Scotland's Economy

Scottish Business Buzz (23.11.16)

Written by Rhona Middler

New ethical market launched in time for Christmas in boost to small businesses. 

The Common Market, a new online trading platform to promote small ethical businesses in Scotland has been launched before Christmas.

Commenting on the launch, Campaign Officer for Common Weal Max Wiszniewski, said: “There is a lot of justified feelings of negativity towards 2016 so far but it’s been inspiring to see so many people choosing to get involved in this project. By connecting local, ethical and independent Scottish producers with people around the country, Common Market could become the good news story we need to end the year.”

In an online shopping world dominated by large business, the Common Market aims to create an accessible venue for shopping with small businesses.

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Anderson Construction announces new contracts totalling more than £3m

Despite the much talked about downturn in oil and gas, the Aberdeen firm has secured a variety of new contracts including work transforming the former A C Yule building in Tullos for Simply Self Storage, a conversion of a property in Ellon from office to residential use for Castlehill Housing Association, refurbishment work at the Duthie Park Japanese Pavillion and a substantial new residential property at Burnside, Westhill.

Managing director Kenny Anderson said: “The economic climate is tough in the North-East of Scotland right now but these awards along with our existing workload show that there is a resilience and confidence in the market place going forward. We believe the diversity of work we are involved in is a strength and this along with a workforce of long serving employees provides us with an agility and a skill set that can help us to maximise opportunities as they arise.”

Anderson added: “The work we do is almost always in partnership with local architects, engineers and quantity surveyors with whom we have built positive relationships over the many years since Jim Buchan and I started the business in 1993, these consultants know and understand the needs of Clients as well as the local legislative framework so that, as a team we can deliver projects effectively and efficiently.”

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EU funding for new Scottish tidal energy project

Edinburgh-based Nova Innovation announced the world’s first fully-operational, grid connected offshore tidal array in Shetland in August and has now secured rant funding of €2.25 million (£1.93m) through the European Commission under phase 2 of Horizon 2020’s SME Instrument programme.

It will be a milestone in the long-term commercialisation of tidal energy as a source of predicable renewable power.

Thanking the European Commission for their confidence in the Scottish firm’s technology, Simon Forrest, Nova Innovation managing director said: “We are looking forward to bringing this innovation to a commercial reality so that it can be exported throughout the world.”

Bernd Reichert, unit head of at the Horizon 2020 SME Instrument programme, commented: “We are looking for an elite of highly innovative small and medium-sized businesses that can transform markets and create rapid growth.

“Nova Innovation is a great example of how SMEs can disrupt the market with an innovative idea and the right technology and we are proud to count Nova Innovation in our programme.”

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Converge Challenge programme appoints board of business leaders and academics

A major step forward by the entrepreneurship development programme, the Converge Challenge programme, has been made with the appointment of leading academics and business leaders to the new Strategic Advisory Board.

As well as advising on future funding opportunities, the new board aims to identify the emerging challenges and opportunities for the Scottish entrepreneurial community.

Converge Challenge was established in 2010 for students, recent graduates and academic staff across the higher education sector. Jointly the companies formed within the programme have raised over £37 million of funding through grants, investment and sales, and they employ 158 staff.

“The Converge Challenge programme is instrumental in the creation of world leading products and services which are already making an invaluable contribution towards Scotland becoming a world-leading entrepreneurial nation,” said a spokesperson.

Read more.

Mark Tiffney, of Dynamic Core Studios Clydebank is here to help us lose weight, but not as a quick fix…


Lose Weight Fast – Why all 3 of these words are wrong – Part 3

Hopefully you’ve been following along with the analysis of these 3 little words and understand why they are so toxic.

If you missed the previous 2 posts you can find them here and here.

To finish, let’s review the word “fast”.

Fast versus efficiently is not the same thing. In most aspects of life, we want results and we want them now. The sooner the better right?

Not always.

There’s no point in achievement that doesn’t stick.

If you are looking for a physical change, such as getting leaner, stronger, faster etc, that change is limited by simple physics. You can’t force your body beyond its physiological limits.

What’s your hurry anyway?

Life will go on for quite some time. And the more you look after yourself, the longer that is likely to be.

You are where you are through the choices you have made. How long have you been making poorer choices to get you to a point where you want to change? Do you really think it can be undone in a matter of days just because you really REALLY want it?

As in Part 2, the media has a part to play here. With programs like ‘The Biggest Loser’ and magazines telling you that you can drop 10lbs in a week and playing on our fantasies, the fact is the human body cannot give up more than 2-3lbs in a week, even in optimal conditions, without sacrificing health, causing hormonal damage or cannibalizing muscle tissue. The only caveat to this is a drop in water weight due to a dramatic change in habits. But even that will only happen once, not on a weekly basis.

So if you drop weight quickly, you’ll cause your body’s defenses to kick in. All essential functions will shut down; your metabolism will slow; your mental focus will diminish and you will simply be operating on ‘battery saving mode’. Then, if you then return to eating more or drop your activity level (which is likely as you won’t have as much energy) you are going to be in a worse position than when you started.

The faster you change, the less likely it is to stick. Sometimes slow and steady does actually win the race.

So next time you want to slim down for an event or a holiday, remind yourself, there will be more holidays, there will be other big events, but you only have one body. Look after it, nurture it, remove the panic and work for the long term.

And the next time you think you want to ‘lose weight fast’, hopefully now you’ll think again and re-frame for a more positive, focused and long term goal.


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About the author

Rhona Middler

Rhona was Business for Scotland's Engagement Executive and Events Manager.

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