Scottish Business Buzz

Scottish Business Buzz (27.12.17)

Written by Michelle Rodger

Thirteen of the country’s most promising entrepreneurs have pitched their way to a share of a £1.1 million prize in the Scottish EDGE Round 11 Final.

Twenty two finalists, chosen from more than 242 applicants from throughout the country, had just three minutes to pitch their business plans to an expert panel of judges made up of Rob Jones of FanDuel, Jo Bucci of People’s Postcode Lottery, Andy Lothian of Insights, Petra Wetzel of West Brewery and Majella O’Boyle of Royal Bank of Scotland.

Each of the thirteen winners, stood out for their potential to scale quickly and disrupt the market with impressive innovation.

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Annual spending on business research and development in Scotland has exceeded £1 billion for the first time, and employment is at a record high of nearly 12,000.

Data published yesterday by Scotland’s chief statistician reveals business enterprise research and development (BERD) spending totalled £1.072 billion in 2016 – an increase of £98 million on the prior 12 months.

Scotland outperformed the UK over 2016 with this 10.1 per cent growth in BERD expenditure, the corresponding increase in the UK as a whole was 3.3 per cent.

Since 2007, Scotland’s BERD spend had risen by around 69 per cent in real terms, while corresponding expenditure UK-wide had increased by only 22 per cent over the same period.

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Bowhouse, Fife’s new food and drink hub, has welcomed an impressive 15,000 visits to its three food weekends this year and announced a further programme of monthly spring food weekends.

Bowhouse launched its first food weekend in July 2017 and ran subsequent events in September and December. Each market took place over a weekend and attracted an average of 5,000 visitors, making the events one of the region’s top food and drink events. The free-to-attend food weekends included a line up of up to 70 stalls selling food, drink and crafts alongside street food traders, live music and a food demonstration theatre.

Following the success of its food weekends, Bowhouse is announcing a line up of monthly spring markets starting in March 2018.

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The gender pay gap at Clydesdale Bank stands at almost 40%, it has been revealed.

Bosses have pledged to link improvements to gender diversity to executive remuneration after it published its gender pay gap for the first time, revealing that the average hourly pay of female employees is nearly 40 per cent less than that of its male staff.

CYBG, owner of Clydesdale Bank and Yorkshire Bank, said its current gender pay gap sits at 37 per cent, largely driven by the higher number of men than women in senior roles.

The lender had 5,813 permanent full-time equivalent employees at September 30, 63 per cent of whom were female and 37 per cent male.

The figures also show that across the bank as a whole, 63 per cent of the lowest pay quartile are female.

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An increasing number of Scottish adults see themselves starting their own business, according to the latest ‘How Scotland Lives’ research from Bank of Scotland.

Research from Bank of Scotland reveals that 14% of Scots are looking to start up a company on their own or with a partner – an increase of 17% over the last year, and almost equal numbers of men and women expect to start-up in business in the next year;  57% of men and 43% of women are looking to start their own business.

Younger Scots are embracing the entrepreneurial spirit, with more than half of those aged between 18-34 expecting to start their own business, compared to just 8% of those aged over 55.

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Glasgow remains the biggest economy of Scotland’s cities, according to official figures released by the Office for National Statistics.

The ONS found that, while the City of Edinburgh’s economy grew slightly faster, at 4.6 per cent last year, compared to the 3 per cent up in the Glasgow City Council, Glasgow generated more than £20bn of economic output for the first time.

While Glasgow posted a figure of £20.3bn, the capital fell just short of the £20bn mark.

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About the author

Michelle Rodger

Michelle is a former national newspaper journalist who co-founded an award-winning IT business before launching Tartan Cat Communications. A social media and crowdfunding expert she manages media and communications for Business for Scotland.

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