From Sausages to Silver Medals for East Durham College Business Students

Fri, 24/07/2020 - 12:58

It’s an amazing story of sausages to silver medals for East Durham College Peter Jones Enterprise Academy students Matthew McGregor and Lucas Duncan as they have achieved second place in the Peter Jones Tycoon Enterprise Competition 3K category 2020!

Matthew and Lucas founded their company, the Meat Men, earlier this year. The Meat Men, with support from East Durham College’s butchery at our Houghall campus, have been making and delivering premium sausages to hungry patrons from around the North East.

The 3K element of the competition is exclusively available for students in further education, allowing them to borrow up to £3000 to start up their businesses. After months of business planning and preparation as part of their business course at EDC, the Meat Men received an initial start up loan of £800 from the Peter Jones Enterprise Academy. Several months later, after their sausages proved a massive hit around college and other venues around the North East, the Meat Men have managed to generate a hugely impressive £1758 in profits.

As part of the Tycoon Enterprise Competition, the Meat Men were judged on several criteria from a panel of business leaders from Sage, whose partnership supports the contest. Despite being up against 2,413 other students from across the country with nearly 500 individual businesses vying for the crown, the Meat Men were ultimately awarded the runner-up prize for the entire competition.

Catherine Taylor, Business Lecturer at East Durham College, said: “I’m so, so proud of the students for how far they’ve gone in the competition this year! All year long they’ve worked so hard on launching the Meat Men and making it a success – for them to be recognised with second place in this competition is just incredible. A huge well done Matthew and Lucas!”

Delighted by the range of businesses in this year’s Tycoon programme Peter Jones CBE said:

“I‘ve been blown away by the ambitious and inventive businesses that have been started as part of this year’s Tycoon competition. In challenging circumstances, the students have demonstrated that they have everything it takes to make it in business - their resilience, creativity and determination is inspiring.”

The competition sits at the heart of the Peter Jones Foundation’s mission to put enterprise at the centre of the education system and this year students from 192 schools and colleges spanning the length and breadth of the UK took part in Tycoon.

As well as start-up funding and a suite of digital resources, students participating in Tycoon can have an Ambition Business Mentor to support them on their entrepreneurial journey, thanks to the Peter Jones Foundation partnership with Sage.

This year, in recognition of the business motivations behind many of the Tycoon start-ups, the Peter Jones Foundation launched the Tycoon Impact Awards which recognise innovative businesses and enterprises committed to ‘doing good’.

Bill Muirhead, Managing Director, Peter Jones Foundation said:

“Over the past few years, we have seen an increasing number of Tycoon businesses putting purpose at the heart of their proposition. The social and ecological consciousness of these young entrepreneurs is inspiring and this year we were delighted to launch the Tycoon Innovation Business Award and Tycoon Business for Good Award, in recognition of the creativity and determination of the next generation of business leaders”.

Through the Tycoon Enterprise Competition, the Peter Jones Foundation has worked with over 700 schools and given more than £600,000 in funding, to enable over 14,000+ students to start their first business. The Foundation sees enterprise education as a cornerstone in ensuring that students leave school job-ready and, as such, Tycoon has had a tangible impact on the lives of young people.

For more information on East Durham College’s range of business courses (including the Peter Jones Enterprise Academy), taught at our Peterlee campus, use the following link to visit the EDC website: https://www.eastdurham.ac.uk/peter_jones_enterprise_academy_courses