Dress-up kit box start-up wins Market Maker 2014
Team of Cardiff students take top prize at nationwide youth enterprise competition
A business which creates customised dress-up boxes for famous characters has been announced as the overall winner of the Market Maker 2014 student enterprise competition.
Entitled Trickle Box, the start-up was created by a team of Hair and Beauty students from Cardiff and Vale College and offers a range of boxes featuring all the essential make-up and accessories required to create any fancy dress costume.
The start-up saw off 320 teams from 16 further education colleges to win the award, which will see them sent to New York and attempt to secure further investment from backers.
Organised by the Gazelle Colleges Group, Market Maker’s stated aim is to encourage entrepreneurial opportunities for students and provide them with skills employers will value.
The teams had been working since September to create their businesses using the Market Maker online platform, a system which allows users to simulate real market conditions and demonstrate their ability to successfully run a business.
The final saw the best teams from the 16 colleges selected present their ideas to a panel of judges at the Institute of Directors headquarters in London.
Kinetic battery charger start-up Full Capacity came in second place, whilst woodworking social enterprise The Charity Wood Working Company took third prize.
Ellie Griffith, financial director of Trickle Box, said: “My confidence has been boosted immeasurably by getting involved in this competition.
“The opportunity to participate in developing a business idea and getting to pitch in front of successful business people at the IoD has given me a life changing experience. Every aspect of the competition has empowered me beyond expectation.”
Fintan Donohue, chief executive of the Gazelle Colleges Group, added: “At the Gazelle Colleges Group, enterprise competition is becoming an integral part of student experience. The student role models that are winners today help create a culture of enterprise and entrepreneurship in the colleges they come from.
“The young people in the competition may never actually take forward their own businesses but the experience of being involved in a start-up has developed a mind-set that will strengthen their employment prospects.”