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Congratulations to Our Latest Incubator Prize Winners

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In these times of crises with cost of living rising, it is great to be able to celebrate some positive news and achievements of some of our start-up businesses in Croydon and surrounding areas.

StartUp Croydon’s latest incubator programme was in full swing over the autumn, and our intrepid entrepreneurs have been working hard on their business plans and business models, which culminated last week in them delivering a pitch to our Dragon’s Den-style panel.

We are delighted to announce the winners of the pitching process who have been awarded a small start-up fund to help them on their journey.

They are:

Sackito – a social enterprise recycling and repurposing coffee bean bags into fashionable tote bags made by prisoners at HMP Pentonville. Click here to visit their website

Maria said,

“I am delighted to be one of the winners of the Business Incubator Program Autumn 2022. I want to thank StartUp Croydon for the opportunity to be part of this course. For me, it has been an incredible journey of learning and personal development.

Before I started this programme, I wasn’t sure how to grow the Sackito brand into a viable and sustainable business.
Sackito produces a range of sustainable bags made from reclaimed coffee sacks. We handcraft the bags at HM Prison Pentonville, and we offer training and skills to prisoners in the process. As well as a sustainable and ethical brand, we are a community-orientated start-up enterprise working with a prison in London, it is an unusual combination.”

The StartUp business incubator programme set me on the right path; from the workshops, the mentoring and finally, pitching to the panel, it gave me the tools and knowledge on how to move my business forward. It has been invaluable!

A big thank you to the force of volunteers that helps with the programme and experts from different industries that kindly offer their time and share their knowledge, this is a big part of the gear that makes this charity one of a kind. My gratitude to my mentor Anna, thank you for all your advice and for keeping me going.

Congratulations also to the other two winners. They both worked very hard. And to all the other participants, you helped me build my confidence with your encouragement, support and advice, it has been invaluable. Best luck to everyone.

Beard Surgeon – a business set up by three friends providing a range of perfumed beard oils to help men Look Good, Smell Good and Feel Good. Click here to visit their website.

One of the founders of Beard Surgeon, OJ Ohonyon, said,

“Entrepreneurs from different backgrounds and ages coming together to create new ideas and ways of doing business, it was a great experience.”

TN Natural Juices – a healthy drink brand using the healthy powers of sea moss and soursop fruit from the Caribbean.

Co-founder Tanya Sinclair said,

“Ital is Vital! William Shakespeare once said some of us are born great, and some have achieved greatness, some of us have greatness thrust upon them. Keep your dreams alive. Understand to achieve anything requires faith and belief in yourself, vision, hard work, determination, and perseverance.

Coming to Start Up Croydon, I did not know what kind of experience I was going to achieve. I personally wanted to learn everything that they were going to teach me about business. The experience was phenomenal, I met new people who had started their businesses and who are looking to start their businesses. This program has been very beneficial to my personal development and business growth; I have learned so much that is instrumental and informative. The team at Start-Up Croydon are truly inspirational. They have helped and supported me in all areas of development when it comes to understanding and improving my business.

On behalf of my Sister and myself, we want to thank you again for truly believing in us and T&N Natural Juice.”

We wish them all the best for their continued journey.

If you are interested in our next incubator programme, visit the Incubator page to find out more, or click here to apply.

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