People, Places, Business

Swansea Bay Dragons 2012

Students wow judges with innovative business ideas

Over 7,000 students from across the region have wowed judges with their innovative business ideas, during Round 1 of the Swansea Bay Young Business Dragons competition. 

Teams from Neath Port Talbot, Swansea and Carmarthenshire battled it out for the opportunity to represent their school in the next stage of the popular event, which sees students embark on a 6 month programme that aims to inspire them to become future entrepreneurs.

The event is challenging teams of 14-15 year olds to create and develop a business idea around the theme of UK Festivals.  School teams compete in an inter-school round and qualifying teams will now go onto the area semi-finals in October. 

Business ideas developed by the teams have ranged from high tech apps to designer festival welly boots and disposable bio-degradable tents.

40 teams have now made it through to Semi Final Stage of the competition.  Pupils at Dyffryn  School commented “we had a brilliant day developing our ideas. We enjoyed coming up with an original idea and being able to develop our marketing and entrepreneurial skills. We  found the pitch to judges a very rewarding experience and are now  looking forward to working with our business mentor and  competing at the Neath Port Talbot Semi Finals in October.”

The event is sponsored by Wales & West Utilities. Graham Edwards, the company’s Chief Executive, said: “We are very proud to be once again supporting this event.  Last year’s competition had such a positive impact on the young people and on the mentors that took part – it is remarkable.  This year it seems that this high standard is yet again evident.   The business ideas in Round 1 of the competition have been fantastic and inspirational.  We would like to wish all 40 teams the best of luck for the next stage of the competition and we look forward to seeing which 6 teams are short listed for the Regional Finals in November.”

Over 50 local businesses have volunteered their time to mentor and share their experiences with students.

The competition which is organised by Swansea Bay Partnership in association with Careers Wales culminates during Enterprise Week in November with a Dragons Den-style final.  There 6 short-listed teams from the semi finals will pitch their business ideas to a judging panel of local business experts.  The winning school team will scoop £1,000 and the coveted title of Swansea Bay young Business Dragons 2012. 

For further information on the event visit www.swanseabaypartnership.com or contact Sarah Toomey, Swansea Bay Partnership Event Coordinator on 01792 637284.