East Yorks boot camp for entrepreneurs
ASPIRING entrepreneurs are being urged to book into a boot camp to help make their business plans a reality.
FEO Bootcamp is run by the Hull-based For Entrepreneurs Only (FEO) group in conjunction with Hull College, and aims to provide free fast-track help and guidance to those setting up their own business, or taking an existing business to the next level.
When Angela Marshall and Sue Robson came up with an innovative retail idea, they knew they had the passion to make it work. However, they lacked the vital experience to get their business off the ground.
Now, after taking part in FEO Bootcamp, the two fledgling entrepreneurs are preparing to launch the Dressing Room in George Street.
The Dressing Room is a boutique-style dress agency that takes customer's pre-loved designer and high-end street brands and sells them on their behalf.
Angela said: "The FEO Bootcamp was really informative and very helpful, with everything explained in simple, digestible terms, reinforced with real life examples from the FEO members.
"Each session gave us something to think about and we always came away bursting with ideas.
"It was a great insight into what was involved in setting up a business and provided us with a step by step guide that focused us on our priorities."
As part of the initiative, Sue and Angela were assigned FEO mentor and retail entrepreneur Joyce Clappison, who helped them drive their idea forward while offering constructive help with setting up their business plan.
Sue said: "It was extremely valuable to have contact with someone who has real retail experience, and will be even more beneficial once the business is up and running.
"The great thing about the FEO Bootcamp is it doesn't just teach you how to set up a business, it also supports you throughout your journey.
"We will definitely be using the support of FEO in the future.
"As well as having Joyce as a mentor, we are also planning on attending an FEO clinic at the Hull University Enterprise Centre and would like to become an FEO member in the future, so we can use our experience to help others."
Now Angela and Sue are encouraging others to follow their lead and take advantage of the wealth of experience and free support available via the FEO group.
"We definitely recommend the FEO Bootcamp to aspiring entrepreneurs. It really is a massive help, especially if you have no business background," said Angela.
"It made us realise setting up a business is not easy, while also inspiring us to see that, with some hard work, we could make it happen."
Antony Eltherington, head of the FEO Getting Started group and managing director of Eltherington Group Ltd, praised Sue and Angela's "vast drive and energy" throughout the Bootcamp series.
"We are keen and excited to continue mentoring them and look forward to following their success," he said. "We hope our 2013 Bootcamp will be just as popular as the first and can't wait to offer our help to more local entrepreneurs."
FEO has announced new dates for the 2013 Bootcamp.
The six practical workshops are free to attend and will run from February 27 to March 27.
Anyone interested in taking part should email firstname.lastname@example.org by February 20.