Startup Weekend Newcastle: launch your own business in 54 hours…
Taking place from the 20th to 22nd April, Startup Weekend Newcastle is a three day event which gives entrepreneurs the chance to turn their ideas into action. With advice from successful local mentors and the opportunity to pitch to a panel of expert judges, the event, which will be held at Newcastle Business School, encourages attendees to take a startup business from idea to reality in 54 hours.
Launched in 2007, Startup Weekend has staged 468 events in 35 countries. This April alone, events are taking place in cities as diverse as Delhi, Athens, Porto Alegre (Brazil), Sydney and Honolulu. The Newcastle event is the first Startup Weekend in the UK outside of London.
The event is aimed at people who have a business idea, but don’t know how it take it to the next level. Attendees gain experience developing startup ideas, make contacts and gain insight into their strengths and weaknesses. It gives people the chance to make contacts, and is also an opportunity to make friends and be inspired by the creativity and inventiveness of fellow entrepreneurs. The average age at the events is around 30, but 19 and 20 year olds also attend.
The event starts with pitches on the Friday evening, when people with ideas inspire others with the skills they are looking for to join their teams. On Saturday the newly-formed teams develop their ideas and have the opportunity to discuss them one-on-one with mentors who are highly successful in their fields. Sunday is dedicated to finalizing ideas (with mentors on hand to help if needed) and creating demos and a final presentation, which is presented in the evening to a panel of expert judges. Claudia Wong, who is organizing the Newcastle event, says “Attendees can win over £15,000 worth of prizes, gain global recognition and benefit from a weekend of expert advice from experienced mentors”.
Mentors at the Newcastle event include Paul Lancaster, founder of Plan Digital, and Angela Mclean, a small business advisor for over thirteen years who has started businesses in both the manufacturing and service sector. The judging panel is made up of Stuart Anderson, UK Project Director of the Shell LiveWIRE programme, Stephen Lightley, Chief Operating Officer at North East Access to Finance Limited, and Paul Callaghan, a Business Development professional with an international business network covering Asia, the Americas and the Middle East.
For a ticket price of £39, attendees receive access to event and 5 meals. Tickets can be bought online. Use discount code STUDENT for a 20% discount.