Business support

Creating a competitive advantage

This February, Highlands and Islands entrepreneurs can learn how to create and sustain a competitive advantage at a workshop delivered by a leading expert in the field.

Professor Eleanor Shaw, Executive Director of the Hunter Centre for Entrepreneurship and Vice Dean of Strathclyde Business School, will deliver the masterclass in Inverness on 20th and 21st February 2019.

Eleanor has more than 25 years’ experience in delivering entrepreneurship education across the globe. She has also undertaken extensive research on entrepreneurship and will be passing on her knowledge to enable Highlands and Islands entrepreneurs to enhance impact, value and performance.

The Creating and Maintaining a Competitive Advantage masterclass, which includes a networking dinner, is organised by Highlands and Islands Enterprise (HIE) as part of its entrepreneurship programme.

HIE is providing help towards travel and accommodation for those with travel expenses in excess of £70 so that as many entrepreneurs from across the Highlands and Islands can benefit from this masterclass.

The masterclass will also include a session with Stuart Rowell from Sunamp Ltd. Stuart’s career spans 30 years, with the last five years spent working with SME and start-up businesses, particularly in the software development and energy sectors.

Speaking ahead of the masterclass, Professor Eleanor Shaw said: “By creating a competitive advantage, businesses can set a buffer between them and their competitors; in turn creating a more secure place in the market.

“The way in which we approach executive education at the University of Strathclyde is different – we put the focus on the participant in the room, looking at their needs and providing access to toolkits and learning so after the masterclass they can start working with colleagues and honing their value proposition straight away.

“Everything we do has been road tested by working with entrepreneurs and we’ve learned that creating a competitive advantage can help a business in many ways. I’m really looking forward to working with Highlands and Islands entrepreneurs, sharing our learnings and making new connections in the region.”

Louise MacDonald, senior entrepreneurship manager at HIE, said: “Creating and sustaining a competitive advantage can be difficult in today’s ever-changing and dynamic environment. Businesses need to think strategically and be able to analyse their proposition to find ways to enhance impact, value and performance. The February masterclass will teach entrepreneurs from across the region the tools and techniques to stay ahead of the game. I look forward to meeting delegates and seeing how they implement what they learn within their businesses.”

The Creating and Maintaining a Competitive Advantage masterclass takes place 20th-21st February 2019 at Kingsmills Hotel, Inverness. The networking dinner will be held at the Kingsmills Hotel on the evening of 20th February. Further information and details of how to book can be found at

For information on help towards travel and accommodation expenses, please email


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