If you’re aged 16-21, living in Belfast, and you’ve recently started, or are thinking about starting your own business, 2024 could be your year.
Designed to unearth, recognise, and fast-track 21 exceptional potential young entrepreneurs in the city, Belfast City Council’s new “21 Under 21 – Entrepreneurs to Watch in Belfast” competition is an exciting opportunity for young entrepreneurs at an idea, or early start phase, to take part in a three-month programme of action-oriented workshops that will act as a springboard for future success.
And thanks to sponsors Danske Bank and Pacem Accounting & Tax, one of the 21 participants will be named Belfast’s first ever Young Entrepreneur of the Year and win a £2,000 cash boost.
Lord Mayor of Belfast Councillor Ryan Murphy said: “I’ve chosen to champion our city’s young people during my year in office, and we’ve also made a commitment to support Belfast’s young people to fulfil their potential in our Belfast Agenda. So this new competition is all about nurturing Belfast’s young people’s entrepreneurial talent because they’re so fundamental to our city’s future success and growth.
“We’re not seeing enough young people starting businesses – and that’s despite their obvious talent and ambition. We want to show that enterprise is a viable career option for everyone, regardless of age or educational achievement. And while starting a business may be daunting, our council enterprise and business growth team and our wider business networks are there to support you every step of the way.
“This competition programme offers action-orientated workshops, top class entrepreneurial speakers, a proven playbook, a support network of 20 other exceptional entrepreneurs, profile opportunities, and the chance of a £2,000 cash boost lined up – so this this could really get young people’s 2024 off to a fantastic start.”
Applicants must be at least 16 years old when applications open on December 14, 2023, and no older than 21 by completion of the programme on March 31, 2024.
Shortlisting will be based on a video submission (maximum three minutes), which should be authentic to you as an entrepreneur and your idea or venture and can range from you speaking to your phone or laptop to a TikTok, Instagram reel or even PowerPoint video.
The deadline for applications is 3pm on Wednesday January 10, 2024. Successful applicants will be notified in early January and the workshops will take place from early February until late March 2024.
For more information on how to enter, go to www.belfastcity.gov.uk/21under21