Dragon heaps praise on property developer

20 JULY 2016 – Manchester-based Beech Holdings won an advertising package with the Manchester Evening News as well as one-to-one mentoring sessions with Dragons’ Den star Deborah Meaden. 

A Manchester-based property developer has received one-to-one mentoring sessions with Deborah Meaden.

The renowned entrepreneur heaped praise on Beech Holdings after meeting with its boss Stephen Beech.

It comes after the firm was crowned overall winner of the 2016 Local Business Accelerators scheme earlier this year.

As part of beating 11 other shortlisted businesses to the national prize, Beech Holdings won an advertising package with the Manchester Evening News as well as mentoring sessions with Dragons’ Den star Deborah.

Following Deborah’s meeting with 38-year-old Mancunian Stephen, she hailed Beech Holdings as an innovative and creative outfit.

“When he was young Stephen was selling lollipops in the school playground,” she said, “and now he has a multi-million-pound business.

“I love what I do and there’s nothing more motivating and invigorating than people who create something – and that’s what Stephen and the rest of the staff at Beech Holdings have done.” 

Beech Holdings boasts £65m worth of residential housing stock in Greater Manchester and is passionate about bringing unloved historic buildings back to life by creating environmentally sustainable and efficiently designed apartments.

The company owns 17 significant buildings in Manchester city centre in addition to another 100 properties in Greater Manchester.

Earlier this month Beech Holdings was joined by more than 100 business leaders – including Manchester council chief executive Sir Howard Bernstein – as it launched its new £1m headquarters on Oxford Street.

The Local Business Accelerators scheme is in its third year and is organised by Local Media Works, the marketing body for the local press industry.

Deborah, who recently released a book entitled, ‘Common Sense Rules – what you really need to know about business’, said it was ‘refreshing to speak to a business that knows exactly what it’s doing’ 

She also described local newspapers as “a friend in any household” and said winning the Local Accelerator Award and free newspaper advertising will give the company massive exposure.

“It was great to meet with Stephen, get to know him and provide some mentoring – not that he needs mentoring,” she said.

“Beech Holdings is a grown up and successful business. But it’s also a business that has become very successful, very quickly. It knows itself very well as a company, has a lot of smart people working within it and there is a lot of clarity in what it offers.”

She added: “During the meeting we discussed the best way to go forward. Myself and Stephen have also agreed to do more things going forward. We will stay in touch and I shall be following the company’s progress with interest.

Stephen said it was fantastic to spend time with such a successful entrepreneur.

He said: “Deborah was very pleasant and took a lot of time to listen to the Beech Holdings story.

“It’s great that we have this chance to work with her after winning the Local Business Accelerators scheme. When you meet people like Deborah you tend to remember everything they say as their time is precious.

“It’s also good to know that she thinks a lot of us as a company – it certainly gives us extra confidence going forward.”

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