West Barn Co was founded in 2016 by mother and daughter duo Kimberley Cattin and Donna McCann-Turner.
The firm’s revolutionary ‘soap brows’ has been featured in numerous fashion magazines, beauty blogs and the runway. Last summer the team started working alongside their dedicated Scaleup Partner Tony Brooks with ambitions to grow the brand.
In March, West Barn formulated their own sanitising product ‘Clean Down’ with vulnerable people and key workers in mind.
Equipped with both the facilities and knowledge to create antibacterial formulas, Kimberley, Donna and the team tasked themselves to lend a hand.
In addition to working on hands, like a typical sanitiser, Clean Down works on surfaces such as door handles, parcels, pens and steering wheels. As a cosmetic and skincare brand, the firm also made it much more moisturising for hands than the usual gels to try and combat potential dryness.
The team had already planned for a make-up kit cleaner in the future and Clean Down is great for cleaning pallets, containers and spraying powders to sanitise. When the pandemic hit, Donna and co rethought the formula and did everything they could to get it to the front line as quickly as possible.
So far West Barn has donated and distributed over 1500 50ml bottles and over 300, 200ml refills to those in need thanks to staff connections and a social media campaign.
The manufacturing crew have been able to continue production by forming 'same household' teams due to many of the staff being related, and several of them sharing a home. West Barn Co have also extended their opening hours to include evenings and weekends with teams or singular staff members only working all hours to continue production.
Recalling the ongoing support from Scaleup Advisor Tony Brooks, Kim said: “We have been hugely supported by Tony. He has given me some great advice and also set up invaluable meetings with others in the industry who have helped.”
Kim believes it is truly a testament to the incredible team that they have built over the last few years as to how efficient and selfless they have all been in manufacturing, pouring, labelling, making and hand delivering the product they are donating.
In response to the firm’s efficient coronavirus support Tony said:
“Kim is a very focused and inspiring young lady, I work with many businesses across the North East and you just know when you meet someone that has something very special. Kimberley is very passionate about creating a business that represents everything good about the North East.
The amazing atmosphere hits you as soon as you walk through the door, everyone is onboard and pulling in the same direction and this is all down to the excellent foundations put down by Kimberley. COVID 19 - It is a very worrying time but they are doing what they can to stay positive as a team and to continue to drive the business.”
RTC North is delivering Scaleup North East in conjunction with the North East Local Enterprise Partnership (LEP) and is part-funded by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF). The programme is aimed at supporting North East-based businesses that can demonstrate both the hunger and the potential to achieve high levels of growth. Click here for more info.
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