Restaurant concept wins Start Up award

David Atkinson with Apprentice series 5 winner Yasmina Siadatan and Tim Sawyer, CEO of Start Up Loans. (S)

David Atkinson with Apprentice series 5 winner Yasmina Siadatan and Tim Sawyer, CEO of Start Up Loans. (S)

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A newcomer to the Harrogate restaurant scene has been named the regional winner of the Government’s Big Start Up Loans Competition.

Entrepreneur David Atkinson only set up The Yorkshire Meatball Company, on Station Bridge, five months ago and took out a Start-Up Loan to help fund growth. Since then, the company has served nearly 10,000 customers and beat off strong competition from 550 entrants to be named regional winner for Yorkshire and the Humber.

Mr Atkinson said: “This venture has given me a new and exciting purpose. I am also proudly working with one of my own sons as co-founder in developing a business with a real, tangible growth prospect.”

Start-up Loans have helped create 20,000 businesses in the two years since the programme was created within the Department for Business, Innovation and Skills led by Business Secretary Vince Cable.

Mr Cable said: “The Start Up Loans Company have enabled thousands of entrepreneurs to get their businesses up and running. Today’s winners illustrate the creativity and innovation that is at the heart of great British business. I congratulate them and hope they will inspire other businesses to work with us through the Start Up Loans programme.”

The Yorkshire Meatball Company was named regional winner by Business Minister Matthew Hancock and the chairman of the Government-backed Start Up Loans Company, ex-TV ‘Dragon’ James Caan.

Mr Caan said: “I’m immensely proud of the work we have done at the Start Up Loans Company. Awards like this should be a permanent fixture in the calendar as they give us the chance to recognise the risk-takers and entrepreneurs who are so vital to this country’s economic well-being.”