Run alongside partners NatWest and KPMG, Entrepreneurial Spark is the world’s largest free business accelerator for start-up and scaleup businesses and has provided free support, mentoring, networking and office accommodation for over 650 businesses across the UK.
The #GoDoAcceler8 event comprised a training and networking programme dedicated to developing entrepreneurial leadership skills and encouraging growth for the new fledgling businesses (‘Chiclets’) that joined the Brighton hub (‘Hatchery’) in February. This was followed by an awards ceremony celebrating the top success stories from all 85 of the businesses based at the Hatchery.
The event also marked the halfway point of the February intake’s six month programme at the hub.
The award winners were as follows:
Acceler8 Award (£3000 awarded to best performing company)
- China Travel Outbound (www.chinatraveloutbound.com) – Specialist marketing agency which promotes British tourist boards, hotels and attractions to the Chinese market
#GoDo Award (£2000 awarded to each of the companies that best demonstrate the mindsets and behaviours of a successful entrepreneur)
- ClubRadar (www.clubradar.com) – Brighton’s official university nightlife app
- DoubleSix (www.doublesix.co) - The digital experience supporting grassroots football
Best Pitch Award (£1000 awarded to each of the entrepreneurs that best delivered a 60 second pitch about their company to a panel of esteemed judges)
- Michael Kelly, founder of Wriggle
- Amber Rust, founder of Bonieri Chocolate (www.bonieri.com)
- Al Start, founder of Go Kid Music (www.gokidmusic.com)
Jim Duffy, founder and Chief Executive Officer, Entrepreneurial Spark said:
“#GoDoAcceler8 is an exciting stage in the Entrepreneurial Spark programme. The progress we see is incredible and it’s hugely rewarding to watch entrepreneurs who joined us three months ago often unable to clearly articulate their business idea stand up and deliver a winning pitch. Our Chiclets have raised more than £45million in investment to date, and #GoDoAcceler8 is an important stage in each businesses’ growth as they look to scale up and build incredible businesses.”
Fiona Anderson, Entrepreneurial Development Manager at NatWest, said:
“Congratulations to all the entrepreneurs who took part yesterday. Seeing how far the Chiclets have come in just three months, it will be really exciting to see how much they improve by the end of the programme. Events like yesterday’s #GoDoAcceler8 are what make Entrepreneurial Spark so unique and effective, and what ultimately helps establish successful businesses.”
Tim Rush, Head of Enterprise for KPMG in the South East, added: “The Acceler8 events are the first opportunity for the Chiclets to really test their mettle and demonstrate the progress they have made since embarking on the Entrepreneurial Spark programme. Once again, we were not disappointed. The confidence, enthusiasm and sheer ‘GoDo’ attitude on show here in Brighton reinforces our belief that the future is extremely bright for these ambitious young businesses.”