Giant bubble firm aims to get bigger – and greener

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Children enjoying the Dr Zigs bubble experience.

 

An entrepreneur from Conwy has launched a campaign for funding as she plans to pop indie rock band The Kaiser Chiefs in a gigantic bubble.

Giant bubble firm aims to get bigger - and greener
Children enjoying the Dr Zigs bubble experience.

Paola Dyboski-Bryant, who launched Dr Zigs, a company that makes massive eco-friendly bubbles, has landed a high profile contract to attend the Kendal Calling pop festival in the Lake District where The Kaiser Chiefs will be starring with Elbow and the Vaccines.

She’s confident she can put them in big bubbles having already captured stand-up comedian and TV presenter Dara Ȯ Briain inside one of her giant creations at the Hay Festival in 2013.

According to Paola, winning the small business category at the recent Conwy Business Awards, helped kick-start he next phase of the company’s expansion.

She has now launched a £5,000 crowd-funding appeal to develop eco-friendly packaging more in keeping with Dr Zigs’ green credentials.

Paola said: “Our current packaging is still pretty much what I created back at our kitchen table using MS Publisher and clip art.

“It’s no longer fit for what is a really cool and wonderful product – and certainly no good for helping us to #sharethebubblelove.

“We have a lot more people to make happy, but in order to be stocked in shops, and to be considered by distributors, we need packaging that is not only good for the environment, but also looks good too.

“We want to communicate the huge amount of excitement and goodness a little bottle of bubble mix can bring, so we can fill the world with bubbles, far beyond North Wales!

“We need £5,000 to allow us to redesign our packaging and make it more fun and ecologically friendly.”

Paola started Dr Zigs from her home in Betws-y-Coed as her then two-year-old son, Ziggy, loved them so much.

Now, after four years of research to ensure they are produced from sustainable and responsible ingredients; Dr Zigs has expanded and now has its own manufacturing site at Bangor.

Speaking at a special event in Llandudno Junction to celebrate the Conwy Business Awards, Paola said she was delighted to have won the small business category.

She said: “I started on my kitchen table then moved to a big garage and then to two rooms and now we have our own manufacturing site.

“Currently I have six full-time staff, four part-time and up to 20 seasonal or casual workers.”

She added: “I’m so proud to have been short-listed for The Princes Trust Renewable Business Awards and was a finalist alongside established businesses such as Arriva Trains, British Industries and the Welsh Housing Association.

“But to win the Conwy Business Award has been a real highlight and something I am very proud of. I have to thank the Federation of Small Businesses (FSB) who sponsored me for the awards.”

Conwy County Borough Council’s Business and Enterprise skills development co-ordinator, Anna Openshaw, says the annual business awards are going from strength to strength.

She said: “The purpose of this event was to celebrate the awards and thank sponsors. The profile of the awards has increased significantly and I believe business large and small see the huge benefit that can come from the awards.

“We are now partnering with the Daily Post. All entries into next year’s the Conwy Business Awards will automatically feed into the Daily Post Awards.”

“Business such as Dr Zigs, which were formed in the region and are expanding are having a hugely positive impact on the North Wales economy and it is only right that we celebrate their success.”

Another of the winner was CAIS Social Enterprise North Wales who won the social enterprise of the year category in the Conwy Business Awards.

The charity’s project administrator, Katie Sanders, revealed their Porter’s Coffee Shop and Bistro in Colwyn Bay has proved a huge success.

She said: “Porter’s is owned by CAIS and the café and bistro is run by volunteers alongside a few paid members of staff.

“The volunteers, usually people recovering from alcohol or drug dependency, are people wanting to gain experience and training in areas such as food hygiene.

“It doesn’t matter to us if someone has a learning difficulty or just needs a hand-up, what we want to do is give people a chance.”

And now CAIS, which helps people get over addictions as well as mental health, personal development and employment issues, has opened Troop, a new military themed café in Llandudno with all proceeds going to help fund veterans’ services.

Linzi Jones, CAIS fundraising manager, said: “There are a number of people who suffered post-traumatic stress disorder following their military service as well as others who suffer different mental health issues.

“What we want to do is encourage them to volunteer and get training that will help them move on in life. We can offer a support network of family and friends of veterans that can help.

“Winning the Social Enterprise of the Year in the Conwy Business Awards was huge for CAIS and we were all absolutely delighted, it really did mean a great deal to everyone involved with the charity.”

She said: “I hope that next year’s awards will be as successful as this year’s and we will be celebrating some more great success stories 12 months from now.”