Apply for the eBay Doers Scheme

Brilliant business idea which could work on eBay?

The Guardian Labs and eBay are looking for 15 individuals or teams of two with an exciting new idea or one which is already in development to join their new eBay Doers scheme.

The chosen entrepreneurs will receive 10 weeks of mentorship from a leading industry expert and £500 PayPal credit to help build their business, a photoshoot for their product and additional support and promotion on eBay worth over £200.

To find out more and apply, please visit The Guardian’s website.

Applications close: 17th July 

Starting an ethical business

Ethical business is booming

The ethical goods market in the UK has quadrupled in size since 2000 and millennials appear more willing to pay for and choose brands doing social or environmental good. However, making money ethically is not always easy, many will not have profit at the forefront of their minds but as chief exec of Cafédirect John Steel explains, ‘financial sustainability is paramount.’ Other aspects such as recruiting the right people, who share the same values as the business are also vital.

The article is a very interesting read with a number of ethical business examples discussed, including the Big Issue, the Ethical Landlords Association and Brighton supermarket hiSbe. You can read the full article on The Guardian’s website.


Teens making thousands from selling online

A shift from paper-rounds to teens ‘building empires from their bedrooms’?

Generation Z (those born in the mid 1990s to early 2000s) are finding new ways to make substantial amounts of money from the comfort of their very own bedrooms. Reselling hyped merchandise from the likes of Supreme online, through platforms such as Depop and Ebay is making some teens up to several thousand pounds a month.

A number of entrepreneurial teens are using social media to gauge the popularity of limited edition products, to then purchase and resell them online.

The article on The Guardian’s website talks about this new trend and speaks to a few of the entrepreneurial teens making money from it.

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!


‘Airbnb for retail’

Pop-up shops to test your product

With an estimated worth of £2.3bn (Centre for Economics and Business Research, 2015), the pop-up sector is thriving. A temporary stall or pop-up shop could provide an entrepreneur with the ideal opportunity to validate their product and gain valuable experience, in turn, assisting in the formulation of a compelling business case.

A recent article on The Guardian’s website, explored this new temporary retail trend and talked about new startup – ‘Appear Here.’ Hailed as the ‘Airbnb for retail,’ Appear Here allows entrepreneurs to find temporary business spaces quickly and simply.

The concept is not dissimilar from LUSU facilitated ‘Deli Takeover’ nights, a number of which took place last year, allowing food entrepreneurs and societies to organise their own event or test out their food related business idea. Lancaster Charter Market also offers the opportunity for new traders to rent a pitch for free if they are offering a product which is new to the market.

What do you think? Would you fancy trialing your product on a temporary stall/pop-up shop? Read the full article on The Guardian’s website.

Enterprising art gallery collaborations

Leggings & baubles = modern day artist canvases?

In a recent Guardian article, Louise Tickle explores the nature of innovative business collaborations between entrepreneurial artists and top galleries. From famous paintings being printed onto leggings to hand-painted Christmas baubles. The article discusses these examples and how they came about and explores the nature of such collaborations. It also identifies the common challenge experienced by the artists in making their products commercially viable when approached with such deals.

To read the full article on The Guardian website, click here.

‘Startup founders have to be a little bit crazy’

‘Entrepreneurs are gloriously imperfect’

Luke Lang, founder of Crowdcude has written a great response to a recent letter published in The Guardian from a startup employee who claimed that unless you’re lucky, working for a startup often isn’t as fun and successful as portrayed, describing many startups as ‘rudderless and stuffed with clueless children.’ In this article, Luke defends the often somewhat crazy nature of entrepreneurs and discusses how this is something which should be embraced and celebrated rather than criticised.

It may well be that the entrepreneurial mindset does not align with that of others, however it is just that unique mindset of not following rules, bravery and creativity which enables them to succeed. As Luke rightly concludes, ‘without the creativity they bring and the impact they make, life would be quickly squeezed out of the UK’s business environment.’

To read the full article on The Guardian website click here.

The Guardian Competition: Win a Mentor!

Are you an SME seeking some advice and guidance to help you reach your full potential? Here’s your chance to win a Mentor!

The Guardian Small Business Network competition, supported by Barclaycard is giving small businesses in retail, professional services or hospitality industries the chance to win access to personalised support and advice from one of three UK leading entrepreneurs:

  • Sarah Willingham, serial entrepreneur and investor, as well as star of BBC show Dragons’ Den.
  • Lopo Champalimaud, founder and CEO of online hair and beauty appointment bookings service, Treatwell.
  • Andre Balis, founder of restaurant chain Bodean’s.

To be in with a chance of winning, all you have to do is answer the following question in under 150 words:

What is your biggest ambition for your business, and how could a mentor help you achieve this?

The competition closes on the 22 July. For more information and to enter click here.

Even if you don’t win a mentor through the competition you can apply for one through us. To read more about our Enterprise Mentoring Scheme click here.

Enterprise Team in the News!

Simon Harrison and Amanda Brooks of the Lancaster University enterprise team have this week shared their wisdom and insights on enterprise in an article for The Guardian. ‘University could be the time to unlock your inner innovator,’ shares some insightful tips on what being enterprising is all about…

To find out more you can read the article here!



Small Business Showcase: Startup of the Year

Are you the “Startup of the Year”?

startupaward2The Guardian’s Small Business Showcase competition is now calling for entries for Startup of the Year.

If your business is up to 18 months old and you feel like you’ve made a real difference or impact in the short time you’ve been trading – apply for the Startup of the Year category.

To enter, you need to explain what you have done to propel your business forward and what results you have seen whilst turning your idea into reality. The more innovative the better and really describe how you’ve made the most of the support & resources around you.

The competition is open to UK based companies only and this category closes on 5th Feb 2016.

Enter and find out more here.