Smokesman Investment Story

In February 2020 partners Josh and Matt setup an American Inspired Grill on Queen Street, Peterhead called Smokesman. 14 months later they opened a their second Smokesman in deli version, on Peterhead’s Broad Street.

Matt shares with us the Smokesman story. He explains why they chose to setup their business within Peterhead, and why he thinks others should consider Peterhead as a place to invest.

our business story

Having originally come from a traditional chip shop background, the owners, Matt and Josh, felt Peterhead needed a new and exciting takeaway option; and that is how the ‘Smokesman’ idea was born. They wanted to bring a unique takeaway experience with restaurant quality dishes to the comfort of the home. The Smokesman would work with local suppliers to bring American Inspired food, using the best quality ingredients with value for money in mind to the public of Peterhead. They had the vision and the drive, so when it came to its setup, they were fortunate to be able to reach out to several business contacts for business guidance.

With both premises there was a requirement for a considerable level of investment between renovation works, interior design, and installation of industrial catering equipment. Combined, there was an eighty-thousand-pound investment before they could open the doors to the first customer in February 2020.

That door opened and closed very quickly. Because in March 2020, just a week after being opened, the country went into lockdown. The business was forced to adapt quickly to a take-away delivery only service. There was a digital grant available at the time from Rediscover Peterhead, which contributed heavily towards the development of a website. An online food ordering system was also swiftly setup.

The Smokesman believe they were successful throughout this adversity because they offered the Peterhead community a new and unique takeaway experience, in which they could feel good to be part of. As consumers could support a local business, who supports local producers, and makes environmentally conscious decisions, right down to the takeaway commercially compostable packaging which the consumer received their order in. And which they didn’t need to feel guilty about.

The Smokesman Grill continues to do well, with its doors reopened to the public, and its Deli version having opened in June 2021.

Why we chose Peterhead as the location for our business, and why others should consider investing here.

Matt originally from the area chose to Invest in Peterhead as he wanted to add his own unique offering to the town. He feels strongly that diversity of business offerings is key to bringing footfall into a town, and away from competing locations. Peterhead’s thriving town centre, and low vacancy rates, gave the duo the confidence they required to setup their own business within Peterhead. They are currently drawing in hungry consumers from miles away to taste their unique offering.

“People from Peterhead, who work in Aberdeen, tend to shop in Aberdeen. But if they could get what they want in Peterhead, they would get it from Peterhead. There is enough of an audience here, a diverse enough audience, for you to open something different, and people will come.”

Matt, Smokesman
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