Young entrepreneur from Neath Port Talbot is turning his sweet hobby into a thriving buffet business
A 20-year-old entrepreneur from Neath Port Talbot is tickling the taste buds of locals with the launch of her own catering business, thanks to support from the Welsh Government.
Poppi Kingsepp, from Jersey Marine Village, started Beautiful Buffets late last year from her home kitchen.
With a passion for baking passed down from her mother and grandmother, Poppi’s company offers a range of menus to suit events of varying sizes.
Beautiful Buffets has already proven popular with locals for its fresh, home-cooked food philosophy, including Poppi’s artisan canapes and desserts, and pasture centerpieces.
Before launching her business, Poppi studied art and design at Neath Port Talbot College and now applies her artistic skills to decorating her renowned cakes and desserts.
When she was 18, after her parents separated, Poppi went to the kitchen to cook comforting meals and sweet desserts in a bid to cheer up her mother, Tammerson (pictured above with Poppi) and his 16-year-old brother Harri, both of them have their own small roles within the company today.
Her grazing platters not only brought her family together, but proved to be a form of therapy for Poppi who did not yet know she was building the bones of her business.
The Covid-19 closures provided the perfect opportunity for Poppi to plan and grow the Beautiful Buffets business, with help from Big Ideas Wales.
Big Ideas Wales is part of Business Wales and is funded by the Welsh Government to support entrepreneurship in Wales.
The service is aimed at anyone aged 5 to 25 who wishes to develop a business idea, including students and graduates, as part of their commitment to the Garantie Jeunes.
Poppi said: “I have always loved cooking, but today cooking means something completely new to me.
“My therapeutic hobby has not only allowed me to bond with my family during difficult times, with my mother supporting Beautiful Buffets deliveries and my brother acting as my personal taste tester, but it has allowed me to become a successful businesswoman.”
The wide range of options available on the Beautiful Buffets website allows customers to choose event catering to suit their budget, with prices ranging from £30 for a small platter of raw vegetables to £127 for a seafood platter .
Since gaining support from Big Ideas Wales last year, Poppi has taken cooking and catering courses, completed Level 2 courses in Hygiene and Health and Allergy Awareness, and received valuable tips and resources that helped her start her own business.
Speaking of the support offered by Big Ideas Wales, Poppi said: “Starting a business in the post-pandemic hospitality sector has proven to be a challenge, especially for me, someone who has absolutely no knowledge nothing to business.
“That’s why it’s so good to know that Big Ideas Wales was there to support me and my business during this time.
“Big Ideas Wales had so much valuable advice to offer me as a young entrepreneur and provided me with the tools I needed to navigate this industry.
“I couldn’t have done this without the support of my Business Advisor, Amanda, who showed up at each of our weekly progress meetings armed with helpful tips, helpful resources, and plenty to help me out. grow my business.”
Big Ideas Wales also backed Poppi in his successful application for a £2,000 Business Barriers Grant, which Poppi earmarked for more appliances for his business, including extra fridges and hobs to help to diversify into the catering of hot meals at larger events. which also contributed to Poppi receiving a five-star food hygiene rating this month.
Big Ideas Wales Business Adviser Amanda Bordessa said: “It’s such a pleasure to see Poppi’s restaurant business grow in these uncertain times.
“Poppi is a testament to how hard work and dedication are the most important tools for building and launching a successful startup business.
“She and her family should be very proud of the business, and I can’t wait to see it grow.”
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