Falkirk company set to bring paddle-boarding to Scotland

Emma hopes lots of people will be paddle-boarding down Scotlands waterways and believe paddlefast.co.uk will be the place everyone goes to for equipment
Emma hopes lots of people will be paddle-boarding down Scotlands waterways and believe paddlefast.co.uk will be the place everyone goes to for equipment

Stand up paddle-boarding is sailing its way to Scotland and a husband and wife team from Standburn want to ride the wave to success.

Duncan Hepplewhite (36) and his wife Emma (35) launched their new website www.paddlefast.co.uk this week and hope it will become the leading voice on Britains fastest growing watersport.

Emma said: “When a supplier told us they had seen 70 per cent growth in stand up paddle-boarding (SUP) sales south of the border we saw a golden opportunity to become the go-to supplier based in Scotland.”

In 2002 Duncan, who has been involved with sailing since he was 16, started his own business, Scottish Sailing, selling spare boat equipment up and down the country. Eventually this expanded into selling boats and services.

Emma, who had worked in corporate hospitality for ten years, joined the company last year and with advice from Business Gateway Falkirk, they increased the turnover by 27 per cent to £200,000 this summer thanks to re-branding the website.

This was part-funded by a £5000 digital voucher from the business support organisation.

Having added Paddlefast into the group, Emma forecasts the business will turnover more than £300,000 next year.

The mother-of-one said: “The majority of Scotland’s population lives within a five minute drive of a canal, loch, or sea, so SUP is an excellent way to stay fit outdoors. A gentle stroll down Scotlands beautiful waterways is an added bonus.”

The company showcased its new stock at the Scotland Boat Show earlier this month and sold out completely.

Now the couple plan to increase the awareness of their brand and hope the venture continues being plain sailing.