This Thursday, the 27th October 2016, Elevator and Business Gateway will exhibit at the huge Granite Expo taking place for the full day at the Hilton Tree Tops Hotel (Springfield Road). 

The event is a great opportunity to showcase the local business talent and network with fellow business representatives, as well as increasing brand awareness and meeting current and prospective clients and customers. You will find us at stand H33 on the day - if you would like any business advice or to ask more about what Elevator and Business Gateway do, please come and say hello!

GraniteExpo2016Logocropped6Within the Elevator and Business Gateway Pavilion at the Granite Expo, we are delighted to be joined by 10 local businesses who have been assisted by Elevator and Business Gateway. 

The businesses featuring in the Elevator and Business Gateway Pavilion are:

  • Pinnacle 
  • Gift Wrapped and Gorgeous 
  • Rebel PT 
  • LUX Decorations: Luxury Window Design
  • The Potting Shed
  • Ballogie estate
  • Westburn & Granite
  • Squad 
  • Beloved 
  • The Aurora Juice Company  

We hear from some of the business owners today about what they hope to gain from the opportunity at the Granite Expo.

Lewis Gray BallogieLewis Gray from Ballogie Estate

We are a diverse business that operates a café and restaurant, holiday cottages, residential and commercial property, fishing, shooting and soon to be a wedding venue.  Our clients range from brides looking for a secluded venue for their wedding or a group of Norwegian fishermen looking for a week fishing and accommodation on one of our fishing beats or a couple coming out from Aberdeen for a lunch and wall around the estate woodlands. 

We are newly approved into the Growth Advisory Support with Elevator & Business Gateway and look forward to any support that is available for the business that will aid us in our expansion plans and creating new business, creating sustainability in our business.

In the last 12 months...

We have opened a 5* self-catering accommodation and a restaurant after a £500K investment into a former hotel.  We are currently working on another property to create an exclusive use wedding and events venue.

We look forward to hosting a stand at the Granite Expo, creating new contacts both for working with other business and customers, gaining brand exposure to inform people who we are and what we do.

Links to website and social media platforms: 

Fiona MacDonald, The Potting Shed

Screenshot 2016 10 24 13.49.17What the Potting Shed does: Fifty shades of green: the new way to spice up and liven up your home and office. 

I help style homes and office with gorgeous green plants which provide a lush and relaxing environment and also clear the toxins from the air. 

I specialise in selling house plants, succulent/cacti terrariums and run terrarium workshops and I welcome commissions.

My target market is those who would love to have plants in their homes and offices following the Scandi-trend for greener indoor spaces. Perhaps you lack the confidence to keep houseplants-I can help with advice and styling.

 Screenshot 2016 10 24 13.49.07

In the last 12 months...

I received a Silver Gilt medal for my display at Dundee Flower and Food festival in September which I was delighted with as it was the first time I had done anything like that.  Thanks to people seeing my display, I have been invited to have a stall at Glamis Castle Christmas Market (businesses usually have to go through a selection process) and I have been invited by Jim Jermyn, organiser of Gardening Scotland to attend the event next year (he was one of the judges at Dundee Flower and Food Festival).  I have also been invited to have stalls at several Christmas fairs as folk have admired my market stall. 

I was delighted to have had an article on keeping houseplants published in the Press & Journal and also a write up about my success about the Dundee Flower & Food Festival.  

I have also been invited to run several workshops and have also collaborated with "Teasel and Tweed" to run a successful workshop there and been invited to host more in the shop. 

I get many commissions for my terrariums. 

I have been assigned a Business Gateway Advisor who has provided me with a whole host of information regarding seminars, opportunities for publicity, relevant courses, relevant websites with suitable information for start-ups and more; so much that I'm yet to make use of a lot of the information. My advisor is also available for me to chat to if I am needing guidance on any issues and has been instrumental in getting me this opportunity to promote my business at the Granite Expo. I have also enjoyed Business Gateway networking events where I have learned about other start-ups and their experience which has been invaluable.  Screenshot 2016 10 24 13.48.38

I look forward to gaining more exposure and publicity from my stand at the Granite Expo and also look forward to the opportunity to network with a wide range of people and businesses. 

