Sir Tom Hunter has announced his Hunter Foundation’s is to launch a Pre-scaler programme, which has been especially designed for a new generation of entrepreneurs.

“This is for early stage businesses coming out of Scottish Edge or, indeed, anywhere else in Scotland because the early stage is most certainly their hardest time,” said Sir Tom.

“It’s the loneliest time for the entrepreneur and it’s the hardest time. So you can apply through the Hunter Foundation website for early-stage pre-scaling.

“What we’re going to do to help you is offer full ‘wraparound services’. So we’re going to help you network, we’re going to help you find other people for peer-to-peer support and learning.

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“So, if you’re sitting there thinking: ‘Oh, I don’t know how to deal with this!’, you’ll meet someone and you’ll learn how to solve problems. That’s absolutely invaluable.

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“Next we’re going to get you together down at our HQ in Blair Estate, where you can listen to speakers, people who’ve ‘been there, done it’.

“We’re going to get Lord Willie Haughey to join this group – and it’s completely free of charge – and we are all going to listen and learn.

“At the end of it all, we’ll ask one another: ‘Was that worth it? Do we want more of this? Do we need less of that?’”

Up to 20 pre-scaling businesses will be selected for the first cohort by four judges, Chris van der Kuyl, Principal of Chroma Ventures; Ana Stewart, Partner at EOS Advisory; Evelyn McDonald, CEO of Scottish EDGE and Ewan Hunter, CEO of THF.

“This is, of course, in addition to the Scale Up Scotland and the Scale Up 2.0 initiatives,” said Sir Tom, “so please apply. Please come and see us and let us help you.”