Win £25,000! Santander Universities Entrepreneurship Awards info session next week

One of the UK’s largest student and graduate business pitching competitions, is HERE!

How can I find out more?

Come along to our information drop-in on Friday 23rd February in Pod 4 in the Learning Zone.  We’ll be there throughout the day, ready to answer your questions and help you get off to a flying start. It would be great if you could email us to let us know if you are planning to attend.

Can I read anything in the meantime?

Yes!  Please visit our competition information page here.  You’ll be able to get an overview of the competition and download the information pack.

What other support will be available?

We will announce dedicated workshops on completing your competition Business Model Canvas, and producing a 2 minute video pitch, and offering 1-2-1 support with your individual application before Easter.   Watch this space!

Campus Capital Launch Event

Looking for funding to help your startup?

Campus Capital is working in partnership with a number of UK universities to deliver on-campus venture capital funds, part-run by students!

The Lancaster team will be hosting their first event this Monday the 29th of January, 6:30-8pm in The Hub, Lancaster University Management School. This event will provide the opportunity for entrepreneurial students and alumni of the University to find out more about potential funding for their startups. With Campus Capital being able to provide investment of up to £350k to startups – this is not an event to be missed! Anyone who attends the will get the chance to meet the Students VCs and receive advice for securing funding.

Please visit the event page for further information and you can find our more about Campus Capital Lancaster here.

Nesta’s innovation predictions for 2018

’10 trends, tech breakthroughs and social movements for the year ahead’

Innovation foundation Nesta have made some predictions for the coming year in terms of tech breakthroughs and social movements.  Predictions include drones delivering public benefit, Artificial Intelligence creating prize winning art, the internet going green, tech giants racing to buy a healthcare provider and the increased use of complex simulation methods to experiment with new ideas.

You can read the full article on Nesta’s website.

Monetising your app idea

Making your app stand out against the competition

The UK app economy is estimated to be worth about £83bn by 2021, but with almost 1,000 apps submitted to the app store each day competition is high. A recent article in The Guardian spoke to a number of bestselling app producers to see what they thought was needed to make a successful app.

It is evident that marketing is a crucial factor which can make all the difference, with developers sometimes spending too much on producing the perfect app rather than prioritising their marketing budget.

Utilising and building a network of users, testers, tech journalists and investors before launching is also mentioned as important to getting an app out there.

Other points discussed in the article include framing the purpose and function of the app with a story you can tell and the advantages of using a Freemium model.

To read the full article, please visit The Guardian’s website.

Do you have an app idea? Want help developing a marketing plan or building up your network? Get involved in Enterprise Team Labs!

 

Disruptive Innovation Festival 2017

Online, open access event that asks the question: what if we could redesign everything?

Accessing the Disruptive Innovation Festival is simple as it is all online and free! The festival will involve 200 hours of content streamed throughout it’s three week duration, including live studio discussions, animations, pre-recorded videos and roundtable debates with leading thinkers. Whilst watching you can chip in with your your own thoughts or questions.

When? It’s already kicked off – 6th-24th November

Find out more on the thinkdif.co

Is Blockchain the future of tech?

Apple, Alphabet (Google), Facebook and Amazon – will their reign last forever?

Concern over the amount of power and information held by some of the world’s largest tech companies such as Apple, Alphabet (Google), Facebook and Amazon appears to be growing in today’s society.

Recent months have seen increasing interest and investment in a new emerging technology – ‘Blockchain,’ a version of the technology that brought us bitcoin. It is believed that Blockchain technology could be used to build similar platforms to those of the big tech companies however, in a more cooperative style – owned by all who participate or invest, avoiding the super-concentration of wealth and power into one company.

Blockchain experiments are now popping up all over the world, so who knows what the future holds…

Find out more by reading the full Newsweek article on their website.

 

 

What’s new for 17-18?

If you’ve engaged in Enterprise & Innovation support through us previously, you are probably wondering what’s happened to the Wednesday IdeasLab and Thursday StartupLab sessions.

We found that so many people were bringing new ideas, having just a couple of fixed-time drop-in sessions per week wasn’t giving everyone enough time and space to get the attention they needed

So, this year we’re opening up more slots and letting you call the shots on when they should happen.  We’re still calling them Labs, but there are now lots of different Lab types to choose from.

How does it work?

The idea is simple – we’ll help you put together a personalised development programme and you work through it at your own pace. Whenever you’re ready to work on something new, you book a Lab session and we’ll supply the space, the know-how, the resources, and, where appropriate, bring in like-minded collaborators.

To make this work though, there are a couple of other things that have changed.

  • Firstly, before you start ‘dropping in’, we’ll ask you to register or re-register by completing a short Registration Form so we can get you into the system.
  • Secondly, we’ll book you in for a 1-2-1 chat (called an IntroLab) so we can find out more about you, what you are trying to achieve and what you are looking for right now.
  • Thirdly, we’ll get you underway so you can start putting together your bespoke development programme from our new menu of different Lab types. Regardless of what you are working on or where you are up to, there’ll be something for you.

To get started right away, please complete the Registration Form.

To find out more about Labs, please visit this page.

‘Embrace Failure’ – James Dyson

Sir James Dyson discusses prototyping, failure and patents

In a recent interview on Radio 2’s breakfast show, British inventor Sir James Dyson talks about why he sees failure as something exciting which should be embraced. He also answers questions on whether he’s ever invented something in a dream, how many patents they hold and whether he uses his own hairdryers…

It a great, short interview – well worth a listen on the Radio Two website. 

Innovative clothes that grow with your baby…

Example of design focused innovation

Buying new clothes every few months for a growing child can be costly and resource consuming. This is why engineer Ryan Yasin, 24 has come up with new children’s clothing range, ‘Petit Pli.’ Petit Pli clothes are made from an inventive new material inspired by solar panels and satellites. The material grows along with the child – so one garment can be seven sizes in one!

Petit Pli was the result of over 500 prototypes and now Yasin’s efforts have been recognised through becoming the UK winner of the James Dyson Award! But he is not stopping there, him and the team are currently working towards trying to make a garment out of a single material, allowing for it to be recycled more easily!

Read more about Ryan Yasin and his innovative design on the Wired website. 

 

 

Some of 2017’s less successful startups…

Ventures aren’t always a success

It is of course not always good news for startups, even those which may have at one stage looked very promising and been valued highly. An article on the BBC’s technology pages takes a look at just a few of this year’s biggest failed technology startups including Juicero – a wi-fi connected juicing machine and YikYak anonymous messaging app.

It all just goes to show that no matter how well funded an idea may be, changing circumstances is our unpredictable environment can result in a turn for the worse.

Click here to read the article.