A SCOTTISH cheesecake company has plans to ramp up sales to trade customers as it prepares to launch a special product in time for Valentine's Day.

The Caledonian Cheesecake Company, which sells more than 2000 slices of its product a week, has enjoyed a rapid rise since opening its first store in Grangemouth in July. It is targeting a maiden turnover of £300,000 after launching a second outlet, in Stirling, in November to keep up with demand. The firm's store in Grangemouth frequently sells out within an hour of opening.

The outlet in Stirling's Springkerse Industrial Park fronts an industrial unit, where a commercial kitchen has also been installed to serve trade customers.

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Business Gateway Falkirk, which provided a £3000 grant to help the company open its first store, helped with the cost of equipment by matching the investment made by owners Martin Merrilees and James King.

Mr Merrilees, who used to work offshore, said: "We supply restaurants, delis, that kind of place.

"We have also just had a meeting with a well-known Scottish hotel chain to supply of four and five star hotels, who want us to supply our cakes to all of its UK business. We have got these kinds of things in the pipeline

"We have got the capacity - we'd obviously need to take on more staff if we got the deal."

While the owners are looking to expand trade business, they are also open to adding further stores. The company, whose recipes created by Mr King feature everything from Lion Bar to Toffee Crisp cheesecakes, has identified Glasgow and Edinburgh as possible locations.

The firm, which attracts customers from as far afield as Essex, Scunthorpe and Northern Ireland, has created a heart-shaped millionaire cheesecake coated in chocolate for Valentine's Day.