Safetray is Business Comment's featured start-up

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Q: Tell us a bit about your business?

A: Safetray Products Ltd is a joint venture between myself and Glasgow product design consultancy Fearsomengine (headed up by Alan Suttie). We have created a series of innovative products for the global hospitality industry to solve the problem of service trays toppling over when nudged or if the balance is upset. The products are all designed to make the cost, danger and embarrassment of toppled trays a thing of the past.


Q: What gives your business ‘the x-factor’?

A: We know we are on to something special when people say, “I can’t believe no-one has thought of this before.”


Q: What motivated you to set up in business for yourself?

A: When I was a young child I used to say that I would be an inventor when I grew up. I never break a promise.


Q: What do you like most about working for yourself?

A: I enjoy the challenge and diversity of running a company. I never stop learning and have met many inspirational innovators along the way.


Q: What has been your greatest success to date?

Joining forces with Fearsomengine was a turning point for me. Their inventive thinking combined with commercial nous has provided significant power behind this venture. Additionally, being accepted on to Scottish Enterprise’s High Growth Pipeline against stiff competition has reinforced our belief that we are on to a winner.


Q: What has been your lowest moment?

A: The legal process required to form a JVCo forces you to focus on worst case scenarios before you’ve even started. I’m very thankful to our lawyers, MBM Commercial, for guiding us through that process.


Q: In terms of business achievements, where do you want to be within the next 5 years?

A: The Safetray Poise has been described as ‘disruptive technology’. As such, we intend to become the industry standard throughout the globe within the next five years.


Q: What would be your top tip to someone thinking of starting up their own business?

A: Never feel shy to tap into the knowledge of those who have been there before. You don’t have to agree with every piece of advice you ever get, but it’s vital that you listen and build up a picture of what works and what doesn’t.

Posted on May 31, 2010 .