Enterprise Awards – Call for nominations!

 We need your nominations!

We are currently busy planning for the relaunch of our annual Lancaster University Enterprise Awards. The awards aim to recognise and celebrate the diversity of ways in which students, researchers and alumni have applied their entrepreneurial mindsets, acted as creative-problem solvers and made a genuine impact on the world around them.

The awards seek not only to celebrate the successes but also recognise the journeys and distances travelled to reach those successes -every winner should have a story to tell, which hopefully will help to inspire others to engage in similar pursuits to realise their own dreams and ambitions.

The award ceremony itself is set to take place in December and will involve  a formal dinner attended by various VIPs, stakeholders and of course a number of students. The dinner will be followed by entertainment, and an opportunity to network and socialise.

But now we need your help!

We need your assistance in identifying nominees within the following categories:

  • Student Leader – Individuals/teams with a leadership role on behalf of a segment of the student body e.g. Society Execs, College JCRs, Departmental Reps, LUSU Offices and Student Ambassadors who have demonstrated the application of entrepreneurial behaviours to the realisation of an event, project, activity or other intervention.
  • KE Champion – Individuals/teams who have displayed entrepreneurial behaviours in the undertaking of a Knowledge Exchange Intervention with an external organisation. For example through a Student Consultancy Project, Placement or Internship, KTP or PG Rise project.
  • Impactful Researcher – Early Career Researchers who have translated, or taken active steps to translate their research into sustainable research impact, for example via a licensing agreement, spin-out or other business model.
  • Sustainable Venture – Individuals/teams who have successfully launched a venture that has a clearly identified ‘triple bottom line’ business model, and has demonstrated or begun to demonstrate its viability. Must be formally registered, and trading for a maximum of three years.
  • Organisational Innovator – Individual alumni (up to last three years) who have gone into employment in any role, industry or sector except self-employment, or as a founder member of a start-up

There will also be a ‘bright sparks’ category which will involve the submission of short video pitches for ideas – more details on this category to follow!

Further details on each of the categories and what we are looking for can be found within the nomination form. If you think there is either a team or individual (or maybe you are them!) that fits into one of the categories, please download and complete this nomination form and send it back to enterpristeam@lancaster.ac.uk no later than the 31st of October.

 

An update from Ikigai Factory Ltd

Things have changed for Patrizia, Sebastien & Kyaw (MSc International Innovation, 2016) since they last shared an update following their victory at the 2016 Santander Big Ideas competition. Having established their company Ikigai Factory Ltd earlier this year, the trio have taken part in two startup accelerators and are going from strength to strength. Here they share an update and some valuable advice for aspiring entrepreneurs.

Our company is called Ikigai Factory Ltd and the flagship product we are developing is called REVR, which stands for real estate virtual reality. REVR is a simple tool to create, manage, view and share virtual property tours. Virtual tours help the property listings of real estate agents become more engaging and compelling. The idea originated from our experience of renting a flat in China from the UK by only looking at photos…. and well, it’s an understatement to say what we saw on the pictures did not reflect at all what we got!

So in February 2017 we incorporated our company with the support of the Enterprise Centre who also helped us with finding an accountant (at a convenient price, which is always important when you are a startup). We also started a 12 week pre startup accelerator in London (FFWD) which was very useful as it gave us guidelines on how to carry out different parts of the business such as, finance and marketing. Also it was a great opportunity to network with experts from different business areas and discuss and get advice from mentors. We worked on different important topics every week and had to present the results in front of other startups which was excellent practice for pitching on stage.

At the same time, we applied for the Barclays Eagle Lab Flight in Brighton, a startup accelerator which gave us access to some funding (always welcome) in the form of an unsecured loan. One of the best parts of the programme was to have office space; it’s not always very productive to work from home. Since there were only seven or eight other startups it was easy and natural to network and we spent a lot of time together and we came to know each others businesses quite well which allowed us to share suggestions, advice and learn from each other.

The programme finished at the end of June. During the summer we decided to hire a freelance senior developer to make progress quickly and have a functioning product as soon as possible. Through the Brighton accelerator we were introduced to a local real estate that since August has been testing our solution; this has been very useful and getting feedback from both the agency and the customers has allowed us to improve our product/service to add genuine values.

Lancaster University was very helpful as we have been introduced to a potential investor from China, and at the same time, LUSU Living has become our customer #1! Since August we have had a fantastic intern working on our social media (thank you Camille!).

It we could give one piece of advice or recommendation to our fellow aspiring student entrepreneurs, it would be to use the resources available at Lancaster University!

So what’s next for us? Our current main goal will be to get on board between 5-10 customers per month, and look for potential investors to develop REVR further and focus on growth and scaling.

If you want to know more about REVR and Ikigai Factory, check out their website here and have a look at their page on our Enterprise Directory.

If you’d like to make the most of the resources and support available at Lancaster, register with us and get started! 

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.

Paid Internships with Nesta Innovation Foundation

Recent graduate interested in working for an innovative organisation?

Nesta are an innovation foundation, their mission is to ‘seek out, spark and shape powerful new ideas, joining with others to take on the big challenges of our time and shift how the world works for everyone.’ They are currently advertising 12 six month internships, within a variety of areas across the organisation including, government innovation, International innovation, Health and Design. All internships at to be paid at London Living Wage.

