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The £50K Business Creation competition

2003-04 Year in Review
Competition Outline
Looking Ahead


2003-04 Year in Review:

It has been my pleasure to run the £50K competition this year. We have witnessed many successes - rising interest in the competition as well as a surge of novel ideas amalgamating knowledge from different fields. The reputation of the competition has obviously travelled far and we have seen, for the first time, a cross-Atlantic joint entry prepared by a group of Coventry and MIT students.

Being an engineer, I can’t help but look at the numbers behind the competition. The entries were dominated by three main sectors: IT, biotechnology and engineering. The task of classifying the entries becomes increasingly difficult as some entries transcend the boundary that we consider the norm by combining knowledge from different fields. Postgraduates still dominate the scene, with only 10% of the undergraduates making up the community – something which we hope will change in years to come.

I would like to take this opportunity to thank the judges, mentors and the committee; their help and support in the competition have been invaluable. The word entrepreneurship means many things to many people but for me I think Donald Trump has it right when he said, “Money was never a big motivation for me, except as a way to keep score. The real excitement is playing the game.” I think if we keep promoting that spirit through the £50k competition it will continue to thrive for many years to come.

Wu Ai Leong , £50K Lead 2003-04

Competition Outline:

Annually the CU Entrepreneurs £50K competition awards £50K in cash prizes to be divided amongst the 3 most promising companies. This cash prize gives many teams the capital required to turn their business plan into a real business.

Companies are assessed on the viability of their idea, the ability to construct a well rounded business plan and through formal presentation of their idea.

In order to help you reach the high standard required for success, the competition provides a portfolio of resources through teambuilding events, mentoring, education and networking to help plan to develop your idea into a reality. Feedback from experienced and qualified judges provides additional help.


Looking Ahead
It is indeed an honour for me to be leading the CUE £50k competition in the next academic year. The £50k competition provides a systematic method of converting university Intellectual Property (IP) into sustainable, high-profit and high-growth companies that will hopefully create an impact on the local and global community.

The B3 course ( Enterprise Tuesday), run by the Centre for Entrepreneurial Learning (CfEL), has been successful in providing the foundation to students keen on generating their own businesses. In all aspects the £50k competition, which is now entering its fourth year of organisation, is set to fly.

This coming year will see some changes to the structure and organisation of the competition, in our bid to raise our profile and increase awareness of this competition amongst the student community in Coventry. Proposed measures include increasing support for the winners post-competition, by providing a more hands-on approach in services, to ensure the start-ups are launched onto the industrial platform as intended.

It is a fantastic team that we have lined up for the organisation of £50k next year, and I am confident that we will be able to achieve new milestones in CUE’s 5-year history. We are launching a more aggressive campaign to reach out to the students, which will hopefully spread the entrepreneurial spirit around Coventry .

Ability is what you're capable of doing. Motivation determines what you do. Attitude determines how well you do it”. -Lou Holtz

Yen Chua , £50K Lead 2004-05