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Business Gateway reels in success for fishing supplies business 

Donnie Maclean Alec Mackay and Steve Mackay of West Coast Creels

BUSINESS Gateway has helped an Isle of Lewis fishing supplies business grow its operations with funding and new premises secured on the outskirts of Stornoway.

West Coast Creels is a family-owned business established in 2018 that produces high quality crab, lobster and, most recently, prawn creels for the local fishing sector. It also offers a repair and overhaul service for both static and mobile fishing gear. 

The business recently successfully secured new premises after applying to Business Gateway for the lease of a vacant Comhairle-owned unit in Mossend Industrial Estate. This will help the business to grow, as it previously operated from owner Steven Mackay’s home. The business now benefits from a more central location, which has resulted in greater control over production and the delivery of supplies.  

Steven has also recently expanded his product range, adding prawn creels for purchase to his offering. This has allowed the business to access a new market that previously relied on Chinese imported products. Through Business Gateway, Stephen accessed a grant of £2,000 from the COVID-19 Economic Recovery Grant Scheme to allow him to purchase materials and equipment required to assemble prototypes of the prawn creels ahead of full production.  

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Steven Mackay, owner, said, “West Coast Creels is at an exciting stage of its journey, and Business Gateway has been an instrumental partner during this process of growth, giving us valuable 1:1 advice as we set about taking on larger premises.”  

“Business Gateway was vital to our successful application to lease a Comhairle property, which will be a key asset for us as we move forward and develop in the future.”   

Norman MacLean, Business Gateway, said, “We specialise in providing a free, bespoke service for all our clients, ensuring their package of support is catered to their needs.”  

“In this case, we worked with Steven to identify what would help him secure his growth ambitions for his business, and then provided advice and assistance as he applied for funding. With the new premises secured, alongside an expanded product range, I have no doubt West Coast Creels will go from strength to strength over the coming weeks and months.”

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