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Entrepreneurial Father and Daughter duo launch Nordic-inspired timber-frame module business

DATE: 17/09/20

COUNCIL AREA: Mid Ulster Council

ENTERPRISE AGENCY: Marketing-NI

BUSINESS ADVISOR: Jarlath Anderson

A father and daughter duo from Co. Tyrone have joined forces during the Coronavirus pandemic to launch a bespoke Scandinavian-style timber cabin business thanks to the Go For It Programme, in association with Mid Ulster District Council.

The Go For It Programme is part funded by Invest Northern Ireland and the European Regional Development Fund under the Investment for Growth and Jobs Northern Ireland (2014-2020) programme.

Johnson and Laura Irwin from Dungannon launched Noble Spaces in July 2020 after spotting a gap in the market for a manufacturer of high quality, energy efficient turn-key Scandinavian timber modules for residential and commercial purposes to customers across the United Kingdom and Ireland.

Talking about the idea for the business, Laura Irwin, Co-Owner of Noble Spaces said: “I spent time in Denmark as part of my degree and noticed that most people lived in timber modular units.  I completely fell in love with their way of life and how they build their homes.  Everything is so highly beautifully crafted, energy efficient and incredibly versatile.

“This planted the seed for the business idea, but it wasn’t until my sister couldn’t find a local supplier of premium turn-key timber log cabins, that my father and I noticed a gap in the market and developed the idea for Noble Spaces built upon these Nordic values.

“With my Fathers extensive knowledge within the building trade and mine in marketing as well as my eye for design, we knew we would make a really great team.  We have been able to bring together our individual strengths as well as our passion for great design to create homes and spaces we are both so proud of.”

Laura and Johnson turned their vision into a reality after taking part in the Go For It Programme, which is delivered free of charge by a team of experienced business mentors through Northern Ireland’s wide network of enterprise agencies. The Go For It Programme provides expert advice and help with developing a robust business plan to help turn ideas into a commercial enterprise.

Commenting on her experience of the Go For It Programme, Laura said: “We started the Go For It Programme face-to-face, but when the Covid 19 pandemic hit, we continued the programme virtually via phone calls, email and video conferencing.  The transition was seamless and our business advisor was excellent at ensuring we had all the time and resources we needed.”

“The business advisor really helped us develop our business proposition and put it all into a very detailed business plan, which also included financial forecasting for the first two years of trading.  There are so many things to consider when starting a business, many of which we hadn’t considered until consulting the Go For It programme.  Their advice was really invaluable – we couldn’t believe it was free.”

Chair of Mid Ulster District Council, Councillor Cathal Mallaghan, congratulates new business Noble Spaces, he said, “Johnston and Laura are a great example of the entrepreneurial spirit we have in Mid Ulster. Even in the current difficult circumstances there are still opportunities out there and the Council is delighted to help businesses like Noble Spaces get started. I wish them every success for the future, and would like to encourage anyone with a business idea to get in touch.”

Jarlath Anderson, Go For It Business Advisor with Marketing-NI on behalf of Mid Ulster District Council, said; “I was delighted to be able to advise Laura and Johnson in the start-up stage of their business.  They had a really clear vision for what Noble Spaces was going to be and so working with them to finalise the finer details was a fantastic experience.”

“We assisted Laura and Johnson to develop their business plan, drawing all individual elements together, completing a full financial forecast allowed us to determine the potential for the business.  I am delighted that Noble Spaces is up and running and look forward to seeing their cabins become the staycation holiday of choice across the country in the not too distant future.”

We started the Go For It Programme face-to-face, but when the Covid 19 pandemic hit, we continued the programme virtually via phone calls, email and video conferencing.  The transition was seamless and our business advisor was excellent at ensuring we had all the time and resources we needed

If you have a business idea you’d like to develop or if you are thinking about starting a business contact the Go For It Programme on 0800 027 0639 or visit: www.goforitni.com.

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