By Daniel Hunter
The UK will become a hotbed of entrepreneurial activity in November, with thousands of budding entrepreneurs uniting for Global Entrepreneurship Week 2013.
From students turning tenners into trips to Moscow to network with peers, to ex-servicemen and women gathering at the Tower of London to develop business ideas, there is just a month left to get involved. More than 350 UK events involving over 76,000 people are already in the diary for the Week, which spans 130 countries and will involve around 7.5 million people.
Vince Cable, Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills, will launch Global Entrepreneurship Week 2013, which runs from 18-24 November, at a Youth Business International and Barclays event at Westminster Kingsway College. The event will also feature former Pizza Express entrepreneur, Luke Johnson, and Gandy’s Flip Flops founders Rob and Paul Forkan.
For 2013, events will encourage aspiring entrepreneurs and small businesses to ‘take a step forward’ towards start up success. Topics range from ‘everything you wanted to know about taking card payments but were afraid to ask’ to ‘step by step guides to selling ethical products’. In Dorking, students will work in community teams to create a sustainable island with shelter, industry trade links and a national anthem, while Portsmouth entrepreneurs will network whilst learning to cook Asian street food.
Highlights of the 2013 Week, which is hosted in the UK by Youth Business International and supported by Barclays, to date include:
· Coca-Cola Enterprises’ Real Business Challenge 2013/14, which gives students in Years 9 and 10 the chance to work with a leading brand
· ‘The Apprentice’ star Melody Hossaini running entrepreneur bootcamp sessions for City College Plymouth students
· A series of TED talk-style events run by the University of Dundee and Enterprise Gym
· A week-long series of events run by the British Library including live ‘Inspiring Entrepreneurs’ screenings in six city libraries and the finals of NACUE’s business planning competition, the National Varsity Pitch
· The Great British Entrepreneur Awards in London featuring judges Oli Barrett of COSPA and Minister for Business and Enterprise, Michael Fallon
· Every Woman Inspired, a retreat and expo for women entrepreneurs providing opportunities for UK businesses to expand internationally in ways that help improve the lives of women and children in Jamaica
· The Largest Ever Start-up Saturday, a one-day start-up class led by Enterprise Nation’s Emma Jones
The 2013 Week marks 10 years of a Week dedicated to giving individuals and start ups practical help and support to help them get set up and grow. Last year, 279,500 people attended more than 3,200 events organised by over 500 partner organisations — a 30% increase on the year before.
Andrew Devenport, Chief Executive of Youth Business International, said:
“Young or old, whether you’re in Barrow or Braintree, or Greenock or Greenwich, Global Entrepreneurship Week can help you take a step forward. We had a record year last year, but 2013 is shaping up to be even bigger and better. Youth Business International and Barclays want all aspiring entrepreneurs to sign up now for start up success.”
Sue Hayes, Managing Director, Business Banking at Barclays, which supports Global Entrepreneurship Week in the UK, said, "The Week offers businesses a fantastic opportunity to hear from some of the most successful entrepreneurs in the UK. When you are starting out it is vital to seek out as much advice as possible, either from your local Chamber of Commerce, online or from friends or family who may have started a business themselves. It’s this advice and expertise that can make an aspiring entrepreneur’s dreams a reality.”
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