Finance Minister John Swinney MSP welcomes young entrepreneurs to Scotland

The Power of Youth, an Edinburgh-based organisation, set up by Adam Purvis and Alex Scott-Tonge, returned to the shores of Loch Lomond over the weekend for the second time since 2011.

This was the fourth session in a series that included networking weekends at Wee Isle of Cumbrae, RBS Gogarburn, Harburn House and finally Ardoch, on the banks of Loch Lomond, 4th- 5th April 2014. This last session focused on the ripple effect and how business can really benefit the local communities in which they operate.

Finance Secretary John Swinney said: “Scotland’s young entrepreneurs are vital to our vision of creating a more prosperous nation with sustainable economic growth at its heart, and it is important that we encourage young people to engage in business while considering the needs of our communities.

“Organisations such as Power of Youth have a key role to play in encouraging engagement among young entrepreneurs, and fostering a culture of sustainability that will benefit communities across Scotland in the longer term.

“Power of Youth highlights that Scotland is an outward-looking, international country with a wealth of young entrepreneurs who want to make a difference, and I look forward to seeing what the future holds for these exciting young business people.”

This weekend also marked the handover of the programme to the Princes Trust creating a strong network of mentors for ambitious young entrepreneurs from Scotland. Jamie Halvorson and Lewis Philips, both aged 18, started their own company, Ignited Minds, having met at Power of Youth,

“Power of Youth had so many inspiring and like-minded people; it made us think and showed us there was so much support and people out there that were trying to make a difference”

Evelyn MacDonald from The Princes Trust said, “There is no real network of young business people here in Scotland and the Power of Youth has created a peer led network with an international element that is really helping our young Scottish entrepreneurs”

The legacy programme, known as the “Naked Entrepreneur Programme” is run by young entrepreneurs for young entrepreneurs, with a focus on creating businesses that are sustainable and ethically sound. It also enjoyed support from EY (Ernst and Young), RBS, the Entrepreneurial Exchange and Scottish Government.