Over 400 people attended a series of events organised by Startup Guernsey as part of Global Entrepreneurship Week.
The programme of 11 events provided an opportunity for attendees to network, attend talks with local and UK-based entrepreneurs, learn new business skills and engage in workshops on starting a business.
There were many highlights of the week, with several sold-out events. One of which was the “Speed Networking” event with the Busy Queen Bee, which involved participants networking in a friendly speed-dating style.
The sold-out EY “Women Entrepreneurs” workshop with the Women’s Development Forum featured a panel of prominent local businesswomen who shared their experiences and passion for their craft, offered advice and took questions from the audience.
The “Small Business Essentials” workshop with Island Mums and Startup Guernsey introduced a series of events aimed at anyone looking to start or grow a small business.
Chief Mummy Officer of Island Mums, Sasha Kazantseva, said: “It was fantastic to launch our business course during this year’s Global Entrepreneurship Week and to highlight the opportunity for Guernsey to nurture small businesses as one of its economic development pillars.”
Other key events included a talk by Entrepreneur First’s programme director, Alex Crompton, facilitated by the Dandelion Project. Mr Crompton spoke about Entrepreneur First being one of the world’s most innovative tech incubators, with over 50 businesses having been started through the programme.
The Finance and Funding Event elaborated onthe funding opportunities for startups in Guernsey. Eric Martineau-Fortin from venture capital firm White Star Capital has just launched a Guernsey-registered fund investing in technology entrepreneurs and he cited fintech, cyber security and artificial intelligence as areas he believes Guernsey could excel in.
Ken Bradley, director of Barclays who was also on the panel explained how technology is going to change the way banks interact with entrepreneurs, with simpler access to bank funding and products.
Global Entrepreneurship Week also saw the launch of the first Guernsey FinTech Network. Organised by Jamie Vidamour, a local tech expert, the FinTech Network will host monthly events to explore ideas and opportunities in the developing area of financial innovation.
Orchard PR hosted a Meet the Media event with panelists from Channel Island broadcast and print media. An opportunity to find out the “dos” and “don’ts” of contacting the media, entrepreneurs also got the chance to understand what makes a story newsworthy and appealing.
With the “Made in Guernsey” theme of the week, Startup Guernsey also offered local entrepreneurs the chance to visit successful, locally-based global manufacturing businesses including Intersurgical and Offshore Electronics.
The Business Studies group at the College of Further Education presented the ideas that they are developing as part of their Enterprise Projects, which will be supported by Startup Guernsey over the coming months.
The finale event for the week was a “Made in Guernsey” networking event, sponsored by EY with drinks provided by Aperitif, White Rock Brewery and Haut Maison.
Executive director of Startup Guernsey, Jennifer Strachan, said: “The week successfully celebrated entrepreneurship in Guernsey with over 100 more attendances than last year.
“We are grateful for the support of all the event partners as well as to our event sponsors Barclays for the Finance and Funding event and EY for the “Made in Guernsey” networking finale. Thanks also to all the organisers, guest speakers and participants. We hope we have inspired and encouraged all those interested in entrepreneurship to develop their business or to take the plunge to start a new one of their own.”