Facebook page:


Collette Norval & Candice Tickle – SQUAD 

Collette SQUADSQUAD is a multi-use, tube scarf made specifically for supporters. Protecting you from the elements on match day or on the go, SQUAD gives users the comfort of a seamless, lightweight fit with breathable, wind resistant and quick drying properties. Constructed from 100% anti-bacterial polyester, handmade in the UK and uniquely designed for your team, the SQUAD scarf is the essential accessory for any sports fan.

SQUAD is a product of a small, social start-up with big ambitions. Established in 2016, the idea behind SQUAD was simple - we wanted to create a product that would appeal to the many millions of sports fans around the globe; a versatile, practical and affordable accessory that can be used anywhere in the world, in all conditions. It’s a small clothing accessory that allows fans to be part of something BIG. 

We’re proud to manufacture all of our SQUAD scarves in Aberdeen, Scotland using high-quality materials and a passionate, energetic team. Each one of our SQUAD scarves is individually hand pressed, printed and packed so you can wear yours knowing it was prepared with a little extra TLC. 

We want fans to feel proud to support their team and feel good knowing that they are supporting the awesome things we do as a social business because every time you support your team we support good causes.

We’re all about bringing fans together with a common goal. Our mission is simple; to push the boundaries of the social enterprise, create a global brand and generate millions of pounds for good causes.

Our ideal client/endorsement figure would be – David Beckham! He has the values that we’d love every SQUAD wearer to demonstrate, he’s a sporting icon and…he’s got a pretty good face for modeling our product! 

We have had support from Elevator/Business Gateway from the start of our journey until now. One year on and our idea has become a reality and we are now manufacturing our product. From marketing support to IP advice, to manufacturing guidance – the Elevator and Business Gateway teams have been there every step of the way. Our advisor Gordon is our very own ‘start-up guardian angel’ and is always there to pick us up when things get tough. 

In the last 12 months...

If we could call a rebrand “exciting” then we’d say that, but there are probably better adjectives to describe how we felt about having to come up with a brand new name for our product weeks before our planned launch! However, reflecting on this now when we look at our product and our packaging and how proud we are as a team, it was the best thing that could have happened. On top of that, 6 months into manufacturing we are currently retailing our product within the Official Outlets of some of Scotland’s biggest football clubs including Aberdeen FC, Partick Thistle, Inverness Caledonian Thistle, Ross County & St Johnstone. We’ve also recently signed a license agreement with Scotland Rugby to retail SRU, Glasgow Warriors, and Edinburgh Rugby SQUAD scarves. We also managed to get a SQUAD into the hands of some famous faces including Neil Lennon, HRH Prince Harry, and Sir Alex Ferguson.  

We’re looking forward to introducing the local business community to our product and telling people our story on our stand at the Granite Expo. We’re proud to be manufacturing in Scotland, creating jobs within the city, supporting youth unemployment and generating profit for charity. We’re also excited to demonstrate the many ways to wear and features/benefits of our SQUAD scarves as some people still see them as a “tube of fabric” and aren’t quite sure to do with them. We’re also excited to meet other entrepreneurs and explore how we can work collaboratively with them. 

Links to website and social media platforms:

Facebook -

Twitter - @squadscarf

Instagram – squadscarf

Website –

Fiona Welsh, Beloved                        

Peter Rabbit Nappy Cake 1024x1024Beloved specialises in handmade mother and baby gifts such as nappy cakes, hampers and baby clothes bouquets.  Our collection makes the perfect new baby, maternity leave or baby shower gift. We have recently launched Beloved’s new Christmas range for Baby’s 1st Christmas, where many of our gift ideas feature a Peter Rabbit theme.  We are constantly developing our gift range, and have many keepsake items which make great Christening and Baby’s 1st Birthday gift ideas.  Our clients are usually buying for Mums to be and new-born babies, where they could be buying a gift for a loved one, a friend or work colleague, or for something to take along to a baby shower.  We have also supplied a few businesses who have ordered something special for an employee who is going on maternity leave, which is a great way for companies to show appreciation for their staff.

In the last 12 months...

With thanks to Business Gateway, Beloved received a write up in the P&J shortly after launching.  A few weeks later, we were super excited to see that our popular 3 tier Peter Rabbit nappy cake received a re-tweet from the Official Peter Rabbit @BeatrixPotter Twitter page.  Since launching our website we have had a lot of interest from other boutique websites (including Gift Wrapped and Gorgeous) and gift shops such as Myriad who want to feature our products.

