Our Senior Accountant John Farrell entered the “dragons-den” to send students from the University of Chester on an entrepreneurial mission to Milan.
John sat on a panel of four professionals who were invited to judge “the Italian Job” and allocate funding to students delivering the best business pitch at the Riverside Innovation Centre (RIC) in Castle Drive.
The event marks the second year running that Ellis & Co has been invited to take part in the judging process, with John helping to send students to the Global Entrepreneurship Congress in Moscow last year.
As part of this year’s pitch, contestants were encouraged to turn just £10 into a winning business idea to make enough funds to attend the Global Entrepreneurship Congress (GEC2015) in Italy.
Other judges supporting the event were Phil Harris, the Executive Director of the Business Research Institute at the University of Chester, who judged the event on behalf of John Newton-Jones, the Managing Director of the Snowdonia Cheese Company and Matt Bullas, the CEO & Founder of Click Consult Limited.
Robin Gill, the Head of Corporate and Commercial at Storrar Cowdry and Joel Silvester, the Graduate Trainee Manager of the Business Growth Team at Cheshire West and Chester Council were also on the panel.
All four judges decided to pool their money, amounting to £1200, to enable the four most successful contestants to travel to Milan where they will each attend the GEC2015 between March 16 and 19.
Pitch ideas included raising money by distributing children’s toys, creating courses for young adults, clothes designs and a phone app.
The successful finalists Admon Imseeh, 19, Emma Woollard, 35, Huw Liddiard-Williams, 20, and Anthony Georgiou, 20, will leave for Milan as part of a group of 11 delegates where they will attend the main summit of the GEC2015.
They will also visit some of Milan’s famous sites such as Duomo and the San Siro stadium and will dine with local entrepreneurs to gain an insight into the Italian way of doing business.
“This was the second year I have attended the “Funding for last resort” event and again I was very impressed with all of the pitches and the business ideas presented,” said John.
“Assisting local entrepreneurs in starting up their own business and creating a business plan forms a key part of our role at Ellis and Co. We are proud to support this programme for the second year running and are looking forward to supporting the University with other sponsorship opportunities throughout the year.”