Two brothers who came up with a plan to go into business together while on a 24-hour hike in the Brecon Beacons, say setting up was no mountain to climb, thanks to the long-term support they received from Welsh enterprise support specialist, Business in Focus.
Sam and Charlie Lewis now run Fit My Floor, in Newport, with the brothers making initial plans for the company when they made the challenging trek together and started talking about their ambitions for the future, to help pass the time.
“The idea for Fit My Floor started when Sam and I did a 100k walk through the Brecon Beacons for 24 hours straight – we walked day and night. Because of the distance, we were bored to death and all we did was talk. And we came up with the idea of starting our own flooring shop.”
Sam was already in the industry and was adept at sales, while Charlie was at university, so the pair decided to pool their talents and set up together.
Getting past the initial hurdle of finding suitable finance was actually quite straight forward, says Sam:
“The Business in Focus name kept coming up when we did our research online into ways of financing start ups. So we looked on the website and they offered small loans for people like ourselves, so we got in touch and set up a meeting.
“The biggest selling point for us with Business in Focus was the personal touch. They came to our home towns and met up with us on a few occasions and for me and Charlie, with ours being a family business, it felt right and it worked really well.”
Craig Tamplin, a Business Advisor from Business in Focus, which has offices throughout South Wales, said:
“It is always pleasing to see fledging businesses blossom, and family businesses such as this one do so much to enhance their local communities.
“Business in Focus helps lots of new businesses every year bring their ideas to fruition, then find their feet, and thrive. From experience, we know that the way to build stable SMEs with the potential for longevity is to make sure those businesses have the long term support they need. So we do more than offer Start Up Loans – we are on hand to give real support and mentoring on the practicalities and processes of running a new business. We are very happy to be a delivery partner for the Start Up Loan Company and appreciate the extra support the service provides during that crucial first year.”
“Getting the Start Up Loan enabled us to create what we have here and a year down the line we are now running a very successful family business. It’s really exciting to think what we have made and what we are going to have for the future, for all of us.”
Business in Focus can provide assistance with funding options, a business plan, business forecasting, market research, and legal compliances, even offering premises with flexible terms – all the necessary foundations that can make the difference between success and failure for a start-up business.