20th June, 2016 No Comments
We are passionate about supporting new businesses and we’ve helped thousands of small businesses flourish across England.
Cavendish Enterprise has teamed up with Crowdfunder to create Cavendish Crowd – a partnership aimed at supporting and inspiring businesses across the country through its newly launched crowdfunding platform.
In our quest to support some of the brightest and most exciting start-ups, by offering an alternative form of finance to the usual arrangements offered through banks, etc, Cavendish Enterprise partners are now able to advise and support startup and growing businesses through the crowdfunding process.
Visit the Cavendish Crowd site to launch your crowdfunding project, and find crowdfunding advice and support. Here are five top tips to start you off:
1 Identify and engage with your network
Crowdfunding is about reaching out to the community around you, in business this could be your current customers – or your future customers if you are launching a new product or brand.
Start close to home with your friends and family, talk to your loyal supporters and identify your wider network. You’ll need their support – so make sure to ask them to share your campaign when it’s up and running.
2 Warm up your crowd
It’s time to get everyone excited. Let your crowd know you’ve got a great project in the pipeline. Share a few details; get your supporters ready to pledge. 90% of the work on your campaign should happen before you go live and start funding. That includes getting your biggest fans ready to pledge on the day you launch.
3 Great rewards
Make people want to pledge to your project not just to help you out but because they get something amazing in return: Rewards should be unique, great value, and non-geographical – appealing to everyone who is interested in your idea – making your project an exciting one to be a part of.
4 Plan – fail to prepare, prepare to fail
You need a plan, you need a team and you need to know who is doing what and when. Many of the most successful business crowdfunder campaigns have pledgers lined up before the launch date in order to drive momentum once the campaign is live.
It’s also a great idea to plan your social media, PR and marketing approach before you start so it’s plain sailing when your campaign launches.
5 Talk to your community
Communicate with your supporters, before, during and after your campaign. Say thank you for their pledges – keep them up to date with progress on your project, send out rewards quickly and keep talking to them – where is their money going, how is it helping your business? These supporters are your customers and you want them to come back again and again – maybe even supporting your next Crowdfunder campaign.
So, if you have a great idea and think crowdfunding may be the best solution to raising the finance you require contact the Cavendish Enterprise delivery partner in your region, for support and advice, or go straight to the Cavendish Crowd platform and launch your project today!
20th June, 2016 1 Comment
Cavendish Enterprise partners, three entrepreneurial Start & Grow clients, and a room full of guests came together at the House of Lords to celebrate the success achieved by businesses who have benefitted from government funded business support, advice and training.
With the kind permission of Lord Wei of Shoreditch, who is himself an entrepreneur, the guest list of 100 influential and passionate supporters of enterprise heard the start-up journey taken by three Start & Grow clients.
Start & Grow entrepreneurs (left to right) : Cemal Ezel (Change Please CIC), Dr Craig Rose, (Seaweed & Co), and Patience Chipaumire-Oyeniran, (Panashe Home Care Services).
Cemal Ezel saw a business opportunity that would also give something back to the community. In Nov 2015 he set up Change Please. With his previous experience of working with a coffee roasting social enterprise company, Cemal saw there was an opportunity to work with homeless people to give them a clear way forward. The company provides barista coffee carts operated by homeless individuals. There are currently 8 coffee carts operating around London and employs 11 homeless individuals. Change Please pays the London Living Wage and arranges housing for its workers. Whilst working with the company, employees can build their skills base and eventually move on in their career. After six months, they are moved into full time employment with one of the organisation’s partners. Cemal’s future plans suggest that up to 50 additional jobs will be created and £500,000 investment secured as he hopes to expand into new regions and potentially other sectors.
Cemal needed advice and guidance on sourcing the appropriate grants and putting together successful applications for future expansion which he received through Start & Grow with Enterprise for London. The programme has also guided Cemal in areas where he needs to employ, such as Operations Manager, looking at job descriptions and employee handbooks. “My advisor has been a sounding board for ideas and challenges.” said Cemal. “I hope that the support will enable me to grow the business in a much more efficient way.”
“I would have been able to start the business because the of the backing from other companies, but the benefits of research and assistance with grants available through the Start & Grow programme will have a positive impact on outcomes.” said Cemal.
