When it comes to proving doubters wrong there is no greater example than Drew McGilvray, who took home the Young Entrepreneur of the Year gong at this year’s Excellence in Business awards.
Prior to being named Young Entrepreneur of the Year Mr McGilvray had only ever won one award.
Mr McGilvray said: “I’ve never really achieved anything on the awards side of things. The last award I won was ‘most likely to be unemployed’ in the last year of my sixth form.
“When I left school I had to stand up in front of all of my peers, 280 people, and accept an award saying most likely to be unemployed. It’s also in my yearbook from when I was at school.”
But Mr McGilvary has come a long way since then. Launching Cater-Clean Solutions, a ventilation and kitchen deep cleaning company, Mr McGilvray has worked his way up as a sole trader from his parents’ garage. His business is now providing cleaning services to the likes of Royal Mail and the NHS.
One of the main sources of motivation for striking out on his own was his desire to stay in his home town of Harrogate.
Mr McGilvray said: “There’s not a lot out there for young people, especially where I live in Harrogate, it’s very upper middle class.
“I’ve always loved living in Harrogate. I always want to live in Harrogate. I thought if I’m going to stay here I’m going to have to do something on my own.”
Mr McGilvray said winning Young Entrepreneur of the Year was a great achievement for him and that he hoped to build on the achievement. He added: “Hopefully in five years time we can be up there winning the £50m turnover awards. For me I want to be one of the top three players in the next ten years in our industry.”
His message to other young budding entrepreneurs is “never give up”.