Celebrating 10 years of student entrepreneurs entering the Fox's Lair

A decade of putting business students in the spotlight is due to be celebrated tonight as the Fox’s Lair marks its 10th anniversary.

This unique module offers first year business students the chance to pitch ideas to real-life business gurus, get feedback and help them improve as young entrepreneurs.

The winning team receives £1,000 from headline sponsors Champions UK as well as free mentoring. Tonight will see the 2015 winners crowned at a special awards ceremony held in the Hugh Aston atrium.

Among the guests will be alumnus Tom Brookes, who was in the Lair in 2011 as a Business Management and Enterprise student, pitching the idea of a fancy dress shop for students.

He is now a serial entrepreneur having set up a lettings agency franchise, a property investment company and is now an SMU business consultant.

Tom said: “I’d absolutely recommend going into the Fox’s Lair! It gives you fantastic transferable skills and allows you to apply the theory that you learn to a real-life business, as well as teaching you how to think of new business ideas and look for potential areas for a new business.

“Many of the Fox’s Lair businesses go on to be set up for real, so there’s always potential! I can honestly say I wouldn’t be where I am today without the practical experiences that project such as the Fox’s Lair have given me!”

More than 35 company owners and entrepreneurs are now official “Foxes”. Some have been supporters for the last nine years and are going into the tenth, including Tim Storer, MD of Pukka Pies; John Hayes of media outlet Champions UK, David Simms, publisher of the Leicester Mercury and Nottingham Post, management guru Russell Copley, Aatin Anadkat of Leicester’s Maiyango Hotel and Femi of Femi Boutique Beauticians.

Russell said: “I really value being a panel member for Foxes Lair.  I think it’s really important that students experience as much of the real world as possible during their education, and I’ve been delighted to help DMU in some small way in delivering that experience.   

“I get a real buzz from seeing pitches from groups of student who have put their heart and soul into their work – those who have come up with a real world idea and worked it through.  I think you can tell from these early encounters which students have got that entrepreneurial spark and will go on to succeed in business.”

Fox’s Lair™ helps prepare students for the world of work by getting them to focus on skills employers look for – teamwork, project management, research, communication skills and problem solving.  

Posted on Thursday 14th May 2015

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