Pie Mezzanae, a pie-maker based in Blackburn, has announced that they are planning to expand their business in hopes of reaching triple their current turnover in the next three years. They are hoping to hire more staff in order to make this possible.
Pie Mezzanae was born in founder Zainab Bilal’s home kitchen, but has since been able to move to a purpose-equipped site in Blackburn thanks to support from Boost. Boost is the name of Lancashire’s business growth hub, set up to ensure that local entrepreneurs and start-ups have the best possible chance of going big.
She is now working with Boost to develop a funding application, which she hopes will allow her to continue growing the company. For now, she will be looking to take on two new employees, and you can see all openings that we currently have in the food industry.
She also aims to set up a much wider distribution network across the UK by the year 2020.
“Since Boost, I have moved to a unit, my little pie factory. Now I want to smash turnover targets and double, even triple them over the next three years,” Bilal said. “I have great vision for the Pie Hero brand. My aim this year is to launch my pies at local Blackburn Rovers football club, as a true celebration of diversity and community. My dream, then, is one day to see my pies on the shelves in Booths.”
Help from Boost
The opportunity to work with Boost has been great for Bilal, who has been growing her business under the advice of experts such as Yusuf Musa and Matt Hutchinson. They are, respectively, the growth explorer for Enterprise4All and the Lancashire Forum programme manager at the Lancaster University Management School.
Hutchinson said: “Zainab was able to build a deep-trust network with other business leaders from across Lancashire and share experiences with them, gaining invaluable insights to help her develop her own personal growth plan.”
The Forum also allowed Bilal to access a wide variety of topics which were relevant to her business and aided her in understanding how to grow it, such as leadership and personal reflection. Innovation and finance were also included. She says that the workshops and advice she was able to access helped her create a strategic plan for the business which is now firmly in place.
“The professional connections I’ve made though Boost have also really helped me. Being able to get in touch with Yusuf for advice is like having another little door I can knock on,” she said. “Andrew Leeming from Boost introduced me to Lancashire Forum, a peer network and business growth programme and I have really gained a greater business insight through this programme.”
While there may only be a small number of opportunities open at this time, we one day hope to see Pie Mezzanae joining us as an employer in search of a larger number of staff members. Any interested businesses within the food and drink industry wanting to recruit then take a look at our Employer zone.
Programmes like Boost can be hugely beneficial for small businesses who are looking to grow within the UK. They provide access to resources and help that are normally inaccessible to those with smaller budgets, meaning that they can gain the expertise to get to that next level. The mentorship from more experienced members of the business community is also essential for anyone looking to grow without having to hire more established employees – who normally come at a premium wage packet that could put them out of reach.