Sitting on a beach in Vietnam, Amy Richards had a flash on inspiration about her future career.
The experienced hairdresser realised there was a need for a wholesaler of beauty products in the North Gwent area, and a few months later The Warehouse Hair and Beauty Supplies was born.
Based in a newly refurbished store in Barleyfield Industrial Estate in Brynmawr, she stocks a wide range of hair and beauty products, for hairdressers and beauticians, selling mainly within a five mile radius.
“The idea came to me as a brainwave,” she said. “I was on holiday on the beach in Vietnam and I suddenly had the idea and started working out the costs of setting it up.”
Amy had previously worked as a hairdresser in the Ebbw Vale and Abertillery areas for 17 years, and is now delighted to have her own business and premises. The store opened earlier this year and the signs are good as the reputation of the business grows.
“People like the convenience of the location and the personal service I can offer. The response so far has been very encouraging,” she said.
The business was supported by the Kickstart programme run jointly by Tata subsidiary UK Steel Enterprise and Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council. A grant of £750 helped Amy buy a till and other equipment.
Kim Robinson of UK Steel Enterprise said ”Amy’s new venture will help to keep business local to the area and provide a convenient service for the local beauty and hairdressing trade and we wish her well.”
Jim McIlwee, Deputy Leader and Executive Member for Economy, Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council said:
“The Warehouse Hair and Beauty Supplies is one of many businesses that the Council has supported through grant funding to help, support and grow the business community. I wish the business every success. The programme assists local businesses to expand and develop and I would encourage local enterprises to get in touch with the Council’s Economic Development Unit for advice and further information.”
Sarah Jeremiah of Blaenau Gwent County Borough Council added “Amy has worked tirelessly to achieve her ambition and the Kick Start grant support has been able to assist in helping Amy establish a demand led business that is able to support many other local businesses in the Blaenau Gwent area. We wish her every success!