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Research Case studies

Matthew Paton

MP Auto Detailing is a prestige valeting and detailing service, set up just over a year ago, by Matthew Paton in Cockermouth and across Cumbria. Matthew has always had a passion for cars, especially prestige and sports cars so when the opportunity to start his own business arose it was something he had always wanted to do.

“When offered the opportunity of a four year course with one year being on placement, my first question was, can I work for myself? As I have always set up and run businesses previously so the opportunity of being able to do this for a full year and not just in and around other things (e.g. school work and exams) was something I jumped at”.

Matthew, a third year Business Studies student, completed the Placement Year Entrepreneur Scheme (PYES) where Business Start-Up took on the role of his employer, creating a team to help and support him and his business, so that he was free to try out his ideas and see if they work in a real business situation.

When asked why he decided to do a PYES instead of a regular placement, Matthew replied ‘I have always wanted to work for myself so PYES was a lot more appealing than any other placement. It has taught me skills that I might not have gained on other placements’ .

Matthew Explains; "Because I have set my business up from scratch I have had to go through every single stage from sourcing premises, dealing with planning offices, local authorities, suppliers, customers, and marketing. As far as I know there is no other placement that enables you to go through all these different stages learning the skills".

Matthew reveals how he made mistakes at the beginning of the process but has learnt from them. He recalls the time he purchased a van that was very cheap and later had to scrap it, which incurred a four figure cost. ‘Lesson Learnt – Buy cheap buy twice’.

Matthew's advice: "Go for it, research, research then do some more research as this can save a lot of time and money. Don’t be afraid to try something new as it will only leave you wondering what if…!".


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