Students are put to
the test by ‘dragons’

East Northamptonshire students took part in a Dragons' Den style contest
East Northamptonshire students took part in a Dragons' Den style contest

Young business brains from East Northamptonshire put their skills to the test at the finals of the ninth Business Dragons event.

The competition, hosted by East Northamptonshire Council and organised by East Northamptonshire College, saw teams of young entrepreneurs from four schools, Rushden Academy, The Ferrers School, Huxlow Science College and Manor School, pitch their ideas to a business panel of local business dragons.

The ‘Dragons’ included Peter Waddup (director of Scotts of Thrapston), James Maziak (managing director of Maziak Compressor Services), Katherine Dillon (director of Seeds of Change) and Emily Carrington (solicitor of Borneo Martell Turner Coulston).

The final, which was held in the East Northamptonshire Council chamber on July 17, gave the young people the opportunity to present their original business ideas to the panel, having considered the design of the product, finance, staffing, manufacture, competition and profitability.

The Business Dragons then tested the knowledge and professionalism of each team with rigorous questioning about the benefit and effectiveness of their ideas.

The best overall winner trophy went to Pillihod, Rushden Academy.

Their idea is to produce a contact lens featuring transitional technology that would replace the need for sunglasses and could be used by companies to give to their employees to prevent glare while driving.

The best presentation trophy was awarded to Easy Roll, Huxlow Science College, for their pitch of having a contraption that aids with putting up wallpaper to make redecorating easier.

LEGC, Rushden Academy, won the best innovation trophy. Their idea is for a smart date sticker that can is put on food packaging and changes colour to represent the best before date, use by date and when the food item is out of date.

Chairman of East Northamptonshire Council, Marika Hillson, said: “I never expected such a high standard of business ideas to be offered to the Dragons at this event. It was a joy to see the budding entrepreneurs of the future blooming in our district.”