Impressive ideas for business
Dominic Bareham A SCHOOL radio network and a company designing logos for T-Shirts were just two of the ideas presented by budding Great Yarmouth entrepren-eurs that impressed judges at a Dragons' Den-style conference.
A SCHOOL radio network and a company designing logos for T-Shirts were just two of the ideas presented by budding Great Yarmouth entrepren-eurs that impressed judges at a Dragons' Den-style conference.
Students from seven high schools in the Yarmouth area, including Oriel, Yarmouth, Caister, Cliff Park, Lynn Grove and Flegg, as well as Yarmouth College, gathered at the town's racecourse to pitch their business ideas to the experienced panel of judges.
And there was no lack of expertise among the Dragons, who included Lianne Miller, 41, star of BBC3 programme The Last Millionaire and founder of Young and Pure, which produces a natural skincare range for teenagers.
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Other judges included Chris Wilson, from Beach Radio; Richard Miner, chosen for the prime minister's Global Fellowship; Richard Percy, project manager for enterpriseGY and a member of pop group EFX.
The dragons had £1,000 to give away to the pupils with the best of the 12 business pitches and there were also representatives present from nine local businesses supporting the event including Adrian Pennington, chief executive of James Paget University Hospital and Peter Jay of the Hippodrome in Yarmouth.
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Mrs Miller, who has two children, said the conference gave the teenagers an idea of how much work was involved in becoming an entrepreneur and the skills involved.
“We are giving them real facts, real expertise about what it is like to be an entrepreneur. They are going to be under no illusions about what it takes to be an entrepreneur,” she said.
The oldest entrepreneur on the BBC3 show, she lists the five qualities for success in business as self-belief, self-awareness, taking calculated risks, passion and tenacity.
Having been brought up in a strict Catholic family, she was expected to follow a traditional career and
wanted to emphasise there were other options available, “if we are talking about Britain being more entrepreneurial.”
She added: “ These conferences are fundamental to the way kids think. We have to get kids thinking we can get out there to do it. We have to get them believing that they don't have to follow a traditional path but there is something else they can be doing.”
Mr Miner, who runs recruitment firm Project Underground, said: “The children showed a lot of enthusiasm and have come up with some great ideas.
“Hopefully I can form a business link between them and my own company and I especially liked the logo merchandising idea.”