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Campus Life Series: Graduate Success

CitySpark Marketplace - Entrepreneurs pitch for share of £5,000 prize

Eighteen teams of student and graduate entrepreneurs pitched their business ideas to over 60 judges at the CitySpark Marketplace to win a share of the £5,000 prize fund.

by Jennifer Mills (Internal Communications Officer)

The event, held at CityBar on Thursday 1st December, attracted over 200 attendees and over 60 esteemed judges including business founders, alumni entrepreneurs and staff from across the University, whom the teams CitySpark portraitpitched to in the hope of getting their vote.

The overall winners of the evening receiving £1,000 towards their business venture were 'The Oven', who pitched their idea to provide market space and incubation to food start-ups to enable them to scale in a low risk environment.

Three second place and third place prizes were also given, as well as the GreenSpark prize for sustainable ideas and The People's Champion which was voted for by all attendees. A full list of the winners and their business ideas can be found below.

Special guest at the event was previous CitySpark champion Jeremy Evans, MA Broadcast Journalism, 2013. Jeremy won CitySpark in 2014 with Explaain, a website that breaks down complex news stories and issues into easily digested, bite-sized chunks. Since then Jeremy has gone on to be included in Forbes 30 Under 30 Europe Media List and has been backed by the Google Digital News Initiative.

Alex Elkins, Entrepreneurship Education Manager at City, said “the quality and range of ideas this year has been truly outstanding. From intelligent property search to a street food incubator and using virtual reality to help structural engineers build better buildings, the businesses offered something for everyone!

“Every year I am overwhelmed by the entrepreneurial talent City has to offer and the amazing concepts and ideas they produce. The energy and enthusiasm in the room was amazing and really promotes just how good City is when it comes to entrepreneurship.”

The CitySpark competition is run by CityStarters, part of the Entrepreneurship Team at City. More information about entrepreneurship can be found on the City Ventures web pages.

The winning ideas

First prize - £1,000CitySpark The Oven

The Oven (right)
The Oven provide market space and mentoring to food start-ups to help them prove, refine and scale their concept; lowering their risk and improving their chances of success.

Second prize - £500

The Nusa Project
Nusa Ceningan is an island, located on the south east coast of Bali, that is facing significant issues with waste management. Litter from tourists is covering the island. The Nusa Project’s solution is to use empty trade boats to transport waste back to the recycling plant and sell them the plastic and metals.

Student Circus
Student Circus is a portal with job listings dedicated to the needs of international students. The jobs are listed using a mix of accurate technology and manual effort to ensure students save time and explore relevant opportunities.

Pzee
Pzee creates personalised, customer focussed, property searches that brings together all the data sources customers need to make a decision at the time of viewing the listing.

Third prize - £250

City Go
Offer a hassle-free welcoming experience for international students coming to London. City Go offer a pack containing local necessities, including an Oyster Card, international Sim Card and Uber offers, to be delivered to the student.

Grubify
By providing an interactive interface and profile Grabify enables the user to input all of their food preferences into an app ordering system as well as use a budget calculator and daily or weekly food planner.

Eat Chay
Eat Chay create delicious plant-based food inspired by childhood experiences and travels. The food is based on comfort foods but use plant products giving fresh fruits and vegetables the spotlight they deserve.

The Peoples Champion - £250, voted for by all attendeesCitySpark Thumb

City Food Co-op (right)
City Food Co-op is a portable shop offering students accessible and sustainable food at a cheap price. The products will be organic and fair trade.

Grubify
By providing an interactive interface and profile Grabify enables the user to input all of their food preferences into an app ordering system as well as use a budget calculator and daily or weekly food planner.

Direq
A location based app that allows users to quickly and accurately find local halal food.

GreenSpark - £1,000

The Nusa Project
Nusa Ceningan is an island, located on the south east coast of Bali, that is facing significant issues with waste management. Litter from tourists is covering the island.The Nusa Project’s solution is to use empty trade boats to transport waste back to the recycling plant and sell them the plastic and metals.

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City, University of London is an independent member institution of the University of London. Established by Royal Charter in 1836, the University of London consists of 18 independent member institutions with outstanding global reputations and several prestigious central academic bodies and activities.