Coffee firm brewing up plans to double size of business

O&E Coffee-3

A coffee roasting company is brewing up plans to double the size of the business.

Denbigh-based Owen & Edwards will be one of the star attractions at an event to promote the food and drink industry in Denbighshire.

Another role model at the A Taste for Local networking event  at Llangollen Pavilion on Wednesday March 9 will be Ruthin-based Patchwork Pate which is about to launch the UK’s only dairy-free chicken parfait.

The aim of the event being organised by Denbighshire County Council is to give people involved in the hospitality and tourism industries the chance to mingle with some of the county’s top local producers.

It’s being held as part of Denbighshire Business Month starting on March 2 and people wanting to attend can do so via the website Denbighshire.gov.uk/marchforbusiness

Richard and Rhian Cattell launched Owen & Edwards a year ago and have since built up a solid customer base at cafes and restaurants across the Clwydian Range area.

After investing around £20,000 in state of the art coffee roasting equipment they are now aiming to brew up even more success by doubling the size of their business with an expanded range of products and a much larger number of sales outlets.

Rhian said: “We’re both coffee lovers and decided to start the business as something we could do and enjoy together.

“We developed Owen & Edwards with a coffee roasting business owned by my husband’s family in Devon and they have given us lots of help with it.

“We came up with our own blend called Espresso No.1 and began distributing the coffee around the Denbigh area.

“We gradually developed our range to include blends called Famau, after the mountain, and Hiraethog after the moorland above Denbigh, along with a decaf.

“We are doing well with our local customers but have decided to step things up by making a major investment in a roaster, which is now installed at our base on the Denbigh Industrial Estate.

“This now gives us the ability to expand into other areas such as Llangollen and Wrexham and to double the number of places where our products are on sale. We’ll also be looking to expand our range of blends.”

Rhian added: “We both have other part time jobs – myself with a housing association and Richard as a project manager – and cover the coffee business between us during the week.  But we’re now getting to the stage where it can support more of our time, which is great news”.

“We’re really looking forward to the networking event in Llangollen where we’re hoping to get some fresh business opportunities and meet new customers.”

Also eager to meet new people to do business with at the March 9 event is Rufus Carter from Patchwork Paté.

Rufus said: “The dairy-free chicken parfait is designed to appeal to the growing `free-from’ market – free from wheat, sugar and dairy.

“The parfait is traditionally a smooth pate made with 60 per cent butter. But we’ll be using a machine developed for the paint industry to inject vegetable oils into the recipe.

“We began to develop the new product in January and it is due to be launched in April.

“From our point of view meeting potential new customers at the Llangollen networking day is a fantastic opportunity and we’re looking forward to being there.”

Another Denbighshire based business saying cheers to the event is former computer software programmer Alyn Ashworth, founder of Denbigh Brewery, or Bragdy Dinbych in Welsh.

He said: “I produce a range of beers including a light and hoppy bitter called John the Thumbs, a brown ale called Earl’s Folly, Goblin Tower, which is a ruby mild, a seriously strong ale and a lager.

“I also do occasional beers like Christmas Ale and another called Plum Ale, which uses and celebrates the distinctive type of plums that the Denbigh area has long been famous for.

Alyn added: “I usually show off my products at events like beer festivals and local food markets, so I’m looking forward to the networking opportunity at Llangollen because I’m a small company with big ideas.”

Among the guest speakers at the event will be TV hill farmer Gareth Wyn Jones who will issue as rallying cry for better networking  between food suppliers and producers.

Carolyn Brindle, Denbighshire council’s lead officer for Business Support and Local Growth, said by embracing local produce, restaurants could make their businesses distinctive.

“If a place wants to be chosen as a destination then it has to have a unique and distinct offer,” she said.

“Everything from edible flowers, through to bread, beer, meat, ice cream, cider, cheese, whole food bars and much, much more is made in Denbighshire.”

Carolyn said March for Business month was designed to help businesses help themselves.

“It features a mixture of speakers, workshops, one-to-one advice and networking covering subjects such as HR and employment and social media over the course of the month,” she said.

“One particular focus is on promoting our food and drink offer.

“We have a number of great producers in the county and we would like to see more B&Bs, retail and hotels using this produce when they refresh their menus, for example.”

A Taste for Local will start at 10.30am and finish at 1.30pm, at Llangollen’s International Pavilion, on Wednesday March 9. People wanting to attend can book their place at Denbighshire.gov.uk/marchforbusiness  or ring Janet Turner on 01824 706896.  Places are free but space is limited.

