There are few things more British than a freshly cooked, delicious portion of chips – except when they are Dutch.
Entrepreneur Andrew Mckechnie is bringing his Dutch-style chippy to Liverpool’s waterfront this summer after securing £35,000 of investment through Wirral business finance specialist Bathgate Business Finance.
Andrew used the cash to launch the first outlet of his gourmet chip shop, Chip’d, on Northgate Street in Chester, and the success of the venture has led to a year-long residency at the Dockside Dining Club at Liverpool’s Pier Head.
His inspiration for the concept came following a visit to the Netherlands. While looking for something to eat he stumbled upon beautifully-designed shops selling nothing but twice-fried chips – cooked to order – and an extensive selection of sauces.
The process involves hand-cutting fresh Agria potatoes, leaving the skin on and frying them twice fry in pure sunflower oil, before tossing them in sea salt and serving with a choice of dips.
On spotting a gap in the market, he brought the concept to the UK, first taking Chip’d to events such as Festival No 6 in Portmeirion and the Liverpool Food and Drink Festival, before deciding to open permanent restaurants.
Thanks to the investment secured by Bathgate, he was able to purchase a specialist Dutch-made frying range. Unlike standard equipment available in the UK, the open range features four round pan chip fryers, which are essential to the cooking process.
“Before finding Bathgate, I tried several asset finance companies. Many of them offered unviable repayment terms or made the whole process over-complicated,” said Andrew
“The process with Bathgate was completely different. They even liaised with the fryer manufacturer on our behalf to make sure everything ran smoothly with the finance. Bathgate has been instrumental in getting Chip’d off the ground.
“The deal has not only provided the equipment we need to deliver the concept, it has freed up other funds for short term cash flow. I couldn’t recommend them more highly to other start-ups or even established businesses.”
Gordon Andrews, from Bathgate, added: “We love supporting exciting new start-ups and providing advice that will help their ideas thrive and develop. Since we arranged the asset finance Chip’d has gone from strength to strength and we’re looking forward to seeing it continue to grow.
“After sampling the Chip’d product range I can confirm that they are exceptional chips and dips and I have no doubt that the business will flourish wherever it opens.”