THE SEARCH FOR BRITAIN’S ENTREPRENEURIAL UNIVERSITY STUDENTS AND GRADUATES HEATS UP

Nine businesses across London and the South East named in the Lloyds TSB Enterprise Awards regional shortlist Announcements made as the search for Britain’s brightest university and graduate entrepreneurs gathers momentum

Shortlisted businesses in the running to scoop top prizes of £10,000 and £50,000 to invest in their business

A jewellery training centre and a software developer are just two of the companies named in the Lloyds TSB Enterprise Awards regional shortlist, as the quest continues to find the very best in rising business talent amongst Britain’s university student and graduates.

There are two categories: Best Start Up and Best Enterprise. The first – Best Start Up – will be granted to a business in its early stages, whilst the Best Enterprise accolade will be awarded to a company judged to show real potential to grow over the next five years.

LIST OF NOMINEES IN LONDON AND SOUTH EAST REGION

Cursive Simulation: a science and technology company based in Southampton delivering innovation in training and research simulation
Espresso Mushroom Company: an Oxford-based enterprise supplying mushrooms which grow in ground coffee beans
Integr8 Dance Ltd: the fastest growing street dance company in the South based in Eastleigh
London Jewellery School: Europe’s largest jewellery training centre based in Hatton Garden, London
neo-innovations UK: an innovative company based in London which creates a solution which aids the application of anti-embolism stockings
Old Bond: an independent creative agency in London which helps promote forward thinking brands in an innovative and exciting way
PleaseCycle: an employee engagement software developer from London which aims to get more staff commuting via bike
Vantage Power: a London-based engineer developing hybrid energy-powered products for the automotive industry
Ventive Ltd: a technology company in London which has developed a new approach to indoor air quality and ventilation

HOW THE AWARDS ARE JUDGED

The initial rounds will take place throughout March, with the heat for London and East taking place in Guildford on 21 March. Winners of the Best Start Up category will scoop £1,000, whilst the Best Enterprise winner will take home £5,000. Both winners will also benefit from two years’ mentoring from Lloyds Banking Group.

The two winners from each regional heat will then go on to compete for the overall title of Best Start Up and Best Enterprise at the Grand Final in Edgbaston on 23 April. The Best Enterprise Award winner will receive £50,000 and the Best Start Up will win £10,000 to invest in their business, alongside a comprehensive two-year mentoring programme, involving senior executives from Lloyds Banking Group, designed to provide coaching and support on critical business issues such as planning, finance and marketing.

Marking the shortlist stage of the Lloyds TSB Enterprise Awards, Gareth Oakley, regional director for Lloyds TSB Commercial Banking in London and the East, said: “This year we’ve seen a great show of talent as we search for the next generation of entrepreneurs. There have been a number of really strong businesses from a wide variety of sectors shortlisted and some very inspirational students and graduates who I’m looking forward to meet at the finals.

“The Enterprise Awards are a true demonstration of Lloyds Banking Group’s commitment to supporting small business start ups and encourage enterprise growth. We understand the difficulties that fledgling businesses can face as they try to get their ventures off the ground, and we’re delighted to be able to offer recognition to the rising stars who have overcome these challenges.

“From last year’s winners, we’ve seen how much of a difference both the cash injection and the mentoring programme can make to innovative talent coming out of UK Universities.”