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World renowned ceramic specialists on the march to China via Denbighshire

Craig Bragdy FAIRMONT

A director of the world’s leading ceramic mural specialists has hailed Denbighshire as a “great place to do business” after clinching their first big contract in China.

Nick Powell, of Denbigh-based Craig Bragdy Design, is backing Denbighshire Business Month in March which aims to highlight what the county has to offer companies and help attract inward investment.

He told how the company had secured its first sizeable contract in mainland China which will involve the creation of an intricate water fountain within a five-star gated private community residence near Beijing.

The 60-year-old businessman, who runs the company with his brother Shon and mother Jean, is encouraging businesses to get behind the March for Business initiative – a month-long Denbighshire County Council event launching on March 2.

Craig Bragdy is now bringing its unique skills and high-quality craftsmanship to countries such as Malaysia, India, Texas, Florida and New York. It has recently employed two new salesmen to oversee the many international enquiries it receives.

“We travel a lot but technology is fantastic and we have a brilliant broadband connection to promote our company via our website,” said Nick, who has lived in Denbigh since early childhood.

“Connecting to top class architects and landscape designers across the world is relatively simple because of the internet. We don’t have to be based in London or New York – Denbighshire is the ideal place for us particularly as we have the Manchester airport hub so close by.

“We’ve now just finished a big job in Malaysia building big swimming pools for private clients and another in Singapore. We’re really accelerating the effort we’re putting in.”

The company’s impressive work, which has attracted wealthy clients the world over, is hugely varied and ranges from swimming pools and wall murals to water fountains and spas.

Nick urged firms to take advantage of the free resources and seminars available during Denbighshire’s March for Business events.

“There’s support available in different ways and everybody is very proactive, especially for manufacturing and technology industries.”

“If new companies come to this territory then they will be offered help and support from the Council and the Welsh Government without question,” he said.

Carolyn Brindle, the council’s lead officer for Business Support and Local Growth, said March for Business had been designed to help businesses help themselves. It features a mixture of speakers, workshops, one-to-one advice and networking covering subjects such as HR and employment and social media over the course of the month.

“The sessions in a wider sense have been shaped by the results of our annual business survey,” she said.

“One of the questions we asked was about what training or help local firms needed and the March events are designed to address these needs.

Mike Horrocks, Economic and Business Development  Manager at Denbighshire County Council, said there were currently 16 high priority projects focusing on developing the economy in Denbighshire over the next five to ten years. There are  six key priorities for action, signed off by business organisations::

  • building the right infrastructure for business growth
  • supporting and connecting the business community
  • exploiting opportunities for growth by strengthening sectors such as advanced manufacturing, food production and energy and environment technologies
  • developing a high-quality and skilled workforce
  • creating vibrant towns and communities to attract new businesses
  • promoting Denbighshire as a great place to do business

“These key priorities are the building blocks to creating a healthy, balanced economy,” said Mike Horrocks. “One where we see business growth leading to an increasing number of well paid jobs and the overall number of people in work going up.

“It’s a long-term strategy that will benefit future generations but there are practical improvements in a number of areas already, particularly around digital infrastructure, where we’ve seen nearly 4,500 premises connected to superfast broadband in the last eight months.

“We’re working with businesses who are coming in, setting up and bringing new jobs with them, and helping  local people access those jobs in order to improve their household incomes.”

Mike Horrocks added the council and its partners were also taking simple steps to get employers into schools to talk to pupils, challenge them with mock interviews and to talk to them about what skills employers are looking for in the future.

Register for: March for Business

Better Business for All

Listen to how food officers from the Public Protection team helped businesses in Denbighshire to save time, money and grow their operations.

Visit our Better Business for All webpage here to find out more about how the Planning and Public Protection service can help your business to thrive and how to get in touch.

The Public Protection team will be at the A Taste for Local and Open for Business events during March 2016 to book your place and find out more information visit
March for Business.

March For Business

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Denbighshire’s March for Business runs from March 2 to March 22 2016 with several events on offer for new and existing businesses. These events are as a direct response to the issues and needs raised by businesses in the 2015 Business survey.

The events will cover topics including Finance and Funding, Recruitment, Social Media, Public Relations and  1-2-1 advice and support.

Our ‘A Taste for Local’ event in Llangollen will showcase a wide range of food and drink producers and buyers, key note speakers such as TV’s Gareth Wyn Jones and practical advice and support from Visit Wales and Denbighshire’s Public Protection.

Other events include an Employment focused Business Breakfast, Finance & Funding Networking Lunch and Social Media for Beginners.

To register for any of these events please visit: www.denbighshire.gov.uk/marchforbusiness

Click for Full programme of events

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