Chelsea FC has helped nearly 2,000 entrepreneurs start their own business

Chelsea Foundation’s Edge of the Box Club helps local jobseekers learn about innovation and enterprise and has celebrated its two year anniversary

Chelsea football club says its helped nearly 2,000 entrepreneurs start their own business, as its Edge of the Box Club celebrates its two-year anniversary.

Run by the Chelsea Foundation, the Premier League champion’s charitable arm, the initiative looks to equip local job-seekers with all the necessary skills and knowledge needed to launch their own enterprise.

To mark the programme’s second birthday, Chelsea hosted more than 100 aspiring business owners at an event in its home ground Stamford Bridge – where it announced Delta Air Lines as its new sponsor.

Attracting approximately 150 start-ups each month to its networking events, Edge of the Box Club provides a mixture of guest speakers, innovation workshops and live trading, as well as helping entrepreneurs test and pitch their business ideas.

Michelle Dewberry, 2009 Apprentice winner and guest speaker on the day, said:

“Football has the ability to bring a lot of people together and for Chelsea to use their brand to do something like this is brilliant.

“Events like this are essential for anyone who wants to set up a business because you can get actual advice, you can network, get new connections, it helps with your confidence and you can also learn lessons from people who have been doing what you are trying to do.

“I’ve been self-employed since way before winning the apprentice and it’s the best thing I’ve ever done and I came today to share my journey right from the beginning to the end.’”

Carl Southwell, Chelsea Foundation employability and enterprise manager, said:

“Today was a bit of a celebration but also an opportunity to help a lot of start-ups.

“Two thousand people have gone through the programme in two years and so today was all about those guys.

“There were guest speakers, opportunities to network, an opportunity to innovate and collaborate and also an opportunity to feel a sense of belonging as it can be very lonely when you are starting up.”

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  • How Tottenham Hotspur’s new stadium will help small businesses. Click here to read.
  • What your start-up can learn from Leicester City’s historic Premier League title win in 2016. Click here to read.