City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

City Guide to Edinburgh, Scotland

Edinburgh Company shortlisted for Best New business UK Start -Up Awards

By Editor - Posted on 21 September 2009


20-year-old man who runs a jam business has outperformed thousands of entrepreneurs
to reach the National Shortlist of the 2009 HSBC Start-Up Stars Awards.

The national contest, now in its ninth
year, recognises, supports and celebrates the initiative and dedication shown
by new businesses in the UK.

Fraser Doherty, who started SuperJam,
is now hoping to scoop the top title and a cheque for £25,000, courtesy of

20-year-old Fraser from Edinburgh
started making jam at the age of 14 using his Irish grandmother's secret
recipes.  After several years of experimenting with different methods of
his own, Fraser developed a recipe made entirely from fruit and fruit juice
producing a healthier and better tasting jam.

In January 2007, aged just 18, the young entrepreneur started
his company SuperJam and by March that year Fraser became the youngest ever
supplier to a major supermarket chain when his range was launched in Waitrose

SuperJam now supplies most of the major chains in the UK,
including Tesco, Asda, Sainsbury's and Morrisons, and remains the number
one brand of jam in Scottish Waitrose stores.  Fraser is now working
towards expanding overseas.

During the set-up of the business, Fraser received financial
support from the Prince's Scottish Youth Business Trust and also
benefited from mentoring from several successful and experienced business
experts.  And the supermarkets themselves have supported the development
process by giving advice and feedback throughout.

Despite initial production problems, SuperJam now operates
from a modern jam making plant and the company is producing around 40,000 jars
a month.  Containing no artificial additives, the jams are cooked for less
time at a reduced temperature, resulting in products that have a more natural
flavour and are lower in calories and sugar content.

The company runs SuperJam Tea Parties for lonely elderly
people from care homes or sheltered housing and last year hosted over 100
events across the UK. 
The parties are attended by up to 500 guests and are growing in popularity
every month.

SuperJam has its own successful website boasting up to 10,000
visitors per month, as well as a popular ‘blog', FaceBook page and
a newsletter with over 2,000 subscribers.

Consumer loyalty has made SuperJam the fastest-growing brand
in its sector, with sales increasing by 200-300 per cent year on year. 
The company now sells more than 500,000 jars a year and has gained the accolade
of being exhibited in the Museum
of Scotland as an
‘iconic Scottish brand'.

Fraser has gained extensive media coverage, with appearances
on GMTV, ‘This Morning', BBC Breakfast and Sky News, as well as
being the subject of a television documentary on Channel 4.

SuperJam is one of 25 companies to secure
a place on the National Shortlist. Their entry will now be considered by the
national judging panel who will select the top 10 start-up companies to come to
London and
convince them why they should be named the ‘Start-Up Star 2009'.

There will also be £10,000 cheques for the
best new business trading internationally, the best new Green business putting
the environment at the top of its agenda and the best new business set up by a

All entrants currently have access to a support
programme and networking opportunities through HSBC's Business Network.
This month's webinar tackles the issue of intellectual property with four
panellists, including Sebastian Conran (Director, Conran &
Partners' product and graphic design), Jim Shaikh (Managing Director,
Feed Me Bottles and Intelligent Fluid Solutions Ltd.), Denise Nurse (Halebury)
and Katharine Hamnett (Fashion Designer). Previous
webinars in this series have covered topics such as marketing, cash flow and social
enterprise. You can view previous webinars by visiting

Head of Business Banking for HSBC, Huw Morgan, said: "HSBC Start-Up Stars
is about demonstrating by practical example that with the right help and
support, there are still opportunities out there for people with the dedication
and will to succeed.

"We hope the success of SuperJam in
this year's Awards will help it go from strength to strength, as well as
prove to other budding entrepreneurs that business dreams really can be turned
into reality."

Start-Up Stars supporter, Google, will be
offering £11,000 worth of free advertising plus mentoring at Google's UK
headquarters, to be split between the four winners.

Specialist Business Partner, Start Your
Business, will also be offering a year's free subscription to each of the
category winners.

The overall Winner will be revealed at a
black-tie gala dinner at London's
InterContinental Hotel on November 23rd.

Other supporters are Sky News, the NCGE
(National Council for Graduate Entrepreneurship), The British Library and The
Carbon Trust.

For more information  please call Gemma Ryan or

Katie Ellerker at Aspect
Communications on 020 8673 2020 /
07984 527285