Blue Moon students star in contest

A TEAM of young entrepreneurs from Woodbridge School has been named joint runner-up in a national enterprise competition backed by banking group HSBC.The members of the Blue Moon team, who produce unique bird nesting boxes painted in the style of village cottages, inns and shops, were among 12 regional winners competing for the overall title in the 2009 HSBC Young Enterprise Innovation Awards.

A TEAM of young entrepreneurs from Woodbridge School has been named joint runner-up in a national enterprise competition backed by banking group HSBC.

The members of the Blue Moon team, who produce unique bird nesting boxes painted in the style of village cottages, inns and shops, were among 12 regional winners competing for the overall title in the 2009 HSBC Young Enterprise Innovation Awards.

First place went to Affinity, from Plymouth College and Plymouth High School in Devon, which produced a book of family walks, with Blue Moon being one of two other finalists to be highly commended, together with a team from Farr High School, in the Highlands.

Besides the appealing design of their next boxes, the Blue Moon students increased their success by diversifying their product to include personalised bird boxes and boxes using colours from the Ultra Violet spectrum, which appeals more to birds' vision.

More than 2,500 teams entered the competition as part of the Young Enterprise Company Programme which enables pupils aged 15-19 at schools and colleges across the UK to set up and run their own businesses, with the support and guidance of volunteer business advisers.

The national final, held at the Hilton Park Lane Hotel in London involved each team appearing before a panel of judges to be evaluated on their innovation, the successful exploitation of ideas in all aspects of the running of the company and an understanding ofcontinuous improvement.

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Michael Savory, chief executive of Young Enterprise, said: “The HSBC Young Enterprise Innovation Awards are our annual celebration of the achievements of the students and their companies. The quality and creativity of the entrants continues to grow every year.

“We believe this is a unique opportunity for students to experience the world of business whilst in full time education, our volunteer business advisors provide the students with valuable support and advice throughout the process.

“To win an award students not only have to run a financially successful company or to have created an innovative product. The programme has a proven long term impact on young people's skills, attitudes and aspirations for work and entrepreneurship.”

Huw Morgan, head of business banking at HSBC, added: “HSBC is proud to have been working in partnership with Young Enterprise for 28 years to help encourage the next generation of young entrepreneurs.

“As part of our continuing commitment to entrepreneurship throughout the UK we want to recognise the hard work that the young people put into running their companies.”