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Turn your business idea into reality – apply for a place on DMU's Crucible now

Applications are open now for final-year students and alumni who want to turn their business idea a reality at De Montfort University Leicester (DMU).

The Crucible is DMU’s two-year programme that gives aspiring entrepreneurs a deep dive into all aspects of setting up and running a business every step of the way.

Liga bees

Crucible member Liga Orlovska of Honey Craft

It includes a comprehensive package of support for individuals and partnerships, including:

  • Access to experts in business strategy, winning investment and marketing
  • Mentoring from real business leaders
  • A working space in DMU’s Innovation Centre on campus
  • Opportunities to receive financial support from DMU, on a case-by-case basis
  • Help to put together pitches for investment funders
  • Group social sessions and peer guidance

The Crucible Project is run by enterprise development lecturer Percy Emmett. He said: Joining the Crucible is more than learning how to launch a business. It’s joining a community of entrepreneurs, finding a place to take calculated risks, research your idea and test before going to market.

“We have industry experts as mentors, access to top notch equipment and support from DMU along your journey. Where Crucible is different is that we focus on the individuals to give them the confidence to be able to run a business. It’s about their personal journey as much as it is business development. We build confidence and resilience by imparting the knowledge and the skills they need to know.

“If you have an idea for a business or if you have started already but not sure the next steps to take, we’d like to hear from you.”

To apply for Crucible, all you have to do is complete this form and send in a two-minute video about you and your idea.

This year’s cohort include Sarah Langdon, whose company Tall Giraffe helps young people excluded from school; Roshni Desai, whose lingerie designs are sustainable and community interest company HEAL.med which helps children with Type 1 diabetes better understand the condition.  

All 10 start-ups are now registered businesses in Leicester and join successful Crucible alumni such as animation studio Lead Balloon.

Lead Balloon is run by graduates Lois Cockerill and Darrell Wright. Lois said: “The Crucible has been really helpful. We were able to get so much advice and I don’t think we’d be in business without it. Leicester has such a supportive network when you are a start-up and that’s why we stayed here after we graduated from DMU.”

Lingerie designer Roshni Desai said: “Being part of the Crucible has really pushed me to try different things with my brand, its great how everyone helps each other, and everyone has different ideas to bring to the table.”

The Crucible is a finalist in the Educational Excellence category of this year’s Niche Business Awards which recognises outstanding businesses – while Crucible member Heal.Med is also a finalist in the Best Digital Business category. The winners will be announced in September.

Posted on: Tuesday 13 July 2021

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