MORAY IS ONE of the most successful regions in the country in which to start up a new business venture.
That is according to the chair of the economic development and infrastructure committee at Moray Council, Councillor John Cowe, who is welcoming a report from the region’s planning and economic development manager Gordon Sutherland this week.
Amid all the financial doom and gloom that surrounds the newly elected local authority, Mr Sutherland points to over 3000 Small and Medium Enterprises (SMEs) in Moray – many of which are classed as ‘micro-enterprises’ with less than 10 employees.
He says in a report to councillors this week: “The are the life and blood of the local economy from where growth must come. Business Gateway played a key role in supporting new business start-up following the closure of RAF Kinloss and is a key asset to help address economic shocks, such as business closure or changes in the local and national economy.”
Ahead of the start of a process that will see Moray Council awarding loans of up to £100,000 for small firms seeking to establish themselves or expand (part of the Business Loans Scotland scheme), Councillor Cowe said: “The Business Gateway team in Moray is the most successful in Scotland – while the new loans are intended to help firms get an idea off the ground or to help somebody start out.
“I is something we are keen to encourage because success will encourage others – we have got the demand to award them if others cannot. All you need do is look to Batchen Street in Elgin. Every shop there is now occupied – which is a turnaround from a year ago. Elgin is on the up.”