Showcasing the Best of Welsh Business

Leading Property Developer Supports School Careers Initiative

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Welsh entrepreneur and property developer Mandy St John Davey last week gave an inspiring talk to Year Six children as part of the Cardiff Commitment Open Your Eyes Week 2017.

Aberdare born Mandy purchased her first house for just £8,000. She has single-handedly built up a multi-million pound property business from scratch. Today she also mentors and coaches individuals with a passion to build their own property portfolios.

Mandy, who lives in South Wales, was thrilled to receive the invitation to raise the aspirations of 10-11 year olds.

Mandy said:

“It was a privilege to go into the classroom at grass roots level and talk about what I do and what I’ve achieved. Not everyone is academic, it was important for me to explain just how vital skilled workers such as builders, bricklayers, plumbers and electricians are to the future of Wales.  Also I wanted to emphasis the importance of engineers, surveyors and architects.

“Likewise with girls, I wanted them to know there was a potential world beyond an office job or working in the beauty industry. While there is nothing wrong with either employment fields, I wanted them to think about all possibilities. Having grown up in the South Wales valleys I know firsthand how difficult it can be as a teenager to carve out a future.”

The Open Your Eyes 2017 week is a careers initiative created by Cardiff Council for the city’s primary schools. The scheme has been launched to inspire young pupils and ignite their interest in a wide range of occupations.

On Tuesday June 27, Mandy spoke for an hour at the Ninian Park Primary School. Other speakers at the day-long event included attendees from the BBC and the RAF.

“It was fantastic being able to plant the seed with them that through hard work and determination they can achieve anything they set out to do. I believe that it’s important to share my knowledge and experience with others. Mentoring is a big part of what I do.”

Mandy is an active member of the South Wales branch of Women in Property which campaigns throughout the UK to increase the number of women entering the property and construction industries.  She’s also a mentor with the Prince’s Trust.

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Fiona Scott is a journalist, media consultant, videographer and tv producer/director. She has worked in the media for almost 30 years including working for ITV, BBC & Comic Relief.

Some of the programmes she’s managed include multiple regional award-winning current affairs series West Eye View, political show The West This Week, antiques and collectibles shows The Bargain Hunters and Beat The Dealer. On the national stage, she’s worked on The One Show and Flog It! She’s also often a guest producer for ITV Wales and she won the award for the Best Regional Television Feature in the British Asian Media Awards 2013.

After setting up her media consultancy in 2009, she’s offered media advice to many companies both large and small including Wiltshire Fire & Rescue Service, Kream London, Systemagic, John Williams Heating Services, Medikas, Sinclair Pharma, Galderma, Haines Watts Swindon, Sales Coaching Solutions and Bevirs Solicitors.

(She was also part of the team who helped raise the profile of the biggest cooperatively owned solar park in Europe – Westmill Solar Cooperative, Oxfordshire. As a result £6 million in community shares was raised in six weeks – the target was £4 million.

Today as her business is growing she works with associate writers and media professionals offering a range of different ways to tell stories and share news, which can be tailored to budget and need. All of her associates act under her guidance and direction.

Her approach to PR is to act as a journalist using strategy behind story-telling – with contacts and skills to gain credible and valuable editorial, advertorial or paid-for advertising for a business or individual on and offline.

Outside the work environment, Fiona is married to Steve and they have four children, three girls and a boy, ages ranging from 22 to eight. She’s a huge fan of reading and of the cinema, a film addict. She has a passion for antiques and collectibles and is an avid bargain hunter especially for things which are quirky or interesting. She loves local history and has researched her own family history back to the 1100s. She has a number of celebrities she’s worked with who are now friends. Ethically she believes in honesty and truth – even if that truth is difficult. Her family are her top priority in all of her life decisions.

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