Awards recognise student entrepreneurs for business success
Enterprising students from across West Yorkshire have been recognised for success in business at a special awards evening hosted at The Grammar School at Leeds (GSAL).
LEAP (formerly Leeds Enterprise Advisory Programme) provides students aged 14-19 with real life business experience, and holds the annual awards ceremony to celebrate their achievements. There were 19 companies this year from four schools – Bradford Girls’ Grammar School, Co-op Academy Priesthorpe, Woodhouse Grove School and GSAL.
Student teams set up their own companies, taking responsibility for raising share capital and writing a business plan, sourcing and marketing a product. They present their company results, annual report and accounts to a panel of business advisors. Throughout the process they have access to mentoring and advice from LEAP on the different aspects of running a business.
The winner of the coveted Best LEAP Enterprise Company 2019 was The Snug Cartel, a team of eight Y12 students from GSAL. However with 15 award categories and certificates for all participating students, there was something for everyone on the night.
The Snug Cartel achieved profits of well over £1,000 by selling a range of branded sweatshirts in colours designed to appeal to female and male tastes. Their managing director, Lucy-Anne Olutayo-Daniels, said: “I’m beyond happy and very proud of my team. It’s not always been easy, but as a company we bonded well and learned so much about how to work with other people.”
At the awards, the guests heard from Josh Robson, assistant product manager at L’Oreal, who had his first taste of business through LEAP when he was a student at Allerton High School. Josh said: “I learned so much from LEAP, it showed me that my future studies and career would be in business. You can build on this experience – you’ve set up your own company and learned so many skills that will get you places.”
LEAP is a not for profit organisation, which was set up in 2006 and is run by volunteer trustees, judges and mentors, who generously give their time so that the students can learn from their professional experience in business.
LEAP chairman Steve Webber, managing director of Westcom Networks, said: “LEAP is delighted to bring our annual awards ceremony to GSAL for the first time. This year has seen 19 companies from schools across West Yorkshire come up with some of the most innovative product ideas we’ve seen.
“Some have achieved profits in four figures and all showed huge levels of enthusiasm for learning about business not in a classroom or from a text book, but in the real world, serving members of the public.”