AN award-winning Aberdeen barber has secured a six-figure funding package to open new salons in Edinburgh and Glasgow.
Sovereign Grooming, launched by Kyle Ross and Ryan Crighton, is expanding and creating 20 new jobs with two new outlets.
The business is being backed by a group of investors led by MB Martin & Partners Ltd, which specialises in helping early stage companies grow.
Alongside the funding, Sovereign has also agreed a 10-year lease on a 1,118sq ft unit within Edinburgh’s New Waverley development, near the Royal Mile, and will open in the capital in January.
A third salon, in Glasgow City Centre, will follow later in spring.
Mr Ross has won a catalogue of industry awards since opening on Aberdeen’s Union Street in 2016, and has been named among the UK’s elite barbers by GQ Magazine.
Commenting on the funding package, which is made up of both equity investment and a debt facility brokered by MB Martin & Partners Ltd, Mr Ross said: “We are delighted to get this deal completed and access the capital required to expand our business into two more cities.
“We offer a very different salon experience for men, bringing together top barbers and male image experts to offer a complete grooming experience.
Mr Crighton, who was a journalist for 10 years, added: “We are excited about the business experience and pedigree which our investors bring to the table.
“As we execute our business plan in a rapidly changing business environment, it is reassuring to be working alongside partners who have been over the course before.”
Moray Martin, MB Martin & Partners Ltd chief executive, has joined Sovereign’s board as chairman under the deal and will support the business founders through the growth phase.
Mr Martin said: “I am delighted that we have been able to co-ordinate and provide financial support to Sovereign.
“We recognise the ability, experience and commitment of the founding team – and their complementary skill-sets make this an attractive business to invest in.”
Mr Ross and Mr Crighton remain the largest shareholders in the business, retaining 80% of the firm’s equity shares between them.
An employee share scheme has also been carved out as part of the deal, which over time will see 10% of the business owned by loyal and strategically important staff.