Aspiring entrepreneurs showcase their talents

St Leonards Academy students at the event
St Leonards Academy students at the event

BUDDING entrepreneurs from schools across 1066 Country showcased their business skills at the Young Enterprise awards event last Thursday (April 25).

More than 100 students, together with supporters and business sponsors attended the annual ceremony at Azur, Marina Pavilion, with firms offering more pledges for the Own Grown campaign.

The presentations by entrants, together with their company reports, trade stands, websites and branding were judged by a panel of business and enterprise experts, made up of Peter Matthews, from Global Re Group, Louise Keller, of Eat@the Stade, Linda Smith, of Unique Hair, and Chris Addison, from Ace Joinery Solutions Ltd.

The winners were Best Company of the year – Intellego, St Leonards Academy; Best Accounts – Intellego – St Leonards Academy; Best product or service – Supersaints – St Marys Bexhill; Box it, bag it – Claremont Senior School; Best presentation - Box it bag it – Claremont Senior School; Best trade stand – Intellego – St Leonards Academy; Marketing Excellence – Super Saints St Marys Bexhill; Best Company Report – Intellego – St Leonards Academy and Most improved Company – Intellego – St Leonards Academy.

Wendy Gorham, the local staff YE manager said: “This was an exciting opportunity to showcase the achievements of these young people for all to see.”

Mark Weeks-Pearson, chairman of the Hastings and Rother Board, said: “These guys are off to a flying start in business. Their presentations were very professional and showed us how much they have learned. Their businesses are testament to their success.”

Young Enterprise is an education charity and students form their own businesses, marketing and selling real products under the guidance of business volunteers.

The Own Grown initiative, supported by the Observer, aims to get 1,066 pledges from companies to help young people in a multitude of ways over the next year.

More than 240 pledges have so far been made by firms across 1066 Country.

Businesses can help those under 18 and school leavers in a variety of ways, such as talks at schools about working and developing a career.

Firms can also offer help with CV writing and interview techniques, help with student projects, such as the engineering challenges, workplace visits and work experience.

Employers can pledge support via www.owngrown.org.uk, emailing owngrown@hastings.gov.uk or ringing 01424 451795.