EN entrepreneurs impress judges with their business acumen

40 students at East Norfolk Sixth Form College entered the College’s annual Business Challenge.

The entrants started the day and proceeded to get to work with the task of designing packaging and devising a marketing strategy for a new soft drink and all within a budget.

There were some brilliantly creative ideas and the judges were particularly impressed with the original designs for some of the packaging and there were some clever product names too. A couple of teams had even come up with slogans to go with their products that really impressed the judges.

After a mornings hard work 7 teams then had to enter the EN version of Dragon’s Den and present their ideas to a panel of judges made up of: Jack Ellwood, himself a former student of EN and now a client manager at local accountancy firm Cunninghams. Andrew Fitchett from Archant media and Anita from Santander, Great Yarmouth. The judges were impressed with the standard of presentation and found time to give feedback to every team on what had most impressed them about their performance or product ideas.

It was a difficult judging period but in the end two teams were singled out for recognition, the runners up presenting their ideas for ‘Super Organic Papple’ and pear and apple soft drink. The packaging and creative targeting at the child and parent market impressed the judges with this product. The overall winners were ‘Akomi’ which apparently is the Greek for ‘still’ to match their still lemon drink. The judges felt that this team managed to link together all the elements they were looking for, such as presentation skills, creative ideas, sensible business plan and realistic forecasts and budgets the most successfully.

The whole day was an enjoyable event and organisers Deborah Dyer and Helen Hudson hoped that the students taking part felt that they had not only benefitted from some valuable experience in team working, meeting deadlines and facing the terror of presenting but had also had fun doing it. The informal feedback from participants seems to support this idea and might spur some on to competing again in next year’s event.