Opportunity for entrepreneurs

BUDDING young Scottish entrepreneurs are being given the chance to get ahead in a unique business start-up competition with a £300,000 prize fund.

The Young Innovators Challenge, run by Scottish Institute for Enterprise (SIE) on behalf of the Scottish Government, is a national competition challenging 18 to 24-year-olds to come up with solutions to a range of issues currently facing Scotland’s key industries.

Those considering entering are being encouraged to sign up for one of four Challenge Labs which will take place in Aberdeen, Edinburgh, Glasgow and Inverness in February which will give them the best chance possible of winning one of the six cash prizes up for grabs.

Participants will view videos explaining each of the challenges being set by industry leaders and the sessions will also offer networking opportunities and the chance to find out more about running a business.

Entries will open soon with participants creating a business solution for one of a number of key challenges in a number of sectors including energy (oil, gas and renewables), technology/engineering, built environment, textiles and food and drink. The best ideas in each category will win up to £50,000 to develop their idea and launch a business, plus a year’s dedicated business support.

The competition is open to those in their final year of college or university in Scotland, those taking part in a national programme or studying for a Modern Apprenticeship. Winners will be announced this summer.

Challenge Labs are free to attend and will last from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m., with the Aberdeen lab taking place next Saturday, February 16, at the Doubletrees (Hilton) Hotel.

Places are limited and must be booked in advance online at http://yicchallengelabs.eventbrite.com. Further information about the Young Innovators Challenge is available at http://www.sie.ac.uk/about-sie/sie-activities/young-innovators-challenge.aspx.