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Businesses join forces to support Highlands events industry

By Rachel Smart

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From left: Ken Loades and Kai Logan.
From left: Ken Loades and Kai Logan.

Having a spirit of collaboration is a driving force for businesses in the current economic climate – and this becomes even more critical when looking to plug a gap in the market.

For Inverness-based Cru Holdings and KBE Events it was a no brainer to partner up when they discovered there was a demand for catering equipment for hire across the region.

So, together they are launching Highland Cater Hire Ltd (HCH), which is aimed at supporting the Highlands events industry.

With decades of experience running popular city-centre venues, including Scotch & Rye, The Whitehouse and Prime Steak & Seafood, Cru Holdings dipped its toes into the events space in 2021 where it managed and ran events across the Highlands for a range of clients.

Speaking about the new company, Cru Holdings’ operations director, Ken Loades, said: “On the back of running some successful outdoor events and having a structure change at head office for Cru, we decided to look into running outdoor events on a more regular basis.

“While investigating what was needed, I discovered there was a lack of resources for covering the equipment demand in this sector of the hospitality industry."

Ken will now sidestep from his current role to allow him to focus solely on this new and exciting project.

Scott Murray, managing director of Cru Holdings, said: “As a trained chef, and with years of supporting our venues, Ken’s levels of experience and knowledge, as well as enthusiasm and passion are second to none, and are a perfect fit to drive this venture where we know it can go.”

KBE Events is a highly regarded events provider in the region for weddings, corporate dinners and much more. From banqueting tables and chairs to cooking equipment to cutlery crockery and glassware, plus all sound, lighting and staging, the team at HCH can provide clients with everything that they need for a memorable event.

Kai Logan, owner of KBE Events, said: “With Cru’s reputation for providing top notch service to their clients, and our passion for the events industry, it made sense to work together on this project.

“Not only will HCH be able to provide the furniture and kitchens for events, but we will be able to provide the venue dressing and technical support, giving our already extensive client list a true ‘one stop shop’ when planning and delivering their functions.

“This can only be a positive thing for everyone involved.”

A recent event that KBE Events did.
A recent event that KBE Events did.

The majority of events will hire out the equipment for three to four days, however, HCH are happy to discuss various lengths of time. It even has a fleet of trailers and vans at its disposal, so it will be able to deliver to the Highlands and surrounding areas.

Ken added: “There is a massive demand in the Highlands for all-outdoor catering equipment, staging and lighting. With the back log from Covid there are more outdoor events than ever.

“We haven’t even launched the company yet and have a number of event hires scheduled already!”

The business will launch on May 1, and it is now taking bookings for the remainder of the year.

The team are very excited about this new venture, and supporting the region with a variety of events.

Ken Loades and Kai Logan.
Ken Loades and Kai Logan.

Scott concluded: “With things very much up in the air for hospitality businesses, it’s encouraging at the level of interest we have gained in this project already.

“The fact that it helps us diversify our retail estate is a great added bonus for us as we continue to navigate the stormy seas of our industry through Covid recovery, Brexit, DRS, energy costs, supply chain issues and staffing challenges to name a few.

“The Highlands is well known for its high level of hospitality, and it’s what keeps visitors returning again and again.

“Regardless of the current economic position, it is important that businesses continue to invest in this sector, to ensure the future demand is satisfied.

“I am proud that we are one of the businesses leading that charge.”

Highland Cater Hire
Highland Cater Hire

39 Tomnahurich Street, Inverness, IV3 5DU

W: www.highlandcaterhire.com/

T: 01463 213363

E: enquiries@highlandcaterhire.com

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