Tom Warrender, from Wolverhampton, won the award for the Best Business Plan at the Start-Up Awards. The 29-year-old developed his innovative drug awareness business, Get Set Schools, with support from the University of Wolverhampton.
Tom delivers awareness workshops in schools using a simulator named ‘Stan’.A physiologist by background, Tom wanted to produce a hands-on way of educating young people about the dangers of drugs and also about different careers available in the medical profession.
The entrepreneur received business support from the University through the I-cubed project, funded by Advantage West Midlands, 18 months ago.
Tom said: “It was absolutely fantastic to win. We beat hundreds of businesses to reach the final three, which was an achievement in itself, but to beat two other great finalists was magnificent. Having other successful business owners give their seal of approval gives us so much confidence and further inspiration to help more young people across the West Midlands and the UK make more informed decisions about their health and career choices.”
Sarah Taylor, I-cubed Project Manager, from the University, said: “We are always delighted when individuals who we have supported through our enterprise programmes go on to achieve muchwider recognition.”
Tom was also shortlisted for The Pitch, where he had three minutes to sell his business to the Apprentice winner Tim Campbell and former Dragon’s Den panellist Doug Richard for the chance to win £50,000. He narrowly missed out on the top prize, but received good feedback on the business.
The I-cubed project, run by the Institute of Innovation and Enterprise at the University of Wolverhampton Business School, set Tom up with a business mentor, Gary Lennon from Ideas2Reality, who helped him to develop his idea. So far Tom has visited schools in Dudley, Sandwell and Wolverhampton to deliver workshops, but it is hoped he will be able to take his business all over the country.
For more information, visit http://www.getsetschools.co.uk/
Picture: Event compere Oli Barrett, Davina Warrender, Tom Warrender and Allison Harper, from Crimson Business, who organised the event.
The I-cubed project, funded by Advantage West Midlands, provided 133 local businesses within the West Midlands with business support over a five year period and helped to create 45 new businesses, 101 new jobs and secured 79 jobs in the region.
For more information please contact Vickie Woodward in the Media Relations Office on 01902 322736