Sixteen budding entrepreneurs from Year 10 at Nova Hreod School pitched for investment from some of Swindon’s top business brains in a Dragons’ Den style presentation on 4 October, writes Andy Fila, Nova Hreod Social Sciences faculty leader.
The entrepreneurs represented four businesses that were set up by students taking the Business, Admin and Finance Diploma.
The first unit of work in the Diploma is about business enterprise. Students are expected to come up with their own ideas for a product or service, choose one that they think will be successful and develop it, and present their idea to an audience. Students then prepare a business plan, put it into practice, document what happened, decide how successful they think it has been, and work out what lessons they have learned so that next time it will be even better.
The four businesses were Nova Shakes whose idea was to sell milkshakes to order to staff and students; Cake That,who were producing and selling cakes and biscuits; Star Wash, a car-washing business and Car Wash 4U, a competing car-washing business.
Students were judged firstly on their presentation skills and how well they had prepared their pitch. They were then questioned further on their entrepreneurial skills such as theirwillingness to take risks, determination to succeed, creativity and competitive drive.
3 of the 4 businesses were successful in gaining investment from the dragons. The remaining one was advised to make adjustments to their business plan before they would be considered for investment.
The feedback from the dragons was really positive with Paul Miller, Chair of Governors, saying “I really enjoyed the session and thought that the preparation behind each of the bids was very good and well thought through… and Car Wash 4U was really exemplary. They really understood their business model.”
Pictured, top: Dragons Paul Miller, Sarah Hollick, Jacky Barnes, Phil Barber