Glasgow business journey, though? Here are some of our top tips for getting that killer enterprise off the ground in Scotland’s most populous city.
Plan, Plan and Plan Some More
No matter where you intend to start a business, having a business plan with clear goals is always going to be one of the first steps to success. If you’re setting up shop (or gym, or restaurant, or law firm, or yoga studio, or whatever your business may be) in Glasgow, there are some excellent resources out there to help with this stage.
Business Gateway and Scottish Enterprise are two Scotland-centric, government-run service that can help to point you in the right direction. In particular, Business Gateway’s free Planning to Start service can help you build a picture of your business aims, along with recommending relevant services and resources suitable for your Glasgow location.
Get Your Hands on All the Funding You Can
There are a lot of different Scotland-specific and Glasgow-specific funding sources out there for those planning to start a new business. A good place to start looking for options is on the Glasgow Life website, which provides a good round-up of funding you may be eligible for.
You might also want to start by looking into the New Business Start-Up Grant, which could provide your new business with as much as £1,000, either before you launch or within your first six months of trading.
What else is out there? Well, there’s the West of Scotland Loan Fund. Through this initiative you could receive up to £30,000 for your SME. The Glasgow New Business Fund, meanwhile, can help reduce your costs by subsidising your rent.
In short, there’s a lot to choose from – and a good few of these funding options are only open to Glasgow businesses.
Find the Perfect Office or Commercial Space
Getting your office or commercial space just right is often key to getting your business off the ground. The best location for your business depends on the products or services you’ll be offering, of course, but there are a few things you’ll probably want to consider no matter what. Would a grand historic building or a sleek modern one better suit your brand? Do you need a serviced office space or do you prefer to do your own thing? Does capitalising on the affluence of the West End make sense for your business, or would you be better off making a name for yourself in the busy city centre?
If you’re in the market for some new staff, it’s hard to think of a better place to find them than Glasgow. The exceptional Glasgow School of Art means the city is a hive of creative talent across everything from web design to fashion to illustration to architecture, and a lot more besides. And unlike many other university towns, a large proportion of students who study at Glasgow School of Art and other Glasgow universities choose to stay on and build their careers here once their courses have finished – meaning you have a huge pool of potential employees to draw on.
Glasgow’s higher education institutes don’t just churn out outstanding creative minds, either. Between the prestigious University of Glasgow and Strathclyde University and Glasgow Caledonian University’s focus on building valuable vocational and technical skills, you’re sure to find everyone you need for your perfect team here.
Connect with the Entrepreneur Community
Glasgow has a flourishing network of businesspeople whose experience and support you can benefit from. One simple way of tapping into this network is by joining Entrepreneurial Scotland. This Glasgow-based organisation provides a means for Scottish entrepreneurs to connect and support one another. Membership will also help keep you in the loop when it comes to new funding initiatives and other opportunities that could benefit your business. What are you waiting for?
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