Nationwide Search for Enterprising Youth Begins

Oct 03, 2005

The hunt for the nation’s next Richard Branson or Anita Roddick is on!

As part of Enterprise Week, a national competition supported by the Rt Hon Gordon Brown and Lloyds TSB is back for a second year to find young people under 30 across the United Kingdom who have made their ideas happen.  

Last year, over 1,000 enterprising young people entered, culminating in a ‘Pop Idol’ style final at a top London hotel. This year, even more entries are expected.

Commenting on the success of last year’s entrants Gordon Brown, Chancellor of the Exchequer, said:

“Those finalists have used the competition as a springboard. This year’s competition will undoubtedly attract even more participation.”

The competition is one of a number of events which will form part of National Enterprise Week 14th-20th November, organised locally by Invest Northern Ireland.  A celebration of enterprise in its many forms, the week has been designed to encourage people to take a risk and start a business.

Welcoming the competition Leslie Morrison, Chief Executive of Invest NI said:

“This competition celebrates the UK’s best young talent and aims to inspire others to follow in their footsteps. We know the hunger and ability is out there; it only needs to be encouraged. These awards are about giving young people the confidence to develop their own ideas and make them a commercial success.”

A panel of judges, including entrepreneur Al Gosling, CEO of the Extreme Group and representatives from Lloyds TSB Business and HM Treasury will judge the submissions. Some of last year’s finalists will also be involved in the judging process.

The five competition categories are:

  • Business entrepreneur – For enterprising individuals who have started their own business, large or small.

  • Social and Community – For ventures combining the principles of a successful business with an emphasis on the social and community benefits it can provide.

  • Helping Hand – For someone who has gone beyond the call of duty to help others, demonstrating a strong can-do attitude.

  • Teen – For anybody making an idea happen, who is aged 13-19.

  • Creative – For enterprising individuals, businesses and endeavours in creative industries.

Entry forms are available online at www.starttalkingideas.org, or you can register your details with the competition helpline – 0115 979 1129 and an entry form will be posted to you.

The short-listed finalists, five in each category, will be invited to the final and awards event in London during national Enterprise Week. The winner of each category will receive £1,000 and a trophy.

The closing date for all entries is 28 October 2005.

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