Enterprise Starter was created to support London startups
Community projects, and contributing to the people and enterprises in London’s communities, is central to our activities. We view this as an investment in the people of London, the benefits of which spread out further than the people and projects we directly mentor.
We’re here to effect positive change. We do this by utlising our entrepreneurial spirit, skills, network, technology, innovation and creativity. We also work holistically with participants in supporting their lives outside of their enterprise or educational background. This means the people we work with include people who are trapped in situations and need help finding a safe way out, people who are homeless, people who deserve a break.
By virtue of us being a social enterprise every penny that is granted to us, and the profits from our own commercial work, is re-invested, back into the community. This investment goes directly into our community projects, into the London community that our team is a part of, and into training the entrepreneurial team at Enterprise Starter so that we can keep up to date and continue helping in relevant, creative and more effective ways.
We make sure The Enterprise Suite is primed with good technology, including the latest winning innovations, backed up with knowledgeable and encouraging staff, who guide our entrepreneurs and participants through using the positive mix of the elements we can bring to the table, in order to bring wide-reaching beneficial change.
And it doesn’t stop there. We also work in the background, on our own time and effort-saving innovations; making use of our ongoing experience in the projects we work on and in the businesses we work with. Coupled with the application of the latest developments in fields such as Artificial Intelligence and Big Data, we create systems and applications that streamline both our own processes and those of entrepreneurs and our community stakeholders. This gives us all more ‘bang for our buck’ and provides our team and our entrepreneur-participants with the space, on a day-to-day basis, to engage more fully with creativity and innovation.
Our aim is to reverse the pattern of rising unemployment through support that can enable our community to thrive by increasing the number of effective entrepreneurs in the community. We coach and mentor not only in the area of enterprise, but also in areas of self-worth, confidence and well-being.
The success of the entrepreneurs we support is intrinsically linked and is pivotal to the support we can offer future service users, benefitting not only individuals but their circles, and indeed the community as a whole. We’ve chosen to be a social enterprise because its framework provides the trading environment where inventive and knowledgeable responses to tackling some of our most deep-rooted social and economic challenges can be achieved with tangible and progressive results.
We work alongside our entrepreneurs and partners to deliver programmes that enable and encourage people to take positive steps for their lives. We support and coach on building resilience and adapting to changing climates to secure attainable futures for participants and the prosperity of the community. Mentoring, or being exposed to successful people with similar background profiles and skill sets can be a powerful contributor to self-efficacy, and we strive for our team and our graduating entrepreneurs to be positive role models.
We are experts at squeezing the last pip from every penny funded to us and our projects.
Our founder has been helping people to start businesses since 1999 as a printing company owner, freelance graphic designer, company formations agency, web development company owner, an employability coach on a DWP project and now Managing Director at Enterprise Starter.
He is joined on the board with a City of London accountant of 25-years and digital strategist of 15-years.
Together they direct the Entrepreneurial Team.
Challenges Islington Face
Islington has the sixth highest GDP of London’s 33 Boroughs, has an average property value of circa £650K (£400K over the national average), is (under normal circumstances) a central hub for social events and gatherings and attracts millions of visitors annually.
Yet our local community faces issues of high unemployment, shortages in affordable housing, disadvantages in income, poor health levels, high crime levels, low educational attainment and a scarcity of green space.
Neighbourhoods in each ward are among the poorest 20% in England. Other barriers to success include parents coping with addiction problems, the responsibility of caring for younger siblings and a general lack of positive role models in young lives. The Indices of Multiple Deprivation (IMD) ranked The Borough of Islington as the 6th most deprived local authority in London and 53rd in England.
Islington is the most densely populated local authority area in England and Wales, with 16,097 people per square km. This is almost triple the London average and more than 37 times the national average, whilst having the least green space per head of any local authority.
There is a vast disparity between the haves and have nots in Islington.
Our Community Investment Projects
Entrepreneurial education is essential for developing the human investment necessary for the society of the future. - World Economic Forum
Mind Your Own Business
This programme is for people who want to start a business but are on a low income or benefits and as such are caught in a poverty loop and need support to help them break free.
It is fully funded by several bodies at varying times of the year. Startup capital is not funded, however participants will learn how to raise funds for their business ideas.
Our new entrepreneurs will also learn the basic principles of bookkeeping and how to use Xero to maintain their financial records going forward. Participants work on communicating meaningfully with their accountant by fully learning and discussing the Balance Sheet, Profit and Loss Account and the Cash Flow reports.
We will sprinkle the above throughout the 13 weeks while the entrepreneur-participants concentrate on the nitty gritty:
- developing the idea
- creating a brand
- building a website
- launching a social media presence
- managing themselves and their new business
Upon successful completion, which includes registering their business with Companies House and registering as self-employed, participants are gifted 12 months membership providing 40 hours from the Entrepreneurial Team and other business goodies to help them get started.
There are no entry requirements to the programme except those imposed by funders. Each funder has their own application page with full details:
Current Fully Funded Projects
EQUIP - Paddington Development Trust - ESF - ESFA
To access this investment fund and join the next programme you must be on a low income or no income and living (with or without a home) in London. Apply now.
