Could your business or idea help address the climate and ecological crisis? BU has partnered with Santander to bring you funding and support to launch or grow your idea.
What’s the fund?
Achieving a net zero emissions future is only achievable through a multi-layered approach of innovation, education and communication. To drive innovation, BU has partnered with Santander to support the next generation of Eco Entrepreneurs to bring your ideas to reality or grow your business.
- Do you have a business or an idea with an environmental benefit? This could be anything from a product that can help reduce emissions or a business that helps people connect to nature.
- Are you passionate enough to make it a reality or grow it to the next level?
- Are you a BU current student or within three years of your graduation from BU?
- Is your idea well thought through, viable and with potential to help solve an environmental or climate problem?
If so, you are invited to apply for the Eco Entrepreneur Fund and win up to £5000 towards your business or idea.
Shortlisted entrants will get the opportunity to present their business or idea to judges who have experience of developing ideas which will help address environmental problems. Several of our judges and mentors are part of the Nature Health Network which brings together a wide range of organisations to foster innovation in nature-based learning and health solutions. The Bournemouth University Social Entrepreneurs Forum (BUSEF) will provide you a mentor to develop your idea if you are successful.
Sign up for the Graduate Skills Masterclass: Pitching & Presenting a Business Idea with Natwest & Dorset Growth Hub on 15 March - this session will focus on giving you practical advice on how to pitch and present a sustainable business idea to a panel of potential investors.
How do you apply?
Applications will open on 9 January 2023 and close on Friday 3 March 2023 at 17:00. To be in with a chance of winning the funding, please apply here. If you have any questions, please contact BU’s Sustainability Team at [email protected].
Why should you apply?
Climate change is recognised as the most important issue facing our planet today. In October 2022, the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) confirmed that “climate change is an imminent threat to the health of our planet, our livelihoods, our well-being, and all other species sharing this world with us”, and that we must act rapidly to achieve the Paris Agreement target of keeping increases in average global temperatures below 1.5°C.
BU is ranked 1st in the UK in the THE Impact Awards 2021 for our contribution to UN Sustainable Development Goal (SDG) 13: Climate Action, and our Climate and Ecological Crisis Action Plan (CECAP) lays out our commitment to achieving net zero emissions across all of our operations by 2030/31.
In order to reduce our carbon emissions and reach net zero emissions we need innovation, creativity and partnership to make progress. The BU Eco Entrepreneurs Fund could help you make a big impact.
Who won last year?
The overall competition winners, who received a £2,500 grant, were Matt Cosier and Nick Cooper from Gaia Card, a membership scheme which connects customers with sustainable businesses while supporting reforestation.
Matt, who completed both his BSc in Business and Management and MSc in Marketing Management at BU before going on to found Gaia Card, said: “It really is an honour to win the Eco Entrepreneurs Award. The businesses we went up against were amazing. It really does give me hope about the future to learn of so many revolutionary ideas and impactful businesses. We are excited to see where the funding can take us. This is just the start for Gaia, so make sure to follow us on our journey for more!"
Three other businesses – searchBOSH, an online rental platform; Four Acre Farm, a no-dig market garden and fruit orchard; and Gro Promo, an eco-printing company – were awarded £1,500 while the remaining four businesses received £500. The funding was provided by Santander and BU.
Read more about last year’s winners (Dorset Biz News profile winner Gaia Card).