Top honours for Bristol’s student enterprise experience
Press release issued: 7 June 2013
Support provided to students starting their own businesses while studying at the University of Bristol is now award-winning, after scooping top honours at the SETsquared Enterprise Awards last night [6 June]. Basecamp, the University’s dedicated student start-up space run by students for students, won the ‘Best Student Enterprise Experience’ gong and was aptly presented with the award by former Bristol student Nick Wheeler, who has gone on to establish internationally renowned clothing business Charles Tyrwhitt Shirts.
Also being singled out for her achievements was student Gemma-Josiane Smith, the President of Bristol Social Enterprise Society, who was named one of the ‘Student Enterprise Champions’. Gemma has transformed the Society and helped to inspire others to establish their own student enterprise.
Entrepreneur, engineer and investor Ray Crispin, a mentor at Basecamp, received a ‘Business Mentor of the Year’ award.
The SETsquared Enterprise Awards were held to showcase the achievements of students and graduates from universities across the south, as well as the mentors, champions and initiatives that have helped them thrive.
It was the first time the awards were held in Bristol, with the University hosting them at M Shed.
Dave Jarman, Head of Enterprise Education at the University of Bristol, said: “We were really please to pick up the ‘Best Student Enterprise Experience’ award last night. It reflects four years of work by a talented team who I've had the pleasure to manage. It's run by students for students and offers a great service for developing their ideas into real ventures. I couldn't be more proud!"
Basecamp is supported by the Research, Enterprise and Development Division within the University and offers students advice on their business ideas, free office space, seed funding, mentoring and support.
Around £30,000 is offered in loans each year for enterprising activities, and regular events include Monday Means Business, competitions like the Coffeemat Challenge and the New Enterprise Competition, plus Basecamp Surgeries - a series of one-on-one advice sessions run by external business professionals each with expertise in their field.
Will Pritchard, Entrepreneur in Residence at Basecamp and a former student at Bristol University, said: "I am absolutely delighted that Basecamp received this award. It is fantastic to be recognised for the depth and breadth of our work, and the effort that goes into supporting student startups at the University of Bristol. I hope that this will encourage even more budding entrepreneurs to come forward and work with us to develop their business ideas into concrete realities."
Historically, the SETsquared student enterprise awards have acted as a barometer for emerging talent in UK business. Previous winners have included those behind the company Thoughtified – a web-based software development company - which began life as a student enterprise start-up in 2011 and now turns over £300,000 a year.
The event is run by SETsquared, a partnership of the universities of Bath, Bristol, Exeter, Southampton and Surrey, in order to celebrate and encourage entrepreneurialism in the UK’s next generation.
To find out more about the event, please visit the SETsquared website.
Further informationAbout SETsquared
SETsquared is a collaboration between the universities of Bath, Bristol, Exeter, Southampton and Surrey which partners in enterprise activities and collectively supports the growth and success of new business opportunities through spin-outs, licensing, incubation and education. The partnership also works with industry through research collaboration and consultancy.
Find out more at www.setsquared.co.uk
You can follow Basecamp on Twitter - @BristolBasecamp. The hashtag for the Student Enterprise Awards is #studententerprise or mention @setsquared