Maybe you’re a graduate looking to take your next steps? Why not take a look to see if something catches your eye? The full list can be found on the Nesta website.

Applications close at 10am on Tuesday the 29th of August 2017.

 

Santander Entrepreneurship Awards Semi-Finals

Santander Awards Semi-Final Update

This week, Lancaster University’s Santander semi-finalists traveled to Northumbria University to pitch their ideas in the North & Ireland Semi-Final.

Charles Rogers pitched his virtual queuing app first in the pre-revenue category followed by Ze and Adam of Kaizen Academy in the post-revenue category. Both delivered excellent, well prepared five minute pitches which were followed by a grilling from the panel.

 

The results were announced on the day, unfortunately amidst very tough competition neither made it through to the final. However, as winner’s of the People’s Choice Vote, Kaizen Academy have been selected to attend the forthcoming accelerator week and have also be awarded £500 of funding. Both Charles and Kaizen were a credit to Lancaster –  we would like to thank them for all of the hard-work they put into the competition. I think would agree that it was a great day and a lot can be taken away from the experience.

 

Enterprise Nation: Student Start-up of the Year

Win £3,500 for your business!

Enterprise Nation have just launched a brand new competition: Student Start-up of the Year.

Supported by Microsoft and 123 Reg, Enterprise Nation are looking for brilliant ideas from both current students and those who have graduated within the past two years.

Entries will be accepted from businesses who are not yet trading and also businesses that have been trading for less than a year.

Applications need to be submitted by the 12th of May.

10 applicants will then be shortlisted to pitch in front of a panel of judges at Microsoft’s offices in London on the 19th May, from those five will be selected to go to a public vote.

To find out more about the competition, the prizes and to apply visit enterprisenation.com/student.

Santander Entrepreneurship Awards – Deadline Approaching!

Deadline: Noon, Monday 24th April

Hopefully many of you have been working hard on your Santander Entrepreneurship Awards Applications. This post is just a quick reminder with regards to what to submit, how to submit and the judging criteria. In addition, please could you let us know via email if you are planning to submit an entry and in which category, so that we have an idea of numbers before the actual deadline. 

To enter, you will need to produce both a two minute video pitch and a completed business model canvas (Download Template).

In your video the judges will be looking for:

  • A clear explanation of your business, its purpose and an understanding of the problem that it solves for customers.
  • An understanding of where your business or idea came from.
  • Evidence of how winning the competition would help you grow your business.

To find out more about the competition including the full process, eligibility requirements and prizes, take a look at the information page here.

A few tools to help you perfect your entry:

  • Simon Sinek – Starting with Why? may help you to better articulate the rationale behind your idea.
  • You can access the Business Model Generation: a handbook for visionaries, game changers, and challengers (Osterwalder & Pigneur, 2010) online through OneSearch.

Please email your completed canvases and videos to enterpriseteam@lancaster.ac.uk by noon, Monday the 24th of April. In your email please state which category you are entering in – Pre-revenue or Post-revenue. 

Santander Entrepreneurship Awards: Business Model Canvas Workshop

Tips for creating the most effective Business Model Canvas

The Santander Universities Entrepreneurship Awards are your chance to win up to £25,000 funding plus mentoring and a whole range of other startup support for your business or idea!

Round one submissions for the competition this year involves the completion of a Business Model Canvas. We will be hosting a workshop to help you explore the canvas and build the best possible submission!

The workshop will take place on Monday the 20th of February, 12:30-2pm in Management School Lecture 12. You can book you space now through Target Connect.

In the meantime, if your are unfamiliar with the Business Model Canvas, a copy of the Business Model Canvas can be downloaded from the Strategyzer website. The first 80 pages of the Business Model Generation book can also be downloaded here.

Deutsche Bank Awards for Creative Enterprise

Launch your creative career with £10,000 investment!

The Deutsche Bank Awards for Creative Enterprise is an awards programme for final year students and first year graduates. The aim of the programme is to provide financial and business support to help launch your creative career.

Winners will receive £10,000 investment in their idea, as well as enterprise training and business mentoring for one year to help with the launch of their creative business/project.

To apply you will need to submit a plan that details your project or business.

Deadline for submissions: Sunday 12th of March

More information including details of the full process, previous winners and helpful resources can be found on the DBACE website.

If you are interested in applying and would like any guidance with your application please get in touch with the Enterprise Team.

 

LU graduate in Forbes top 30 under 30 Europe: Finance

Forbes recently revealed their top 30 under 30 in the Finance industry, with a former Lancaster University student making the list.

Daumantas Dvilinskas (Business Studies, 2007 – 2010) attended one of the Enterprise Team’s very first bootcamp events and was an active student entrepreneur. Now the co-founder of TransferGo, a high-growth digital global money transfer service, Daumantas is well known in the fintech scene.

Other under 30s in the list include young professors, CEO’s of fintech startups and entrepreneurs creating digital financial market places. In years gone by, the top 30 would have included traders, bankers, fund managers and other traditional financial jobs whereas 2017’s list reflects the vast changes within the sector.

Congratulations Daumantas!