Semi finalists National Business Awards Duke of York New Entrepreneur of the Year Award

The ten Duke of York New Entrepreneur of the Year semi finalists are:
– Jamie Clarke, BioDome Systems Ltd / Essex
– Leanne Morris, Carter Morris Talent Solutions / London
– Richard Llewellyn, Forell Ltd / Newcastle Upon Tyne
– Emma Cerrone, Free:Formers / London
– Alistair Smit, The Magic Thermodynamic Box / Essex
– Ben Weaver, Outlook Publishing Ltd / Norfolk
– Vivian Chan, Sparrho (Distylled Ltd) / Cambridge & London
– Soraya Bahrami, Toucan Fruit / London
– Kathryn Birch, Translive Global / Leeds
– Jay Radia, Yieldify / London

Each semi finalist will present a pitch on their business model, key achievements and elements underpinning future growth to a panel of judges and an audience of NBA Alumni and partners, investors, entrepreneurs, business leaders and media.

The judging panel will include Ed Wray, co-founder of Betfair, Charmaine Eggberry, former Wayra director and CEO of Plan B Consulting, Thea Green, nails inc founder, Guy Rigby, Head of Entrepreneurs at Smith & Williamson and Simon Burckhardt, Managing Director of Vonage UK. The panel will select five finalists based on pre-supplied entry forms, pitches and responses to questions from the panel and audience. The overall winner will be determined by a combination of judges’ scores and a public vote.

The Duke of York New Entrepreneur of the Year Award recognises those demonstrating the entrepreneurial aptitude, commercial acumen, vision, ambition and drive to build a successful enterprise. Judges will focus on the market opportunity identified, the model to capitalise on it, and how it has been executed within the first 18 months of trading.

Vonage, a leading provider of internet telephony for small businesses, and Lead Supporter of the Duke of York New Entrepreneur of the Year Award, has partnered with the National Business Awards to find and recognise the best first-time business founders. They will provide each finalist with access to their products and services.

Alex Evans, Programme Director for the National Business Awards said: “On the 24th June, ten of Britain’s best founders will gain recognition for the success of their new ventures. While only five will go forward to a public vote to choose a single winner, all ten could find the help they need to grow their business from an audience of investors, advisors, peers, and enablers. It will also provide a rare opportunity for the business community to participate in the judging of this prestigious award – designed in partnership with HRH The Duke of York and supported by Vonage UK.”

Simon Burckhardt, Managing Director of Vonage UK said: “Entrepreneurs and micro-businesses are the back-bone of this economy and as such we are proud to be the Lead Supporter of The Duke of York New Entrepreneur of the Year Award. This is the first year of the award and we were thrilled to see such variety among the semi-finalists. I am excited to hear what they each have to say during the live pitch in Liverpool and wish them all the best.”

Semi-finalists will also benefit from face to face presentation coaching to hone their three minute pitch – provided by Mike Southon, Business Ambassador and Entrepreneur Mentor for the City of Liverpool and enabled by Cisco’s regional NVI centres. All registered attendees will be invited to trial a new web-based networking app to connect before, during and after the event, provided by

Recognising enterprise excellence, innovation and ethics, the thirteenth annual National Business Awards will celebrate a range of achievements through 17 award categories – the winners will be revealed on 11 November 2014.