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Enterprise Stars

Enterprise stars posterUniversity of Salford is pleased to be taking part in Enterprise Stars 2018 – an annual showcase and enterprise competition run by University Alliance encouraging the entrepreneurs of tomorrow.

What is Enterprise Stars 2018?

Building on the success of the 2017 pilot Innovating Future Business competition, we are launching an annual Alliance-wide showcase and enterprise competition, renamed as Enterprise Stars. We are organising a one-day enterprise festival hosted by Salford University at their MediaCityUK campus on Thursday 14 June 2018, culminating in the opportunity to win investment and business advice from a panel of investors.

Pitch your business idea to a panel of investors for a chance to win cash prizes and mentoring.

You will have five minutes to pitch your business idea to a panel of judges, and then face questions from the investors and other industry experts to win a prize.

Keep an eye on our website to find out who this year’s investors will be.

Who can participate?

The competition welcomes students and graduates in any subject – all you need is a strong business idea and good understanding of what is needed to launch your idea. Be confident, as your personality will also help the judges make their final decision. You will be competing against other institutions in the University Alliance group.

This is a competition with student enterprise education at its heart. This is a great opportunity for you to gain real-life experience.

Participating universities are asked to enter teams in this spirit; students with a genuine idea for a new start-up, which requires some enterprise expertise and seed investment to get it off the ground. We therefore expect competitors to be ‘pre-trading’ but to have a solid idea that they can develop through participation in  the  competition. Crucially, it should be an innovative idea with the ‘wow’ factor.

How do I enter the competition?

Your university will select one entry to pitch at Innovating Enterprise Stars 2018. You can enter the competition as an individual or group, and at least one member must be available to pitch on Thursday 14 June 2018 at University of Salford’s MediaCityUK campus.

You will be asked to complete an entry form to register your details and business proposal. If you are entering as a group, the business idea must belong to at least one member of the group.

Application for the competition at the University of Salford is through the Santander Start Up Award.             Closing Date: 30th March 2018

If you have any queries regarding the competition please contact

Visit the University Alliance website for more details. #EnterpriseStars

How can I stand out?

Watch students pitch for investment at our event last year. You can find more tips and resources here on our ‘How to Stand Out’ page at

Testimonials from 2017 winners          

Finlay Thornburn, Buffalo Adventures (University of Brighton)

“We’ve invested into administrative tools and digital presence to support ongoing investment. [The feedback from judges] was extremely useful. Whilst the opportunity to receive financial support is fantastic, I find the value of IFB really lies in the judges’ provision of business  acumen  and  experience and the opportunity to network and connect with likeminded individuals.”                  

Zahid Tapas, Pathways (University of Salford)

“The competition gave us a platform and experience that not many students have, so we are lucky to have this opportunity. There were a few tricky questions after our presentation but I could tell that Craig (Marketing Signals) was interested. He said to us he sees great scalability as we can move  from  hospitals  to airports and shopping malls.  We are going for a meeting with him in the next few weeks to see how we might be able to improve the product. It is exciting times for us.”                  

Helen Andrzejowska, Ocean Spark Studios (University of Huddersfield)

“Being able to take part in the competition has helped us grow in confidence as a team and given us really good insight into how to produce and deliver an effective pitch in order to secure investment.”                  

Ocean Spark Studios subsequently went on to secure £26,000 investment following the competition, including £23,000 from Creative England. Read more here.    

Supporting information about the competition

The day will have four main components:

Morning: Networking and Learning

A series of informal ice-breakers and networking events and an opportunity for investors to meet entrants and share hints and tips.        

Students could be asked to bring materials and/or participate in other activities such as masterclasses and advice and support sessions.

Lunchtime: chance to prep Extended lunch allowing entrants time to update their pitches on the basis of learning from the morning.
Afternoon: Pitching session Entrants will be asked to give a 5-minute pitch with 5 mins for questions from investors.

End of Day: Feedback and celebration

‘World-café’ style table discussions (5 mins max) for investors to give personal feedback to entrants.