Enterprising Hebburn youngsters pitch in for business success

A team of enterprising teenagers swapped the classroom for the boardroom to find the key to business success.

Budding business brains from Hebburn Comprehensive School took a break from their studies to gain a vital enterepreneurial education.

Sage, a leading account, payroll and payment systems firm, teamed up with The Key, a charity which inspires young people to boost their development through a range of skills-based initiatives, to host an event to help disadvantaged youngsters reach their full potential and see their bright ideas turned into a reality.

Students Callum Worth, Keiron West, Kristian Healey, Lauren Burniston, Rebecca Smith and Stan Mathieson, all aged between 14-15, collectively called Chapter Gangstas, made a pitch for investment to Sage and Key executives to help fund plans for a toddler’s party for nursery children in their local area.

Rather than use a standard PowerPoint presentation, the innovative youngsters wrapped up each slide within a layer of wrapping paper for the boardroom panel to unwrap as a corporate pass the parcel.

The inspired presentation style and the passionate delivery of the aims of the business led the panel to award the team £1,000 of funding to ensure their idea is brought to fruition.

As well as Chapter Gangsters receiving funding, two further teams of teenagers from Hebburn Comprehensive were also successful in gaining grants; the creatively named The Cracking Gang and Banana Unicorns each received £250 to help bring their ideas to life.

Claire Sharp, Teacher, Hebburn Comprehensive said: “All the teams were incredibly happy about being successful at Sage with some waking up parents on night shift to tell them the news and others ringing parents who were incredibly happy for the group and so proud of what they had achieved.”

Brendan Flattery, President Sage Europe, said: “At Sage, we believe that entrepreneurs are the true heroes of the economy. So, any support we can provide to people as early as possible in their lives to help ignite their entrepreneurial passion is very important. Through Sage Foundation, we aim to transform lives by investing our time, money, expertise and technology to create sustainable social, economic and entrepreneurial opportunity in our local communities.

Hannah Underwood, Chief Executive, The Key, said: “We want to create a world where all young people believe in their own ideas and can take responsibility for living them. Our work with Sage really builds on this by helping us to support even more young people from the region by providing them with opportunities that will set them up for the future. It’s a fantastic endorsement that Sage believes in our work and the positive impact we make and is a great start to our new approach to building long term, win-win partnerships with businesses.”