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Business Development

Business development is another core activity of A B Associates Ltd.We provide a comprehensive business development service including:-

• General business advice,
• Exploration of initial ideas,
• Feasibility studies,
• Business and development planning,
• Funding,
• Lobbying,
• Ongoing business support.

We are currently business advisers for the Business Gateway, and are also retained on a Highlands and Islands Enterprise consultants register for specialist advice on business projects.

We have assisted businesses in a number of sectors including:-

• Agriculture,
• Business Services,
• Childcare,
• Fisheries,
• Food and Drink,
• Renewable Energy,
• Retailing,
• Tourism,
• Various other service sector areas.


We provide the following services in this field:

  • New business proposals require careful appraisal. Often quite radical changes must be developed to attract potential funders or investors and/or assist the entrepreneur to realise or surpass initial goals.

    We have assisted a variety of clients through researching, developing and implementing their initial ideas, providing more detailed views of the initial concept that can have a significant bearing on the future direction of a project. Our appraisal of new business proposals often leads to more concrete business development plans that identify business projections and set goals and targets for the project.

  • Success in business comes as a result of planning. No organisation can afford to operate without a clear and well thought out plan of what it is intending to achieve and how.

    We have assisted a variety of clients to research, develop and implement business and development plans. We provide a comprehensive document detailing business history, current position, an assessment of current and potential markets, identifying and quantifying further business opportunities, assessing management, training, and premises issues, detailing costs, potential for funding, and producing a full set of Cash Flow, Profit & Loss and Balance Sheet Projections, and setting goals and targets for the business.

  • A marketing plan can be the part of the business plan that outlines the marketing strategy for a product or service, or it can be a stand alone document, in either case, it should include information about the product or service offered, pricing, target market, competitors, marketing budget and promotional mix. It is vital for all companies and organisations to have a marketing plan as they operate in an environment that is highly complex, dynamic, and competitive. Marketing and market planning is therefore relevant to large and small organisations in both the public and private sectors.

    The company has assisted a variety of clients to research, develop and implement marketing plans, either within business plans, or as stand alone documents.

  • Training needs analysis involves gathering and interpreting data that identifies areas for personal and organisational performance improvement. A thorough training needs analysis exercise comprises analysis of the business needs; potential participants and trainers; the tasks being performed; documents, laws, and procedures relating to tasks performed; whether training is the solution; and a cost-benefit analysis of the return on investment of training.

    There are a number of reasons why a business or organisation may require a training needs analysis including investigating training needs prior to taking training and development initiatives, or prior to organisational change, developing a succession plan, or evaluating recent training.

    We have assisted a variety of clients from individual companies to agencies and colleges to identify their training needs, or to help assess training needs in an area and thus likely demand for training causes.

  • Companies are constantly evolving and need expert advice in order to expand or remain competitive. In these days of global, consumer-driven markets, it is imperative for a company to be both profitable and efficient. Sound business advice including the identification of potential funding sources is vital for all businesses.

    We provide a fully comprehensive business advisory service and have assisted a variety of businesses from a wide business background.

    We are also familiar with the variety of funding opportunities available to both public and private bodies. The secret is to identify which are relevant to your business or organisation. Years of experience have given us an understanding of the complexities of securing funds. We can quickly guide you towards a suitable programme and advise on the best way to present your case. Please visit our Funding Packages page for more information.

  • Identifying a funding source is, however, only the first step toward securing finance. Often lengthy and complex funding applications must be completed, which may be followed by requests for additional information, and all too often the deadline for submissions is imminent or just passed.

    We have invaluable experience of completing and submitting applications, addressing follow-up issues and lobbying, as well as completing and monitoring funding claims for successful submissions.

    We have a high success rate for applications submitted, however it should be noted that on occasion applications may be turned down or deferred due to lack of programme funds.

    We operate a policy whereby we will gauge the potential for success of a funding application prior to commencing work, and advise the client accordingly. This stage of the process is included within our free initial project consultation.

Click here to see some example of work we have done in this area.