Elevator / Business Gateway have helped me throughout the full process of setting up my business Beloved.  From day one I was assigned a Business Advisor who suggested relevant training courses and seminars to me, which were invaluable.  The team have also helped me to receive assistance through the Prince’s Trust and increased my exposure through networking events and recommending my business to other contacts.  I attend the monthly Women Into Business networking events, as well as a few others, and with Business Gateway’s help, I was featured in an article in the P&J in February.

Links to website and social media platforms:

Amanda Charteris, Gift Wrapped & Gorgeous.Com

BG Abd Amanda Charteris with product from her online business Gift Wrapped GorgeousGift Wrapped & Gorgeous is a tech company which provides a selling platform for designer-makers and artists.  Our ideal clients are designers and artists who are looking to grow their creative businesses online and ideal customers are those who treasure the less ordinary in life.

In the last 12 months...

We've increased our team, pitched for and attended the Scotland Can Do Scale MIT Summer School and secured office space at AbventureZone within Aberdeen University. More recently we have started working with Steve Harrison of Scottish Enterprise in a mentoring capacity and Amanda Boyle OBE in a coaching capacity.

Both Elevator and Business Gateway have opened doors for me to a wealth of expertise to help me grow my business fast and have introduced me to fellow entrepreneurs who will now be friends for life.

Links to website and social media platforms:  

@GiftWrappedandG - Twitter 

@giftwrappedandgorgeous - facebook

giftwrappedandgorgeous - Instagram - LinkedIn - Google Plus  Pinterest

At the Granite Expo, I am hoping to reach out to Corporate Customers and meet potential Investors

Happiness someone a gift! 

Suzanne Christie, The Aurora Juice Company

I run a juicing business with offers a juice preparation service, juice cleanse programmes, one to one consultations and juice workshops.  From January 2017 I will also be providing a commercial service advising businesses how to add juicing to their current services/products.  My current target market is females aged 25-45 looking to lose weight and/or looking for a natural alternative to medication to help with chronic ailments.

In the last 12 months… 

I operated a pop-up juice bar in Inverurie a couple of weeks ago and sold a juice to Alex Salmond who loved it.


I have used Elevator/Business Gateway to help me in setting up my business, I have attended workshops and had sessions with my business adviser which have been invaluable.  The support is fantastic.

Links to your website and social media platforms:

At the Granite Expo, I am looking to create brand awareness, provide information on juicing and how it can benefit absolutely everyone, build relationships with local businesses. 

Tom McAra and Alice McAra, Rebel PT 

Photo of Tom and AliceRebel PT is an outdoor fitness and social club where we try to help people to enjoy being more active. Whether this is through the boot camps or prams in the park classes we run in outdoor local parks or on the weekend events we organise. This can be anything from walking up hills, playing rounders, touch rugby and so much more! Our ideal client is anyone looking to explore and socialise more with awesome people and join the #Rebeloution

So much has been happening in the last 12 months...

from completing the Elevator Accelerator Program. Tom being a finalist in the Elevator awards. Hitting our highest ever amount of members. Having 80+ members take part in The Banchory Beast Race followed by 60+ members at the meal and night out after. 

Elevator's Team has been a great help in business support, especially with networking. They’ve introduced us to so many interesting people who have helped benefit our business, from Personal Trainers who we met at their networking events to discussing financial and business support with people who are in similar situations to us. They also put us in touch with our current accountants, who are great! 

We are looking forward to meeting more awesome people at the Granite Expo stand and trying to inspire more people into adventuring in the great outdoors.  


Lynsey Steele Website 2Lynsey Steele, Pinnacle

Pinnacle delivers Bespoke Software Development to Companies of 50+ employees who currently use software developers from overseas.

We participated in the first cohort of Elevator's Accelerator Programme and have had assistance from being on the Business Gateway Growth Pipeline. With Business Gateway and Elevator we have benefited from invaluable assistance and networking opportunities.  

In the last 12 months… 

We have been working with fantastic start up companies and helping them realise their potential especially Nicole from and Craig from

Links to website and social media platforms: www.pinnaclevl.com, @PinnacleViz, 

We look forward to gaining New Business opportunities and company visibility from our stand at the Granite Expo. 

Brett Jackson Granite PR3

Commenting on preparations for Granite Expo 2016, event creator and managing director of Granite PR, Brett Jackson said: “Granite Expo has, once again, received a very warm reception from the North East business community and we look forward to what promises to be another bumper event.”

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