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Sweet success for chocolate entrepreneur at Hallam Enterprise Awards

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Issued:29/09/17

A local craft chocolate factory, a jewellery school and Taiwanese cuisine are just a few of the diverse fledging businesses showcased last night (28 September) at Sheffield Hallam University's Hallam Enterprise Awards.

The awards give student and graduate start-ups the opportunity to showcase their businesses and share their achievements with an audience and judging panel of fellow entrepreneurs and innovators from the Sheffield business and higher education communities. Ten individuals were shortlisted to compete for a share of a total £10,000, courtesy of the University's new partner Santander.

The winner - on the night, Max Scotford, took home a £5000 prize for impressing the judges with his business Bullion. Bullion is Yorkshire's first craft chocolate company and sources quality cocoa beans from across the globe. 

Max graduated from Hallam in 2015 with a degree in Events Management. Since then he has set up a small scale production unit at Sheffield's Kelham Island, after spotting a gap in the market for fine chocolate. Bullion is now on the shelves of seven independent retailers in Sheffield, and has also sold nationwide in cities such as London, Leeds (Harvey Nichols) and Hull. By having complete control over the production process he is able to produce a single origin, craft chocolate from bean-to-bar. Just as with fine wine, Max wants Bullion to encourage people to discuss the different origins and distinct flavour notes of the chocolate they produce.

Max said: "The enterprise team allocated me an amazing mentor who I meet with on a monthly basis; the team have put me in touch with essential contacts which has turned into amazing opportunities. They have been my back bone, my go to team and a fantastic support for everything that I've been through.

"What's next for Bullion is investment in marketing campaigns, starting with The Chocolate Show, and then onto Vogue magazine, and to be featured in Vogue at such an early time in our business is monumental."

Two runners up also won £2000 each as part of the prize fund, Nelly Naylor impressed with her photography business Same Sex Photography, a unique business that celebrates love and supports the LGBT community.  Whilst Danielle Wilkinson was chosen for her mobile spray tanning business -Dan Tan, which uses only eco-friendly, ethical tanning products. She primarily employs single mothers who are seeking opportunities to provide for their families around flexible working hours. 

The enterprise team also sponsored a £1000 prize based on an audience vote for the best pitch.  Harvey Morton impressed with his IT support business, Harvey Morton Ltd, which offers services which include social media management, web design, app development and media production. Founded in 2013 whilst Harvey was at school, the young entrepreneur secured his first international client earlier this year.

Enterprise Awards finalists
Danielle Wilkinson (runner up), Max Scotford (winner), Nelly Naylor (runner up), and Harvey Morton (best pitch)
Max Scotford Enterprise Awards winner

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Caroline Nouvellon, manager of the enterprise team said: "The Enterprise Awards are a great way of supporting student and graduate businesses. Not only to provide our talented entrepreneurs with an opportunity to showcase their businesses but to allow us to acknowledge and congratulate them on their passion, drive, hard work and determination to turn their ideas into viable commercial ventures, with the potential for long-term success and sustainability in the years ahead.

"This year’s finalists provide a snapshot of the range of business ideas we currently support and, I believe, demonstrate the breadth and depth of the entrepreneurial talent and spirit that SHU students and graduates possess. I am certain that all of the finalists will approach their future prospects with confidence in themselves and their business."

Other finalists of the Hallam Enterprise Awards included:

·         Green Threads Clothing - Sam Pipkin

·         Klear Commercial Services Ltd - Sam Kennedy

·         Shuju Kitchen - Shu-ju (Gloria) Chien

·         Studio Budgie Galore - Julie-Ann Weissenborn

·         Yang for Young - Yang (Elena) Liu

·         Lubrikem - Ali Sayadi Zadeh

For press information please contact Deanna Coult in the Sheffield Hallam University Press Office on 0114 225 5220 or email d.coult@shu.ac.uk