Who are you? 
Emma Toner, 22-year-old business graduate from Glasgow Caledonian University and owner of Nics Wee Deli & Donuts in Glasgow. 

What does your business do? 
Nics Wee Deli is the only unit in Glasgow with a 24-hour licence to trade and we take full advantage of that by serving speciality crepes, donuts & hot food until late weekdays and 4am on the weekends. We’re known around Glasgow for our vast range of Halal food as well as charity work. 

Where are you based? 
We are based in the Woodlands area of Glasgow, sandwiched in between the West End and City Centre. I am a sole trader who grew up on the outskirts of the city which has given me an advantageous insight into different culture groups in Glasgow, allowing us to cater to many diets/dietary requirements with ease. 

How long has your business been running?

We are celebrating our first birthday this week!

How did you get started? 
I was working in a deli during my final year at university in order to save extra money during term time. I had planned to graduate university and take a place on a graduate scheme with a bank in Glasgow City Centre but after I had an unexpected hiccup (I failed one of my last exams and had to graduate late) I found myself without that option.

Coincidently my boss at the time was looking for someone to take over the Glasgow famous ‘Crepe a Croissant’ food truck and I took the opportunity to open it under a new name with some fresh ideas.

We sat down with my four parents (mum dad and step parents) and discussed the risks and potential gains.

My mum was more sceptical than my dad in the beginning but once I started to show them menu samples and marketing plans she realised I was giving it my all and supported me fully. Two weeks later we opened for trade.

What is your background? 
Before Nics Wee Deli, I had worked as a hostess manager at a nightclub as well as in a local estate agents while I was studying at university.

I didn’t realise at the time but in hindsight I realise that both of those jobs set me up for a job in sales, whether it be bottles in a nightclub or crepes at 4am. I had one and a half years’ experience in food preparation and zero in how to run a business before our first sale was made. 

What is your top tip? 
My top tip would be to wake up in the morning and remember why you started. Owning a business is the most time consuming thing I can think of, and since the day we’ve opened I’ve never really had a day off without having to think about orders, staff or wages etc. You’re never away from work 100% but if you’re having fun then it never really feels like hard work.

Where do you plan your business to be in five years time? 
My focus is on building our brand name in and around Glasgow. My five-year plan is incomplete as I never really expected to be doing what I’m doing now until last year but I am very interested in opening a ‘fast food’ franchise with the experience I have gained.