Santander Universities Entrepreneurship Awards 2018

The Santander Universities Entrepreneurship Awards 2018… one of the UK’s largest student and graduate business pitching competitions, is HERE!

Why should you enter?

Of course the money is a great incentive, but the prize goes broader and deeper than that with invaluable access to business experts and a quality training opportunity…and more…read on!

Who should enter?

If you have a business, or plan to start one in the near future, and are a current student or recent graduate, you are probably eligible to enter this competition.  Full terms of eligibility are provided in the information pack, downloadable below.

What are the competition categories?

There are two categories, and one entry from Lancaster will be put forward into the national competition for each category:

  • Technology business – defined as a business or idea with hardware and/or software central to the business value proposition.
  • Non-technology business – defined as a business or idea that has a value proposition that is not primarily based around hardware and/or software.
What could you win?

There is a grand prize of £25,000 equity-free seed funding and a runner’s up prize of £15,000 for each of the categories.

All four winners will also receive:

  • Mentoring from business experts
  • Access to the ‘Accelerator Week’
  • A fully funded intern
  • £500 digital growth voucher from Talent Cupboard

Additionally the Santander judges will be looking out for the entry with the most positive social, community or environmental impact throughout the competition.  The prize for this…one winner will receive £7,500 of equity-free seed funding, access to the accelerator week and a fully funded intern.

How does the competition work?

The competition starts with a qualifying stage in order to select the entries from Lancaster University.  The two winners of this stage will be put forward into a Regional Heat, and if you are successful at that stage, you’ll have the opportunity to participate in an Accelerator Week which will prepare you for the Nation Finals.

How do I enter?

To be considered in the initial stage, you will need to produce:

  • A two minute video outlining the idea behind the business and how it came about.
  • A simplified Business Model Canvas providing insight into the inner workings of your business or idea.

All entries will then be assessed by a panel of judges with entrepreneurial experience and insights and a winner for each category selected.

Can I enter the competition directly?

No.  Entries must be submitted to Santander Universities via the Enterprise Team.

What’s the deadline?

The deadline for submissions to be considered for the Lancaster shortlisting competition is 5pm FRIDAY 13th APRIL.  We will aim to inform successful applicants by Tuesday 24th April.

IMPORTANT: The information pack gives the deadline for Universities to submit their finalists as 24th to 27th April.  This is NOT YOUR DEADLINE.

How can I get started?

Download the full awards information pack (here), as well as the Business Model Canvas Template and canvas guide.

If you are unfamiliar with the Business Model Canvas we would also recommend that you watch the six short introductory videos from Strategyzer here or download the first 8- pages of the Business Model Generation book here.

We would also recommend watching our video interview with one of last year’s semi-finalists, Charles Rogers. In the video he describes his experience of the competition, how the experience has helped his business and advice for applicants:

What support can I get?

If you are able to submit entries by Friday the 6th of April, members of the team will be happy to review them and provide feedback before the final deadline on the 13th of April.

Email us if you have any further questions or would like access to any example canvases.  We have the means, the experience, the contacts and the desire to steer you with your application or generally.  Why not contact us and set up an IntroLab session, we’re here to help?  Follow our simple four-step guide and get into our business building loop.

Remember, entries must be submitted to us by 5pm on Fri 13th April!