The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

The Elite Ayrshire Business Circle

Thursday, 13 June 2013

Ayr Racecourse offers top racing, glamour and entertainment at Scottish Sun Raceday

By: Iain Ferguson

SCOTTISH Sun Raceday, one of the highlights of the season at Ayr Racecourse, takes place on Saturday 22 June and promises to a great day out with some spectacular racing, fabulous entertainment and more than a hint of glamour.

Racing wise the highlight of the seven race card is the Scottish Sun/ E.B.F. Land O’Burns Fillies Stakes, a Listed Race over five furlongs with £40,000 up for grabs.

The first race is the Scottish Sun Miss Scotland Handicap at 2.25 pm with the final contest, The Arnold Clark Fillies’ Handicap Stakes at 6.00 pm.

Immediately after racing there is some terrific entertainment including a disco in the Ayrshire Suite.

The day also sees the launch of the famous Ayr ladies competition with several lucky ladies winning a bronze coin which guarantees them a place in Ladies Day Final on Friday 20 September.

The star prize this year is a Vauxhall Adam Jam 1.4 with an ‘Urban Pack’ ‘Intellinik Infotainment System’ in white with ‘I’ll be black roof’, courtesy of Kerr & Smith.

There will be a total of 24 ladies in the final and each will draw the name of a horse running in the William Hill Ayr Bronze Cup that day with the lucky lady who picks the winner driving off in the car.

Runners up prizes are a fantastic holiday courtesy of Stewart Travel and Laser treatments in the form of a photofacial or a non ablative skin re-surfacing package by The Coast Clinic, Ayr.

There will also be a Best Dressed Man competition on Scottish Sun Raceday with £300 of Slaters Vouchers going to the winner. For more information on racing go online at or call 01292 264179

For further information please contact Iain Ferguson on 01292 294972 or 07795565691.

Ayr Racecourse and the associated Western House Hotel are Founder Members of the Elite Ayrshire Business Circle.

Wednesday, 12 June 2013

Community groups want to rebuild belief and confidence in Kilmarnock

A wide-ranging group of local organisations and businesses attended a special ‘conversation’ with The Klin Group on ambitious proposals to regenerate the site of the former Diageo bottling plant in Kilmarnock.

[Pictured: Marie Macklin, CEO of The Klin Group.]

Attendees were asked to help shape the future of the Hill Street site in a special evening at Centrestage. Participants were drawn from Ayrshire-based sports, educational, cultural and other community groups and local manufacturing, service and retail businesses – all to hear first-hand about The Klin Group’s initial thoughts for transforming the now vacant site.

The Klin Group’s proposals are community-based in education, health, community sports and culture, with an opening-roof arena that would provide a year-round, town centre venue for sporting, conferencing and entertainment events.  The development would feature premises and facilities for enterprise, entrepreneurs and start-up businesses, driving a new economy for Kilmarnock and East Ayrshire but serving a much wider area with components that would be unique in Scotland.   

Marie Macklin, CEO of The Klin Group, said:  “I’m thrilled that so many people came along to our special ‘conversation’ event and shared their views.  We believe that ambitious, bold proposals are needed to help build confidence and create something that really puts Kilmarnock on the map.

“We were delighted with the warm response to our initial concepts and we had a wealth of positive and constructive feedback, and lots and lots of ideas. What came across loud and clear was that this has to be a community-based transformation; it has to be something that helps make Kilmarnock a unique destination, and it must be iconic in a way that local people have real belief in the town’s potential and shows that Kilmarnock is looking to the future with confidence.”

“Those who came along contributed fully to the conversation and we value that input enormously.  We have listened carefully to all of the feedback and it will inform our thinking going forward. This is just the beginning – we will continue to engage the local community, local and national businesses - and this dialogue will be crucial to the success of the project.”

The Klin Group has an exclusivity agreement with Diageo, the current owners, in order to come forward with plans to redevelop the land at Hill Street.  

The Klin Group, established in 1988, is a privately owned entrepreneurial investment company based in Kilmarnock. The company focuses on regeneration initiatives in Scotland and in prop

Tuesday, 11 June 2013

Sharpest increase in Scottish business activity since April 2011

* Growth of output hits 25-month high
* Faster increases in new work and employment
* Input price inflation weakest since June 2012

Latest PMI data from Bank of Scotland showed a marked improvement in the health of the private sector economy north of the border. May saw solid and accelerated increases in both output and new work inflows at Scottish businesses, as well as the fastest rise in employment for over a year. Input price inflation meanwhile weakened to an 11-month low, though output prices rose to the greatest extent since last September.

[Pictured: Donald MacRae, Chief Economist at Bank of Scotland.]

Growth of private sector business activity in Scotland accelerated to a robust pace in May, and one that was the fastest since April 2011. This was signalled by the Bank of Scotland PMI posting 54.4, up from 53.1 in April. Both factory production and service sector business activity rose at faster rates, the sharpest in 12 and 13 months respectively. The pace of economic expansion was broadly in line with the average across the UK as a whole.

Behind the overall increase in output north of the border was a further improvement in new work inflows. The level of new business has now increased for six months running, and the latest rise was the most marked in over two years.

Stronger demand across domestic markets was the main factor underlying growth of new business, as new export orders placed with manufacturers fell fractionally on the month.

In line with the improved trends in both output and new business, the pace of job creation at Scottish firms quickened to the fastest in 13 months. Furthermore, Scotland posted a stronger increase in employment than any other part of the UK except for the West Midlands.

The amount of work-in-progress (but not yet completed) at Scottish businesses decreased slightly during the latest survey period, extending the ongoing spell of depletion to four months.

May data pointed to a further drop in input price inflation in the Scottish private sector economy, to the slowest since June 2012. The rate of inflation was below the long-run series average, although still much faster than the modest pace registered at the UK level.

According to anecdotal evidence, lower fuel prices was one factor that dampened overall inflationary pressures in Scotland.

Output prices meanwhile rose for the fifth straight month in May. The rate of inflation was the fastest since last September, albeit still only mild overall.

Donald MacRae, Chief Economist at Bank of Scotland, said: "At 54.4 May’s PMI is not only the highest for 25 months but has now been above the no-growth level of 50.0 for eight months in a row. Output grew in manufacturing and activity was strongly up in the large services sector with an encouraging rise in new orders across the economy evident for thesixth month in succession. However, growth appears confined to the domestic market with new export orders falling slightly in the month illustrating the effects of the recession in the Eurozone. These results show the recovery in the Scottish economy is becoming more strongly embedded with every passing month.”