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Enterprising students enter the Dragon’s Den

Published: 20 November 2007

Ecological bike oil, a magic enterprise and a filmmaking web portal were just some of the innovative business ideas pitched by University of Southampton students at a ‘Dragons-Den’ style panel.

Business-savvy students were given five minutes to wow a panel of judges made up of local business leaders, University staff and the student entrepreneurial society, Fish on Toast.

The event was part of the University’s Enterprise Week (12 – 16 November) a UK-wide initiative aimed at inspiring young people to make their business dreams a reality.

The panel invited students to pitch for funding to help them get their business ideas off the ground, with up to £2,500 match funding for start-up businesses, proof of concept grants worth £499, and social enterprise funds available. All students were given support and constructive feedback to help develop their business plans.

Harry Dhand, Managing Director at Tenon Corporate Finance, lead sponsors of Enterprise Week events said: "I was extremely impressed by the energy, enthusiasm and entrepreneurial drive of the students. They all gave highly professional presentations and its encouraging to see such high-quality business ideas coming out of the University of Southampton."

Student Sean Nuzum, who took part in the panel, added: "While presenting to a panel was a nerve racking process, it was a great experience to prepare for taking your ideas out into the business world. I came away from the panel buzzing with new ideas and excited about taking my business forward."

Other Enterprise Week events included an evening networking session, an exhibition from local organisations and a ‘virtual’ wine bar challenge.

Notes for editors

  • The University of Southampton has an active entrepreneurial society called Fish on Toast, which promotes entrepreneurial thinking and good graduate skills among students.

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