This summer, the PopUp Business School will tour the UK, teaching aspiring entrepreneurs how to start a business. However, the advice they are giving out goes against the status quo that business books and universities often teach us.
Co-founders - Alan Donegan and Simon Paine – started the PopUp Business School in 2011 and believe anyone can start a business, even without a business plan or any funding for that matter. Since its inception nearly seven years ago, the PopUp Business School has taught thousands of aspiring entrepreneurs the skills needed to start a business and make money doing what they love.The PopUp Business School is the polar opposite of tried and tested approaches to enterprise support. Rather than preach the importance of business plans, company structures and loan funding, Donegan and Paine turned this model on its head to achieve far greater results. Using a combination of the latest online business models and a rapid approach to sales, PopUp Business School is fast, smart and seriously hard hitting. Their results speak for themselves – at a recent event in Reading, 43% of attendees started a business within the first two weeks of attending the course, and 38% of the attendees made a sale in that period too.
Whilst its primary mission is to help people start businesses, 98% of participants experience a significant boost to their confidence in attending the course. Many of those attending come from lower income backgrounds as the PopUp Business School does a lot of work with those on unemployment benefits, ex-offenders and single parents. So, to be able to give them some confidence is a huge boost.
As part of its national tour, the PopUp Business School will travel around the UK from north to south and east to west and will make its first stop in Birmingham on the 24th July. The PopUp Business School currently has sponsorship from Hammersons and Microsoft, but are looking for another headline sponsor for their autumn tour of the UK.
Co-founder, Alan Donegan said he founded the PopUp Business School because: “The government (BusinessLink) nearly put me off following my dream of starting my own business and I don’t want that to happen to anyone else.”
Co-founder, Simon Paine said he founded the PopUp Business School because: “Business shouldn’t be an exclusive club for those people with cash or who know how to write a business plan. I want to make it possible for everyone – that’s why we developed our approach.”
Donegan says what he most likes about teaching aspiring entrepreneurs is “changing people’s perceptions of what is possible for them. Changing the way they look at business and helping them to see a brighter future that they can take charge of.”
And the future is very bright with plans to take the PopUp Business School across the pond to the USA and Canada. Donegan says: “Our mission is to change the way schools, colleges, banks and government organisations teach how to start a business and help them to unleash the country’s entrepreneurial talent.”