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Sustainability Footprints in SMEs: Strategy and Case Studies for Entrepreneurs and Small Business by Lowellyne James

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10Rabbie’s Trail Burners: Carbon-Friendly Sightseeing and Tours

10.1 Introduction

Rabbie’s Trail Burners Ltd is an award-winning SME in the Scottish tourism sector achieving the Vision in Business for the Environment of Scotland (VIBES) Award in 2011 Scotland’s highest environmental accolade. The company has been operating small tours initially for elderly visitors since 1993 with a maximum of 16 individuals for each coach trip. Since then, the organization has rapidly expanded to 13 full-time staff and a vehicle fleet consisting of 16 modern Mercedes minicoaches and 1 people carrier [1, 2]. This focus on small tour groups and personalized service has yielded dividends helping the company achieve £3.4 million turnover in 2011 with 40,000 satisfied customers choosing the company to provide unique holiday experience [3]. However, this strategy was a result of necessity rather than planning as the company’s founder and Managing Director Robin Worsnop explains [3]: “It was a trying time because I didn’t have any money—I made about £4000 profit that was what I lived on.

As Chairman of the Edinburgh Tourism Action Group (ETAG), a tourism industry body, the firm’s Managing Director actively champions innovation in the Scottish tourism sector recently contributing to the development of a 3-year strategy to maintain Edinburgh’s position at the forefront of the United Kingdom’s tourism industry. In his own business, he has pursued a similar 5-year growth strategy through the development ...

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