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Paul's Latest Blog - Choosing a name

iCAN experiences founder Paul Nicol embarks on his own personal blog, taking the readers on his journey from diagnosis of a sight losing disease through to the present day as he makes iCAN experiences a success in the midst of tough economic times.

Welcome once again. In my last post I said that I would tell you a little about my Kilimanjaro climb, well, thinking about it, that doesn't fit in with the timeline of events, so I’ll save it for the next post! 

So hopefully by now you know a little about me and how I came to lose my eyesight. As I have mentioned, my introduction into activities of any kind has been as a result of my blindness and primarily driven by the need for me to prove to myself and others that I can still be an active individual.

At the end of November 2011, I left my job and armed with my savings, sat down and focused on starting my own business. Brave some may say, crazy others will say. I like to think a little bit of both! Previous to leaving my job I had done some business planning and market research to understand what competition is out there and how the industry operates etc. It was clear that I had something unique with my business model, offering gift experience days squarely at people with disabilities, I knew from many I had talked too that the idea was good if not great, the big question and risk was, will it make a successful business? Well so far so good!

Originally my wife and I came up with the working name for the business of "Challengeability", this stuck as the company name until the new year when my business planning was complete. It was getting close to needing to register the company with companies house, purchasing domain names etc and my Father-in-law (Also my business consultant) poo poo'd the name. "it needs to have a little more umpff, be more representative of you and the business". Brilliant, back to the drawing board. I sat down with the wife and made a big, very big in fact, list of possible company names, nothing got ruled out, it all just went in the pot.

A couple of weeks later, I was with one of my best Friends John Barneby and Karl Stevens (My cameraman for the Kilimanjaro climb), we were in the Peak District on my final training walk in prep for Kili. We had spent the day walking and were relaxing in a pub, sampling the local Ale. "Right, I need to choose a new company name" and I began to tell them what the problem was with "Challengeability" and some of the ideas I had thus far. After a few more pints, a couple of packets of Crisps and the odd pickled egg, "iCAN experiences" was born!

iCAN experiences, a name that inspires, motivates and encourages you to want to know more! On my return from the Peak District, the company formation was set in motion, the domain names secured and the bank account set-up. With that, I was able to get started on the most important thing, identifying suitable suppliers that I could contact and get onboard with my new business iCAN experiences!

It is at this point, I had to put things on hold whilst I did my final preparations and left my wife and daughter to travel to Africa to climb the world's tallest freestanding mountain, 5895 meters above sea level or 6Kilometers or about 3.5 miles!

In my next blog post, I will tell you about Kili, I promise! In the meantime, as always, please do tell all your friends and family about iCAN experiences, what we're all about and how to find us!

If you want to help us, please do follow us on Twitter @icanexperiences or like us on facebook at www.facebook.com/icanexperiences. Alternatively, pop along to www.icanexperiences.co.uk and browse our list of activities and remember to check back as we are always adding new locations and new experiences!

All the best,
Paul