Birmingham Made Me Make It Club – making it real for Birmingham City and Aston University entrepreneurs

Make it club

Birmingham Made Me Make It Club met for the first time 14th October in the recently opened BCU Curzon building from 4-7pm, hearing the stories from 12 entrepreneurs either studying at BCU or recently graduated.

Make It is a joint initiative between Birmingham City and Aston Universities providing early stage support to emerging businesses through networking, introductions to experienced mentors, funders, business plan development, marketing and promotion, and access to the BMM network of member and supporting businesses. It is part of the drive by both universities to promote entrepreneurship within Birmingham’s growing Knowledge Quarter.

A range of businesses and ideas were presented – from interior design business, Beige and Teal, , through to plans for new coffee shops and community activities, community design, vending machine and product hire, digital XploR Cane – providing accessibility support for blind and partially sighted populations, jewellery and silversmithing, jewellery-making for , singer songwriters, 3-D printing services, stress-busting in-company exercise and dance programmes, along with premium car valeting and vinyling business, CS Services.

The first meeting was a great success as an opportunity for all parties to share information and learn more from each other. Birmingham business people in attendance, 14th October, included Stuart Ballinger, JCDecaux, Simon Topman, CEO Acme Whistles and Chairman Millennium Point, with Booom TV, C4 and Videovision joining the meeting. BCU staff present included Assoc Prof Parmjit Chima, Associate Director, IDEA Birmingham, Don Dhaliwal and IDEA Director, Beverley Nielsen.

All joining in Make It Club meetings 14th October and 4th November, Curzon Room 510, 4-7pm, will be supported and assessed through a Team Poster Selction process on 19th November,  with those businesses making the greatest strides in moving forward being offered the opportunity to attend the BMM Make It Club dinner, 26th November, BCU Parkside Atrium and Shell Lecture Theatre, being held as a joint event between BCU and Aston University.

Selected businesses will pitch their proposals via a speed-dating format to funders, mentors, business people, and join a prestigious networking dinner with business and university leaders.

Keynote speaker Simone Schehtman, Founding Director, Teamworks Karting will share insights from her journey as a successful graduate entrepreneur who has been running her business for 16 years.  Simone has been widely recognised for her achievements, most recently as a Winner, ‘High Growth Award – Women on their Way’, and previously as one of ’42 Under 42 – Up-and-Coming Business Leaders’.

Forthcoming Make It Club meetings:

4th November, 4-7pm, BCU Curzon Building, Room 510 – open to all
19th November 4-7pm, BCU Curzon Building, Room TBC – Poster presentation and dinner attendance selection – open to those attending previous Make It Club meeting
26th November, 5-10pm, BCU Parkside Make It Club Pitching Dinner, with keynote speaker, Simon Schehtman, Teamworks Karting – by invitation only