Trade looking good for Ross

Ross Milne
Ross Milne

A Forfar singer is hoping to have double success – in the music industry and the business world.

Ross Milne (29) is lead singer of local band The Trade and has also recently become his own boss by setting up RAM Engineering and Tooling (RAM-ET).

Ross (pictured right), with the help of Business Gateway Angus office, is now aiming for success in both his ventures.

The engineer was made redundant when the company he worked for, Kelman Engineering, went into liquidation earlier this year.

Determined to put his experience, including three years working for the RAF to good use, Ross decided to start his own business.

And now he is enjoying not only fronting an up and coming Indie band, but also running and expanding RAM-ET.

He said: “I left school and joined the RAF where I was trained and then subsequently worked as an engineer. In the years since then I worked for a few companies in Scotland before becoming Operations Manager at the Brechin site of Kelman Engineering.

“Unfortunately, due to the current climate, the company went into liquidation in June this year and the workforce was made redundant.

“I wasn’t sure what my next move would be but I wanted to use the skills I had including an extensive knowledge of tooling I gained from previous jobs.

“I didn’t want to be in this type of situation again and so decided to set up on my own.”

Ross soon got to work starting up RAM Engineering and Tooling which aims to solve companies tooling needs, save them money and increase productivity.

RAM-ET is the only supplier in Scotland of Edgecam, a leading computer aided manufacturing system and is the sole Scottish agency for Hardinge Bridgeport machine tools.

Added to this, the business has close ties with tooling distributors Engineering Supply Company, offers sub-contract machining services and with Ross’s extensive contacts also playing a big part, the company has made an excellent start.

Ross now hopes that he can continue to build the business and even start taking on employees in the new year.

As well as expanding his fledging business, Ross is also committed to The Trade and admits that while doing both means he hardly gets any spare time, he wouldn’t have it any other way.

He added: “A lot of people think I’m mad for doing both but I love it. I’m realistic enough to know that the music career isn’t going to be enough short term but we are doing well and we want to continue gigging and making albums.

At the same time I’m committed to the business and my customers. I do believe I can make a success of both and I’m really excited about the future.”

When Ross decided to start his own business he sought help from his local Business Gateway office in order to gain important advice on what his next step should be.

Ross said: “When the company I worked for went into liquidation I had an idea to set up a skip supplying business and to hire some of the guys I worked with.

“But not long after I started looking into it, the price of starting that type of business increased to such a level that it didn’t make sense for me to go into that industry.

“I had always wanted to set up my own tooling company and I felt the time was right.

“I had been given a wealth of information and advice from Business Gateway with regards to my initial business idea that I could put to good use this time around and since then I’ve received support for RAM-ET. I will definitely be taking advantage of Business Gateway’s free services in the new year in order to take my company forward.”

Donna Williamson, Business Adviser, Business Gateway Tayside office said: “Ross came to us with an idea for a business that he hoped would be able to offer employment to some of his colleagues who had also been made redundant. However economic factors meant this original business wasn’t proving viable.

“During the time he had gained a lot of knowledge from us regarding running a business so when he came back to us and told us that he had another idea that was more suited to his expertise, he was able to use the advice we had offered him previously as well as accessing specific support for RAM-ET.

“We are helping Ross in discovering avenues to funding and we hope to continue helping him as he develops and expands the business.”

Business Gateway provides practical help, advice and support for new and growing businesses.

To find out more about how Business Gateway can help you set up and develop your own business as well as find out when and where workshops are taking place, visit or call 0845 609 6611.

Alternatively call your local Business Gateway office directly on 01241 870563.