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Casio Bright Minds won by Young Enterprise team

eco-friendly fashion concept wins business start-up prize


Winners Grace Hyer (15) and Victoria Stanworth (14) flanked by Young Apprentice stars Nick Holzherr and Zara Brownless

A Young Enterprise team from Hameldon Community College, a comprehensive school in Burnley, Lancashire, in has won the  coveted Bright Minds Enterprise Award for 2013.

The recycled fashion business, De-Cycle, picked up the award at this year’s BETT exhibition in London. The business idea beat over 50 competitors from across the country, to win prizes worth thousands of pounds including; a host of top range Casio products and an exclusive business start-up package where they will work closely with the global brand to expand their business idea.

The winning idea was presented by young entrepreneurs Grace Hyer (15) and Victoria Stanworth (14), students at Hameldon Business, Enterprise and Science Specialist College. The business revolves around manufacturing original, one-off fashion accessories using unwanted denim – a model ideally suited to an eco-friendly and fashion-conscious market, already having seen profitability selling in their local area.

The Bright Minds Enterprise judging panel, which featured Apprentice and Young Apprentice stars Nick Holzherr and Zara Brownless alongside Paul Eastham from the business charity, Young Enterprise, heard from the four finalist teams as they presented their unique business ideas on Casio’s stand at the exhibition. Runners up presented equally impressed the judges, showcasing compelling business concepts including a developed learning app, online party business and first person console game.

“The competition this year was extremely close as all the entries were such high quality, and creative business concepts,” explained Tim Gould, Head of Marketing at Casio and member of this year’s judging panel.

“We were looking for great ideas for an invention, business, product or service that would make the students school, community or the world a better place. All the ideas put forward did just this with such professionalism and the debate to pick a winner was intense.

De-Cycle presented a great business idea, matched with real business feasibility and were able to showcase how it could impact their school, community and the world in a positive way. This really gave them the winning edge, we are looking forward to working closely with them over the coming months to take their brand further.”

Paul Eastham said: “What was so impressive about De-Cycle was that despite being pretty young the team was able to show they had gone about planning and running their company in a thorough and realistic way. They were able to present robust financial numbers and demonstrate how how their business had made money. Also the quality of their products was outstanding. This is a really good example of how enterprise education can offer young people from normal backgrounds the skills they need to take control of their future.”

Alongside an all expenses overnight trip to London, where the students got to pick a watch of their choice at the flagship Casio store in Covent Garden, a Hotel Chocolat experience on the London eye and a showing of the Lion King, all of the four finalist teams walked away with a state of the art Casio projector for their school. The success of this year’s competition at BETT sees Casio and young entrepreneurs across the country already looking forward to next year’s event.