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Welsh ICE Blog: Consumer spending in Wales rose by 4.5% last month

Published in Comment, News at 13:02, Wednesday August 28th, 2013.

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In her column for Caerphilly Observer, businesswoman and Welsh ICE director Mandy Weston takes a look at current business news.

Mandy Weston of Welsh ICE

Mandy Weston of Welsh ICE

I’m feeling optimistic for those who recently received their A-level results, or their GCSEs this week, thanks to recent news from Barclaycard.

Consumer spending in Wales rose by 4.5% last month, according to the finance provider, and confidence in the economy seems therefore to be rising.

This is great news, not only for businesses in Caerphilly and the wider region, but for school and university leavers too.

Combined with increasing support from the Welsh Government and other funding agencies towards helping small businesses get started, the barriers to entry for anyone considering starting their own firm after school, college or university have never been so low.

The future success of our young people needs no longer be defined simply by their exam results, so this is great news.

Of course I am delighted for anyone that excels in their A-levels of GCSEs this month, but I am also thrilled for those who naturally perform better vocationally too.

Here at Welsh ICE we already have members that are using their first summer after university or school to try out their own business idea.

Among them, Cardiff graduates Owen Walker and Shane Owen are developing a business idea involving sporting services for schools, and are a shining example to anyone considering alternative routes to work following their exam results.

On this note, we are also delighted that some of the learning models devised at Welsh ICE to encourage business minded students to flourish are being repeated elsewhere in the country.

ICE co-founder Gareth Jones visited Metro Cymru near Carmarthen, which held its own ’24 Hour Lock In’ event for students and graduates to come up with a business model in the space of a day, last month and was thrilled to see his own initiative being put to good use elsewhere.

The teams taking part came up with some really innovative business ideas that, now summer is almost out, they have all the will in the world behind them to make a reality.

I really would urge anyone without a clear path ahead of them following their exam results to think about the likes of Welsh ICE as a very real prospect moving forward.

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