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Latest Business Incubator Presenters Announced

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Our Business Incubator Programme goes from strength to strength with every new cohort. The programme has been running for the past few years and is doing a great job of inspiring and educating local people on how to plan, pitch and deliver their business plan.

Over the past year, we have introduced some major, positive changes to the Incubator programme, including a dedicated volunteer mentor for each delegate, which is an incredible addition and has made a significant difference in the connections for individuals and to their confidence overall.

Free use of our coworking space is also available during the Incubator process which helps people to concentrate on the outcomes, and we have developed a more concise delivery period which has again focused individuals to deliver positive outcomes.

We are now pleased to announce new presenters for the Business Incubator Programme who will be bringing their vast experience and knowledge to our delegates.

Jem Bahaijoub

Jem will be delivering our Digital Content session as she is an accomplished strategic leader with two decades of experience, becoming a Client Director for a boutique PR agency in Soho, London, and working with record labels, music festivals and independent artists.

Her wanderlust has inspired her to work across the globe — with recent stops in London, Washington D.C. and Chicago, where she’s collaborated with international clients across a diversity of industries.

With a career beginning in the music industry, Jem spent eight years as International Promotions Manager for Universal Music, devising and implementing global promotional campaigns across five continents.

Jem launched and ran her own PR and marketing agency in America for ten years, which had a profound impact on her work journey – she became a small business owner for the first time and was inspired by the hundreds of entrepreneurs she met who worked tirelessly to pursue their dreams.

Now residing in South London, Jem represents both US and UK brands. She is particularly passionate about working with purpose-driven female entrepreneurs and is on a mission to empower them with the confidence and strategic clarity to grow their businesses.

Jem regularly provides social media training workshops to various businesses both in the UK and USA. She has run her acclaimed Social Never Sleeps Mastermind Course for the past three years.

Mike Orchard

Mike Orchard will be taking over our session designed to help delegates identify customers. He is a self-confessed generalist with lean and agile DNA and an acute understanding of how to convert that into short, medium and long-term value for others.

Experienced in the rapid formation of collaborative teams to explore and monetise emerging opportunities, he also has a natural ability to see the big picture and communicate the strategy required to deliver it.

In his role as CEO at Skills Hive, Mike not only creates teams of independent professionals to deliver fixed-cost projects for clients but is often invited by clients to lead the early phase strategy design as a virtual board member.

Valued for his ability to identify opportunities through micro and macro-economic pattern recognition, Mike is often asked to share his insights and experiences with budding entrepreneurs both as a guest lecturer and public speaker.

With such a broad range of skills and experience, Mike is in his element, collaborating, coordinating and communicating as the glue that binds a team based on his enthusiasm for the value each and every team member brings.

Mike will be with us for the day and will be leading a ‘Skills Hive Swarm’ bringing other local providers of services to support delegates as they work on their plans.

Paul Taylor

Paul Taylor, who is currently part of our non-exec team as a financial director, will be delivering financial 1-2-1s with all participants to help build out the all-important financials.

The combination of one-to-many sessions along with more specific training through 1-2-1 mentoring makes all the difference to our delegates.

AJ Dosani

Aj Dosani will be coming in just before the pitching session to mentor each delegate and get them prepped and ready to present.

AJ is a natural presenter having prior experience as an actor as a skill which helps him on a daily basis as an accountant. He is also a natural networker and truly understands the power of persuasion. Aj will meet each delegate before the pitching session to enthral them with energy and confidence.

These new presenters add to our current support system, which includes Project Manager Geoff Ranson who manages the entire process, along with trustees Jo Gumb, who delivers a session at the start of the process to help delegates truly understand the value of the business plan, and Richard Sumption, who offers 1-2-1s towards the end of the process to give honest feedback on the developing business plans.

We have a variety of expert trustees who then judge the delegates at the crescendo of the entire process when each delegate has the opportunity to pitch to our dragons to win some seed funding.

Our Business Incubator Programme runs twice a year in Autumn and Spring. If you would like to take part yourself or, if now someone who could benefit from this experience, please visit the Business Incubator Programme page.

To qualify for the Business Incubator Programme, you must have attended one of our Bootcamp sessions – the next one starts on Wednesday 28th September. Find out more here.

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