START ME UP!

smu Published Tuesday, 28th November 2017

Aspiring business leaders mark Global Enterprise Week at the University of Worcester with a networking and speaking event designed to help get start-up ideas off the ground…

DOZENS of entrepreneurs gathered at the University of Worcester to hear from some of the region’s start-up success stories discussing the skills of online selling.

The Enterprising Worcestershire Project – a European Regional Development Fund (ERDF) part funded Worcestershire County Council initiative – joined forces with the university’s Worcester Enterprise to open up support networks to people embarking on the early stages of setting up their own business.

Timed to coincide with Global Entrepreneurship Week, delegates heard from speakers with experience of starting up their own enterprises as they discussed brand awareness and creating a recognisable online presence.

One of the key speakers was Studio B61 founder Sian Conway who was able to deliver some inspirational insights into establishing a successful business in Worcestershire, having been a recipient of assistance from the Enterprising Worcestershire Programme while establishing Studio B61 – a creative marketing agency based in Bromsgrove.

 “Events like this are really valuable for new businesses, in terms of what they can learn and also the contacts they make in the room,” Sian said.

“It was really inspiring to meet all the students and hear about their business ideas - especially as I met my business partner at a similar event when we were at university!”

After leaving her role at a software company as Head of Marketing in the summer, Sian established Studio B61 with help from Worcestershire County Council’s Enterprising Worcestershire project.

“It just shows how much of an impact these events can really have,” she added.

“There's a lot of support available for new businesses in this region and a lot of opportunities out there, but events like this are essential in raising the profile and encouraging more people to pursue their business ideas.”

Other speakers included Ben Feltwell, a director of marketing agency Alphaquad, and Blue Monkey founder Ella Stearn. Blue Monkey is a successful social media management agency based in the heart of Worcester.

One of the event’s main organisers was Nicholas Bancroft, Enterprise Manager at the University of Worcester Business School.

He said: “It has been great working with the Worcestershire County Council Enterprising Worcestershire team in the delivery of this event and, in turn, be able to showcase the extensive offer that is available locally to both pre start-ups and businesses who are already trading.

The event was part of a long-running calendar of #Worcesterpreneur gatherings designed to encourage students and the wider community to think entrepreneurially and be inspired about the possibilities around starting and building a business in Worcestershire.

“Our speakers from this event are great examples of the abundant talent that is around locally within Worcestershire in the creative industries, and how leveraging this expertise and insight is enabling their respective customers to grow their businesses and succeed in today’s competitive online space,” Nick added.

“We are looking forward to follow up the success of this event with our annual business start-up fair in April next year.”