Seaweed & Co has launched offering seaweed ingredients for the food and nutrition industries, using high quality seaweed sustainably wild harvested in the Scottish Outer Hebrides. The business has been launched by seaweed expert, Dr Craig Rose, who has lived and worked in the North East since moving from his native Leeds to attend Newcastle University over 15 years ago, and is on track to make seaweed a food of the future thanks to a £25,000 investment from Virgin StartUp, and assistance from TEDCO Business Support through the Start & Grow programme.
Based in North Shields, Seaweed & Co is now looking to capitalise on the growing popularity of seaweed as a ‘superfood’ ingredient, and boost sales within the UK and international food and nutrition industries.
Dr Rose, Managing Director of Seaweed & Co. said: “Although a central ingredient in the diet of Asian countries for millennia, seaweed is a forgotten food in the West, and has only recently been re-discovered for its extraordinary nutritional benefits. I was always aware of the positive impact seaweed can have on health, and as a sustainable natural resource through my training as a marine biologist.”
Seaweed contains all the vitamin groups and minerals, and can be used as a natural flavour enhancer to replace salt in the food manufacturing process. Just even a tiny amount of seaweed packs a strong nutritional punch and research has suggested it can help with weight management, and due to its natural iodine levels, can contribute to normal cognitive function and metabolism.
Dr Rose continues: “The market for seaweed in the UK is still relatively new but thanks to support from high profile figures such as Jamie Oliver, who champions the benefits of adding more seaweed to your diet extensively in his new Superfood TV show, seaweed has huge potential for growth. It is not only the nutritional benefits of seaweed which make it desirable as part of a healthy diet, but it is also presents a valuable alternative to food manufacturers as a natural salt replacement in everyday foods.
“Thanks to investment from Virgin StartUp and the guidance of TEDCO Business Support, we are on track for a successful first year and have three UK distributors on board to sell our product to the food and nutrition industry. Food containing Seaweed & Co sourced seaweed is now stocked in all of the major UK supermarkets.”
The investment has been used to fund a highly innovative system for processing the seaweed in Scotland to produce larger volumes of high quality seaweed through a more gentle and scalable approach . The system, and the factory in which it operates, is one of the most sophisticated seaweed production facilities in the UK.
Seaweed & Co. is also working in partnership with Durham University on a research project to develop sources of seaweed production near Lynemouth. Dr Rose continues: “Our order book is looking strong for the next 12 months and we are currently working to develop more seaweed based products for the health and nutrition industry. However, for now, our focus is on growing our B2B market share as Seaweed & Co.’s accredited quality seaweed gains momentum with food manufacturers and the health supplement industry.”
Patience Chipaumire-Oyeniran has just opened the doors to her very own care agency in Leicester, Panashe Home Care Services, so elderly people can enjoy a high standard of comfortable care in their own homes.
Thanks to NBV Enterprise Solutions, Patience is also running a consultancy to advise budding care home owners on how to start up their own agencies. “NBV have made a real difference to me and I was pleasantly surprised to find them. Without their support, I would have struggled to set up my own business.“ said Patience.
Patience left her native Zimbabwe and came to the UK in 1990, training as a registered nurse and working in care homes before turning her hand to managing them. She has recruited four members of staff and one driver, and has advised seven budding care home owners on how to set up their own agency.
Patience said: “I’m really happy that I can finally make a difference to someone’s life by opening Panashe Home Care Services. I believe people should not have to leave the comfort of their own homes due to old age and neither should they have to change their little ways to fit into the care system. Instead the care system should change its ways to fit with their lives.
“I believe in our motto, ‘there is no place like home’ and I’m proud that I stand by this in everything I do.” said Patience.
With an expert panel on hand comprising David Petrie (ICAEW), Peter Holbrook (SEUK), Nick Underhill (Crowdfunder), Sarah Mintey (Developing Experts), and Peter Ibbetson (JournoLink), guests and entrepreneurs alike were able to access a wealth of start-up advice.
Although the sun didn’t shine across the Thames that day a lot of light was thrown on how to overcome some of the typical hurdles businesses might face on their start-up business journey. A big thank you from Cavendish Enterprise to all those who took part and shared their knowledge and experiences.
Written by Davina Young, Marketing Manager, Cavendish