Ruth Mitchell

SEEDA appoints The bgroup to inspire entrepreneurship in the South East

The bgroup has fought off national competition against 12 other agencies to deliver a competition which brings principles behind TV programmes such as Dragons’ Den and The Apprentice into South East classrooms. The agency, which recently opened a London office, was appointed by the South East England Development Agency (SEEDA) to deliver The Edge campaign to recruit nine school teams of 13-15 year olds from nine counties. The successful teams, who will be selected via a video audition process, will come together in Autumn 2006 to compete in five challenges designed to test and sharpen students’ enterprise skills.

Each of the five challenges in The Edge will be testing and strengthening specific skills, including team working, problem solving, strategic thinking and leadership. The teams will be awarded points as they complete the challenges, with the most enterprising team at the end winning national recognition and top prizes for themselves and their school.

They will be working with a real business person as a mentor all the way through the competition, which will culminate in a grand final for one team to win the overall prize package.

Teenagers’ interest in TV and popular culture programmes such as Alan Sugar’s The Apprentice, Channel 4’s Make me a Million and CBBC’s Beat The Boss will see the whole competition harnessed via multi-media capturing each team’s development on film. A video audition is required from each team wishing to win the chance to take part, as well as video diary footage throughout the whole competition and several of the challenges being professionally filmed.

Siobhan Bales of The bgroup explained; “The ultimate purpose of this competition is to raise awareness of enterprise and business skills in 13-15 year olds, to produce educational materials for enterprise education teaching and to demonstrate to people at this age that running your own business or being enterprising in your career choices is an excellent way to build your future.

“In drawing from popular culture TV show formats, and filming the whole experience, we are able to draw the mindset of young people to one of their chosen forms of communications and relaxation: TV, and establish an engaging competition for young people across the SE of England to take their first steps into enterprise at such a formative age.”

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