Edinburgh entrepreneurs start leap year day business

Edinburgh entrepreneurs start leap year day business

Two Edinburgh entrepreneurs used the leap year ‘extra day’ on the 29th February to do what many would say was unmanageable – set up a fully-fledged new business, from scratch, in a day.

Charles Henderson from Climate Futures, and Tim Barlow, head of Attacat Digital Marketing, created woodpicker.com, which makes it easier for users of biomass heat to manage their fuel supply, by improving the transparency and access to the wood pellet supply market.

Tim and Charles recognised a gap in the market for a service that made finding and ordering biomass fuels more intuitive. With a fully transparent market, it is hoped that more people and enterprises will get the best value for money from biomass heating systems.

This will improve take-up of the low-carbon heating systems, encourage a switch from gas and oil boilers and, ultimately, reduce CO2 emission rates.

Tim said: “Charles and I have been toying with a number of new business ideas, but finding the time to put them into action is never easy. 

“Developing a new business is often a long, drawn out process, but it really needn’t be. What we have done today is prove that a business can be set up cost effectively and quickly - as long as you have a good idea and the right expertise and tools at your disposal, anything is possible.”

Woodpicker.com will initially offer a free service, focusing on helping customers find bulk pellet wood fuel delivery quotes.

From there, Tim and Charles plan to monetise the offering, and bring in a member of staff to run the day to day operations.

The company was set up with help from staff Attacat, and from students at the Edinburgh School of Business. Between 9am and 7pm on the 29th, the team worked diligently on market research, creating a company name and brand, building a website, undertaking market research and developing marketing plans, setting up supplier lists and developing the online tools and resources that lie at the heart of the offering.

Charles added: “I’m excited by any sustainability business, but particularly this one, as I am wood pellet user and potential customer who sees the need for the service it offers.”