Tyrone Entrepreneur Lifts National Award

A Tyrone entrepreneur who built a thriving business despite being denied bank finance, has been crowned winner at the Citi  Microentrepreneurship Awards.

Rhonda Montgomery, who set up Montgomery Food Consulting with the help of alternative local lenders, was celebrated at the recent awards ceremony.

Launched in 2005, the Citi Microentrepreneurship Awards highlight the contributions of microentrepreneurs and microfinance institutions (MFIs) to their local economies.

Rhonda’s Aughnacloy based business took off when she spotted a niche in the market and launched the innovative Butchery Excellence Scheme, assisting butchers with technical support. The scheme gained 50 members in just three months.

After her original attempt to obtain bank finance to develop a new premises proved unsuccessful, the managing director secured the backing of Enterprise NI and the Ulster Community Investment Trust, through the NI Small Business Loan Fund. Montgomery Food Consulting’s turnover has since grown by 400%.

Speaking after her win, a “thrilled” Rhonda said, “Financial assistance can be hard for small businesses to obtain in this current climate, therefore the availability of the Invest NI Small Business Loan Fund was crucial to the success of our business growth when other financial avenues were not available,” said Rhonda.

“To have our determination and recognition for our tenacity in securing finance makes all of the hard work over the past few years worthwhile.”

Source: ulsterherald.com