Meet the business owners who will compete to be crowned our Female Start-up of the Year at the Festival of Female Entrepreneurs on 22 October.
Taking place in Bristol, hundreds of entrepreneurs will descend on Colston Hall to hear from top class keynote speakers and attend practical workshops at the UK's biggest gathering of female entrepreneurs.
As part of the event, three female start-ups will pitch on stage in front of an expert panel of judges to be crowned the best of 2015. The shortlisted businesses, selected from several who applied to take part, are:
Francesca Harkness & Daisy Hamid, Short Stuff
"Bristol is an amazing city for bringing up kids and you're never short of something of do with your babies and toddlers. Sometimes though, the parents can be left twiddling their thumbs while the nippers have a whale of a time.
"That's where Short Stuff come in. We put on Jump Around, afternoon shindigs that are as much fun for the parents as they are for the ankle biters. Great music featuring the best in funk, soul, old school hip hop, reggae and classic dance floor fillers as well as animal singalongs, art workshops, yoga, story telling, film screenings and much more. It's a chance to hang out with your kids and catch up with friends over a pint without the guilty feeling of having dragged your kids to the pub!
"We also create dance floor garb for the littlies to maximise their shape throwing capabilities! We have a selection for sale at each event.
"Short Stuff are Daisy and Fran, two Bristol mums with backgrounds in photography, fashion, arts education, millinery, event planning and multi-tasking! We look forward to getting on that dance floor with you very soon."
Emily Stewart, BASEDtraveler
"BASEDtraveler Books & Media is an innovative company that bridges the gap between global and hyper-local relocation journalism. We benefit communities, writers, and relocating professionals who move to lesser-known cities for career opportunities. We are relocation experts because we live as our readers do, writing narrative guidebooks and website content from our own experience. We benefit communities that are forgotten by Lonely Planet and lack the resources to assist and encourage international citizens there.
"Our writing program is a fantastic opportunity for new writers to build a portfolio and hone-in on their craft. Our readers are local and international; they love the perspective we bring to their sometimes challenging and boring cities. After a year in business and with six people on our team, we've got a clear portfolio planned and the intent to scale. We (think) we know why we're valuable, what we're going to do, where we're doing it, and how to roll out our own yellow brick road. But, we need funds, advice, manpower, scope, time, and the final foundations to do so. We all know someone living abroad. Enterprise Nation, can you help us help them?"
Chloe Tingle, No More Taboo
"No More Taboo is a not-for-profit social enterprise selling reusable sanitary products in the UK and investing 100% of the profits into charitable projects that help tackle the taboos surrounding menstruation and sanitation. Our core values are: reducing the environmental impact of disposable sanitary products; breaking the silence around the taboos; empowering women, both in the UK and in the developing world, by improving their menstrual hygiene management and access to sanitation.
"Each woman in her life time uses over 11,000 disposable products creating 150kg of waste which can take over 500 years to biodegrade. Many women do not know there are alternatives to disposable pads and tampons, which can potentially help save them more than £3500 over their lifetime. Our founder, a young independent female entrepreneur, has big ideas to create a sustainable business. We aim in the next five years to stop 743 tonnes of menstrual waste going to landfill; save women £16m which can be reinvested into the local economy; educate 9200 UK school children; donate over 3000 products and have partners working in 3 different locations worldwide. Our unique selling point of donating 100% of profits to charitable causes makes us a Bristol start-up worth watching."
- Philip Baker, investment analyst at Crowdcube
- Mike Jackson, founder of Webstart Bristol
- Kate Cox, chief marketing officer at 123-reg
- Title of Enterprise Nation Female Start-up of the Year 2015
- Mentoring from investor and Webstart Bristol founder Mike Jackson
- Free attendance of an analyst workshop with Crowdcube
- Consultation and support from Kirsty Ranger, founder of IdeaSquares
- Sales coaching from Alison Edgar, Sales Coaching Solutions and Enterprise Nation South West Champion
- Free website from 123reg
Networking and exhibition tickets are still available for the Festival of Female Entrepreneurs, but they're going fast! Buy yours below: