[UK] A company making luxury skincare products from Hebridean seaweed has set its sights on the American spa market as part of ambitious growth plans.
Lewis-based Hebridean Spa hopes to create at least five new jobs through increased sales of its ishga brand in the UK and abroad.
Currently working to meet a spike in orders ahead of this Sunday’s Mothers’ Day, the company has secured an invoice finance facility from bank of Scotland to back its expansion.
The business, which employs 10 people, hand harvests the seaweed and processes it on the island. The skin care products are created by combining the dried, milled seaweed with spring water.
Launched in 2011, the ishga range is supplied to spas and hotels and shops across Scotland and exported to China and the Netherlands.
The finance arrangement, which provides firms with working capital by releasing up to 90% per cent of the value of their invoices, will be used to break into new export markets, including the United States. It will also help fund recruitment and equipment for the company’s production line.
Hebridean Spa founder and director Malcolm Macrae said: “In 2016, our turnover increased by 25% and we are continuing to grow at a fast rate.
“The team at Bank of Scotland shares our enthusiasm for growing our business and have taken the time to tailor a financial facility that is turning our ambitions into a reality.”
In the run-in to Mothers’ Day the company projected a 300% increase in online orders for its products.
Mr Macrae said: “We notice a steep rise in our internet orders at certain times of the year and Mother’s Day is always huge for us. We had a very successful Valentine’s Day last month.”
Lindsay MacLeod, relationship manager at Bank of Scotland, said: “It’s great to see such a unique business take full advantage of one of its busiest trading days.
“The cosmetic industry in Scotland is very innovative and ishga is a great business for us to support.
Photo: Malcolm Macrae, of Hebridean Spa, with Lindsay MacLeod, relationship manager at Bank of Scotland.
Make it a Mother’s Day to remember
View original article at: Mothers’ Day boost for expanding seaweed skincare brand