We asked some of the latest winners about their experiences of the LSE Generate funding competition and as an entrepreneur, and our first entry is from Rory O’Connor:
Who are you and what does your venture do?
My name is Rory, and I’m the founder of The Good Blend. We make pouches of chopped up fruit, veg and herbs that you blend up or add to water to make smoothies, juices and infusions without the hassle.
What’s it like to compete and win funding from LSE Generate?
The application process is similar to that for external investment or funding competitions and is helpful in making you think about and define your ideas and assess their feasibility. In the final round, the chance to pitch in a supportive but professional environment (where you won’t get ‘ripped to shreds’) provides invaluable practice for subsequent pitches. Being chosen for funding is hugely motivational as not only are you able to progress the business but the added validation that investors like your idea will make you work a hundred times harder.
What’s your favourite thing about LSE Generate?
Aside from the practical and monetary benefits of the competition stages, the network of contacts and range of events put on throughout the year were extremely beneficial. I am now in contact with alumni with similar interests as well as those with food and other businesses. The wide range of workshops throughout the year can give you the tools to turn your ideas into a business.
What’s the strangest thing that you have had to do as an entrepreneur?
Nothing too strange – my family and friends think I’m a bit weird because I’m always messing around with vegetables or machines, dismantling and rebranding display freezers or trying to make a coring and peeling machine with a drill.
You can watch a selection of Lent Term winners pitch alongside Michaelmas Term winners for extra funding and the accolade of LSE Entrepreneur of the Year or LSE Social Entrepreneur of the Year on Thursday 9 June. And after the competition, on the same evening, you can celebrate all of Generate’s success stories and meet the teams behind them at our summer party!