Mrs Bee’s Kitchen provides high-quality catering services across Leicestershire and Northamptonshire, and is one of the many successful businesses that the Sir Thomas White Loan Charity has helped to get up and running.
Mother-of-two Donna Bee is the brains behind the operation and reveals what inspired her to start her own company, how the Charity helped her along the way and how beneficial being her own boss has been for her family.
“As we were planning our first child I spent a long time going through different ideas I could do on a part time basis and still look after my baby the majority of the time, as I really wanted to be there until the children went to school,” said Donna. “I have always been a bit of a foodie and thought that doing something I was really passionate about could only be a good thing.”
Donna applied for a loan from the Sir Thomas White Loan Charity to help start up her business. The money she received allowed her to lay the foundations for her venture and has since helped her to develop her ideas even further.
“The money I borrowed from the Sir Thomas White Loan Charity allowed me to buy everything I needed to start my business, including my refrigerated van. The fact that I didn’t need to pay it back for nine years also allowed me to develop the business within this time,” she added.
Now, six-and-a-half years after setting up Mrs Bee’s Kitchen, Donna has two vans, premises for her kitchen and great team of staff. Since starting out, the business has increased its turnover and profit every single year and is almost fully booked for weddings and events in 2015. In around two years’ time Donna is hoping she can replicate the same business model elsewhere in the country.
The Sir Thomas White Loan Charity believe it’s important to stay in touch with anybody who’s borrowed from the Charity, and Donna has been no exception to that.
“The Sir Thomas White Loan Charity pop in now and again to check how everything is going and I always look forward to their visit,” she revealed.
Donna says she recommends The Sir Thomas White Loan Charity to anyone looking to start their own business. When asked what advice she’d give anyone thinking of applying for one of our loans she said: “Go for it, life is too short! Do a lot of research and spend a lot of time on your business plan.”
Donna says the best thing about being self-employed is that she’s managed to bring up her two children without having to rely on nurseries or other people for childcare.
“My youngest starts school is September and it has been great knowing that I was there most of the time for the first five years of their lives,” she said. “I am also able to drop them off and pick them up every day from school still. It hasn’t been easy and there have been times where I have wished for a normal job instead of trying to juggle everything, but I wouldn’t change it for the world.”
If you would like to know more about Mrs Bee’s Kitchen visit mrsbeeskitchen.co.uk
The Sir Thomas White Loan Charity provides business loans of up to £15,000 to help new businesses. If you’re aged 18 to 35 and have a bright idea we could help turn it into a reality. CLICK HERE to find out more about our business loans.