Get in touch if this programme interests you in any way. We are particularly keen to hear from you if:
- you do not qualify for funding and want to join the programme
- you would like to pay for a place for a friend or relative
- you would like to invest your social fund in the programme
- you would like to partner the programme in delivering to your niche cohort
We are working on a means for young people to be able to start out with an entrepreneurial approach to their careers by joining an Apprenticeship at Enterprise Starter.
We are currently looking for someone experienced in apprenticeship compliance to support our work so that we can become an accredited apprenticeship training centre. If this is you, please get in touch .
We want to be in a position to provide custom built apprenticeships for participants to learn and start their own business in whichever fields of study required for them to do so.
With local colleges and universities we intend to create an apprenticeship programme like no other. One that leads to an apprentice graduating, owning a business that was grown by them while studying and working at a college providing training in their speciality and at our Enterprise Suite in Islington learning about Enterprise and working there as part of their apprenticeship.
We are in the early days of building this programme and the last 12 months did see this project shelved at various times, however, we are now back on track and ready to move forward with our plans.
If you are interested in becoming an apprentice on this programme please register your interest below. Your interest will support our efforts to open this programme sooner:
If you are in anyway involved in UK apprenticeships and feel you can support this initiative then please get in touch
We want to help create a legal environment that is fairer for people starting a new enterprise. One of the biggest reasons people go out of business is because of being unaware of legal issues that affect their operations and marketing. Landing themselves in hot water through no fault of their own, except for not having the funds to have legal advice at hand, and this has contributed to the fear that surrounds starting an enterprise and stifles growth for those that have managed to establish and launch their business but cannot see the wood for the trees due to all the legal hangups that surround them.
Enterprise Starter is creating a solution for this problem and it’s called Straightup Startup.
It is to be a social enterprise legal firm in it’s own right and will provide essential legal support to London startup founders and provide valuable placements for law firm students who will be delivering legal support to the local community. Support such as handling the communications of a tenant being evicted or a phone company threatening legal action because of a debt that the user did not spend.
Funding investment to this programme will pay for three main threads:
- Core investment funding:
- the first year’s annual costs of maintaining a leadership team of solicitor(s)
- trainee solicitor expenses
- the administration costs of managing the leadership and the team of solicitor trainees.
- Project Funding: The Legal Essentials to Startup - Legal Guide and Online Wizard. Will be sold individually by monthly subscription and offered to ES members at reduced rates. 50% of sales of the guide return to the project.
- Project Funding:
- Local legal advice and representation for entrepreneurs affected by homelessness.
- Local legal advice for 1 and 2 residential property landlords who’s mortgage repayments are more than the rental revenue due to Government leniency on rent arrears
- Legal Drop in: 1 hour talk with trainee solicitor with, if there is a case for support, will provide 5 hours legal administrative support, such as writing letters or emails.
The Entrepreneurial Team will be hard at work in the background streamlining the legal processes that our solicitors and trainees are carrying out. We will be working on making the job easier to deliver and thereby providing more time for more people.
Students of law are invited to take part and earn or top up their law hours and become fully qualified quicker and start their careers with a small but mighty wealth of experience.
Through the recruitment of a team of Accredited Supervisory Practitioners who will head up our “Mindfully Well” programmes in their chosen Islington ward. Our Entrepreneurial Team will run the business of a psychotherapy service for the community.
The supervisors employed by us will work directly with placed psychotherapy students and ensure all due diligence and duty of care is maintained and continuously improved with the support of the Entrepreneurial Team.
With each Supervisor we employ we would be able to offer over 1200 therapy hours each year at acc.
Our Entrepreneurial Team will launch an app for making bookings and managing student therapists availability.
Therapy and supervision is conducted through the app via integration with an existing video conferencing provider and if required a room at the Business Design Centre, Islington will be provided for those that require face-to-face therapy or supervision.
Having spoken with psychotherapy students and their pains in not being able to find placements that work for them and knowing potential service users in Islington we encounter (as residents of the borough) we feel confident that we can match these two groups effectively and such a programme would provide intrinsic value to our community as well as our cause.
Some typical use cases:
- lone parents new to the borough who have fled another “needing time to reflect with a sensible psychotherapy trained adult”
- siblings and parents of people adversely affected by isolation since March 2020 “needing to talk through and make sense of it all”
- young people who have become “stuck to their screens and feel weird when out”
We believe that this model could be replicated and scaled up to alleviate pressure on current services, making waiting lists shorter. Problems/issues could be identified sooner for people suffering with mental health issues and escalated where needed. The more Supervisory Practitioners in place the more trainee placements could be offered, the more therapy sessions that can be offered in our communities to the people who need help sooner rather than later,
After establishing and launching we would look to growing the project by creating an app with bitesize tips that can be compiled into a regular read sent from therapists to patients. With patients consent, we can further automate and use AI technology to continue delivering bitesize relevant tips and nuances to support the patients mental well being.