Last chance for budding entrepreneurs to grab one of 35 places on 12-mth NEF Enterprise Programme

Are you a young entrepreneur, or do you think you have the potential to run a growing business?

If so, the New Entrepreneurs Foundation’s (NEF) annual Enterprise Programme could be the stepping stone you need, to turn your dreams into reality.

The 12-month programme, which starts in September, is the only one of its kind in the UK, and gives aspiring business owners a great head-start in their new venture.

Designed to teach young people the ropes of becoming a successful entrepreneur, the programme aims to give young talent the skills, experience and contacts needed to succeed in business.

And the NEF, which has already helped 100 young men and women through the programme, is now calling on the UK’s bright minds and aspiring entrepreneurs to apply to be one this year’s intake.

Fostering a new generation of young entrepreneurs

Now in its fifth year, the Foundation’s 12-month programme aims to foster a new generation of outstanding entrepreneurs who will establish and build market-leading organisations.

By equipping young entrepreneurs with the hands-on experience, skills and networks to build scalable businesses, it is hoped they will play a key role in driving Britain’s future growth and prosperity.

Applicants do not need a degree to apply, or any other experience or enterprise ideas.

The NEF has a great track record, helping entrepreneurs to launch and support some great business start-ups, including PleaseCycle, BirdieList, Sideways6, and HaikuJam.

Collectively, those who have been through the NEF programme have raised over £1m in seed funding, and have picked up a range of awards and accolades, including;

  • The UCL Bright Ideas Award 2013,
  • The 2014 Intelligent Transport Systems App Competition in Helsinki
  • The UK Dating Award’s “Entrepreneurs of the Year”
  • The Smarta100’s “Start-Up of the Year”,
  • And two NEF programme graduates beat 500 entries from all over the world to be selected for the 2014 Oxygen Accelerator programme.

An intensive programme for the brightest business minds

This year, the Foundation will select around 35 of the UK’s brightest, most entrepreneurially-minded young people for its programme. Those fortunate enough to be chosen will receive:

  • A 12-month paid work placement in an exciting, innovative, high-growth company working alongside a successful entrepreneur and their senior management team, experiencing at close hand how to run a successful company. Placements this year include Betfair, Sideways6, Travelex and Vita Coco.
  • An intensive and interactive 10-month learning and development programme with workshops from corporate giants such as McKinsey and Tesco; business schools such as London Business School, UCL and the Centre for Entrepreneurial Learning at Cambridge Judge Business School; and other specialist learning providers.
  • Monthly speaker and networking events featuring established business leaders and inspirational entrepreneurs, such as Brent Hoberman, Sir Charles Dunstone, Sherry Coutu, Joe Cohen, and Lord Young of Graffham, to name a few.
  • An Executive Coach for each entrepreneur, to mentor them throughout the programme and help guide them along the way.

What qualities does the NEF programme look for in applicants?

When asked by ByteStart, what qualities, qualifications and skills they were looking for in people wanting to join the programme, Chief executive of the New Entrepreneurs Foundation, Neeta Patel, said, “We are looking for people who can demonstrate a keen interest in becoming a successful entrepreneur – experience or education aren’t our primary selection criteria.”

“We want to find people who have a real passion for business, and a strong desire to be a successful entrepreneur. We are looking for natural leadership skills, people who are exceptionally driven and ambitious, can demonstrate initiative, and who have strong commercial acumen, outstanding self-awareness and humility.”

Bright young minds sought for the 2015 intake

So, if this sounds like you, and you’d like to have the expertise and support of the Foundation behind you, you can find out more, and apply online at

But you will need to hurry. Applications for the 2015/16 programme were due to close on 27th February but this has now been extended to Friday 6th March 2015.

Would someone you know, benefit from this opportunity? If so, please share it with them.

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