Project Description

Paul Hawthorne, Managing Director of ICMA told us about his experience of working with Ards Business Centre. Here’s what he had to say.

Introducing ICMA

ICMA stands for I can make anything, we manufacture Kitchens, Bedroom Furniture and Office Furniture. Our brand value is to create excellent quality products at affordable prices.

When and why did you decide to start your own business?

I started ICMA in 2012, it was always a desire to have my own business. The reason for taking the first steps, was that the company that I work for reduced their working hours down to a three day week, as I was in my late forties my fear was if I was made redundant, I would find it hard to get employment again. This encouraged me to realise my dream and start up on my own.

At this stage, why did you decide to contact Ards Business Centre?

I had heard that Ards Business Centre assisted new business starts and wanted to see if they could help us get up and running.

How did Ards Business Centre assist you and what courses did you attend?

I contacted Ards Business Centre and they advised that they could help with designing a business plan. I signed up for the “Go for it “programme and I haven’t looked back since. I attended a 6 week Business Course where I learnt a lot of very valuable information that put me on the right track.

Why did you choose Ards Business Centre Strangford Park as a location for your business?

While attending the course at Ards Business Centre I found that the staff were extremely helpful. They were able to offer advice on premises and offered peace of mind that I would have the necessary support if I ever ran into problems.

Where do you see your business in 5 years and how can Ards Business Centre assist with this?

At present we are looking for bigger premises as our business is expanding. I have been in contact with the team as we are very keen to keep our business located at Ards Business Centre, Strangford Park. I am hopeful that in the next five years we will continue to grow and achieve the goals we have set ourselves.

Visit the ICMA website

“Having our factory located in Ards Business Centre has been one of the best decisions we have made. Ards Business Centre offers the full package, the helpful staff have provided us with mentoring and advice and the excellent on site security gives us the added peace of mind.”