How Candy’s Cupcakes delivers happiness throughout the country with local business support

Candy's Cupcakes team

In 2011, Candice Bannister began sharing her home-baked cake on social media; next thing she knew she had started a baking business.

After nine years of hard work, Candy’s Cupcakes grew into a successful family-run business with a dedicated kitchen located in Ashton-under-Lyne, Greater Manchester.

 It was then that she contacted GC Business Growth Hub for more advice and guidance on growing the business and to help her to realise her ambition to ship her products nationwide. And then the pandemic hit…When the country went into lockdown, many celebratory events had to be postponed, causing Candice to experience a significant drop in cake orders.

However, even during the most dreadful times, there’s always a need for a treat. 

Candice recognised that people still desired happiness and cakes, so she changed from shipping cakes to event venues to delivering them directly to customers’ letterboxes. The “Cake in a Box” from Candy’s Cupcakes (four slices of cake that can go through a letterbox) filled the gap in the market perfectly and they saw an exponential increase in orders from everywhere in the country. It was a good problem but also a great challenge for the small business in every aspect, from processing orders, production, and packaging to logistics. 

Candice Bannister with her cakes

After the pandemic, Candice continued to work with GC Business Growth Hub as she wanted advice from someone completely independent who could oversee her business goal and help her to keep the company on the right track. As the business grew, Candy’s Cupcakes moved to a large industrial warehouse, hired more staff, and were introduced to Martin Hyman, one of the Business Advisors in the Manufacturing Team of GC Business Growth Hub, by Kelly Gray, GC Business Growth Hub’s Account Manager for Tameside.

One of the team members of Candy’s Cupcakes, Amy Walker, joined the Lean Champion cohort programme provided by the GC Business Growth Hub on Martin’s recommendation. By Joining the programme, Amy has the chance to look from a different perspective on their production process. Having seen the benefits of Standard Operating Procedures (SOPs) on the Lean Champion Programme, Amy championed the project of implementing SOPs into the production process, with the aim of ensuring the quality of their product and controlling the cost. In layman’s terms, this was in the form of an internal cookbook for use by employees of the company, which contains detailed measurements of the ingredients and step-by-step procedures for the production process for every kind of cake on the menu. With the SOPs, they can be sure that every piece of cake is up to the same standard in quality and costs the same to produce. 

Having been on the Lean Manufacturing course and seen how production floor can be optimised, the company also re-arranged their production line to enhance efficiency. By re-arranging how the worktables were located and where the tools and ingredients were stored, and bringing in more technology into the kitchen, they have tremendously improved their productivity, reducing a lot of backtracking in the production process. Candice immediately acknowledged that after those physical changes, the general mood of the staff improved as everything they needed was more readily on hand. 

“The team is very proactive in making sure that their support is available as easily as possible,” said Candice. “We implemented those suggestions and see some immediate improvement in team productivity. Overall, the support from the BGH’s manufacturing team has definitely positively impacted our business. I would recommend them to other manufacturers struggling to overcome business challenges.”

Martin noted: “It is always a great pleasure to work with Manufacturing Organisations, like Candy’s Cupcakes, who take on board our advice who are then able to see the improvements in their businesses.”

To find out more about Candy’s Cupcakes, please visit:

Cupcake Delivery UK | Candy’s Cupcakes Manchester (

To find out more about GC Business Growth Hub’s impact on Manufacturing in Greater Manchester, please visit – Our Impact | GC Business Growth Hub

GC Business Growth Hub was part financed by the European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) 2014-2021, as part of a portfolio of ERDF-funded programmes designed to help ambitious SME businesses achieve growth and increase employment in Greater Manchester. Working in partnership with Greater Manchester Combined Authority, Department for Levelling Up, Housing and Communities (DLUHC), formerly the Department for Communities and Local Government and Greater Manchester Local Enterprise Partnership.