Manufacturing a wide range of cakes, tarts, traybakes and cheesecakes, the Dessert Depot Ltd, trading as The Handmade Cheesecake Company, came to fruition sixteen years ago in 2003 when Director Frances Barron and her sister Ellen McPherson decided to turn their love of baking into a thriving business.

With a team of 14 working from the company’s factory in Ayr, they produce unique sweet treats which are distributed and sold within restaurants, coffee shops, deli’s, farm shops and visitor centres across the UK. The on-site retail shop has also enabled the company to sell their delicious products to the general public where cakes can be personalised for any special occasion.

With the UK dessert market continuing to grow, Frances was keen to introduce new product lines to drive the business forward, but with new packaging equipment required including a new wrapping machine, the process of exploring the various avenues to support the finance of this began.

Generating 50% of the funds through a private source, the Dessert Depot had a funding gap that needed closed and after hearing of Business Loans Scotland and the loan finance available to Scottish SMEs, Frances decided to apply.

After completing the simple and straightforward online application, a decision was made within a matter of weeks where the Dessert Depot successfully secured a loan of £25,000 that would help support the business’ growth and expansion plans.

Realising her vision would now become a reality, Frances was delighted with the support received from Business Loans Scotland. She said: “The BLS loan is vital to our business as we move forward into a period of growth and will support us in enabling us to make key hires plus assist us across our business.”

Speaking of the loan awarded, Fund Manager for Business Loans Scotland, Andrew Dickson added:

“I am delighted that Business Loans Scotland has been able to support Dessert Depot with loan finance to grow their business. We are passionate about supporting the growth and development plans of SMEs across Scotland, therefore with the help of our loans, businesses can achieve their growth ambitions without delay. With a dedicated pot of £7 million in place, we are keen to support many other businesses, like the Dessert Depot, access loan funding which will allow them to flourish in the current economic environment.”

About Business Loans Scotland
Business Loans Scotland is a consortium of Scotland’s 32 local authorities and provides loan finance of £25,000 – £100,000 to Scottish SMEs funded through the Scottish Growth Scheme and the European Regional Development Fund. More information can be found here –