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Enterprising students win seed investment from Steria

18 December 2014

Gloucestershire College joined forces with Steria and Gloucestershire County Council to host a Dragons’ Den-style competition at its Gloucester Campus on Wednesday 17 December, with the provider of end-to-end IT-enabled business services awarding seed investment of £1,500 to the two winning teams.

The aim of the GC Enterprise Tycoon competition series is to inspire business thinking and acumen into the College’s most enterprising students, to enable them to develop the entrepreneurial skills needed to break into or return to the workplace, and even start their own businesses.

The five ‘dragons’, who judged the competition and pledged their advice and support to the winners, included Vice Principal Sue Steed; Leader of Gloucestershire County Council, Mark Hawthorne; Head of Local Government at Steria, Tracey Lee; Steria’s IT Operations Manager, John Bond; and local designer, Melissa Antonious.

Out of the five teams that pitched their business ideas, Steria awarded £1,000 to the Club Hub team from the Royal Forest of Dean Campus, comprising A Level students 18-year-old Rory Jackson from Ross-on-Wye, and 17-year-old Mike Humphries from Blakeney, and Jason Mosley from Cinderford. They will use the money to conduct market research for their mobile app, which aims to enhance the student social experience whilst studying at University.

22-year-old Lewis Beirne from Cheltenham, who is studying for his HND in Graphic Design, also won £500 to set up a website and marketing tools for his Design Agency, after wowing the judges with his professional and enthusiastic manner. 

Deb Piper, Enterprise Manager at Gloucestershire College, said: “Working with Steria and Gloucestershire County Council on the Tycoon competition has been an exceptional opportunity for the College and our students. We are delighted to continue this partnership into 2015, working collaboratively in enterprise and career development projects.

“The competition offers real opportunities for students to take concepts from idea generation to market and we are always looking to work with local employers to further develop student transferable skills.”

Steria has offered to support the three remaining challenges in the GC Enterprise Tycoon competition, which include ‘Brand It!’ in January/February; ‘Plan It!’ in March/April; and ‘Pitch It! in May 2015.

For more information about the GC Enterprise Tycoon contest contact Enterprise Manager, Deb Piper, on 01452 563245 or email

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