Success stories

ScratchBikes (formerly WhipBikes) - Enterprise Challenge RMT New Trader Award 2010 & TEDCO Business Award Winners 2009

Robert Grisdale and Jack Payne

ScratchBikes provide university students with a quick and convenient way of getting around. With unique self-service cruiser bikes available all around the campus and university accommodation 24/7, making short frequent journeys has never been simpler. The rental process is all automated and charged through the user’s mobile phone. When finished, the bike is simply relocked to any university bike rack.

Every ScratchBike also offers advertising space on the rear wheel, providing a perfect media for reaching the student market directly.

During summer travels, we were impressed with schemes around Europe which were proving very successful and we thought this concept would be perfect for students. We decided to take the plan forward and enter the Enterprise Challenge 2009. Winning the TEDCO Business Award gave us the drive we needed to take our idea forward to the next stage and begin to turn our business plan into a real business.  We then went on to be finalists in the Blueprint Competition 2009, the regional business plan competition in the North East. We have recently won the Enterprise Challenge RMT New Trader Award 2010.

We are always working hard to fill the gaps in our knowledge by seeking help and advice wherever we can. The Careers Service has supported us all the way and without them we probably would not have taken the idea any further than our university module required. Now in the final stages of planning our business, we look forward to the day we first see a ScratchBike fly by!

Visit the ScratchBikes website


Beautiful Bottoms - Enterprise Challenge New Trader Business Plan Award 2009
Lauren Skerritt, Poppy Sexton-Wainwright, Isabel Bradshaw

Beautiful Bottoms

We set up Beautiful Bottoms during the second year of our Marketing and Management degrees. We were frustrated by the lack of silk underwear designed to complement an outfit, so decided to create our own. Beautiful Bottoms’ knickers and bras are all handmade in delicate silk prints which are affordable and unique.

It was quite a challenge juggling the business alongside our studies - frantically sourcing fabrics and suppliers to produce gorgeous girly lingerie that was both comfortable and sexy.

Although we’ve only been trading since last year, Beautiful Bottoms has already received celebrity endorsement and positive reviews and we’ve secured boutique orders around the UK.

We were delighted to win the New Trader (Business Plan) Award and are very thankful to the Careers Service and the University as they have been extremely supportive. We are now ready to expand our business further and are currently working on the launch of a new range.

Visit the Beautiful Bottoms website.


Now Hear This – Enterprise Challenge RMT New Trader Audience Vote Award 2009

Angela Turnbull

I studied an MA in Popular and Contemporary Music at Newcastle University and graduated in 2006. I set up Now Hear This, a music production and education company creating compositions and running workshops in vocal, song-writing, guitar performance, music production and music therapy classes. I am also a successful recording artist with my band, The Red Letter Suits.

My motivation for setting up Now Hear This in September 2008 was to create a music community within the Wansbeck area in Northumberland to help people gain valuable life skills that were fun, vibrant and dynamic.

My experience and passion for music, including teaching, recording services, project work and music therapy, led to my desire to help the musical community engage with young, disabled, senior and less advantaged members of the Wansbeck Community.

The business achieves this by working actively with partners in Wansbeck (schools, societies and business development organisations) to raise the awareness of music as an accessible option for all.

I was really thrilled to win the RMT New Trader Audience Vote Award. The night gave me so much encouragement and inspiration for my business, Now Hear This. It’s nice to know that there is a lot of support and guidance out there for new businesses starting up.

Visit the Now Hear This website.


Mes Footwork - Enterprise Challenge RMT New Trader Award (Business Plan and Pitch) 2008
Matthew Scott

I'm currently studying BA (Hons) Marketing and Management at Newcastle University. My business, Mes Footwork, is a custom footwear brand, which allows you to design your own unique pair of shoes in an online design studio. I'm currently in negotiations with several high-street footwear retailers about possible deals.

Visit the Mes Footwork website.


ANYTHING But Limited - Enterprise Challenge Alumni Achievement Award winner and runner-up in the RMT New Trader Award 2008.
Peter Hirst

I graduated from Newcastle University in 2004 with a degree in Applied Communications. I set up ANYTHING But Limited as an opportunities and creativity company that focuses on cutting edge education around entrepreneurship, enterprise skills, business creation and business growth.  I've developed two brands within the ANYTHING But Limited group: Giantminds and Kidology.

Visit the ANYTHING But Limited website.

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