Following three years promoting the cause of start-up businesses, The Centre of Entrepreneurs is to take over running the StartUp Britain campaign from next month.
StartUp Britain was set up in March 2011 by a group of entrepreneurs keen on increasing public awareness of enterprise, and launching initiatives to promote small businesses.
Some of the initiatives which have been run over the past three years include:
- A UK-wide bus tour, which carried the start-up message to over 60 destinations across the country.
- A series of self-starter weeks, such as ‘Finance Week’, and ‘Tech Week’, and one-day events (such as ‘StartUp Fashion’), in which successful business owners shared their ideas with would-be entrepreneurs.
- The PitchUp initiative, which helped fledgling businesses promote their wares to high street retail brands. This resulted in at least 7 new brands making it onto the shelves.
- PopUp Britain was created to encourage retail start-ups by using empty store space, and helping 350 small business people get started.
The founders of StartUp Britain; Emma Jones, Oli Barrett, Michael Hayman, Duncan Cheatle and Rajeeb Deb are stepping down on 27th March, as the campaign is set to start a fresh chapter.
The Centre for Entrepreneurs, which will take over responsibilities on March 27th, is a ‘think tank’ for self-starters, with a mission to “promote the role of entrepreneurs in creating economic growth and social well-being.”
The body is independent, and is chaired by Financial Times columnist and serial entrepreneur Luke Johnson. Commenting on the handover, Johnson said: “StartUp Britain has pioneered a range of innovative initiatives to boost public awareness of entrepreneurship. As the founders step away, the Centre for Entrepreneurs provides the natural home for the campaign to live on and prosper.”
StartUp Britain’s campaigns coincided with a rapid rise in the number of self-employed numbers; the UK’s employment landscape continues to undergo significant structural change – away from traditional ways or working, towards more alternative types, such as freelancing.
The number of new businesses started up has grown from around 441,000 (at the end of 2011) to over 426,000 at the end of 2013.