photograph Students Shine at 7th Enterprise Challenge Awards


The 7th May saw the culmination of Newcastle University's annual business planning competition Enterprise Challenge in association with Accenture, with a black-tie awards ceremony at the Civic Centre.

In it's 7th year the competition, organised by the Careers Service, had a staggering 227 entries from students, staff and graduates into the ideas and business plan rounds. The competition also included a category linked to student and staff's personal contribution to the promotion of enterprise and entrepreneurship in the University as well as their individual flair: the 'Spirit of Entrepreneurship Award'.

This year, the Business School sponsored two categories - the new 'Best Pitch' category and the 'Spirit of Entrepreneurship'. Presenting these awards was Director of the Business School, Professor Ian Clarke.

Winner of the 'Best Pitch' category was Chris Dobie, a PhD student in Chemical Engineering and Advanced Materials, for his pitch for a new silver service product called 'Waiterpal'. Upon receiving the award he said 'The Enterprise Challenge has given me a platform to present my idea, otherwise it would still just be in my mind, and winning the 'Best Pitch' award has encouraged me to take my ideas further'.

The 'Spirit of Entrepreneurship Award' was won by Yuri Boyanin, BA (Hons) History, who commented 'For me, the Spirit of Entrepreneurship Award only pushes me to work harder and develop my ideas further.'

Business School students were also successful on the night. Isabel Bradshaw, Francesca Sexton-Wainwright and Lauren Skerrit, all BA (Hons) Marketing and Management students, won the 'RMT New Trader Award' for their venture 'Beautiful Bottoms', a silk lingerie manufacturer.

All shortlisted entrants are invited to pitch for a share of the ABC fund initiated by this year's David Goldman Visiting Professor of Business Innovation, Dr. Tony Trapp of IHC Engineering, in early June to take their ideas further.

For a full list of winners of this year's Enterprise Challenge and for further information, please visit

published on: 14th May 2009