Jun 8 2009 by Karen McLauchlan, Evening Gazette.
THE search to find Tees Valley’s next entrepreneurial star is just days away from revealing a winner. The nebusiness backed If We Can, You Can challenge recently named its two local finalists Louise Bell, a 36-year-old, from Stockton, who set up Healthy Glow, a home spray tanning business, and 31-year-old Mark Easby, from Middlesbrough, who runs Better – a creative brand agency.
The two finalists beat off stiff competition from four fellow entrepreneurs, who were given the chance to tap into the minds of the experienced opportunity panel during a 20-minute judging session.
Telephone and internet voting closed at midnight last night. This public vote will be combined with the judges’ scores to determine the overall winner who will be announced on Thursday.
As well as becoming a face of entrepreneurship, the winner will claim a unique prize package, including a ‘money can’t buy’ mentoring surgery, £5,000 worth of business services and a business gadget.
The second If We Can, You Can challenge campaign was launched in March this year.
Almost 100 entrants signed up to this year’s challenge – 20% of them were looking to turn an idea into reality; 50% had already launched a business and 30% were already established but looking to push their business forward.
Further information about the campaign can be found at www.ifwecanyoucan.co.uk