RBS Glasgow Music School case study: Backing puts studio on right track

LYNNE Howard’s dreams of setting up a state-of-the-art 
recording studio in Glasgow 
finally came true, thanks to her unflinching commitment and the support of RBS.

“It took a while to find the right premises,” says Lynne. “There were issues to do with the amount of weight that the floors of any building could bear, so it was difficult.”

But finding premises in the city centre was only the first step for Lynne. After extensive market research, she produced a business plan and approached RBS. “It was quite daunting. This was a new business in a non-mainstream sector.”

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The bank was impressed by the depth of Lynne’s plan, as well as her background in marketing. “They were really helpful and attentive to my ideas. As well as giving me a loan to purchase equipment for the studios, they also talked me through areas of business I didn’t know about, such as insurance and their Mentor service.

“Mentor has been fantastic. When we had bad snow and some of the staff were unable to make it into work, it was good to be able to call Mentor to check what the protocol should be in that situation.”

With the bank’s funding in place, Lynne invested in specialist acoustic modular pods, the only ones of their kind in Scotland, and opened for business in October 2010. It’s a unique selling point Lynne is keen to build on. “I’d like to be recognised as the top rehearsal and recording studio in Glasgow and expand across Scotland.”

It’s an ambitious goal, but one that seems within Lynne’s grasp. “RBS was so supportive when there was such a massive outlay upfront. But they also take a genuine interest. We opened in a really tough trading time, but I’ve focused on promoting the place and we’re on track to meet our forecasts.”

Lynne has enjoyed a huge response to her promotions, with some 500 parties booked. It’s a hard grind, but it is Lynne’s passion, as well as the bank’s support, that’s crucial to success.

“I have three staff, but I’m still busy, cleaning toilets one minute, managing the sound the next. We’re open until midnight most nights and it’s a seven-day a week business, so you have to really believe in it and work with a bank that believes in you too.” www.glasgowmusicstudios.co.uk