Encouraging entrepreneurship in the city

The University of Sheffield will engage with the city's entrepreneurial community this weekend (9-11 November 2012) at the regions first ever Startup Weekend.

Enterprenuers in action

The three-day event, hosted by University of Sheffield Enterprise (USE) and the Department of Computer Science, will bring together entrepreneurs, designers, and business startup enthusiasts from across South Yorkshire. In just 54 hours the talented participants will take innovative business ideas from concept to launch.

Local Chief Executive Officers and startup veterans, including Plusnet founder, Lee Strafford, will be on hand to provide expertise and give talks on their experiences in the fast-paced world of technology startups.

Samantha Deakin, Marketing Coordinator at USE said: "This is going to be an amazing weekend for both our students and the startup community in Sheffield.

"The city has a great deal of creative, digital and entrepreneurial talent and we’re really looking forward to seeing the evolution of ideas from pitch to startup in just a few days."

On Friday evening (9 November 2012), attendees will give a 60 second pitch to the whole group and teams will start to form around the best ideas. The rest of the weekend will be spent developing the web and mobile applications and business plan with the help of mentors and seasoned startup entrepreneurs.

By Sunday, teams will be ready to present their ideas to a panel of judges who will award prizes to the winning team worth around £1000, including premium Fluid UI accounts to continue the development of their app startup.

Sara Pates, Business Manager at USE, said: "Our mission this weekend isn’t limited to just creating student startups. We want to engage the public as well.

"The university has a strong history of civic engagement and we’re really excited about the participation of the city’s entrepreneurial and tech community in what is shaping up to be a fantastic event."
Around 70 participants are expected to take part over the weekend, including students from both Sheffield universities and local technical and non-technical entrepreneurs.

Additional information

Startup Weekend
Startup Weekend is a 501c(3)non-profit based in Seattle, Wash. Founded in 2007 in Boulder, Colo., by Andrew Hyde, the organisation has been based out of Seattle since 2009 under the direction of Marc Nager.

Supported by a grant from the Kauffman Foundation, Startup Weekend has held over 325 events around the globe, inspiring nearly 30,000 entrepreneurs to take an idea from concept to launch. Over 36 per cent of Startup Weekend startups are still going strong after three months, and roughly 80 per cent of participants plan on continuing working with their team or startup after the weekend.

For information about the Sheffield organisation, please visit Startup weekend or contact organiser Samantha Deakin at 0114 222 4034 or s.deakin@sheffield.ac.uk.

University of Sheffield Enterprise
University of Sheffield Enterprise (USE) helps students and recent graduates of the University of Sheffield to make their ideas happen through business support and advice, incubation space and a series of inspiring and informational workshops and lectures. For more information about USE, please visit USE

The University of Sheffield
With nearly 25,000 students from 125 countries, the University of Sheffield is one of the UK’s leading and largest universities. A member of the Russell Group, it has a reputation for world-class teaching and research excellence across a wide range of disciplines.

The University of Sheffield has been named University of the Year in the Times Higher Education Awards for its exceptional performance in research, teaching, access and business performance. In addition, the University has won four Queen’s Anniversary Prizes (1998, 2000, 2002, 2007). These prestigious awards recognise outstanding contributions by universities and colleges to the United Kingdom’s intellectual, economic, cultural and social life. Sheffield also boasts five Nobel Prize winners among former staff and students and many of its alumni have gone on to hold positions of great responsibility and influence around the world.

The University’s research partners and clients include Boeing, Rolls-Royce, Unilever, Boots, AstraZeneca, GSK, ICI, Slazenger, and many more household names, as well as UK and overseas government agencies and charitable foundations.

The University has well-established partnerships with a number of universities and major corporations, both in the UK and abroad. Its partnership with Leeds and York Universities in the White Rose Consortium has a combined research power greater than that of either Oxford or Cambridge.


For further information please contact:

Amy Pullan
Media Relations Officer
The University of Sheffield
0114 222 9859