A healthcare renaissance

A healthcare renaissance

Serial Scottish entrepreneur Robert Kilgour has stepped up the growth of his latest care homes business.

Robert Kilgour launched Renaissance Care in 2005 after making his final financial exit from Four Seasons Health Care.

Kilgour founded Four Seasons with one care home in his native Fife in the late 80s before departing the company in 2000.

By the time he had left the business - it was the fifth largest business of its kind in the UK with over 100 homes and 6,500 employees.

Now he is focused on growing his latest venture, which he founded the same year, Musselburgh-based Renaissance Care.

Renaissance will have a turnover of £20m this year, more than doubling the size of the business in the last three years, and now employs 800 staff in its 12 care homes throughout Scotland.

Kilgour said: "We are committed to spending money on improving our care homes for the benefit of our elderly residents.

"I've been in this sector for a long time, and I'm determined to continue Renaissance Care's growth and development making this a good company in which our staff can develop – hence we’ve doubled our training budget over the last three years.

"With this growth in our business comes opportunity and so we currently have 35 job vacancies of varying types across the group."

He added: "This is a difficult time for the care home sector, with the Scottish Government imposing a challenging and not fully funded £8.25 per hour carer's living wage from the start of this October.

"I am a firm believer in our hard-working staff being fairly rewarded, but there are some issues still to be resolved and we must wait to see the results of this most recent cost increase on the care sector.

"I fear that more care homes will close and fewer new ones will be built going forward leading to more 'bed blocking' in our NHS hospitals and more cancelled operations.

"At a time when the demographics show the need for more care home beds we are seeing an increasing net loss of bed provision every year - a very worrying trend.

"Also there will be interesting challenges with Brexit as it develops as nearly 30% of our current staff come from outside the UK."

"However, I'm very excited by the future potential of Renaissance Care and what it can achieve. This is a people business - both in the case of our vulnerable elderly residents and our staff - and we must always maintain the highest standards.

"That is the reason for this continued programme of investment."