Kingston University Enterprise has launched the Bright Ideas competition for their 14th consecutive year and organisers expect to have at least 20 more entrants this time.
Bright Ideas competition is opened annually from October to students from all faculties who have a potential business idea but not enough funding or experience to realise it.
Valentina Scarinzi, the operations and events coordinator, said: “The number of applicants’ increases year after year. In 2015/16 we had 400 entrants, in 2016/17 460 entrants, the following year 480 entrants and last year 630. We expect and hope to have more than 650 this year.”
To enter the competition, no experience in business is needed because the most prominent applicants will be invited to join an intensive weekend workshop with professionals and learn how to place their idea in the market.
Hundreds of students, including Sujin Kim, a MA student managing in creative economy, are joining the Bright Ideas launch and are planning to enter the competition even if they do not have a particular idea yet.
“The launch was really interesting because it was full of creativity,” said Kim. “I can see that everything could be an idea. Even a usual thing, with just a slight change of view, can become a wonderfully creative idea.”
This February eight winners were announced by the panel of judges and at least four of them made their ideas start-ups, thanks to the £1000 awards and networking opportunities.
George Kyrou, a graphic design student at Kingston University, won the competition with Motivw, a sustainable streetwear brand that specialises in upcycling military waste fabrics in Cyprus.
“Winning the competition not only provided me with money to buy the necessary equipment and start up the process but also gave me the confidence to pursue my dream.
“Having other people congratulate you for the idea that you came up with one random day is unbelievable and funny in a way.
“Orders are getting filled in, business cards are being handed out and phone calls are being made. We now have happy costumers who wear our clothes. Life is good,” said Kyrou.
After the competition, Bright Ideas staff members work closely with the winners to bring their ideas into practice, but they also believe every participant will acquire essential employability skills for the future.
The deadline to submit a Bright Ideas application is December 1st and this is the link to enter the competition.