Kent business selected to represent UK start ups at Houses of Parliament event

West Malling-based business has been handpicked by the Government backed Start Up Loans Company as one of six ambassadors

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  • Business to attend launch event at Houses of Parliament on 8th June
  • Start Up Loans has delivered almost £20million to South East business’ bringing its lending total to more than £210million in the country

A business owner from West Malling has been chosen to represent successful British start ups by the Government backed Start Up Loans Company (SULCo) with the launch of its Ambassador Programme.

Amy Barker, founder of fashion retailer, Monks & Co Clothing, is one of six start-up owners that will be showcased as one of the top success stories and inspiring businesses. The business will be honoured at a dedicated launch reception on 8th June, at the Houses of Parliament in London.

Start Up Loans ambassador Amy Barker at Westminster

The Westminster reception will begin with a panel discussion chaired by Start Up Loans Company’s CEO Tim Sawyer. Tim will be joined by senior Ministers, who helped launch SULCo in 2012, alongside local MP’s and representatives from the Department of Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS).

With years of experience in the fashion industry, Amy decided to fulfil her ambition and set up her own online clothing business. She approached Start Up Loans, which provided a £8,000 loan to allow her to invest in stock and develop her website.

Today Monks & Co Clothing offers premium unique brands through both an online shop and a bricks and mortar store on Swan Street. The business is currently experiencing 70 per cent growth year on year and was named best new business at the 2015 Drapers Independents Awards.

Amy Barker, co-founder of Monks & Co Clothing, said:

“Support from the Start Up Loans Company was essential in getting Monks & Co Clothing up and running, so I’m really pleased to have been selected as one of the company’s ambassadors. Through my role as ambassador I’ll be working to encourage start up business owners to bear in mind that there are a range of funding options out there to support them at every stage of their growth journey, even if they’re already set up.”

Tim Sawyer, CEO of Start Up Loans Company, said:

“The launch of our Ambassador Programme is an opportunity to pay tribute to those entrepreneurial individuals who have taken the steps to launch their own businesses. Starting out on your own is no mean feat, but businesses like Monks & Co Clothing are proof that it can be done. What budding business owners in Kent need to remember is there are multiple support networks out there to make it a far less daunting experience, and provide the guidance and support necessary to help you make your start up goals a reality.”

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