Case Studies

Former lawyer brings first keyless self-storage unit to Aberdeen 

A former lawyer, and graduate of the University of Aberdeen, has launched his own self-storage business in Aberdeen, introducing keyless self-storage units to the city for the first time.

10th June 2024

About the business

Based in Bridge of Don Industrial Estate, Storage Den provides highly secure self-storage units for personal or business needs for Aberdeen residents. Its 70 storage units range in size, from 25 sq. ft. to 200 sq. ft, and are all individually alarmed with motion sensors and monitored with CCTV.  

I’d like to thank Business Gateway for their support, which has been invaluable for making my vision for Storage Den a reality.
Brian Barbour, founder and owner, Storage Den

How Business Gateway has helped

Founder, Brian Barbour, spotted a gap in the market for self-storage provision while living and working between Edinburgh and Denver, Colorado.  

Brian said: “I had acted on behalf of banking clients providing finance to self-storage companies and realised that despite the UK being the third-largest self-storage market in the world behind the States and Australia, there is still a lot of room for growth. 

“My parents have their own business, which I’ve always found really motivating, and I realised that I had spotted an opportunity to start up one of my own. After securing my own unit in Aberdeen, I approached Business Gateway for support.”  

Brian accessed a range of start-up support from Business Gateway, including one-to-one guidance from a dedicated business adviser, as well as an advice on marketing.  

Brian currently has seen strong demand since opening, with a mixture of business owners, families, offshore oil workers and students making use of the space available.  

Despite only launching in March this year, Storage Den was recently named out of more than 350 applicants as one of five finalists at Storers’ Den, a UK wide competition which encouraged self-storage operators under three years old with bold ambitions for growth to pitch for investment.  

Looking to the future, Brian now has plans to expand into other cities in Scotland and would eventually like to take Storage Den to countries in mainland Europe.  

Brian Barbour, founder and owner, Storage Den, said: “It’s been a busy year or so working to get my ideas for Storage Den off the ground. The industry standard for a storage facility to become mature is two years, and I’m trying to do this within the year.   

“I’d like to thank Business Gateway for their support, which has been invaluable for making my vision for Storage Den a reality.” 

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