UK's brightest young entrepreneurs honoured at Student Enterprise Awards

Some of the UK's brightest young entrepreneurs were honoured at the recent SETsquared annual Student Enterprise Awards.

Last Thursday, SETsquared, a partnership between the universities of Bath, Bristol, Exeter, Southampton and Surrey, held the event, which fosters entrepreneurialism and encourages tech startups.

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Some of the big winners on the night included the University of Exeter's TickBox, which helps people compare election candidates, and Instabear, which provides instant photo printing services from social media sites and already boasts Jaguar Land Rover among its clients. SanEco from the University of Southampton also won Best Social Enterprise for its attempts to tackle sanitation issues in Kenya.

Innovations director at SETsquared, Simon Bond, praised the level of this year's entries.

"It is so encouraging to see young people being fearless in setting up their own businesses," he said. "Traditionally, the entrepreneurialism route has been seen as one of risk and students have steered away from it, favouring the relative comfort of climbing onto the rungs of the corporate ladder."

In addition, champions of student enterprise from each university were also honoured and the University of Bristol won a separate award for its entrepreneurial bootcamp scheme, Spark.

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Guest of honour at the ceremony, entrepreneur Phil Cameron, pushed home the importance of encouraging startups.

The former University of Exeter student said, "Starting a business which has any chance of success is hard - it needs vision and a thoroughness of execution - but more people can and should do it, because the rewards of steering a vision to commercial success is well worth the effort.

"My advice to any young entrepreneur would be to embrace the challenge and never compromise on the goal."