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Dragons' Den 2014

20th November 2014 <b>Dragons'</b> Den 2014

This year’s Dragons’ Den was a huge success with entries from across the College including Business, Dance, Computing & IT, Travel & Tourism, Construction and Performing Arts.

On Wednesday 19th November over 80 students from each faculty area were given a brief which focused on recycling material in a throwaway society. Students came together to produce enterprising business ventures which incorporated this year’s recycling theme.

Each group was assisted by a business mentor, courtesy of Business Link and had to develop their original idea into a three minute sales pitch along with a detailed business plan, which included competitor research and financial analysis

The best concepts were then put forward to represent each faculty area and seven final concepts were presented by Dance, Business Studies, Travel & Tourism, Construction and Performing Arts beating their fellow students to qualify for final.

Ideas ranged from waste management and recyclable phone covers to bespoke recyclable chandeliers –Bindeliers. Each group was grilled on different aspects of their business plans including their ideas, marketing, their competitors, costs/profits and their pitch.

After much deliberation, the Dragons’ Den Panel; Business Doctor - Neil Kendall, Eric Binns – Business Enterprise Officer at Calderdale Council, Sharon Mackel - Owner of Aspire Business Development and Andrew Harris - Head of Finance at Calderdale College, came to a united decision.

Well done to Travel & Tourism who came third with their waste management idea and congratulations to Performing Arts who came up with their bespoke products made out of bottles, cans and other recycled products.

Drum roll please! The winners of Dragons’ Den 2014 are Business, who took home the reigning title for their leftover recipe app. The judges loved their solid business idea which focused on an app that provides recipes to save money and use up leftover food.

Neil Kendall, Business Doctor and Chairman of the West Yorkshire Federation of Small Businesses said: "It was a really good event and there were a lot of great ideas in the room. We were really impressed with all of the groups in some way, shape or form and it was a difficult decision to make. The idea that really stood out was “Rescue Recipes” an app which is highlights how to use your leftover food to make a tasty meal.

"In his keynote speech, Neil imparted some important business advice and before the event came to a close offered some final words of wisdom: “The best piece of advice I can give is be thorough, but keep it simple. At the end of the day, business is just about selling it, making sure it’s made right and delivered on time.”

Level 3 Business student, Lee Wright, 17, from Illingworth who wants to set up his own business said: “At the start of this competition we were really stressed because we didn’t have any ideas and then we thought we would risk it and go back to our original idea. We worked well as a team and I am still really shocked! We didn’t expect to win as there were some great ideas."

Lee went on to talk about his course and why the College was the right choice for him: “College has been fantastic, we do a lot of work, but I have friends here and I can always ask for help on my course. My course is hard, but when you put all the work and effort into it and you know you are getting what you want out of it and you are learning new things - it’s good.”

Shahid Raza, Teaching & Learning Champion at the College said: “I am delighted that students from all areas of the College had an opportunity to develop their entrepreneurial and public speaking skills. The College takes an active role in promoting enterprise as a viable option for all students regardless of their course and organises regular workshops with local entrepreneurs to inspire, motivate and offer advice based on their own experience.”

For more information about Business courses at the College or to get involved with next year’s event please contact Ali Shah, Assistant Curriculum Manager:  alis@calderdale.ac.uk

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