Cambridge University Entrepreneurs (CUE) run one of the most successful business creation competitions in the world. Since 1999 CUE has evolved to being a key part of the University's ecosystem for supporting and accelerating entrepreneurship and innovation.
Congratulations to our CUE Grand Finale Winners 2016!
Calling for the Young Entrepreneur of the Year 2016/17. If you are passionate about innovation and entrepreneurship and think you are ready to take on the next big challenge, then CUE can offer you the perfect stage to turn your entrepreneurial dreams into reality! Come join us for an evening with Dr Darrin Disley, CEO […]
The CUE Silicon Valley initiative was started in 2014, with the idea to enrich the experience of the CUE £5K competition winners. In addition to the £5K prize, the winning teams participate in an (all expenses paid) intensive oneweek tour of the Bay Area, where they get to meet Silicon Valley-based startups, multinational corporations, as […]
Ideas Take Flight
Ever had an idea that you thought could turn into a cool business, but wondered how? Looking at other successful start-ups, have you ever wondered "How do they do it?" The fact is that most successful entrepreneurs have, at some point or other, had a helping hand. With CUE's annual Ideas Take Flight competition, we can help turn your idea into commercial reality. The competition is open to entrants in three parallel streams: Science & Technology, Social Enterprise and Software (for detailed rules see: Competition Handbook 2016/2017). Although each stream is run in three stages, you can submit your entry for any one or more streams at any stage of the competition before the respective closing date:
£100 for 100 words
"Write 100 words and convince our judges that your idea has legs"
Your entry can be in any of the three areas described above. Simply write 100 words describing your idea and enter for a chance to win one of twenty £100 prizes. At this stage the requirements are the same for each area.
Entering at this early stage will give you ample time to discuss your ideas and to access training and mentoring opportunities offered by CUE.
The deadline for submitting your entries has passed. The winners of the £100 for 100 words competition will be announced during the Award Ceremony held on 21 November.
"Write a 1500 word executive summary to show your idea has wings"
Write a 1500 word executive summary of your idea for a chance to win one of ten £1k prizes before the final stage of the competition. At this stage the requirements are the same for all areas.
If you do not win this or the previous phase, you still can enter the final phase of the competition.
Competition is now closed. Congratulations to all our £1K winners and runner-ups 2016! We will reopen this competition in December 2016.
"Convince judges and investors that your idea can fly!"
In the case of Science and Technology or Social Enterprise you will be required to produce a 3500 word business plan. In the case of Software you will need to present slides, a demonstration video and a 2000 word business plan.
If you are successful at this stage, you will be invited to pitch your idea to a panel of investors and business angels for a chance to win one of the £5k prizes, the angel prize as well as potential investment in your business.
Competition is now closed. Congratulations to all our £5K winners 2016! We will reopen this competition in March 2017.
The competition is run in three areas and each has three stages. You can enter the competition within any area, at any of the three stages, and submit as many entries as you wish. Note however that entering the competition earlier will give you a better chance of “fleshing out” your idea by taking advantage of our mentoring and networking events. Please read our Competition Handbook 2016/2017.
If you wish to discuss your entry, please get in touch: email@example.com. You should submit your entry through our online form, which can be found on the Competition page.
Training, mentoring and sponsorship
By entering the Ideas Take Flight competition, a range of opportunities to improve your business skills will become available to you. If your idea is selected at the early stages, you will receive training and mentoring to help you progress to the final stages. This help can come in the form of:
- Training: Helping you get the most out of your idea through business and commercial training
- Mentoring: We can provide a dedicated mentor to you and your team to help you reach your goals
- Sponsorship: If your idea is considered to be of special interest, you may receive early sponsorship to put it in the fast track
Join the committee
Here at CUE we are always looking for ideas to keep us fresh and appealing to budding entrepreneurs. If your feel that we could benefit from a new point of view or simply wish to help with organising and running the numerous events and activities please contact the CUE President to discuss how you can become involved!
CUE runs a series of events during the year to support the entrepreneurial ecosystem here at Cambridge University ranging from informal networking events to our Ideas Take Flight competition, culminating in the Grand Finale later in the year!
At CUE, we believe that even the best idea will fail if it is not exposed to the right audience. One of our main strategic goals is to be the leading support body for entrepreneurial activities by building a credible innovation ecosystem. Such ecosystems grow organically through individual involvement of inventors, innovators, established companies and funding bodies. We support this through a number of networking events over the course of the year.
The CUE Organisation
As an investor, there are various ways you can support CUE.
- Attend the networking and other events to give budding entrepreneurs the chance to talk to and interact with seasoned veterans
- Become a Judge for our flagship Ideas Take Flight event
- Invest directly in CUE to support us in growing the ecosystem
Needless to say, by becoming involved you will:
- Gain access to a growing body of early stage entrepreneurs and peers
- Grow your presence amongst the next generation of business leaders
- Be exposed to early stage technologies
- Gain an early “in” on investment opportunities
To discuss how you would like to be involved, please contact the CUE President.