WHO CAN ENTER?
So you are a young entrepreneur with an idea for a business or a social enterprise that you think could work for you or your school/college. The idea in your mind solves a problem that you have identified within your community or the wider market and you have undertaken some background research to get an idea if others share your thoughts. You feel that the product or service that you are proposing would have either a commercial benefit or a social benefit (or both) and is sustainable.
The Award is open to any School and College students undertaking a level 3 qualification (e.g. AS/A-Level’s, BTEC National Diploma Level 3, Advanced Welsh Baccalaureate) in the UK.
You can enter the award either as an individual or as a member of a small team (up to six members).
The Making Business Happen Awards have been developed to give young entrepreneurs and future business owners/social entrepreneurs the opportunity to practice business in a real-world setting, showcase their business acumen and most importantly: ‘Make Business Happen’.
Winners of the Award and their school/college will share £3,000 and also receive a business support and enterprise mentoring package.
HOW DO I ENTER?
To enter you must prepare a written business plan, develop a 60 second ‘creative’ and an oral presentation (pitch). You may already be involved in other young enterprise activities connected to your study that will have incorporated these features – if not then we have produced a number of entry ‘guides’ to help you.
The Business Plan
As mentioned above, you may, as part of your studies or activities, already be involved in developing a business plan. We have created a template for you to use for your entry – and it covers all of the key aspects of a business plan but also asks you for some specific information about your idea – this is your opportunity to impress the judges and also your opportunity to clearly state the impact or benefit that your idea will have.
The ’60 Second’ Creative
This is an opportunity for you to bring your idea to life and ‘tell’ us about it. You can use a video or an animated power point – it’s up to you. All we ask is that your ‘elevator pitch’ is no more than 60 seconds in length, is introduced with your name and that of your school or college and does not contain any copyright content (material that other people have made).
Shortlisted entrants will be invited to visit the University, and have the opportunity to take part in enterprise workshops and meet some of our existing entrepreneurs and listen to how they got their ideas off the ground and successfully developed them into sustainable businesses.
During the visit you will present your idea to the judges. The presentation will allow you to introduce your idea and explain your plan – it will also enable the judges to ask questions and for you to highlight areas of your idea that you think are important.
The presentation will be no more than 10 minutes long and be supported by Power Point or similar (please make us aware beforehand if you are going to require any specialist equipment: sound, Internet access etc.). The presentation can be made by one or all members of your team. Once you have presented your ideas there will be a further 5 minutes of time allocated for questioning from the judges. To enable a fair competition we will be strict on the timekeeping.
Judging will take place over two rounds:
- The first thing we ask is that you/your team complete an online entry form, where you will have a chance to ‘up-load’ your business plan and creative via the ‘Making Business Happen’ micro site.
- After an initial review a short list of entrants will win a place at a special two-day entrepreneurial showcase event including paid for accommodation and catering to take place at the University in June 2017 (Date TBC). During the showcase event shortlisted entrants will have a chance to present their idea to a panel of judges formed from external industry experts and internally from within the University of South Wales Business School for a chance to win prizes of up to £3,000 plus additional mentoring and support packages.
- You live in the UK. You, and all team members, must be studying a level Three qualification at either a school or college in the United Kingdom.
- You, and all team members, must be a minimum 16 years of age on the 1st September 2016.
- Your business idea must be your own. Franchises or subsidiaries of existing companies are not eligible.
- Your entry conforms to the ethical and moral standards of the University of South Wales.
- Your idea must be appropriate for a university-sponsored event.
- The University of South Wales reserves the right to disqualify any entry that we feel infringes the spirit of the competition or exceeds the bounds of social convention.
- Only school or college student team members are eligible to earn prize money. No payments will be made to non-students.
Ownership and Disclosure
All entrants own the rights to their ideas.
Entrants must acknowledge any trademarks or copyrighted materials that are incorporated into their entry or presentation. The entrants are responsible for obtaining any necessary permission before incorporating copyright or trademark materials into their submissions.
Once submitted, the University of South Wales reserve the right to publish information about the entries in university publications and press releases.
What are the judges looking for?
At the centre of our awards are of course the great ideas that you will come up with for new businesses and new social enterprises (sometimes also called Community Interest Companies). The judges will (like everyone within the commercial world) look at your business plan to assess the idea, its benefits and your capability – a business plan is the most acceptable way to articulate the who, what, why, where and when of your young enterprise idea – large or small, for-profit or not-for-profit a business plan is the base line document for communicating what the business is, in any business.
However our awards will also allow you to support the written business plan with a ’60 second’ creative – a way to tell the judges what the key features of your plan is – in essence the ‘elevator pitch’.
We suggest that you take a look at our entry ‘guides’ and also take a look at the many ‘Business Plan’ web sites available before you start the entry process. We don’t recommend developing the plan in the same order you present it as a finished document. For example, although the Executive Summary comes as the first section of a business plan, we recommend writing it after everything else is done. But we suggest that you have at least the following components in your business plan:
- Executive Summary: A clear, exciting and effective overview of the plan with a statement about the benefits to identified target markets and /or social value.
- Customer need/problem: Clear and compelling presentation of an identified customer/user problem.
- Product/service solution: A clear description of the key features and benefits of the product/service.
- Market Analysis: You need to know your market, customer needs, where they are, how to reach them, etc.
- Strategy and Implementation: what is your competitive advantage and how are you going to ‘go to market’?
- Management: who are the members of the team, what are their capabilities/ responsibilities?
- Financial Plan: Include profit and loss, cash flow, balance sheet, break-even analysis, and assumptions.
- Operations: a clear operating statement of how the business will be managed along with a resource plan of the business.
- Sustainability: how is the business sustainable (financially and ecologically) and what about succession?