Winning over the Dragons

Five teams from a Wendover school studying business have pitched ideas to professionals in Metro Bank’s “Dragons’ Den”-style contest. The Dragons came from a wide portfolio of backgrounds and included a representative from a leading blue-chip organisation which has a representation in Aylesbury, an established private sector enterprise, a charity and a public sector authority.

The Dragons present at Metro Bank’s Aylesbury base included Iain Kirkpatrick, Managing Director for Metro Bank UK; Michael Donnachie, Michael Anthony Estate Agents Senior Partner; Caroline Bennett, Director of Fundraising at The Pace Centre; and Nigel Ashton, Director for Commercial Strategy at Aylesbury Vale District Council.

The objective:
As part of their learning syllabus, each team from Year 9 at The John Colet School, Wendover, had a ‘blank sheet of paper’ to incept a new product or service. After a competition at the school, five teams were invited to present in front of a packed crowd of fellow students, parents and friends and many members of Buckinghamshire’s business community. The Dragons would pick one winner.

Finally the Dragons selected ‘Team CBE’ for their car battery idea. The Dragons offered their fictional £100,000 investment to the winners.I deas ranged from pencil cases to cakes to heated hoodies for colder days.

What they said:

Heather Wood, Local Director for Metro Bank, which hosted the evening, said: ‘All the Dragons commented on the high standard of each presentation; entrepreneurship in the UK is alive and well.’

Head of Business Studies at the school, Lee Adams, who dreamed up the event, said: ‘This was a fantastic experience for our students and everyone who took part. I know how much time, effort and consideration was made by the students and they can be proud of their achievements.’

Iain Kirkpatrick, Managing Director for Metro Bank, added: ‘This was an outstanding event for local students gaining insight and expertise from professionals who have amassed many years’ experience. At Metro Bank, we offer initiatives like this up and down in our stores in the UK to excite, engage and encourage customers to understand what is possible. This was another superb showcase.’

All the participating John Colet students and the Dragons together after all the pitches were heard at Metro Bank, Aylesbury.