This team of students from Enfield Grammar School took up the challenge to set up their own business as part of the Young Enterprise Company Programme. Junior Ikechi, Felix Lissak, Ajanthe Anura and Luca Paone-Michael, (ages 14-15) created ‘Youth of London’ promoting the reduction of single use plastics and consumption of healthier drinks for children through their environmentally friendly water bottles.
What inspired you to create your product?
“We were inspired by the idea of helping the planet and were highly compelled towards making a product that could also be beneficial for people’s lives. After looking into the world plastic waste problem and the impact it would have in the future, we focused on sourcing water bottles to help reduce the amount of plastic waste building up in society. We also saw this as a great opportunity to encourage young people to drink more water and less sugar filled drinks.”
What have you learnt from the experience of setting up your own business?
“It’s important to stay motivated and focused so that you can get things done – there’s a lot that goes into setting up your own business! We also learned of the importance of marketing your products. We used an abundance of strategies such as posters, leaflets, social media, newsletters and verbally pitched our message at school meetings to students and teachers. Most of all, we learnt how important it is to work as a team and that when you do the business will flourish.”
What advice would you give to other young people who want to start a business?
“The main piece of advice is to ensure that your product is something which you enjoy allowing you to keep motivated and to not give up. When you first begin, you may not be gaining as much profit as you had hoped, but if you give up, you’ll never know how successful your business could have been. The third tip is to ensure that you construct a business plan as this will help give you direction in order to stay focused and to present your business to others.”
Stephanie Buck, Marketing Coach, has been mentoring the young entrepreneurs and says “Seeing the boys pitch at the North London regional finals for this nationwide competition was an incredibly proud moment. They have taken this challenge head on and are an inspiration to others.”
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