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The importance of good support on your entrepreneurial journey

Wrap-around support helped this startup really take off

Trtl is a recent startup company which produces an innovative sleepscarf for travellers.  It is a great example of how a young company with a great idea can have its growth accelerated through engagement with the wide range of entrepreneurial support mechanisms available in Scotland.  In Turtl’s case that includes The Prince’s Trust, Entrepreneurial Spark and The Scottish EDGE. 

Says David Kellock, Technical Director:

“We’ve been very fortunate to have been given a lot of support in Scotland so far, and we can speak very highly of all the organisations who have helped us to date. The PSYBT (Princes Trust) have been invaluable in the initial stages, providing us with mentors and funding which without we would not have progressed to this stage. Entrepreneurial Spark has also been a great help to us, providing free office space for 11 months, but more than that, was a source of immense inspiration and camaraderie. It was also extremely useful for us during the product development stages because it was like a giant focus group, for us, but also for everyone else”.

The result has been a tremendous impact in a short space of time. Within 6 months of the Trtl Napscarf (previously called Sleepscarf) launching on amazon.co.uk they are now the number 3 best seller in Travel pillows, and the highest rated travel pillow on amazon.co.uk in terms of percentage 5 star reviews. They are stocked in 22 Dixons Travel Stores across the UK and in every major airport in the UK and in Brussels and Dublin. They are also stocked in Madrid and Barcelona airports with the Excess Baggage Company.

Trtl were winners of the Lloyds/Bank Of Scotland Best Digital Enterprise in Scotland for 2014. They were also winners in the Scottish EDGE fund 2013; the Scottish Young EDGE fund 2014; and recipients of a PSYBT Innovation Fund award.

Their customers are reported have managed up to 9.5 hours of sleep on economy class without any neck pain.

The Apple of the Travel Retail Industry

David continues:

“Our aspirations going forward are that we want to be the Apple of the travel retail industry. This means we want every traveller in economy class to have an easy option to affordably and dramatically increase their comfort and therefore amount of sleep on journeys. We are out to build a great company and nothing less. We want to create great jobs for people, for people to grow to their maximum potential in Trtl and to produce products that are so simple to use and great that people will love to use them and speak about them. We want to solve real problems with our products and allow people to focus on enhancing their lives and the lives of others”.

“We’ve been very fortunate to have been given a lot of support in Scotland so far, and we can speak very highly of all the organisations who have helped us to date.”

- David Kellock, Technical Director

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