Shetland family business targets new global markets

Shetland family business targets new global markets

A Shetland wool company which started five generations ago is set to increase international sales and create new jobs.

Jamieson’s Spinning operates the Shetland Islands’ only commercial woollen mill and employs 15 people in the small village of Sandness on the west side of the mainland.

The family owned business buys Shetland wool and completes all stages of production at the mill before turning it into Shetland yarn in five different weights and more than 400 colours.

The company also manufactures a range of Shetland tweeds, rugs and blankets using weaving looms.

The firm is now looking to grow overseas after securing a £33,708 grant from Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) to help drive international sales by implementing a new marketing plan and digitising product tracking within the factory.  

The project, which is expected to create two new jobs over the next three years, aims to deliver an increase in turnover and provide a boost to international sales.

Kirsten Nicolson, account manager at HIE, said: “We are very pleased to support this project as we recognise the potential for Jamieson’s Spinning’s products to reach further global markets which will lead to new jobs at Sandness.

“The company is a valuable employer in a rural area and has a key role to play in the cultural attraction of Shetland as a place to visit. By creating valuable employment opportunities, the company will also help strengthen resilience among local communities.”

Garry Jamieson from Jamieson’s Spinning, said: “We are delighted to receive this assistance from HIE. We have undertaken a number of improvements to the factory this year to increase efficiency and this grant will help us to continue our growth in the hand knitting market.