Business Wales supports new mountain bike tour guiding company in North Wales.

Executive summary

Ride Guide Cymru was set up by Trystan Rowlands to provide guided mountain bike tours and bespoke weekends away in North Wales. He approached the Welsh Government’s flagship support service, Business Wales, for help and advice on how to get the venture off the ground.

  • successful start
  • 1 job created
  • 1-2-1 advisory support and workshops

Introduction to business

Set up by Trystan Rowlands in North Wales, Ride Guide Cymru offers bespoke mountain biking guiding experiences, specialising in all-inclusive weekends in Snowdonia and the Clwydian Range.

Why did you decide to set up your own business?

I decided to start my own business as I wanted to turn my hobby into something that other people could enjoy. I also really enjoy developing people by passing on knowledge with regards to routes, bike skills and techniques.

I’ve been taking people out on their bikes for years and decided to get qualified as a mountain bike (MTB) leader, so I could start organising guided rides for local groups in North Wales. These types of rides grew steadily until I started getting people contacting me to organise private weekends in North Wales. This eventually led to me to start my own business.

It’s still early days but I would like to build it up steadily over the next few years. We currently have 4 all-inclusive guided weekends running for 2020 with three of them fully booked. This will increase to 6-8 trips in 2021 and up to 10 in 2022.

What challenges did you face?

I’ve faced a few challenges along the way but the main one has been how to target people on social media as well as putting a business plan and cashflow projections together.

Business Wales support

Trystan attended a Starting and Running a Business workshop, delivered by Business Wales, and was then supported by Lowri Roberts, Business Adviser, who helped with all aspects of starting a business including business and financial planning, as well as marketing and social media, enabling Trystan to launch his MTB guided tours, creating 1 job.

Outcomes

  • successful start
  • 1 job created
  • 1-2-1 advisory support and workshops

My adviser Lowri has been a great help with the above challenges. She has given me some great advice on how to communicate with potential customers on social media and how to offer them affordable payment plans for the trips we offer. She has also pointed me towards doing a fully funded social media course with Business Wales which I attended in March. This will hopefully give me further understanding of how to interact with people on social media platforms. 

Future plans and ambitions

My plans include expanding the number of trips we offer for 2021 and beyond, as well as training and employing seasonal MTB guides and leaders for these trips. In future, I would also like to offer coaching courses for mountain bikers as part of our trips.

If you want to read more success stories of how Business Wales has helped other people like you to start or grow their businesses, visit https://businesswales.gov.wales/case-studies or follow @_businesswales / @_busnescymru on Twitter.

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