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Enterprise Allowance Start Up Meets MP

Published 20th Jan 2014 by Samuel Lewis

Nicola Mellor from Pepamint Social Media meets senior politician at Elsie Whiteley Innovation Centre.

Nicola, founder of Pepamint Social Media, met Conservative Party Chairman and Welwyn Hatfield MP Grant Shapps this Thursday. 

Mr Shapps dropped in to the Elsie Whiteley Innovation Centre in Halifax on his way to film Question Time and met with Nicola, along with Chamber and Enterprise Agency staff. 

Mr Shapps, who founded his own company at age 22, was keen to hear about the successes of the New Enterprise Allowance scheme, which has helped to create new start-up businesses in West Yorkshire. 

Nicola discussed her experiences of starting her business and spoke with enthusiasm about the support offered to her by volunteer mentors and the wider business community. 

Nicola started social media management firm Pepamint Social Media in August 2013 with help from the West Yorkshire Enterprise Agency and from volunteer mentor Andrew Lee. The firm has since gained a number of clients and Nicola is already thinking about recruiting her first employee to help meet demand for the company’s services. 

Pepamint Social Media provide bespoke management of social media channels to businesses, as well as offering a number of additional services such as web hosting, website content management, printing and PR. The company has won business in the local area as well as gaining clients further afield in Lancashire and London. 

Grant Shapps compared Nicola’s story to his own experience of founding a printing, web and marketing company at 22, which he ran until 2009, recalling his own enthusiasm for running a business. The Conservative Chair was also impressed by the local support on offer and the use of this invaluable network of expertise to help foster start-ups in the region. 

Nicola commented: 

“It was a fantastic opportunity to meet such a high profile member of the Conservative Party. I was pleased that Grant was so enthusiastic about helping new start ups and was particularly keen to hear about my own business. It has been a terrific and rewarding experience setting up my own business over the last year and I am extremely grateful for the support that I have received from the West Yorkshire Enterprise Agency, as without them I wouldn’t be where I am now.”


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